In the near future, it is mandated that all persons must be supplemented with communication implants. Some rebel.
" 'I met Hiam about a year ago, just a few weeks after he had removed his implants. He couldn't stop talking about how free he felt -- how quiet and focused his mind had become without the constant chatter of artificial things.' She looked back at me. 'I mean do we really need perpetual updates on air temperature, UV density, local and world events -- random information about all the people around us, friends and strangers alike? It's almost like we're not individuals anymore. Just . . . pieces of a big machine.',