Another Covert One novel by Kyle Mills, based on the legacy of Robert Ludlum, the Utopian Experiment interestingly builds upon the same theme as Dan Brown's Inferno - too many people on Earth, and one crazed scientist's desperate and brilliant attempt to make things right, unmindful of the rightfulness of the methods used.
This time, it's the Merge, a technology that allows users to seamless connect the Internet to their own brain, overlaying external video and audio inputs onto their own sensory organs, drawing analytics from LayerCake, a unique search and analyze algorithm that can evaluate a person's good/bad quotient in seconds, drawing upon everything that is known about that person in the ether. While millions of ordnary citizens are getting hooked to the Merge for its multiple entertainment and life-enhancing capabilities, including the ability to induce perfect sleep, the US military is excited about using it in combat, riding on an exclusivity partnership with the creator of Merge, the reclusive and brilliant Christian Dresner.
But when Jon Smith, the man in charge of the military program, and his friend and ex-girlfriend's sister Randi Russel, stumble upon some strange occurences in Afghanistan, their curiosity lands them in a desperate battle to survive, and thwart Dresner's diabolic plans.
And unlike many of the earlier Covert One novels which took very early scientific research and created doomsday scenarios out of them (like the DNA computers), this one hits very close to real!