>Remember, NXE has a severe divergence from real-world history. I
>imagine that border crossings more closely resemble ones made circa
>1997, because the continued survival of humanity made the idea of
>flying airliners into civilian buildings for the purposes of terrorism
>seem a little less important.
True, but they did undergo an actual apocalypse and a bunch of wars.
Then again, their progress through the information age does appear to have been arrested somewhat as well. The technology to hit the face of everyone with a high-fidelity camera and do recognition matching, as well as to link every podunk border post to a central database of wanted assholes, may just flat out not exist.
1997-2003 saw a lot of interesting changes here in the real world. The VCR had a stake put through its heart. Cell phones went from "giant brick" to "quirky little flip phones." Broadband penetration grew at triple-digit rates through much of the developed world. It was a weird time.
It's... still a weird time, really. We're approaching the tail end of what I call the smartphone revolution; they've stopped getting bigger and containing more "wow" features and entered the "incremental upgrade" part of their lifecycle. The iPhone 7 and the latest iterations of the Galaxy can't really get bigger; any bigger and they become tablets. Interface responsiveness is high, LTE networks are broadband level and can stream HD video without a lot of trouble... so we've reached the point where anyone who can save up a few hundred bucks can slap an immensely powerful computer-slash-telecommunications interface into their pocket.
The next phase will be them becoming more affordable, but I think we've reached the end of the "new phone! This one is bigger and faster and responds better!" yearly upgrades because they can't get bigger and faster and respond better anymore.
And that's just our phones.
... I went off on a tangent there, didn't I.
NXE was written at a weird time, set in a weird time, and we here in the real world have reached another, different kind of weird time.
The future is awesome, but it can give you a headache.