Researchers at the University of Oxford made a family tree spanning 100k years using genetics. It includes over 3.6k people.
In theory, someone could use the information to figure out who their ancestors were and their relations to everyone today.
The team that created the family tree is a part of the Big Data Institute. Their big breakthrough was using algorithms to sort through the mountains of data—the various databases held both modern and ancient genomes.
Turning this into a story, what if an algorithm in a dystopian future presented users with potential mates to optimize the genetic variation with a population?
For example, a young woman swiping through tinder would only see potential mates with the best genes, according to the algorithm.
Nowadays, first and second cousins are considered taboo, but what if you knew someone was your sixth cousin? Would that affect your consideration of them as a partner?
In this dystopian future, it would.
But this will have a Romeo and Juliet twist, with a bit of Robert Rodriguez’s Planet Terror.
In short, two fourth cousins fall in love. They’re the same gender/biological sex, so they can’t reproduce, and the algorithm can’t let their relationship stand because it contradicts the algorithm’s mandate.
Instead of zombies, like in Planet Terror, the algorithm sends androids after the couple, who have to navigate the wasteland while staying alive.
The people they meet in the city don’t help them because they are under the spell of the seeming utopia. But, outside the city, the locals aren’t fans of the AI. They permit infidelity in their relationships, only marrying who the algorithm demanded so they would be left alone.
The final battle would occur at an abandoned fueling station, where one part of the couple seemingly sacrifices themselves. Later, we find out that they surrendered themselves to the AI and married who the algorithm said so they could get close to the center and take down the system from within.