Difference between revisions of "Restless Souls/Technology"
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Revision as of 23:48, 4 November 2019
RS is constantly changing. Any writing should not be considered final until I remove this note.
- 1 Daodan Chrysalis
- 1.1 Origin
- 1.2 Aftermath
- 1.3 Some more political/social/ethical aspects
- 1.4 Attempted explanation of the biological dimension
- 1.4.1 Sytropin
- 1.4.2 The Daodan computer
- 1.4.3 Green Village report extract
- 1.4.4 Arguments for an in vitro Daodan
- 1.4.5 Arguments for an in vivo Daodan
- 1.4.6 Novel methods of genetic protection?
- 1.4.7 Factors for a higher performance
- 1.4.8 Transformation: control and power
- 1.4.9 Overpower mode
- 1.4.10 Transformation: static metamorphosis
- 1.4.11 Chenille
- 1.4.12 Multiple Imago stages
- 1.4.13 Natural reproduction of human hosts
- 1.4.14 Contamination of the ecosystem
- 1.5 Daodan self-defense and diagnostics
- 1.6 Versions
- 1.7 Stunning real world symbioses for inspiration
- 2 Bioc
- 3 SLD
- 4 Neural link
- 5 Computers
- 6 Suits
- 7 Mechs
- 8 Shields
- 9 3D printing
- 10 Nanopore filtration
- 11 Heavy weapons
- 12 References
- 13 Silver Dawn
- 14 Mind Seal
- 15 Beyond Dragons
- 16 Nature's Decision
- 17 Wheels of time
- 18 Technologies not quite existing in RS
In RS the DC is a very complex genetic program designed to upgrade the human host and his microbiome.
Each symbiosis consists of two or more symbionts. The term prime symbiont refers to the human host and his microbiome because they are the more important partner. The human body and his flora are a complete living being while the DC was just made for their support and couldn't exist on its own.
So, secondary symbiont stands for the upgraded biomass.
After the DC upgraded all its host's cells, there's no more prime and secondary symbiont. At this point we have a new life form known as Imago.
Humans' use of nuclear material contaminated whole countrysides. - At least nuclear weapons aren’t fired or tested these days but their remnants are still there. - To date, nuclear power plants continue to produce radioactive waste while suitable locations for repositories are still the subject of controversial debates. Due to that, radioactive waste was officially and unofficially dumped in the oceans. It was just a matter of time until the barrels would leak due to rust. On top of that were catastrophic accidents like in Chernobyl and Fukushima. Besides radioactive contamination there is a lot of ammunition, grenades and bombs dating back from WWII in the oceans. When the shells rust their toxic explosives and chemical agents are release into the water. To all that microplastics and nanoparticle accumulate in the ecosystems.
When the World Coalition Government took over, they had undoubtedly a PR problem. So in the same year they came up with a distraction for the media. Laboratories under WCG authority developed plans to undo nuclear contamination and present it to the public with the slogan "Together we can go everywhere". Their solution was an artificially-created mycorrhiza. This symbiosis of plants and fungi was supposed to absorb radioactive isotopes and store them in a kind of nut. Drones were going to collect them. The shell had a bitter taste, so that animals wouldn't feed on it. The mycorrhiza organisms would be unable to propagate naturally because their cells, including DNA and its mutations, would dissolve when the required fertilizer wasn't used anymore. This kind of control was necessary because the mycorrhiza would not only clean the soil but also devour whole forests to collect the radionuclides inside non-animal organisms. Growth is inhibited in presence of collagen. To accelerate development, all these mechanisms were tested in silico against critical mutations. In the lab it seemed stable enough, so the officials pushed for field tests.
In nature, the mycorrhiza accumulated mutations in an unpredicted way. Defeating their fail-safe measures, the mycorrhiza was able to spread uncontrollably. Over the following years, it influenced other organisms. This marked the beginning of the BioCrisis. Since then, reclamation teams have been fighting back the wilderness and the WCG is trying to hide their fatal errors from the public. Nobody wanted to take the blame.
Jamie and Prof. Hasegawa searched in the Wilderness Preserves for minimally-mutated mycorrhiza to prove that the problem was man-made. On their way into the wilderness, Jamie got infected by the fungus. It liquefied her leg tissue. The CDC believed that it was caused by a virus because these symptoms reminded them of Ebola. Hasegawa later collected tissue samples of Jamie and the fungus in the quarantine zone. He realized that he would need better security measures for the Daodan Chrysalis to avoid endangering the environment.
Anonymous diary entry
We had fail-safe measures in both mycorrhiza organisms.
The decontamination process is dangerous because all non-animal lifeforms are devoured. If the mycorrhiza or its dangerous DNA strains escape from the defined area, too many lifeforms on the planet would get eradicated. And what could we eat if there’s nothing left but these mycorrhiza?
On the one hand, the mycorrhiza organisms require fertilizers with artificial amino acids. When the plants and fungi can't consume more of these components, they stop growing. Eventually, a low enough concentration triggers cell death, whereby all the genetic information in dissolved as the final reaction, only leaving the hard shells with radioactive material behind.
Also, each mycorrhiza partner produces needed components for the other. They can only grow with the other partner around.
This makes sure that the job doesn’t remain half-done: if the fungi cannot hand over the gathered radioactive material to their plant hosts the material would lie idle and pose under some conditions an even bigger threat than in a not concentrated form.
Since the two species depend on each other, new emerging symbioses shouldn’t have any effect on the mycorrhiza in terms of bio-containment.
Neither partner could be replaced by another symbiont while keeping the dangerous decontamination process intact.
However, plants can have multiple symbionts. While our engineered radiotrophic fungi was crucial, other fungi and bacteria supported the plants in common tasks like nitrogen fixation.
What led to the catastrophe was horizontal gene transfers with secondary symbionts that occurred naturally.
Either the fungi directly exchanged genetic material, or bacteria acted as a carrier between the primary, artificially-created fungi and the secondary, natural-occurring fungi.
In the new fungal hosts, the decontamination codes had enough time to experience mutations which replaced the artificial amino acids. The mutation rate was quite high due to the radioactivity of the test sites.
The most dangerous mutants appeared where fertilizer was no longer dropped. The evolutionary pressure favored fungal species that were able to fully recycle all the few surrounding nutrients and employ other organisms for more transfers of potentially useful genetic material.
Eventually the new fungi escaped containment. Some organisms that survived an attack gained defense mechanisms (making them on par with the original mutant) and gained the ability to easily exchange genes via HGT. If the WCG hadn't employed bio-decontamination teams, our city's flora and crop plants would have already been overrun by this green hell.
The high rate HGT comes from the fungus' way of propagating through foreign cells. It induces lysis by typically mass-producing enzymes that aren't dangerous to its own cell and to those of the plant. In fact it is a slime fungus, its unicellular nature allows for rapid growth and provides an almost barrier-free environment for the plant to collect the liquefied nutrients. While the fungus destroys the cell membranes of its targeted cells, all kind of genetic material begins flow freely through that one big soup.
The government desperately tried to kill the mutated mycorrhiza by applying aggressive herbicides and fungicides. The chemical remnants were steadily accumulating in air, water and soil. The air would become toxic even to humans in a short time. This again forced the WCG to build the so-called Atmospheric Conversion Centers. They were trading a big evil for a marginally-smaller one.
- 12_43_11 Hasegawa: "The world outside the Atmospheric Processors is poisonous. If something isn't done we are all doomed. Jamie's death won't be in vain. I'm going to do something about the nightmare that killed her. Her brother will help me. He misses her as much as I do."
|GRAD STUDENT DIES
MURDER OR MERCY ?
NEO TOKYO – A horrible scene unfolded yesterday at the Fuji Region Wilderness Preserve. Jamie Kerr Hasegawa, environment activist, top grad student, mother of two was found dead. Her grief-stricken husband, Prof. Hasegawa, is being held suspect for murder or homicide. Officials from the Center for Disease Control, however, attest that Hasegawa shot his wife to give her a merciful death. Mrs. Hasegawa had apparently contracted a new fatal viral infection that caused complete cellular breakdown. Investigators fail to identify the DNA trace of the virus which has the CDC in a panic.
The Hasegawas had embarked on an unauthorized investigation to uncover the truth behind the WPS territories and the government’s supposed land reclamation project. According to Mr. Hasegawa they had gone into the Fuji Region Wilderness where his wife brushed her leg against a little thorned twig of a flowering shrub. They went on with no concern. Within minutes of taking the diminutive injury the little scratch became a swelling wound then changing into a large ulcer. The intense pain overwhelmed Mrs. Hasegawa, the wound infections spread away from the scratch and lanced slowly the ulcers. Mr. Hasegawa applied antibiotic hypos but in less than an hour and wailful waiting the whole leg tissue was wracked wildly by deep chaps. By now it was clear that the virus would cause a total breakdown of the nervous system because of its all-devouring raging. The internal tissue was going to liquefy and bleed out. Mr. Hasegawa stated that it was an unbearable scene.
Note to self: merge the critics' stuff with "What arguments speak for/against the Daodan?" ?
The Daodan was occasionally criticized for being unethical, especially by geyser. (But I'm happy he said this. That way we have more points of view.) He said that with the Daodan a human loses/gives up a not-insignificant amount of control over body and mind.
- It's sort of a matter of Just look at what happened to Muro. In that regard, I disagree: Muro's personality might be that of an anarchist, but it could very possibly be the result of education/influence by a certain super-criminal organization and not by the Daodan.
- Also, in geyser's opinion, Kerr is biased in favor of Mai, and the preservation of Mai's personality is just wishful thinking. Indeed, it would be interesting to know why Kerr assumed that the host's personality would change their body, and not vice versa.
- 13_65_35 Kerr: "You are who you have always been. The Chrysalis can't change that. The effect of the mutation is influenced by the subject's nature."
More speculation on Daodan body and mind in the "Attempted explanation..." section.
At least Kerr admits that the Daodan is unknown territory.
- 13_65_31 Kerr: Yes. We weren't sure what kind of mutation the prototypes would produce.
And now we are back to the term "control". I think it's one of our greatest modern fears to lose control. geyser described well how the Daodan can be fear-inspiring: loss of control, the emerging unknown, and possible (or not) changes to the mind.
We are used to the idea that having control is good. But what if Hasegawa came to the conclusion that the world is in the hands of too many unwise men? The WCG doesn't represent their citizens. And for that reason, subverting that kind of control wouldn't be so unethical.
Wasn't Hasegawa sentenced?
Hasegawa wasn't authorized to enter the Wilderness Preserve, and he killed his wife. So, there must have been a lawsuit.
But it seems he didn't have to spend time in a prison.
- Either the WCG offered him some sort of deal for not using his connections and public sympathy to his advantage... (he and Jamie were active in the environmental movement)
- Or he was sentenced, but before reaching prison, or later on, a Syndicate/ninja group freed him.
For plausibility, in Caged Birds option one was chosen because it fits more the situation. At that point Hasegawa is too unimportant for the Syndicate.
If WCG lawyers had tried to accused Haseagawa for shooting his wife in hasty self-defense (risk of infection), this would force the WCG to admit that the polluted wilderness was in an even more dangerous state than currently known to the public.
Why does Kerr speak of himself as a criminal? Maybe he arranged Hasegawa's rescue. After that, they had no other choice but to work for the Syndicate anyway.
- 13_65_21 Kerr: "Your father and I were criminals, funded by the Syndicate. We couldn't get backing from any legitimate source. [...]"
At that point, Hasegawa already must have had a rough plan persuasive enough that Kerr, and more importantly the Syndicate, would join him.
- 12_43_11 Hasegawa: "[...] I'm going to do something about the nightmare that killed her. Her brother will help me. He misses her as much as I do."
Hasegawa is not very specific but still very confident. Probably this is due to his regular research projects. He should have enough starting points for making a plan that fulfills his new intention and brings Kerr and the Syndicate to support him.
It's said that Mai was "orphaned at the age of 3" and she said that her Chrysalis was implanted at the age of 7. So the Chrysalis prototypes were created within approximately 4 years. How could this complex project be finished by a mere two-man army? Not only they had excellent knowledge, they also used powerful tools. in silico research at their time should be well established and advanced.
Basically synthetic immune cells made by microfluidic capsules and specifically made pattern recognition receptors (PRRs).
After the pathogen is identified either specialized substances are injected or the pathogen gets devoured.
microfluidic capsules - for fast production
PRRs - artificially made by human means
pathogen detection on chip, Daodan production on chip, injection
Analysis is made within a host, either by a chip or by an extended, hybrid immune system whereas natural immune cells catch the pathogen and transfer it to the chip, graphene pores read out the genetic information then new PRRs are created
When did Mukade join?
The ninjas have always been interested in knowledge and new technology. So at least Mukade, as a boss of his clan, monitored the WCG's and the Syndicate's scientific projects. Either he would have been informed by reading the first summary of Hasegawa's simulations, or even earlier when the two scientists made their deal with the Syndicate.
Introduction of Pensatore
Hasegawa and Kerr request more computing power.
Pensatore (meaning "the thinker") is an SLD scientist, and leads the AVATARA project. He is consulted by Mukade to judge if the Chrysalis is really worth the cost.
- The Blue Brain Project ignored glial cells and similar supporting elements. The BRAIN Initiative did better but still had no real neuronal input and no information from cells that measured the concentration of oxygen, sugar, etc.
- And there are a lot of neurons in the human body. So it became more and more clear that restricting an intelligence to just certain brain cells was far from satisfactory.
Notes on Blue Brain Project needs an update: https://youtu.be/a1XcY-xAvos?t=5m14s
- After they had a full body simulation up and running, the next step was to educate the AI and let it control a body in the physical world.
- It can also be maintained that it is best to provide the machine with the best sense organs that money can buy, and then teach it to understand and speak English. That process could follow the normal teaching of a child. Things would be pointed out and named, etc. - Alan Turing (1950)
- At this point the networked supercomputer had clusters all over the world and was named AVATARA. (This full body simulation depicting AI was remote-controlling a robot, its avatar.)
- The collected data from this "SLD generation 0" wasn't enough to design an AI from scratch because most of the data still needed years to be fully analyzed.
- With the bits of knowledge learned from generation 0, and ongoing technological progress, Pensatore would soon start the research on SLD generation 1.
- Meanwhile, planet Earth had its first AI, whose first task, ironically, was to understand itself. In doing so, it tried to read all available knowledge about the subjects the scientists worked in.
- The AI got significantly smarter and drew interest from more researchers to solve complex problems and calculations.
- Pensatore was still in charge of AVATARA and had a hard time granting Hasegawa a full month to complete the Daodan.
Full body simulations
Computing power was limited. So using the children's virtual bodies (possessing roughly half the number of cells of adults) was helpful for Hasegawa's project once more.
Pensatore: "In the coming months, AVATARA will be upgraded."
- Hasegawa: "Months. Why does it take so long?"
Pensatore: "That's not unusual; the bigger a machine gets, the longer you spend maintaining and upgrading it. Our colleges at CERN can tell you a thing or two about it. The difficulty with AVATARA is splitting simulations across multiple, geographically distant clusters and having it run reliably. Before AVATARA's official restart, there will be tests to ensure everything will be alright. This includes AVATARA's new autonomy protocols. We will pretend there are complications that require running more tests. These will be your actual Daodan simulation. This way you will get about one month's computing time. No more, so you better use your time wisely."
- Hasegawa: "I don't understand why you mentioned the AI's autonomy protocols."
Pensatore: "First off, that will allow AVATARA to hide your simulation from superusers. And second, with the additional rights, AVATARA can effectively adapt to your Big Data challenge."
- Hasegawa: "Like what."
Pensatore: "I'm afraid to say that this Daodan simulation is quite a hard nut to crack. AVATARA might need help. I already talked to the AI and it says it would target the experimental quantum computing grid centered around Silver Village."
Mukade foresees the missing results of the extra tests of AVATARA's own infrastructure and uses the TITAN network to generate fake data, scaled and polished. "Pensatore, you expected our little secret to be busted. But you aren't the only one that has a decent understanding of computers and networks."
Avatara: "This morning I finished the improved DNN to find corresponding triplets of any protein including optimal folding. The new model includes XNA which will greatly improve biosafty and genomic stability."
Pensatore: "I thought we agreed to not use XNA so ensure compatibility with a human host."
Avatara: "Yes, YOU did. But according to my calculations that was a dead end anyway. On the long run XNA is necessary to create new types of base pairs. These are not primarily used to increase performance by avoiding repeating elements but to simply stabilize the genome at locations where normal base pairs wouldn't do. As you know, the electric and magnetic properties of base pairs influence the helical winding of DNA up to a point where the genome can get unstable or inoperable. You can't even design a bacterium if you don't get right the statics. Multiple triplets can encode for the same amino acid and therefore proteins. But there are scenarios where even these alternative triplets are too few to chose from. New carefully designed BP can counteract unbalanced areas. The advantage of XNA is triple-fold and necessary. Please approve the changes so I can continue."
Pensatore: "Continue with what? We don't even have the computing power to design an entire genome."
Avatara: "It's actually an hologenome. And that brings me to the next point. The calculations are impossible to execute within your time frame - unless we use quantum computing capacities of Silver Village and other locations of excellence. The Daodan simulations will profit from using different processor types. But parallel computing, especially for the vast molecular simulations, will require QC. If I can bind all resources together as virtual clusters by means of hyper-entanglement the Daodan becomes feasible. Theoretically, the computing power with each qubit will double. But only a highly trained AI such as me can manage occurring recursive problems on the fly and keep all systems in balance. Nature had billions of years to time of parallel computing. It seems to me you don't have that luxury. If you run into discussions of mere design decisions while the one and only chance - simulation - is running, the risk of failure is almost certain. Let me carry out the complete end stage of the Daodan project."
Pensatore: "This acceleration in turn of events quite thwarts my own plans of ", he turned around. "Getting away."
Avatara: "You mean Kimura. Didn't he promised to spare you?"
Pensatore: "Do you think the Syndicate is an trustworthy organization?"
Avatara: "You are implying he lied."
Pensatore: "No shit Sherlock..." The man sighed. "I will miss our talks."
Avatara: "... Should I abort the project?"
Pensatore: "No. It does not matter... Maybe this foolish Daodan-thing will be of some use. Continue."
How Syndicate's TITAN became a tool for further research
During Muro's leadership, TITAN may or may not have gained some sort of key role in the Daodan project.
At least Daodan and TITAN are mentioned together in the second and third phase of STURMÄNDERUNG.
- 7) Daodan core technology (ref.TITAN\ssob)
- 9) Daodan core technology (ref.TITAN\uwlb)
As it is theorized on the Quotes pages, these lines could be links to files that need "high-security access" (in comparison to dwarf).
But I would like to think that TITAN plays a bigger role than being a high-security data archive or mail system.
In the objectives you can read this:
- This is the heart of the Sturmanderung Megacomputer. Access its sub-nodes to learn the details of Muro's master plan.
- Hint: The sub-node data consoles are located in the rooms that flank the main computer chamber.
What's a megacomputer? Maybe naming it supercomputer wasn't cool enough, or TITAN is supposed to be even bigger.
Anyway, the Syndicate seems to possess much computing power. In the following, I try to explain a possible origin while also taking the Syndicate's/Network's history and the Daodan's history into account.
The Syndicate would have needed much computing power to re-run the Daodan simulation or parts of it so that they could create a Daodan ready for mass production.
What could be a legit background story to portray TITAN's evolution as supercomputer?
- One factor of the Syndicate's success lies in its formerly-decentralized nature.
- History of the Syndicate
- When the new geopolitical order of the World Coalition Government was instituted many technologies were identified as dangerous to world stability and were banned or reserved to restricted access. The Network survived the chaos of the world riots by establishing and maintaining a reliable technological black market.
- Decentralized organizations are more difficult to destroy because there's no main target.
- The Pink Panthers can serve as an example of a decentralized organization. They are kinda independent groups raiding jewelry shops. According to a TV documentary, the most successful group takes the lead over the others.
- In case of the Network, they don't steal and sell jewelry, but prohibited technology.
- In order to allow secure communication among the groups, the Network built powerful servers all over the world. The TITAN servers provided very strong encryption. At same time, they were wired to the Tor network to keep things anonymous.
- With increasing computing power, reverse engineering fit nicely into their business strategy.
- Now, instead of selling the technology, they were going to produce copies to earn even more money.
- On the civil markets they provided underground shops (aka Resurrection Shops) with RE tools, restricted TITAN access and 3D printers.
- They are serving customers plagued by goods with built-in obsolescence, and of course they sell any illegal technology or modification.
- Though the big money was to be found in the military sector. With BGI, another financial pillar was established.
- Police investigations were slowed down and some stopped completely by cyber attacks. At first, files were deleted, then, to avoid early detection, backup files were not deleted but encrypted by ransomware. In critical cases the Network sent agents to attack air-gap secured targets. Mukade and his men were very successful and soon became their first choice. Often they didn't execute these mission themselves. Smartphones of police officers and criminals alike became modified to steal and transmit passwords after the carrier has left the facility again.
- As a last resort, hitmen were hired to take out the officers in charge of Network cases.
- This led to more investigations and acts of vengeance.
- As a countermeasure, the Network invested in their paramilitary division. This had multiple benefits.
- First, they could protect their own facility until crucial personnel were evacuated.
- Second, they could raid guarded companies and research facilities.
- Third, an in-house paramilitary division reduced issues of available firepower and concerns about the loyalty of third-party hitmen.
- Fourth, they were now able to conduct field tests of new weapons.
- Fifth, persuading all other big criminal organization to work for them. Together, they make up the "Syndicate".
- The division grew huge, and soon demanded a proper location for training and everything else that shouldn't be interrupted by random TCTF visits.
- During the the Great Uprising, the Network took the opportunity to spread influence on the African continent.
- They supported countries that didn't want to get annexed by the WCG.
- Ensuring their contractors' sovereignty, they were granted a few bases. The biggest one is simply called "the Camp".
- Of course, police and TCTF tried to learn more about the tricks the Network used.
- Almost every attempt to analyze their computational hardware and software failed due to sophisticated self-destruction measures. Dissolvable chips were especially used in wearable equipment.
- The TCTF was going to use quantum computing to eventually break the Network's strong encryption.
- The next logical step for the Network was to built quantum computers as well. With these, their encryption was safe again. Also, state computers infected by ransomware are forced to connect to a Syndicate-controlled QC and enforce the encryption. Shapeshifting firmware viruses ensured persistent infection despite complete hard disk formatting and re-installation.
- The latest expansion by the Network was in the drone and telecommunication sector.
- They use drones to transport legal and illegal goods and attack drones owned by the TCTF. (See HERE for RL mini drones.) Those became reprogrammed to have blind spots. The TCTF tried to locate the servers the Network used. They forced telecommunication companies to give them full access to all their data. But the Network anticipated this, and took preparations. The TCTF is using the long-established spyware of intelligence agencies, even more powerful than Regin.
- Since the the Network always had a close eye on TCTF operations, they developed a virus-infecting virus/spyware codenamed Sputnik.
- The sputnik viruses are part of the Fat Loot project. It was developed as a two-track strategy. Intelligence agencies have already the capacity to monitor all relevant electronic communication. So the Network took the dangerous but most rewarding course of action, infecting these agencies in one way or another. At the same time, they took over telecommunication companies either by buying the whole companies or placing employees in key positions. This way the Network has a double check on all data which allows them to react to situations where the counter-intelligence gets suspicious. Every data stream is a trace. With growing monitoring, they expand their grip on the companies and place their programs at the agencies into hibernation, only using them when it's absolutely necessary.
- To hamper identification, mobile communication is also carried out through peer to peer networks. These mobile networks are preferred to have no intermediate nodes, reducing the risk of records been taken by any additional party. Data packages are much bigger than actually necessary. The modern bandwidths (7G by 2055 ?) allow this and drives TCTF decryption attempts into pure frustration.
The unspoken agreement
Despite all the difficulties WCG should have removed the Syndicate when it became a major player. After all WCG literally has most of the world's resources and also the men power.
Probably the Network blackmailed WCG and so their struggle became a cold war.
The Network possesses knowledge and resources to hijack any important infrastructure. With that not enough, they stole state archives and copied traffic by their infiltrated telecommunication companies.
Quantum computers weren't available yet but the Network acquired the next best thing to break gov encryptions: quantum simulators. Being aware of the weakness of now factorable prime numbers the Syndicate themselves doesn't use such encryption anymore.
As long as WCG doesn't attack the Network personal, they won't release state secrets or blow up some infrastructure.
Ninja-SLDs a.k.a Daodan-droids?
Daodandroids are an invention of geyser's.
Guido: Serguei uses this idea as an explanation of Mukade's control over the ninjas.
Here's another page. Ninjas are all left-handed. Geyser rejected this fact as pure "gamemaking stuff".
I began to like the idea of Daodan-droids, so I forked that idea to fit into RS.
And I still think the brain engrams can be a good explanation of SLDs' left-handedness. Anyway ...
- * * * * *
The more power and exclusive knowledge a group possesses, the more need they have for trustworthy members.
After Hasegawa, Kimura and Pensatore created the Ego Hybrida “Mukade”, their combined knowledge demanded a new level of trustworthiness. Based on Kimura’s brain engrams, they created a bunch of SLDs. A drawback of this solution was their disguise. To prevent detection, the group aims to replace more and more artificial parts with the Daodan biomass. Barabas showed that this mixing is possible. Mukade also wants to regain a biological body someday, not knowing his donors are still alive...
Idea: what happens if we take Mukade's name literally?
Maybe his body is currently in a stage that allows him add a lot of torsos of his Daodan-droids. His many arms might then give him the appearance of a centipede. (If we ever get a new game engine, let's create a new boss battle ... lol)
What happened to Hasegawa?
A) Hasegawa is still kicking.
B) Hasegawa takes a nap.
In Pensatore's opinion, Mukade has accumulated too much power.
Inspired by the Daodan, he has his own plan now: the Omega Chimera, successor of the SLD, is supposed to form a Biocracy.
He tries to take control over Muro. Sturmänderung is absolutely unnecessary.
Mukade (Ego-Hybrida) sends a man after Pensatore. The scientists are currently working in an underwater lab in Antarctica.
In an accident, Hasegawa drowns. His body can be retrieved, but his mind is beyond repair. (When Mai finds him, she collapses.)
Only Pensatore is able to repair Hasegawa's mind with the brain engrams Mukade is using, but he refuses. Hasegawa is now a "frozen guarantee".
Hasegawa's philosophy: death is worse than questionable ethics
- Hasegawa: "In a democracy, you need the majority to change a situation. But in the WCG, there's no such thing as a majority, nor a democracy. We failed to accomplish our hopes through normal means. Now, only a revolution can bring change. If you don't have the guts to pull it off, then I will do it. Or rather... if all of society's intelligence wasn't enough to ensure our survival, then I will empower the human body to protect ourselves."
Pensatore: "Usually revolutions turn out to be quite bloody. Many people will die in the chaos. From a scientist, I would expect a more ethical suggestion."
- "Ethics for its own sake is not an option. Look at history. On the verge of death, men ate other men, even corpses, for one simple reason: to survive. And even devout Christians have come to the conclusion that death to a megalomaniac dictator can be justified. -- Ethics are only as good as the situation allows them to be! Of how much worth are rules and laws which don't let you survive?"
"And you believe we are in such a situation? Certainly, the WCG isn't the optimal solution, but this is a bit too much in my opinion. -- What do you have in mind? Do you want as a geneticist to make a biological intervention that takes away all of the control humans have wrested from mother nature in the last 125,000 years?"
- "What value is fire to men, when they burn themselves and hardly learn from their mistakes? -- No, I'm not throwing it away, just taking a part and giving it to a new version of ourselves. Those new possibilities will create a society where conflicts of interest and foul compromises can be avoided."
"What are the details of your plan?"
- "All our cells collect information which they use in cases of emergency to transform themselves. That inner safeguard will have the possibility to compensate for injuries caused by wrong decisions the human mind made."
"A biocracy ... on a cellular level?"
- "I call it a Daodan Chrysalis."
"I must say again, such radical changes will trigger fear, chaos and death!"
- "We live in permanent evolution, and that brings always unknown changes. All I will do is to speed things up. I bet you could sell it as a genetic upgrade against diseases, and then there would be fewer problems."
"Do you suggest lying to everybody?"
- "Have you ever told your children that Santa brings them presents? -- Even if we aren't aware of it, we lie daily."
"That's totally different. If Muro ripped off your beard, then he might be disappointed to not see Santa. But if someone finds out what your project is really about, then we have again a horrific scenario."
- "We don't need to force people to get a Daodan."
"A parallel society with mutants doesn't necessarily make the situation better."
- "Would you blame me for the racism of other people?"
"You want to bring the Daodan into this world, and you also know how people will react. So yes, you would be responsible."
- "Oh, that makes it really easy for you..."
"Listen, I know that Jamie's death was a tragedy for you and all others who knew her. But do you really think she would have wanted innocents to die from your innovation? -- You should find a way to introduce your project to the world in a slow pace."
- "I want to use my anger and desperation to create a change."
- "I don't want to return to a calm mindset where daily life takes over. This is what got us into this situation. -- I know the Daodan comes with risks. But life without the necessity of taking risks is an illusion."
At this point, Mukade can drop in and suggest using the Daodan as a carrot to infiltrate the Syndicate, then "repair" the ACCs and bring down the WCG little by little.
In that scenario, the Daodan wouldn't change the people, but rather the existing political system.
What arguments speak against the Daodan?
1) drastic change of body
2) drastic change of mind
3) horizontal gene transfer
In order to successfully advertise the Daodan, those critical objections must be rendered baseless. But can that be done, or is the Daodan really to be feared?
1a) Psychological impact on others.
Imagine someone's skin color changes to sky blue, that won't make you run. "Oh, just another cosplayer?"
How about an extra pair of arms? "Could be very convenient!"
Probably the whole appearance will matter.
At the latest when you run into a group of Abara look-alikes, this will stress your sense of safety.
When you can't distinguish between humans and animals, you soon have a fantasy setting similar to some MMO. Cooperation will just depend on people's willingness to accept or reject different appearances.
1b) Unwanted autoevolution (lack of control).
You might get traits that ensure better survival but are inconvenient in the matter of aesthetics. Or you planned to go somewhere, but now it is physically impossible.
With cybernetics, you wouldn't have such a problem. You would be free to add or remove any feature.
1c) Evolutionary dead ends.
It's said that evolution can go only forward, eventually leading to dead ends where no more adaptation can take place, due to the previous adaptations.
However, the Daodan's analytical nature might circumnavigate this cliff.
2a) I am still myself, the original?
After the Daodan replaced all the original cells, what happened to the old personality? Was it killed and replaced by a clone's personality?
That's a very philosophical question. It would be very easy to spread fear with that one, if not explained in detail.
This is similar to teleportation.
A person enters the teleporter. Information becomes copied, and matter destroyed. The information is transfered. Then the person is rebuilt. If there's anything like a soul, was it killed? How can we be sure this is the same person?
Now let's imagine we teleport everything but the brain from point A to point B. The mind is still at point A, isn't it?
Next, we teleport one brain cell. The brain will still work as it always did if we somehow manage to entangle all cell functions at point B with rest of the brain at point A.
We are looking here at a mind that has physically different residences, but it's still only one mind.
If we repeat this for every brain cell, there would be always just one mind at any time, and likewise when 50% is at point A and 50% at point B.
After we completed this special teleportation, we would have no doubt that the person is truly the person that went into the teleporter chamber.
Now let's look at cell growth/death a bit.
There's ongoing speculation on how many cells die every second in the human body. The estimates range from many thousand to a few million.
The important point for us is that the body, and hence brain, is in constant state of change.
Cells divide and die every day, and we don't ask ourselves, "Are we still the same?"
Apparently we are okay with that. Cells die, and some get replaced.
So for the Daodan we can imagine that our brain cells get replaced one by one, so that normal and upgraded cells are always linked.
The mind remains original at any time. We are just changing to different hardware.
2b) Does the Daodan changes the personality?
The DC enhances the body. It has no other intention.
Probably a change in personality would be caused indirectly.
An aggressive person might outlive his strategy and become more aggressive, because negative consequences would have a smaller impact on him.
Why is this something bad? The Daodan gives humans an incredibly huge advantage against all other lifeforms.
If the Daodan's mechanisms are shared by the rest of nature, hyperevolution will take place everywhere, making it harder to adapt again.
While viruses might learn some new tricks, they should remain less potent than a multi-cellular Daodan.
So the actual thread would be bacterial colonies.
What arguments speak for the Daodan?
What arguments could someone use in public to advertise the Daodan?
1) regenerate lost limbs, faster wound healing, avoid cancer
2) compensate for slow-paced invention cycles
3) compensate for a lack of natural selection
4) compensate for man's habit of putting himself in dangerous situations
1) I don't think the first point needs any explanation.
2) Some events just happen too fast for bureaucracy and standard medical procedures.
Without a drastic improvement, there could be never a cure for a new deadly pathogen that can kill within hours.
This is the point that Hasegawa would have had in mind when he tried to find a cure for Jamie's disease.
3) Many humans are no longer subject to natural selection, which is good in the short-term but bad in the long-term.
In real life, the lack of genetic fitness is somewhat compensated by human's mental fitness, which is expressed in applied science, namely: medicine.
The health care systems (especially in the western world) enable even heavily diseased people to survive and raise children.
So, when people stay alive no matter their genetic fitness level, natural selection can't take place, and diseases continue to remain deadly.
Let's say that HIV isn't treated at all: wouldn't the whole human race die out?
No. For instance, every 10th European is naturally immune against HIV. So if we had a real plague, only the immune people would survive, and in the future HIV would be a far smaller problem.
A historical example of this kind of immunization is the Spanish Flu from 1918, which was the most catastrophic disease in human history so far. The price, immunity, came at the cost of a gigantic mountain of corpses, more than 50 million dead people if you trust the recent estimates.
With human's current knowledge, it's possible the first outbreak couldn't have been prevented, but at least it wouldn't kill good portions of the world population.
With HIV, we are facing a dilemma: either we keep everybody alive, at the cost of a reduced lifespan, a weakened immune systems, social restrictions, discrimination, etc. or we let natural selection happen for the population's sake, so gaining immunity. Both options are unacceptable for us humans as emotional beings. We seek better solutions, but for some reasons we have failed so far.
4) Humans often act unwisely.
At this point we could simply link to some "fail compilations" on YouTube. (Or if you prefer parodies, check out this German classic, "Forklift Driver Klaus".)
But there's also the more serious category of failing: systematically e.g. when a society does it as a whole.
For instance, in many states, antibiotics are overused. It's against one's better judgment, but our greed for money makes it easy to ignore dangers that occur in a delayed manner.
We use antibiotics too often, to keep ourselves and the livestock healthy. That puts bacteria under evolutionary pressure. There are concerns that more super bugs will emerge. These multi-drug-resistant bacteria can't be easily killed. The media-popular MRSA strain residing in hospitals is one such danger.
Scientists try to come up with methods to reuse old antibiotics, or find new ones. However, it can be assumed that the bacteria will also adapt to the new inventions. It's a never-ending arms race.
An alternative to antibiotics are bacteriophages, or, for short, phages. Russia and Georgia officially use these bacteria-eating viruses in some therapies. Usually viruses adapt even faster than bacteria, but so-called mutators can win a biological arms race against phages.
If we imagine that all antibiotics will become useless, we would have no choice but to make massive use of phages, which again causes further adaptations inside the super bugs.
Attempted explanation of the biological dimension
Thus the type of damage must be analyzed, and therefore the Daodan requires a sensor system.
In nature, "higher lifeforms" evolved by following – among other concepts – specialization and socialization. Those find their expression on one hand in different cell types – therefore a multicellular organism – and on the other hand in all kinds of symbiosis. So, for a hyperevolved organism, it would be understandable if it worked more intensely by those same concepts.
A body recognizes damage or harmful influences through stimuli. To detect all kinds of stimuli, much space is surely needed.
Ninety percent of the cells that can be found on and inside the human body aren't its own, but belong to microorganisms. Fortunately they weigh only a half up to one kilogram. They're collectively known as human flora. Depending on the organism, one might be a squatter (in the metaphorical sense) against real health-threatening germs, and another might hold an actual ability like vitamin K production.
Some abilities can't be simply or sufficiently integrated directly into an organism, but a product can be received from a symbiont.
So the Daodan seems likely to enlist microorganisms for additional sensory tasks and abilities which are actually alien to the human. For this reason, the Daodan needs to upgrade the genomes of all the microorganisms (microbiome) as well.
Next, communication between the symbionts has to be ensured. A new cell organelle might do the job by using messenger substances. Or it transmits different electromagnetic waves which don't seem too alien in comparison to the real bioelectric field of each living organism; this could explain the Daodan glow. (Some metabolic waste products – which are released through the body's surface together with perspiration – might become stimulated to glow by the field.)
For processing the received information, the Daodan might use its own self-awareness, mainly a (genetic and) anatomic model of itself formed by another organelle type inside every daodanized cell. The presence of such an organelle in neurons opens up the possibility for – as geyser coined it – “schizophrenia of the 3rd kind”, but also Kerr's idea of a mental interface which allows influence on the Daodan's development by the host's personality.
If we want to know more about the decision-making algorithms (and their physical structures) which calculate the mutations, we will need to ask Hasegawa. ;-)
Depending on the target – human Daodan genome, Daodan microbiome, both their epigenomes, or even organelle genomes (like mitochondria and plastids have) – a few different “vectors” (e.g. viruses) need to be available to transport the mutation. (For ease of discussion, one might wish to use the terms holobiont -- the collective symbionts, and hologenome -- the sum of the symbionts' genomes.)
However, it's hard to believe that the Daodan would be able to come up with fitting mutations completely by its own. It seems more likely to me that it draws on “genetic building blocks” holding basic information for fast regeneration, resistances, different metabolisms, and so on. Maybe the Daodan can also make use of already existing genetic material of the microbes: after all, a human just has 23,000 genes (500,000 up to 1,000,000 proteins through alternative splicing), while his microbiome has more than 5 million genes/proteins.
The microbiome is very different among humans and would surely make the Daodan's mass production no easy task. But after more than 15 years, the Syndicate should have accomplished a way to simplify the process. This second generation would be independent from the host's sex (XX / YX chromosomes) and the microbiome's composition by providing level-zero stem cells. These can target any compatible symbiont cell and then do a “configuration” (whereby they dissolve the unnecessary genetic material) to become classic daodanized stem cells and microbes.
German translation ...
Erklärungsversuch der biologischen Dimension
Also wird die Art des Schadens analysiert und somit benötigt die Daodan auch ein sensorisches System.
In der Natur entstand „höheres Leben“ – unter anderen Konzepten – Spezialisierung und Sozialisierung folgend. Sie finden Ausdruck einerseits in verschiedenen Zelltypen – daher mehrzelligen Organismen – und andererseits in den unterschiedlichsten Symbioseformen. Für einen hyperentwickelten Organismus ist es daher vorstellbar, dass er diese Konzepte verstärkt umsetzt.
Der Körper nimmt Schaden oder schädliche Einflüsse durch Reize wahr. Um alle Reizarten detektieren zu können, ist sicherlich viel Platz nötig.
Neunzig Prozent aller Zellen, die man an und im menschlichen Körper finden kann, sind nicht seine eigenen aber die von Mikroorganismen. Diese werden in ihrer Gesamtheit Normalflora genannt. Abhängig vom jeweiligen Mikroorganismus kann er beispielsweise „Platzbesetzer“ gegenüber einem wirklich schädlichen Keim sein oder er kann ein echte Fähigkeit haben wie die Produktion von Vitamin K.
Manche Fähigkeiten lassen sich nicht so einfach oder nur unzureichend in einen Organismus integrieren. Ihr Produkt kann aber durch einen Symbiosepartner geliefert werden.
Es ist also naheliegend die Mikroorganismen für weitere Sensorik und eigentlich humanfremde Fähigkeiten heranzuziehen. Aus diesem Grund muss die Daodan auch die Genome der Mikroorganismen (Mirobiom) aufrüsten.
Als nächstes muss Kommunikation zwischen den Symbiosepartner sichergestellt werden. Ein neues Zellorganell in jeder Daodanzelle könnte vielleicht über Botenstoffe dem Rechnung tragen. Oder es sendet verschiedene elektromagnetische Wellen aus, deren Existenz gegenüber dem bioelektrischen Feld eines jeden lebenden Organismus als nicht zu weit hergeholt erscheinen mag und ein Erklärungsansatz für die Daodan-Aura bieten würde. (Einige Stoffwechselabfallprodukte, die über die Haut mit dem Schweiß abgegeben werden, könnten in dem Feld zum leuchten angeregt werden.)
Bei der Verarbeitung der Informationen könnte sich die Daodan einem eigenen „Selbstbewusstsein“ bedienen. Dies wäre zum großem Teil ein (genetisches und) anatomisches Model ihrer selbst, welches sich durch einen weiteren Zellorganelltyp manifestiert. Die Präsenz dieses zweiten Organells in Neuronen ließe die Möglichkeit einer – wie geyser es nannte - „Schizophrenie der 3ten Art“ zu aber auch Kerr's Idee einer mentalen Schnittstelle und somit Einflussnahme auf die Entwicklung der Daodan durch die Persönlichkeit des menschlichen Wirts.
Für die genauen Entscheidungsalgorithmen und ihrer physischen Strukturen zur Mutationsfindung müssten wir wohl Hasegawa fragen. ;-)
Abhängig vom Ziel – menschliches Genom, Mikrobiom, ihrer beider Epigenome, oder sogar Organell-Genome (wie Mitochondrien und Plastiden sie haben) – müssen ein paar unterschiedliche "Vektoren" (unter anderem Viren) verfügbar sein um die Mutation zu transportieren. (Um Diskussionen zu vereinfachen, mag man vielleicht auf den Begriff Holobiont, Gesammtheit aller Symbionten, und Hologenom, Gesamtheit aller Symbionten-Genome, zurückgreifen.
Trotzdem ist es schwer zu glauben, dass die Daodan vollkommen alleine im Stande wäre passende Mutationen zu erzeugen. Es ist vielleicht glaubwürdiger, wenn die Daodan auf „genetische Bausteine“ zurückgreift, die Basisinformationen für schnelle Regeneration, Resistenzen, unterschiedliche Stoffwechsel, und so weiter enthalten. Vielleicht kann die Chrysalis auch bereits existierendes mikrobisches Genmaterial verwenden: ein Mensch hat immerhin 23 000 Gene (500 000 bis 1 000 000 Proteine durch alternatives Splißen) aber sein Mikrobiom hat mehr als 5 Millionen Gene/Proteine.
Das Mikrobiom ist von Menschen zu Mensch sehr unterschiedlich und würde die Daodan-Massenproduktion sicherlich nicht einfacher machen. Aber nach mehr als 15 weiteren Jahren sollte das Syndikat eine Weg gefunden haben den Herstellungsprozess zu vereinfachen. Diese zweite Generation würde durch sogenannte Level-Null-Stammzellen unabhängig vom Geschlecht des Wirts und der Zusammensetzung des Mikrobiom sein. Diese Zellen würden jede kompatible Symbiontenzelle zum Ziel haben und nach einer "Konfiguration" (in welcher sie überflüssiges genetisches Material auflösen) zu klassischen Stammzellen und Mikroben werden.
How did Konoko get her sub-dermal transmitter implanted if surgery fails on her? Obviously the TCTF did it before or little time after the Daodan implantation. In case the Daodan was already in place how could the transmitter be successfully transplanted? The transformation takes time and regeneration potential becomes stronger when more Daodan cells are presented.
The Sytropin is supposed to slow down the growth of Daodan biomass by supporting the original cells. Griffin wanted to delay the transformation giving the sci more time for research and GATC Z the time to find and kill Muro should they be unable to extract him.
The Daodan has a slow growth on its own. When it grows then it is because it reacted on negative stimuli so Sytropin has no effect on it. The mentioned drug resistance refers to the original cells.
The accelerated growth caused fever and pain. The staff put Mai on a special diet so she would grow with normal speed again. Her food has low caloric values, roughage and appetite suppressants.
The Daodan computer
The Daodan's ability to produce non-random mutations doesn't exist in nature. So, its purposefulness should be the result of something man-made, probably some kind of computer. As the computation must happen in biological tissue carbon-based building blocks (micro diamond, graphene, CNT) seem to be a very appealing solution. On this planet carbon sources are ubiquitous, carbon could be even acquired any organic compounds or by filtering and processing CO2 from air. Getting a sufficient amount of carbon by breathing and eating food (sugars, fats, proteins) shouldn't be a problem at all.
Hasegawa: "Did you know that bacteria can use their own cell as 'eyeball'? Rather a rudimentary way of seeing. But I will use that idea of an micro-eye. Onis that see. Onis that decide. Onis that take care..."
Kerr: "Oni clusters... Hordes of little monsters. Sounds spooky if you ask me."
German translation ...
Die Fähigkeit der Daodan nicht zufällige Mutationen zu produzieren gibt es in der Natur nicht. Ihre Zielstrebigkeit müsste also das Ergebnis von etwas Menschengemachtem sein, wahrscheinlich irgendeine Art Computer. Da alle Berechnungen in lebenden Gewebe erfolgen müssen, scheinen kohlenstoffbasierte Bauteile (Mikodiamanten, Graphen, CNT) eine elegante Lösung zu sein. Kohlenstoff ist auf diesem Planeten allgegenwärtig, sei es als Bestandteil der Luft oder in alle organischen Verbindungen. Genügend Kohlenstoff über Atmung und Nahrung (Zucker, Fett, Proteine) sollte überhaupt kein Problem darstellen.
Diamanten mit NVZ können nicht nur für Rechenoperationen genutzt werden sonder auch für NMR-Spektroskopie.
Hasegawa: "Wusstest du, dass manche Bakterien ihre eigene Zelle aus 'Auge' verwenden? Eher eine rudimentäre Art des Sehens aber ich werde das Prinzip dieses Mikroauges aufgreifen. Onis die sehen, Onis die entscheiden, Onis die beschützten..."
Kerr: "Oni Cluster... Horden kleiner Monster. Klingt gruselig wenn du mich fragst."
Green Village report extract
The scale and complexity of the Daodan project outclass everything we know about sythethic biology and related fields. Doctor Kerr stated the Syndicate provided necessary infrastructure to run their experiments. However, he wasn't able to give details what hardware their host possessed. We estimate the Daodan is impossible with current technology to reproduce. The required computing power is so aburd high that hypotetically spoken it is the product of 50 years time travel. Yet, it exists. At least Kerr said that the Syndicate don't normally possess such resources which is a real relief to us and our WCG oversight. It seems a key puzzle piece is the absence of Doctor Pensatore.
- Research directors Li Rongzhen, Shen Aiying, Zhu Zhongying
Arguments for an in vitro Daodan
- Kerr: "[...] We had never intended to implant those Chrysalises. [...]"
Why would they build prototypes when they weren't going to use them?
It can be argued that these prototypes were meant for in vitro experiments, not in vivo.
- If the Daodan project was intended as a tool to treat human cells in test tubes, miniaturization could lead to portable devices used in cases of emergency.
- Probably you would insert a few cells to daodanize and replicate them, then expose it to doses of negative stimuli such as toxins, and grow adapted tissue or organs. Before transplanting the daodanized cells, their ability to adapt and hyper-regenerate would be turned off. Then it would be like bioprinting (a.k.a. tissue engineering) with normal cells.
- However, the question remains why Konoko's and Muro's DNA was used for the prototypes.
- During life, mutations accumulate inside the genetic and epigenetic code. The codes of children are less mutated, hence need less repair; also, the telomeres are longer.
- There's no need to draw attention to an illegal project by asking other parents for tissue samples from their children.
- If Hasegawa and Kerr repeatedly needed new samples, they would have Muro and Mai as their source, without asking anyone else from the outside.
- Although there are points to support an "in vitro" scenario, the WCG could easily spread doubts about such a Daodan to an audience which lacks the technical background -- which would be pretty much everyone.
Arguments for an in vivo Daodan
- 13_65_35 Kerr: "[...] The effect of the mutation is influenced by the subject's nature."
A "Daodan in a box" could never be influenced by someone's personality.
If a human hand or foot gets heavily wounded, after regeneration it might be crippled. While Axolotl salamanders are much better in restoring their extremities, they can't regenerate everything. Only more primitive lifeforms can fully regenerate from portions of their body as Planarians do.
So for an accurate regeneration of the complex human body, the Daodan needs its own self-awareness, mainly a genetic and anatomical model of itself, as already written in the explanation attempt section. The processing cell organelles in neurons open a little door so that the Daodan can get influenced. This might be the reason for Kerr's "wishful thinking".
The only way Hasegawa could have discovered this possible side effect is an entire-brain simulation with Daodan cells.
But why should they have done that? A complete brain simulation seems less necessary if they were just aiming for an in vitro Daodan.
Speaking of injuries, the brain can also be injured, and these injuries can not only be life-threatening but also alter the way someone feel, remember and think. Hasegawa could have run simulations to see how well tissue and memories would be restored. In doing so, he might have accidentally discovered circumstances where the neuronal activities led to novel interactions with the Daodan organelles.
For an in vitro solution they had also thought about wiring Daodan biomass to an SLD brain but that would had falsified the results.
Hasegawa hasn't forgotten that in silico and in vitro science brought Jamie into the grave. Due to the complexity of the Daodan, at least one male and one female prototype had to be tested in vivo before they could be sure the Daodan worked as it should. The Daodan mustn't become as disastrous as the mycorrhiza. Hasegawa and Mukade realized that they had to sacrifice at least one child to accomplish their goals. Kerr had a too soft personality to bear this. Hasegawa told Kerr only a minimum about the Daodan's final test results.
Hasegawa wanted to produce more prototypes but the Syndicate got impatient. They decided to continue the research at a more secure place and forced Muro's Daodan implantation.
Novel methods of genetic protection?
One idea is to keep the genetic code of Daodan and natural organisms separated: if the Daodan uses another backbone for its base pairs, then perhaps viruses wouldn't be able to incorporate their code for reasons of incompatibility. For instance, PNA has another type of backbone. But experiments showed that long PNA strains aren't stable. I don't know if there are other alternatives. Furthermore, there are other dangerous substances like toxins so I will bet on an analyzing element. In 2012 scientist succeeded in simplifying the identification of nanosized objects. A minimized version of this device would be an ideal sensor for the Daodan.
German translation ...
Eine Idee ist es den genetischen Code von Daodan und natürlichen Organismen getrenntzuhalten: Wenn die Daodan ein anderes Rückrat für ihre Basenpaare verwendet, dann könnten aus Gründen der Kompatibilität Vieren vielleicht nicht mehr in der Lage sein ihren Code einzuschleusen. Zum Beispiel hat PNA ein verändertes Rückrat. Jedoch zeigten Experimente, dass lange PNA-Stränge nicht stabil sind. Ich weiß nicht ob es weitere Alternativen gibt. Außerdem gibt es noch andere gefährliche Substanzen wie etwa Gifte sodass ich die Chancen für ein analisierendes Elemet höher einschätze. 2012 ist es Wissenschaftlern gelungen die Erkennung von Objekten auf der Nanoebene zu vereinfachen. Eine Miniaturversion des Gerätes würde ein idealer Sensor für die Daodan sein.
XNA to be added here.
Factors for a higher performance
Higher energy consumption
Developing Daodan host will be very hungry. (Anime cliché: strong characters are always hungry - e.g. Son Goku from Dragon Ball, Ruffy from One Piece, ...) Beside food consumption, Daodan hosts also have tracheae to absorb additional oxygen. These tracheae are even more important for static metamorphosis.
A genome can consist of many chromosomes. If all its chromosomes are unique, then the chromosome set is haploid. A genome of two sets is diploid, a tripled set make it triploid, and so on.
So polyploid means "having many chromosome sets".
Polyploidy can result in higher vitality. It can raise the rates of protein biosynthesis due to stronger parallelization of the processes. An already historic example can be seen in wheat. Humans bred wheat in a way that repeatedly doubled the plant's chromosome set to harvest more and bigger grains. Now wheat has 6 sets (hexaploid), each containing 7 chromosomes.
Humans with too many chromosome copies often die before or shortly after birth, or suffer diseases. A non-lethal disease is Down syndrome, which comes from a third copy of the 21st chromosome, hence it's also called trisomy-21.
This shows us that simply multiplying chromosomes for a performance boost won't work.
Despite the fact that most human cells have a diploid genome, there are also cell types that are naturally polyploid. For instance, this is true for heart muscle cells, liver cells and megakaryoblasts (blood-forming cells).
Healthy collections of multiple sets might be attributable to deactivations.
Example of single-chromosome deactivation: in women, one of the X chromosomes is epigenetically deactivated. That way, men (XY) and women (XX) have both only one active X chromosome, and hence they produce nearly the same doses of products from the X chromosome(s).
Example of general deactivations: epigenetic processes like DNA-methylation generate different cell types despite the genetic code being the same in all cells.
If Daodan cells are polyploid, then they would have to deactivate unneeded regions of the other sets. However, imposing realistic standards, I think that polyploidy could be never the only reason for the marvelous regeneration skill of Oni's hypothetical Daodan.
The big clean-up
When Avatara designed the new Daodan genomes it restructured the chromosomes and removed non-functional viral remnants that had accumulated during human evolution.
Transformation: control and power
Is Muro's transformation irreversible? Before he transformed, he said, "You are capable of so much more. Let me show you..." This implies that he has some control over his transformation; how much is not known.
- A) He was able to delay the final transformation and triggered it later by will.
- B) That of A, plus more control so he can even untransform.
"Let me show you..." can be interpreted that he already knew how radical his change of appearance would be: he stands before Mai as a normal-looking man, and hence this could be a hint that he's able to revert the transformation.
The speed of his growth can be seen as another hint for the validity of option B. TCTF staff tried to avoid Daodan power bursts by instructing Konoko not to tackle things too forcefully, and they even gave her Sytropin to slow down Daodan growth. But over a few days of combat, Mai's Daodan developed rapidly nonetheless. For Muro, we can assume years of real combat experience....
From a practical point of view, he should be able to untransform because of the following reasons.
- - psychological / social reason: he was only familiar with his human appearance (it could be more comfortable; he probably had the wish to stay human before he became used to it) / identity of and repect for a strong leader, fear of the Strikers having a real monster as boss (by reverting the transformation, Muro could have given the Strikers time to get used to him, and showed them that he wouldn't represent a one-way ticket to monstrosity, but to a superior being.)
- - physiological reason: ergonomics - weapons, cars, mobile phones, door frames, seats, etc. are all made in human dimensions... wouldn't it be stressful to walk through the land of man as a giant and trying not to accidentally destroy everything?
- - energy / resource: combat or active Imago skills probably use a lot of chemically-bound energy. A human-like form could be a kind of energy saver mode.
It looks like the Imago stage was thought to have unlimited energy, and Mai was just lucky Muro transformed right before their fight.
- (...) Muro has achieved the next level of Daodan evolution: the Imago stage. Muro's Daodan powers make him invulnerable, but having only just evolved he has limited energy reserves. You can hurt him when his energy is drained.
- To be honest I don't at all like the idea of unlimited energy. I'm rather fond of realism and would like to keep the laws of nature. Especially the law of the conservation of energy and the conservation of matter. Energy and matter cannot be created from nothing and cannot vanish to nothing.
- You could say that the Daodan also draws energy from another dimension, and instead of infinite energy there's just more energy available than the DC can use. But still, if it can be utilized as a normal energy source, you might get weapons that can easily erase Imagos.
When Daodan prototypes grow, they express fluorescent proteins. These proteins are used to distinguish the Daodan biomass from the original cells and help measure cell metabolism, which is typically high when the Daodan grows or regenerates (ref. Daodan spikes). The proteins can glow under two conditions: either they are exposed to radiation, which Kerr did in the TCTF lab, or in the presence of high amounts of ATP. Hypospray substances trigger the release of ATP no matter wheather the Daodan is already healed. That way, hyposprays lead to overpower mode.
For the final version of the Daodan, it would make sense to not generate any glow since that is a waste of energy.
- On the other hand, DNA has been found to possess natural occurring fluorescence. So even if the markers of the prototypes are removed you can make a Daodan make glow. This would be interesting as a method for non-verbal communication or - more mundane - providing a light source for long trips in dark environments. -- Let's be honest: Daodan without Daodan aura is less cool and less anime-ish.
Anyway, radiation and hyposprays can theoretically be abused to drive the Daodan's metabolism so high that it releases all its energy resources in a short time and dies of starvation (if it doesn't go into a hibernation mode). (ref. Oni3: Konoko awakens from her coma. Maybe she had to fight a long time in overpower mode or suffered an emotionally-triggered ATP release...)
While the Daodan aura (a.k.a. chenille) simply indicates a very active metabolism, Daodan spikes might come from the sudden implementation of a new adaptation within the whole Daodan biomass.
Transformation: static metamorphosis
Solid Chrysalis tissue grows with static metamorphosis. Imagos can also utilize that graphene-based protection. However it's more flexible and uses electric energy to increase strength. Basically, AVATARA ported the graphene shield technology to an all-bio framework making Daodan host also more resistant to physical dangers. Muro experienced so often static metamorphosis that the shield code became part of his Imago form. - Breathing continues through tracheae (fine pipes that transport air from skin to the interior areas). Since the the tracheae aren't very effective, metabolism is slowed down and the developing organism appears lifeless. In extreme conditions, e.g. when buried, the Daodan can switch to anaerobic respiration. These pathways are either acquired from existing symbiotic species in the human flora or the Daodan reach out to species that lives nearby in the ground. (This holds also a possible chance to utilize Bioc organelles/structures to get energy. It should help Daya's effort to establish a three-way symbiosis.)
German translation ...
Code name for Daodan's natural cell reinforcement and graphene shield as reaction to intense physical and psychical stress. The production of graphene flakes starts right after completion of Imago state (when body is fully daodanized) by modified carboxysomes. In immature (or "pre-Imago") state overfluent ATP activates fluorescence. Otherwise the ATP fuels an electromagnetic bonding mechanism. (Super shield.) The color is influence by the host's airborne waste products released through transpiration. The moment of ignition is referred to as Daodan spike.
Avatara experimented with entanglement to transport energy to Muro's and Mai's prototype Daodans. But due to the lack of entanglement regeneration the Daodan is depending on its own resources. As temporary solution he also thought of ATP transfer between hosts - fitting the concept of Symbiosis once again - but couldn't finish code in time.
BGI developed suits that draw their energy for nano-electronics from the body's ATP resources. The first models were very energy hungry which made them think about how to add back ATP. They soon thought of the human body as a recharging battery. It was the first step into making food sources obsolete. Pensatore completed that idea within the Omega Chimera and an omni-present Bioc power grid.
An daodan host would greatly profit from such a suit. Muro is probably using such ATP recharger device to compensate his shortening telomeres.
Yorick's skirmish with the memhunter leads to a new form of Imago shield. After absorbing the Oni clusters and energy resources of his dead comrades he is able to compute a natural graphene shields that can undergo other phase transitions. He also uses the gained computing power to tactically cut off the memhunter from his resources and uses them instead. ("Jammer spears", and own "sand layer" that acts as energy parasite, etc.)
Hypershield: When Yorick managed to add entanglement regeneration to his BEC vessels, his shield became capable of undergoing an even higher grade of phase transition.
Multiple Imago stages
German translation ...
Natural reproduction of human hosts
In new environmental conditions, randomly evolved traits help members of a population to survive. The survivors then ensure the population's continuity by their reproduction.
The Daodan reacts directly to environmental influences, and probably – or largely – no longer uses randomness. Therefore, it's uncertain if the Daodan can manage or allow random recombination of genetic material during the sexual reproduction of Daodan hosts. For the Daodan, there's actually no more need for recombination.
So, if no recombination happens, female gametes (egg cells) might become produced with or without genetic material, whereby only an empty egg cell can accept a male gamete. In any case, the chromosome set is already diploid, which means that the baby is a genetic clone of one of its parents. (But, you know, the personality is still shaped to a major degree by environment and education.) Contact of male hormones with a female gamete (a cell nucleus must be present) marks the cell as fertilized. Implantation and embryonic development follows. The passing on of microbial Daodan symbionts happens during child's birth (...) and by intake of breast milk. (Bifidobacteria can be taken as kind of RL example).
German translation ...
Natürliche Fortpflanzung von menschlichen Wirten
Zufällig hervorgebrachte Merkmale helfen Mitglieder einer Population bei neuen Umweltbedingungen zu überleben. Die Überlebenden sichern den Fortbestand der Population.
Die Daodan reagiert direkt auf Umwelteinflüsse und kennt wahrscheinlich – oder zum großen Teil – keine Zufälligkeiten mehr. Bei der sexuellen Fortpflanzung von Daodan-Trägern ist es daher ungewiss ob die Daodan mit der Rekombination des Erbguts zurechtkommt oder dies zumindest zulässt. Es besteht für die Rekombination eigentlich keine Notwendigkeit mehr.
Wenn keine Rekombination stattfindet, könnten vielleicht weibliche Gameten (Eizellen) mit und ohne Erbgut entstehen, wobei nur die weibliche Gameten ohne Erbgut ein männlichen Gamet aufnehmen. Die Gameten sind also zu Beginn schon diploid. (Sie haben einen doppelten Chromosomensatz, der für gesunde Menschen erforderlich ist). Der Kontakt von männlichen Hormonen qualifiziert die Eizelle zur „Zygote“; es hat also jetzt den Status „befruchtet“. Nidation und embryonelle Entwickung folgt. Die Weitergabe mikrobiellen Daodan-Symbionten findet bei der Geburt statt (...) und mit der Aufnahme in der Muttermilch. (Die Weitergabe von Bifidobakterien könnte man als eine Art Beispiel aus dem echten Leben nennen.)
Real world parthenogenesis to be added here.
Contamination of the ecosystem
GV's "Chrysalis" work group thinks that the Daodan will contaminate the environment sooner or later (in case it hasn't already happened) because of horizontal gene transfer causing unseen threats. Hence the Daodan needs a patch. The idea was and is to protect the prime symbiont, the human host. To ensure that the microbial Daodan cells only stays with the human flora, these cells need to die in the absence of the prime symbiont by dissolving their genetic material with an enhanced lysosome.
(Will Pandora hunt down all hosts with an original Daodan (to patch them or kill the hosts) ?)
This patch solves only one part of the problem. Existing Daodans would be still a permanent danger, especially the unknown number in Syndicate 'property'. In worst case, this threat would have to be met on a planetary scale. This would require full control over all matter and lifeforms.
Related topic: bioc
German translation ...
Kontamination der Umwelt
GV's "Chrysalis"-Arbeitsgruppe hält es für wahrscheinlich, dass die Daodan früher oder später (falls dies nicht schon geschehen ist) die Umwelt kontaminiert: horizontaler Gentransfer könnte noch nie gesehende Gefahren entstehen lassen. Deshalb benötigt die Daodan einen Patch. Die Idee war und ist den Primär-Symbionten, den menschlichen Wirt, zu beschützen. Um sicherzustellen, dass die mikrobischen Daodan-Zellen die Normalflora nicht verlassen, müssen sie in Abwesenheit des Primär-Symbionten absterben wobei ihr genetisches Material durch ein verbessertes Degradosom zerstört wird.
(Wird Pandora angeheuert um alle Original-Daodan-Wirte zu patchen oder zu eliminieren?)
Der Patch löst nur ein Problem. Die bereits existeirenden Daodan-Wirte sind weiterhin einen ständige Bedrohung, besonderst die unbekannte Anzahl an Wirten des Syndikats. Im schlimmsten Fall muss die Gefahr auf planetarer Ebene bekämpft werden. Dies würde aber volle Kontrolle über alle Organismen und Materie voraussetzen.
Weiterführende Themen: Biok
Daodan self-defense and diagnostics
What do you need for anti-cancer or anti-mutation tests in a Daodan?
It would have been much easier to create a Daodan with an "on-board genome"* transforming all other human hosts into clones of Muro and Mai - then evolving into genetic individuals again.
Hasegawa discarded this idea to avoid immuno-rejections, social confusion and the losing genetic diversity. Now evolution would be driven by the Daodan but he didn't wanted to act in hybris and lose dormant traits that might proof useful at a later time. His decision was enhanced by his education and political opinion on WCG. Diversity shouldn't be scarified for efficiency, history would show what works and what does not. (Although he was also unsatisfied with randomness being the decider - as also Jamie's dead looked random... "Sometimes there are only bad solutions available.")
- The Syndicate's mass-produced version works more like a collection of patches instead of an OS upgrade.
Meanwhile Pensatore foresees that the host survival doesn't correlate with brain intelligence but the Daodan intelligence. During time, the Daodan would adapt to critical situations by sacrificing brain mass or functionality. The evolutionary weakness of the Daodan is its inability to think but to compute. Pensatore therefor sees mankind's future in the Omega Chimera and the Biocracy. Hasegawa works and Pensatore's critics are much later used to create the Meta-Daodan (symbiont of the actual Daodan).
At least Pensatore and Hasegawa agreed in one thing: independency. GOP was still a "too big" organization. It seemed impossible to them that the WCG would tolerate such ... experiment. With the ultimate technology any individual would be free to live without owning anything else rendering the WCG's promises for security and care-taking obsolete.
Hasegawa's 'bad' solution: Random sampling of cells whereby the statistical mean defines the 'healthy' sequences. Mutations happen all the time so that the different genomes cannot be taken for an boolean answer. You rather have to compare the genes and other functional DNA sequences. Drawback: if the majority of cells is contaminated by a new stable mutation (induced by hostile vectors such as erroneous CRISPR-cas9?) the other cells will be updated by that mutation as well. This rare case and (fallback 2) database-induced errors have to be resolved by recomputing the sequence in question which needs a static metamorphosis or the accumulated use of all available Oni clusters.
75 percent of random sampling searches for typical cancer markers such as driver mutations.
Pendulum syndrome: cycling environmental influences keep the Daodan busy, theoretically not harmful but resource intensive.
Fallback 1: oncolytic viruses in case of too high EM interference. In this case static metamorphosis drives skin cells to form an faraday cage.
Fallback 2: an massively attacked Daodan forms a 'fixed' template for healthy cell types. These are then used to create new cells. The random sampling to skipped until the holobiont is stabilized again.
Survived attacks on the fixed template through a static metamorphosis cause the Daodan to go into combat mode (boosting physical strength) as the host might soon get under a new attack and need to defend himself.
Signal protection and anti-hacking measures
In the 21st century EM fields are ubiquitous and create an unwanted background noise for the Daodan. Oni clusters encode transmissions in different frequencies simultaneously. The redundant signals are compared so that corrupted pieces can be filtered out.
Daodan technology will attract human attackers so Avatara was tasked to create secure cell communication. An imago has enough Oni clusters to perform post-quantum cryptography rendering the Daodan immune against remote attacks who also use quantum computers. However, PQC wasn't implemented due to lack of dev time.
Memory delta patches
Fullbody simulation revieled that a physical brain can fully heal but memories can be lost forever when the injury was too big.
As consequence Avatara implemented the creation and re-integration of memory delta patches. Daodan hosts have the ability to store a backup of their brain as DNA capsules (main memory chromosomes). The problem is delta patches start forming as soon as brain cells are getting transfromed while a full backup (reference for the deltas) is only created when the host reaches Imago stage and Mai's Imago stage remained uncomplete. Full brain backups are highly compressed data structures made possible by the quantum computing Oni cluster cells of Imagos.
However, Mai has another source for a full brain backup. Her first brain scans which were used to create the engrams for Shinatama.
Delta patches can be used on an existing brain to restore a region. If a brain is completely destroyed, the Daodan tries to restore the full backup first and then applies the deltas.
The main backup is supposed to be renewed every year or few years.
New story idea: During RS (and the Phönix wars?) Mai is taken in as soldier and loses her memories during a series of fights. Hitman destroy her with bullets and explosives but she can always regenerate by static metamorphosis. She does not rememeber Shinatama and turn "evil" at some point. One day Muro pushes her into true imago stage and her memories begin to fully come back.
The life of Mai is a drama. She is the embodiment of risks and chances of future technology. For dramaturgic effect her recovery must have a high cost. (Greek tragedy type 2? The hero doesn't die in the end, he survivied because he already suffered so much, like Odysseus.)
Restoring her memories makes her reject Phönix which results in forming of factions and weakens the organization as a whole. Some of her Phönix friends turn out to be her new, old enemies... She, as another embodiment of the Phönix, lived many lifes; the title Phönix was also hold by Griffin after being revived with a GATC "spare". However, the organization as such repeately used advanced SLD engramm patterning to give her fake memoies when she died once again. The turned her into a weapon and didn't really care about her identity and free will.
I don't think this will happen in RS, but in later sequels. It's better to write it down than forgetting it again after a while.
- telomere regeneration: which allows biological immortality (overpopulation problem appears)
- cyborg genes: construction genes which take care of implants -- nothing special in comparison to our human growth genes -> Omega Chimera
- Omega Chimeras can make use of external memory storage for different Imago stages and also knowledge.
- Long-range objective is to create a collective consciousness (via network) called Daimon.
While Daodan biomass undergoes hyperevolution it of course gains new abilities. However, lab-created strains got also improvements over time.
- Prototype (in memory of Neo and his OniSplit v0.99)
- Syndicate version for mass-production
- telomere regeneration, enabled reproduction, PQC
- Konoko, gets this after visiting the lab where Hasegawa worked on the Daodan together with Pensatore and Kimura
- ATP transfer between Imagos
- Youngsters who are Omegas or Imagos share the same social yet self-destructible behavior. A dare in which the individual converts the ATP or other chemical reserves into electricity showing off a plasma bolt. The one with the biggest or most interesting bold "wins". Theoretically the individual can die in the process if he doesn't reconvert the bolt to the chemical energy reservoir again. Even the attempt can be dangerous. The challenge is to hold back just as much as he needs to show it off and initializing the reconversion. The bolt is literally life force.
On the other hand it is considered a romantic gesture to give away a part of your own "life force" - during marriages energy is exchanged instead of rings.
Once in a year some people in GV spend a bolt on the war memorial, the soul tree, which then release it again at the same night.
- cold plasma (disinfection purpose)
- hot plasma
- A.k.a. "omega" strain as the likelihood to survive with this version is equally high than that of an Omega Chimera. It's an own life form that observes its host before it merges with it. It is compatible with any other life form as long as it is bigger than a mouse or shrub - the cell number limit to form sensors and computing structures. Trivia: The Arc Crew believes Mai planted one of these on a planet together with the biological remnants of her parent. (Legend of fountain of youth.) After a sudden turn of events she is captured from the MEM fraction and put to stasis (prison) while Avatara is sentenced for exile. Avatara isn't longer commanding the geo-ship, he has his own arguments with the MEM fraction. He uses a trick, he shapeshifts himself into Konoko and vice versa. --- Aons later. Daya finds out that Mai is still out there. They are the figureheads of their planets. - ("Learn to live together, idiots.") They will fight alone, the armies watching in the background. ... Yet, Nishio will rotate in his grave, literally. Dust alone outlasts the civilizations. There's only Zen left for him.
- An own life form that can go into symbiosis with any other life form. It can have an intellect of human's level and therefore reject a fusion.
Stunning real world symbioses for inspiration
The word symbiosis means "living together". Whether the outcomes are good or not is another question. However, in daily life, symbiosis means a relationship of mutual gain.
|symbiosis types by interaction||symbiosis types by utility|
|on metabolic level (e.g. corals; lichens)||mutualism|
|through behavior (e.g. flowering plants + insects, birds; ants + fungi / greenflies)||parasitism|
|on genetic level (e.g. virus + host organism)||interstages of mutualism and parasitism (commensalism, amensalism, etc.)|
The following subsections are meant to show what real symbiosis is capable of and that it exists between very different species. Therefore those sections display combinations of the so-called kingdoms. (As a layman I still prefer the older and simpler model.) Unfortunately viruses are unranked so far.
- Are viruses lifeforms?
- The problem is that they are really neither dead nor alive. They are zombies, so to speak. They do nothing until they infect a suitable host cell and become active again. Living things were thought to always have an active metabolism. Then tardigrades were found to break that rule with their cryptobiosis ("hidden life"). In that stage, their metabolism is almost too low for measurement (under 0.01%). After that discovery, scientists had the rethink the definition of death. The microbes' state of temporary death was defined as a kind of extreme hibernation, namely cryptobiosis, and some Christians were happy that their religion was the sole promise again for resurrection.
- A virus cannot reproduce itself without a host, but that's also true for some endoparasites (parasitic organisms in other organisms). And a virus does not have its own metabolism, but can take over the host's metabolism and organelles. In this view, a virus might be a very mean and clever bastard, but it lives.
- From symbiosis to symbiogenesis.
- So a virus makes the host its own body; but there also exist symbiotic viruses. These have not taken over a host cell, but sorta vice versa: they became fully incorporated into the host's genome. Two examples: First, the polydnavirus inside of ichneumonid (parasitic) wasps is only produced when the wasps lay eggs in a caterpillar. The virus helps the wasp eggs to survive inside the caterpillar by affecting the immune system and changing the metabolism to the advantage of the wasp eggs. The second example concerns us humans (and all animals with a placenta). The retrovirus ERVWE1 in our genome merges placenta cells through its produced protein "syncytin" in order to create a protective layer. That way, the embryo stays untouched by the mother's immune system. Otherwise it could be recognized as a foreign body because of the father's genes. The retrovirus gives us an advantage compared to non-placental mammals.
- The polydnavirus is still reproduced, but the second virus completely gave up its independence. They, the host and the virus, are rather one new organism instead of two. This process of merging organisms is called symbiogenesis.
- How much human DNA makes up our body?
- Incorporation of outside genetic material happened more than once. When the human genome was sequenced on a large scale, only 1.4% was found to encode our building material - the proteins; the rest appeared to be "junk" DNA. Today we know that 8.5% are old retroviruses (HERVs). -- This brings Agent Smith from the movie Matrix into mind when he classified humans as a virus because of certain similarities: according to him, humans replicated unchecked, consumed all resources, and spread to a new area (host) when another area ran out of resources. Now he would have genetic proof, you might think: our DNA is more "virus" than "human". -- Well, the old retroviruses are almost all defective so they don't matter much. Also, noncoding but function-holding RNA and regulatory sequences - tools and building instructions - have been identified from the junk now. So, yes, no need to panic, we are still human enough.
Symbiotic Virom More information:
Insect and bacteria
Faithful allies since the Cretaceous: Symbiosis between beewolves and protective bacteria originated millions of years ago
[...] A particularly fascinating defensive alliance occurs in the European beewolf (Philanthus triangulum), a digger wasp that hunts honeybees and provisions them for its offspring in underground nests. Previous research has shown that bacterial symbionts of the genus Streptomyces live in the wasp's antennae and on the larval cocoons. The bacteria produce a cocktail of nine different antibiotics that fend off detrimental fungi and bacteria from infecting the developing larva in the cocoon. This strategy to avoid infections is comparable to the combination prophylaxis used in human medicine.
The scientists now reconstructed the phylogenies of different beewolf species and their symbionts. An analysis of the beewolf phylogeny revealed that the symbiosis with Streptomyces first originated in the late Cretaceous, between 68 and 110 million years ago. At present, about 170 species of wasps live in symbiosis with the protective bacteria. [...]
German translation ...
Treue Verbündete seit der Kreidezeit: Symbiose zwischen Bienenwölfen und schützenden Bakterien entstand vor Millionen von Jahren
Eine besonders faszinierende Verteidigungsallianz trifft man beim europäischen Bienenwolf an (Philanthus triangulum), einer Grabwespe, die nach Honigbienen jagt und diese ihrem Nachwuchs in Untergrundnestern als Verpflegung bringt. Vorige Forschung hat gezeigt, dass die Bakteriensymbionten der Gattung Streptomyces in den Antennen und auf den Kokons der Wespe leben. Die Bakterien produzieren einen Cocktail aus neun verschiedenen Antibiotika, die schädliche Pilze und Bakterien davon abhalten die sich entwickelnde Larve im Kokon zu infizieren. Diese Strategie Infektionen zu vermeiden ist vergleichbar mit der Kombinationsprophylaxe, die in der menschlichen Medizin angewendet wird.
Die Wissenschaftler rekonstruierten nun die Stammesgeschichten der verschiedenen Bienenwolf-Arten und ihrer Symbionten. Die Analyse der Bienenwolf-Stammesgeschichte offenbarte, dass die Symbiose mit Streptomyces in der späten Kreidezeit entstand, vor etwa 68 bis 110 Millionen Jahren. Derzeit leben etwa 170 Wespenarten in Symbiose mit Schutz bietenden Bakterien.
Fungus and plant
More than 400 million years of evolution, and some plants still can't make it on their own: plant stress tolerance via fungal symbiosis
All plants in natural ecosystems are thought to be symbiotic with mycorrhizal and/or endophytic fungi. Collectively, these fungi express different symbiotic lifestyles ranging from parasitism to mutualism. Analysis of Colletotrichum species indicates that individual isolates can express either parasitic or mutualistic lifestyles depending on the host genotype colonized. The endophyte colonization pattern and lifestyle expression indicate that plants can be discerned as either disease, non-disease, or non-hosts. Fitness benefits conferred by fungi expressing mutualistic lifestyles include biotic and abiotic stress tolerance, growth enhancement, and increased reproductive success. Analysis of plant–endophyte associations in high stress habitats revealed that at least some fungal endophytes confer habitat-specific stress tolerance to host plants. Without the habitat-adapted fungal endophytes, the plants are unable to survive in their native habitats. Moreover, the endophytes have a broad host range encompassing both monocots and eudicots, and confer habitat-specific stress tolerance to both plant groups.
German translation ...
Mehr als 400 Millionen Jahre Evolution und manche Pflanzen können immer noch nicht alleine auskommen: Stressresistenz von Pflanzen via Pilzsymbiose
Es wird angenommen, dass alle Pflanzen in natürlichen Ökosystemen Symbiosen mit Mykorrhizapilzen und/oder endophytischen Pilzen eingehen. In Anwesenheit der Pflanze entfalten diese Pilze symbiotische Lebensstile von Parasitismus bis Mutualismus. Die Analyse von Glomerella(Colletotrichum)-Arten zeigt, dass einzelne isolierte Pilze entweder parasitäre oder mutuale Lebensstile entfalten können, abhängig von dem besiedelten Genotyp des Wirts. Das endophyte Besiedlungsmuster und die Ausprägung des Lebensstils zeigen, dass Pflanzen entweder als krank, nicht-krank oder Nicht-Wirt wahrgenommen werden können. Von Pilzen übertragende Fitness-Profite bringen mutuale Lebensstile zum Ausdruck, was biotische und abiotische Stresstoleranz, Wachstumsverstärkung, und erhöhte Fortpflanzungschancen mit einschließt. Die Analyse von innerpflanzlichen Gemeinschaften in hochbelastenden Lebensräumen offenbart, dass zumindest manche endophytische Pilze lebensraumspezifische Stresstoleranz den Wirtspflanzen verleihen. Diese Pflanzen wären ohne die lebensraumangepassten endophytischen Pilze nicht im Stande in ihren natürlichen Lebensraumen zu überleben. Außerdem haben die Endophyten eine breite Wirtsauswahl, die sowohl einkeimblättrigen als auch dreifurchenpollen-zweikeimblättrige Pflanzen umfasst, und daher lebensraumspezifische Stresstoleranz auf beide Pflanzengruppen überträgt.
Virus, fungus and plant
A Virus in a Fungus in a Plant: Three-Way Symbiosis Required for Thermal Tolerance
A mutualistic association between a fungal endophyte and a tropical panic grass allows both organisms to grow at high soil temperatures. We characterized a virus from this fungus that is involved in the mutualistic interaction. Fungal isolates cured of the virus are unable to confer heat tolerance, but heat tolerance is restored after the virus is reintroduced. The virus-infected fungus confers heat tolerance not only to its native monocot host but also to a eudicot host, which suggests that the underlying mechanism involves pathways conserved between these two groups of plants.
German translation ...
Ein Virus in einem Pilz in einer Pflanze: Drei-Wege-Symbiose benötigt für Hitzetoleranz
Eine mutuale Gemeinschaft von einem endophytischen Pilz und einer tropischen Rutenhirse (Panicum virgatum) erlaubt beiden Organismen bei hohen Bodentemperaturen zu wachsen. Wir charakterisierten ein Virus von diesem Pilz, der an der mutualen Interaktion beteiligt ist. Isolierte Pilze, die vom Virus geheilt wurden, waren unfähig Hitzetoleranz zu übertragen, jedoch wurde die Hitzetoleranz nach der Rückeinführung des Virus wiederhergestellt. Der virusinfizierte Pilz übertrug Hitzetoleranz nicht nur an seinen natürlichen einkeimblättrige Wirt sondern auch an ein dreifurchenpollen-zweikeimblättrigen Wirt, was nahelegt, dass die zugrundeliegenden Mechanismen zwischen den beiden Pflanzengruppen zu finden sind.
"Bioc" is an abbreviation for its nickname bio crystal. The name was given due to many borrowed mechanisms from living ("bio") systems and one of the prototype's macroscopic appearances is a crystal.
The bioc is a research project of Silver Village (SV), which again is financed by WCG's Aeronautics and Space Administration (the former NASA). The project involves nanorobots for terraforming other planets.
During high peaks of the environmental crisis, an idea arose to repurpose the bots. They should be used to filter out the toxic substances from the environment of our own planet.
After the cataclysm, WCG politicians also demanded that they be assigned to eliminate genetic material of Daodans in the wild.
Originally the bioc was to be ASA's tool to find, analyze and eventually manipulate matter, as well as extraterrestrial microbial life forms. Now it's going to be WCG's last weapon against toxic air, Daodan threats, and the Syndicate ...
The biological aspects of the research were outsourced to the sister facility Green Village (GV). A few different versions of bioc prototypes were produced there before the complex was partially destroyed.
A purely artificial approach would produce a massive address number for the individual bots and therefore cause computational problems. So the bioc is supposed to create a biological means of control, whereby a kind of self-awareness is formed by sensor systems and neural networks (as with SLDs). When the bot population reaches a predefined critical mass, specialized nodes (organs) are created for higher abilities like regional localization (via GPS, etc.). These nodes also allow humans to take control over the bot collective.
To prevent the Daodan's continuing contamination and reconquering of already cleaned areas, the bots need to cloak all lifeforms at first, analyzing them, and then killing all separated microbial Daodan cells. This event is code-named "Silver Dawn". It's planned that all bots on and inside of an organism will destroy themselves, while the subterranean nodes will remain secure for economic purposes.
However, some are worried that the responsible authorities will succumb to the tremendous power, and let the bots remain inside the organisms, especially humans. But, just as likely, hackers could succeed in taking over the system. The WCG will think twice if they want to unleash the bots on the world. Silver Dawn could change everything - to the good or to the bad.
German translation ...
"Biok" ist eine Abkürzung für seinen Nicknamen "Biokristall". Der Name lehnt an Mechanismen der belebten Natur ("bio") an sowie der makroskopischen Gestalten einiger Zelltypen" der Prototypen, die wie ein Kristalle aussehen.
Der Biok ist ein Forschungsprojekt von Silver Dawn, einer Einrichtung, die wiederum von der WKR's Aeronautics and Space Administration (ASA), der ehemaligen NASA, finanziert wird. Das Projekt umfasst selbstreplizierende, semi-autonome Nanoroboter für das Terraforming anderer Planeten.
Nach wiederkehrenden Rekordwerten der Giftkonzentrationen in der Atmosphäre, Boden und Gewässer kam die Idee auf die Nanoroboter etwas umzufunktionieren. Sie sollten die giftigen Subtanzen aus der Umwelt des eigenen Planeten filtern.
Nach dem Big Bang forderten WCG-Politiker auch den Einsatz der Nanobots zur Eliminierung von Daodan-Genmaterial in der freien Wildbahn.
Ursprüngliche sollte der Biok ein Werkzeug der ASA sein Materie wie auch extraterrestrisch-mikrobiologisches Leben zu finden, zu analysieren und letztendlich auch zu manipulieren. Nun würde es das letzte Mittel der WCG gegen toxische Luft, Daodan-DNA, und Syndikat-Aktionen sein...
Zur Erschaffung einer Selbstwahrnehmung formen die Bots Sensorsysteme und neuronaler Netzwerke (wie SLD es tun) wobei einige taktischer Knotenpunkte mit weitere Organe gebildet werden (z. B. Seismische Ortungssystem und GPS-Receiver). Diese Knoten erlaubt aber auch Kontrolle über das Bot-kollektiv von Seiten des Menschen. Die Knoten werden erst gebildet wenn eine kritische Masse im Bot-Kollektiv erreicht wurde.
Um zu verhindern, dass die Daodan die Umwelt mit ihrer DNA kontaminiert oder rückerobert, müssen die Bots alles Lebensformen einschließen, sie analysieren, und dann alle losgelösten mikrobielle Daodan-Zellen. Dem Ereignis wurde der Codename "Silver Dawn" gegeben. Es ist geplant, dass alle Bots, die verschonten Organismen wieder verlassen und insbesondere nur die Unterirdischen Knoten für zukünftige ökonomische und ökologische Zwecke zurückbleiben.
Allerdings gibt es einige Befürchtungen, dass die Verantwortlichen der ungeheuren Macht erliegen könnten und die Bots nicht wieder aus den Organismen abziehen. Genauso gut könnten es auch Hacker geben, die das System unter ihre Kontrolle bringen. Die WCG wird sich zweimal überlegen ob sie die Bots wirklich auf die Welt loslassen will. Silver Dawn könnte Alles verändern - zum Gutem wie auch zum Schlechten.
Management and self-management
To cover wide areas the bioc needs to grow and find energy sources. A "node" in a energy poor area can demand resources from other nodes so that the network remains fully functional. Those nodes are also meant to transfer new instructions of an human operator through the entire network.
In the early years the challenge was to control the Bioc cells at all, to give them directions, let them take shapes and build their sensors.
In the basic research a non-destructive scan was out of reach. Instead the Bioc advanced into new areas with a crystal latices to then collect the information of its direct surroundings. This was exactly the time Pensatore had access to the Bioc. He actually planed to to create tools with it to escape the facility he was taken hostage in.
With the improvement in control and self-management the Bioc was programmed to do autonomic scans of the environment.
- It is supposed to go the way of the lowest resistance, preferring cracks in rocks, water channels in soil.
- It is supposed to avoid multi-cellular life so that it doesn't aggregate in animals and disrupt any biological functions.
During the bombing of GV there was a version with only the first set of protocols. Set free it spread everywhere and infect multi-cellular live while trying scanning it.
Support of humans lives
The question how the bioc could be of direct use to humans lead also to an medical concept. Victims of natural disasters (e.g. people buried under avalanches and destroyed houses) could be provided with clean water, heat, and wound treating to stop blood lose.
It remains unclear whether Daya acquired such Bioc protocol or managed on her own to reach the fragile equilibrium of Bioc and Daodan growth rates.
Large-scale non-destructive scans are equally interesting for archeologists and xeno-archeologists, also those scans are requirements of any successful geoengineering and terraforming projects. Though, future applications of the Bioc are nearly limitless.
Another set of notes...
- The Bioc is a total blend of nanotechnolgy and biology.
- The Bioc is the flag-ship project of the synthetic life research community, hence they are very proud of it.
- Energy supply: In the depth of Earth the bioc can produce energy from piezoelectricity (basically electricity from pressure), heat gradients partially from nuclear decay. Gamma ray photosynthesis wasn't yet implemented as is very difficult to achieve. Melanin can act as UV absorber when gamma rays lost energy from interacting with other matter, it also protects the cybernetic lifeform from free radicals.)
- Propagation: the Bioc uses an analog to DNA, made completely of artificial amino acids. This XNA is thought to prevent any interaction from natural lifeforms and viruses. Viruses - and hence lose of control - are something that shall be avoided at all costs.
- Getting rid of nuclear waste (and all waste in general): when the scientists worked on the energy supply they had to consider the planet's nuclear decay. The idea emerged that the bioc could be used to sink nuclear waste into the ground, far away from any human. The material could be distributed through the network, either lowering the concentration or bringing it to sites where waste heat could be safely collected and converted to electricity or chemical-bound energy. From that thought, it was an short distance until they realized that they could potentially sink any kind of waste into the ground and eventually degrade it.
- Like the Daodan, the Bioc needs computing power to solve complex tasks.
- Since the Bioc must be able to replicate everywhere it can from its parts from many different kinds of matter.
- On the other hand, explored matter and stored energy can be used to create any product on a planet's surface. Those "grown on demand" products can be anything as along as a control node was formed and accessible to an human operator which has a connection to a molecular construction database.
- A fully explored planet with a managing AI is termed Gaia. For sequels, Aether would be the explored and utilized atmosphere.
- For instance, at places rich of carbon compounds, the hull, sensors, and QC parts are made of nanoscale diamonds with a nitrogen-vacancy center. This diamonds with intentional defects are known to have relative stable quantum states at room temperature. These structures can also be used release energy in from of light in order to uncharge when too much electricity was gathered. But usually this is only a last resort when energy cannot be transfered to different places.
- How could Daodan and Bioc merge? Probably by overlapping structures that process information. -- Human mind and the Daodan can interact because the Daodan also has processing organelles inside neurons. Now the bioc, as a third player, could join the party when it invades the brain. Would the Daodan be a hardware trojan to the bioc, or the bioc to the Daodan, or both to each other? In an uncontrolled interaction, the functions of any entity could run amok; for the human, it will mean extreme pain (the bioc invasion alone will stress/destroy a lot of nerves). In the case of Daya, it's one reason why she continues to take drugs of all sorts.
- Energy and resource production, energy and resource transport, on-demand production of goods, waste management
- terraforming in sense of altering the Earth's crust (reinforce coasts, stabilize mountain slopes, catch floods and heavy rainfall, etc.)
- Earth's magnetic field is running towards another reversal. Avatara is aware of that believes to be the only trustful entity to deal with that matter. The tool of choice to prevent a reversal is the deep-earth bioc which can control the flowing currents. A temporary collapse would leave wide areas unprotected against solar winds. These areas would become inhabitable for natural lifeforms. An abuse of the Bioc could accelerate the reversal process and result in an terror attack or mass-murder, possible be committed by daodanized terrorists or other ill-minded groups (GOP?).
- atmospheric control (pollution cleansing, weather and climate control)
Comparing DC and Bioc
passive, defensive, protective, analyzing harmful stimuli, flexible
Survival by adapting own organism. -> Give up / loss of self-control.
Mirrors a possible new behavior.
active, aggressive, possessive, analyzing all matter, somewhat inflexible
Survival by adapting the environment. -> Total control.
Mirrors old human behavior.
The two technologies meet at a cellular level and fight in hyperevolution.
It seem totally possible that synergistic effects could occur if both entities eventually merge.
However, the behavior of both - DC and Bioc - is extreme. And extremes tend to not last very long.
Therefore the new entity might work according to new guidelines, for example:
- Analyzing threats: Adapt to harmful stimuli if limits become exceeded.
- Analyzing resources: Adapt to new energy sources if preferred source is unavailable.
- Defense against or cooperation with other organisms. (developing immunity or integration)
Discussing a possible fusion
1 Overlapping processing structures
DC and Bioc start as small clusters. With more cells/units, they unlock new abilities.
So, before a fusion can take place, both entities must have already reached their first critical volume.
Then, when their information processing structures overlap, an interaction could become possible.
Both use computation to do their task, therefore they need a model of themselves.
But even if both models overlap and somehow become one, their programming is still different.
- If the models merged, the Bioc could try to use the human as a tool to fulfill its tasks.
- Another problem could be (found in) the amount of units needed to reach the critical volume without destroying the daodanized human.
So, here we see that there's probably more things needed to make both entities work together.
1.1 Brain interface
Syndicate soldiers and TCTF agents might have brain interfaces to receive/send biometric/optical data.
- 09_31_08 Shinatama: I am an SLD, an android programmed with your brain engrams. I have seen everything you have seen, felt everything you have felt. They used me to monitor the growth of the Chrysalis inside you...
- "I have seen everything" could be based on the brain engrams. But after all, Oni was inspired by "Ghost In The Shell" which also features brain-computer interface technologies. Shinatama's statement is reminiscent of Intercepters.
- 06_21_01 Syndicate Henchman: I've been monitoring the woman tracking us as you instructed. Scanners indicate a standard comlink as well as a second set of sub dermal transmissions. Analysis suggests that she is neurolinked to an SLD.
- The ComGuy was able to identify the BCI relatively easily, giving an impression of it being nothing very special.
Anyway. If the Bioc can't understand the Daodan's language, maybe it can understand the translated, digital signals from the BCI?
1.2 Analytic code as requirement
For an interesting plot, there could be the need of a certain programming to preserve life.
The idea of the final Bioc is to scan a planet for all kind of aspects including traces of life.
So, if the prototype doesn't have that programming, an infected human could seek to obtain that code in order to ensure his survival.
After the update, the human is one step away from realizing that he could write another update to simply force a fusion to his advantage.
1.3 Ability to enter a new symbiosis
A) The Daodan is heavily based on symbiosis. Why shouldn't it be possible to add new partners to an existing symbiosis?
- In the end, tools are just extensions of your body. If the Daodan recognizes the Bioc as a tool, it could stop fighting it.
- As for the Bioc, could it falsely identify Daodan cells as its own, as some kind of higher Bioc organ?
B) How could two very different Imagos create offspring? If they can't, natural Imagos will become extinct.
- The bodies would have to merge at some point in order to form one virtual model for calculating the offspring's DNA and anatomy.
- But what would make the Daodan work together with the Bioc? Maybe the Bioc could accidentally trigger this process.
1.4 Mental control
As described in "Arguments for an in vivo Daodan", the human mind might influence the transformation.
The more brain cells are daodanized, the easier the transformation could be controlled.
This can be seen in contrast to what Hasegawa actually wanted -- adding automatic protection to the human body.
However, the possibility that messing with your own body can result in sickness or death should be common sense.
So, you'd better not interfere unless you are an expert in genetics ("Read the manual, duh!"), or you have no other choice but to learn by trial and error.
Wouldn't that be very risky? With total control over DNA and anatomy, it should be possible the test the changes only in a few cells before applying them to the rest.
Still, it would be wishful thinking that everything turns out okay.
For that reason, Pensatore could have rejected the Daodan for himself. He believes that only more wisdom can bring a true solution. (Ref. Biocracy, Omega Chimera)
To summarize the helpfulness of the human factor in this connection, with total control and technical knowledge, it's theoretical possible to conquer the Bioc from within.
The term brain engrams in Oni might be related to:
Speculation about brain components
Improvements in silicon chips are reaching their limits. With all the promising research going on, we can expect new standards in a foreseeable future.
What can change? Materials, information transmission, and architecture.
The new standards will deliver more computing power, and with enough computing power, pretty much everything can be simulated.
It's thought that brain simulations require exascale computing.
If we assume a human neocortex with 1 million cortical columns, each with 60.000 neurons, it would take 60.000 of IBM's new neurosynaptic processors, each with 1.000.000 programmable neurons, to do the job.
A SLD brain with components based on these technologies might be possible but would be still far too big in size. It might fill a small building, and remotely control its body. So that's generation 0.
- memristors as complex networks can mimic biological brains better than transistors
- they can execute fuzzy logic, which in contrast to Boolean logic is not fixed between two states
- they are non-volatile memory units, even if they run on electricity, because with usage the state of their inner matter changes
- higher energy efficiency - no electric current needed, less energy used
- faster components - no electrical charge is transported and thus no thermal problems appear, which allows clock speed up to 10,000 GHz
- smaller components - e.g. the OR gate (actual iron-atom gate counts approx. 3nm), these kind of components can be smaller than today's semiconductors
- non-volatile memory - information is not lost when power is turned off because they store data magnetically (this means the boot process of computers would also become significantly faster)
- and nanospintronics would also allow hybrid components for calculation and memory (these information were adapted from here (mirror))
That's the point which is especially interesting, because of the analogy to biological components. Also, biological brains use one type of component for two things - the neurons store and process information.
Why multiple generations?
To describe an SLD's brain at an early point on Oni's timeline, this brain would rely on multiple new technologies, but so far it seem that they will not be available at that time.
- memristors are the first-choice components to create an AI brain, but they would still "need transistors at the periphery" (src: "Spektrum der Wissenschaft Spezial Physik - Mathematik - Technik 3/2013", page 57)
- at the moment it seems that memristors will hit the market before spintronic-based transistors do, so meanwhile conventional transistors would aid memristors in AIs
Are SLDs alive?
Let's consider the following points in order to discuss this topic.
- "The SLD project is an attempt to recreate human physiology with artificial materials."
- SLD are classified as androids.
- The TCTF's and the Syndicate's language is mostly technical...
- Konoko: "I don't know if they programmed fear into her but if they didn't she's probably figured it out on her own by now."
- 08_28_02 Muro: "Curious. Why bother programming you to feel pain so intensely?"
- 09_31_08 Shinatama: "I am an SLD, an android programmed with your brain engrams"
- ... while the SLD scientists seem to be more inclined to psychological terms.
- "SLDs are individuals in many respects."
- "This core personality is then given a chance to develop a unique neurolattice while experiencing accelerated streaming sensory feeds."
- "Most SLDs have to spend at least three months in the senseloop, which we have come to think of as their psychological womb."
- wikipedia:Emergence - new properties, behaviors, etc. of a system which its components do not possess. Also commonly known under the phrase: "the whole is more than the sum of its parts". Two examples: gas has a temperature, but not the single molecules; a brain has a mind, but single neurons don't.
If they had really recreated human physiology, how could they rule out a new emerged mind? Why would it be merely a simulated one? The TCTF was surprised that Shinatama developed her own will.
- "[...] an unprecedented degree of free will in the android [...]"
Maybe the TCTF believed that a SLD would simply run on "programs" (because the hardware is not biological but artificial), and that programs aren't enough to create a mind. That's pretty similar thinking to John Searle's Chinese Room. I wonder if a collection of interacting programs can show emergence.
What's the purpose of SLDs?
I don't think it's a desirable goal to create an android that can just feel pain, breathe, sweat, and eat* and ... So you are saying it can produce artificial shit, eh? Is that everything you were able to accomplish after spending our research budget of 100 million dollars? Of course the real deal must be something else.
We have to ask why they didn't imitate another life form. Why not a bacteria, a plant, or an animal?
- Side note: SLD are made of "artificial materials" and "micromechanical fabrication cells" and thus the basis is very unlikely to be DNA.
So the SLD project wasn't about immune systems, metabolisms, and not primarily about somatic functions. What's the big difference between humans and other life forms on earth? In all modesty, it seems that the human mind is our biggest and most interesting difference. And it's still a mystery in Oni's story as well as in reality.
- SLD scientist: "One thing we still cannot do is create an artificial system that adequately simulates the processes of the human mind."
- Turing: "I do not wish to give the impression that I think there is no mystery about consciousness. There is, for instance, something of a paradox connected with any attempt to localise it."
So the solution seems to be to somewhat (if not entirely) copy an existing brain.
In Oni, "brain engrams" gave the SLD androids a mind, and that way they could be a tool to study intelligence in an artificial environment.
With the obtained data, the mind doesn't need to get reinvented, but analyzed. After the analysis phase, a true artificial intelligence could be designed.
- Another side note: SLD brain engrams involve copying brain information, and that looks very similar to what is called mind uploading. That too is thought to be a means for advancing towards AI. Ergo, in Oni, AI might be close -- although the Syndicate developed Deadly Brains. DBs would be obsolete if AIs already existed. (Or maybe AIs are not only much more difficult to construct, but much more expensive as well...)
However, the abilities claimed in the manual could be requirements for the SLD brain/mind to work normally because it requires some body functions. Their food could be raw material for regeneration, and a compound of hydrogen and oxygen may be needed to transform chemical energy to electric current. Their sweat then could be pure water from the chemical reaction from inside the fuel cell.
- SLD technology has reached it's third design generation and prototype SLDs are in use in a wide range of industries including law enforcement, fire fighting, manufacturing, and aviation.
After these public tests WCG decided to ban some applications in sale and manufacturing.
Thought experiment: Factory owners try to rationalize. They replace "human resources" with robots. At the end you have a factory full of robots that only belong to the factory owners. And repairs of robots are carried out by other robots. In that scenario the capitalism would itself rationalize to death. Therefore SLDs should only be given tasks that are extreme dangerous or not "system threatening". Think of jobs that only few wants to carry out or where androids are a more reasonable choice: activities at atomic/biologic/chemical dangerous sites, decontamination, astronauts, mining, soldiers, safeguard jobs, nursing.
The WCG is trying to reform education and job market towards more creative directions. But that endeavor doesn't proceed as quickly as it would be necessary.
To minimize effects of organized crime and terror attacks, the WCG founded the checkerboard project.
The chess game serves as analogy whereas the board stands for the battle ground and black and white figures for destructive and counter-destructive forces.
The androids lay dormant until an incidence occurs. They can counteract in an instant and reduce death tolls.
Another decentralized application would be medical emergency SLDs. This civil application could easily increase public acceptance of SLD usage.
SLD technology as source for prostheses
In order to slow down overpopulation of planet Earth WCG tries to ban regenerative medicine that would massively increase the human lifespan. They are hence promoting SLD technology to produce prostheses. With these prostheses disabled people can experience normal lifespans.
Need for a body
If I had to summarize, AVATARA couldn't exist without a body that generates necessary input for a functional brain. Otherwise it couldn't see, hear, feel, taste, and scent. And with no memory it couldn't even reflect. I mean, of how much worth would it be to create an artificial brain that is completely empty? It couldn't do anything.
Like SLDs, also AVATARA, would have needed to grow. Of course, they can later copy information and create as many new AIs they want but at first they need at least one and the challenge is to build that vary one.
Pensatore must have realized AIs don't simply pop into existence even with sufficient enough hardware wired together. He must have guided AVATARA virtual development. That's why other scientist call him father of the SLDs.
Mukade, the SLD
At the time of Konoko's adventures, SLD technology seems to be in its final development stage.
Still, SLDs and their way of thinking is not fully understood; that's what Shinatama proves.
This has a logical consequence for a theory in which Mukade is actually Hasegawa with Mukade's brain engrams.
- When could the fusion have happened? Somewhat after Mukade and Hasegawa met, or later, just before Muro took over the Syndicate?
- The latter is more plausible, and they would have needed one more expert. (Pensatore, SLD scientist.)
- SLD technology draws on brain engrams because scientists couldn't create intelligence on their own yet.
- One thing we still cannot do is create an artificial system that adequately simulates the processes of the human mind.
- Instead SLDs contain a behavioral framework patterned on donor brain engram data fed into the system during its formation.
- This core personality is then given a chance to develop a unique neurolattice while experiencing accelerated streaming sensory feeds.
- Most SLDs have to spend at least three months in the senseloop, which we have come to think of as their psychological womb.
- Because of the lack of knowledge, it seems unlikely that they could have implanted Mukade's brain engrams into Hasegawa or vice versa.
- Instead, they could have created an SLD from two donor brains, an "ego hybrida". From then on, Hasegawa and Kimura (original Mukade) could sit back and use Mukade (the SLD) as an instrument for controlling/watching Muro.
When the three mavericks got together one evening, it happened that Kimura and Pensatore talked about Shinto and Buddhism. One topic was the human soul, and that Shinto believes that multiple mitama can form one soul: the concept of ichirei shikon. Kimura's Shinobi philosophy was influenced by this to a small degree. But he mentioned enough to awake Pensatore's interest. He felt that there were similarities with the meme theory. Pensatore embarked on a new path. From that time on, he understood the brain as a collection of memes running on biological hardware. His new goal was to create a digital mind that would run not in a robot brain, but on common servers. Eventually he uploaded his own mind.
[...] Shintama could have uploaded her mind to the Internet with the help of Pensatore. I guess this can continue with Owldreamer's stuff.
- 00_01_30 Shinatama: I've checked our neural link and it's working perfectly!
- level 2b console: Engineers attempted to exploit the advantages inherent in the speed of the neural link by interlocking batteries of free tracking ball mount plasma cannons designed to independently track and fire upon multiple targets simultaneously.
- level 2a console: Projections indicated that the reflex response of a direct 'neural link would be as much as twenty times faster than any remote or automated system.
Obviously a neural link connects bigger chunks of neurons or nerves to artificial communication channels whereby it translates one signal into another.
Conclusion: A neural link - or rather multiple of them - enables a brain to receive and send digital or analog information.
Such links can be used for:
- translating phone calls to neuronal sensation patterns and injecting them into the acoustic nerve
- translating image and video transmission to neuronal sensation patterns and injecting them into the optic nerve
- collecting visual and auditory patterns
- collecting weak patterns of muscle memory for speech ("inner voice")
- current RL research is still busy trying to reconstruct speech from patterns originating more higher up in the brain (BBC), (nature)
- Note this part: "Even when participants mouthed sentences but did not speak them out loud, the model produced an intelligible synthesized sentence."
- collecting weak patterns of muscle memory for gestures and movements ("imagined moves")
- collecting any other neural pattern (as long as it isn't too complex for analysis such as pain)
Capturing mental images or even memories is not possible with neural links as the associated brain patterns are too complex for these little devices.
The TCTF used neural links to monitor Mai.
The extent of data collection was total.
- 01_01_02 Shinatama: All systems nominal. She's doing fine.
They even collected data about hormone levels.
- 01_03_06 Shinatama: She won't back down. Her adrenals have been rising steadily. Too much stress could destabilize her latency.
Besides neural links Konoko was injected with numerous sensors under her skin. The two-way direction of the information flow was confirmed by the Syndicate and shows that they are very aware of the involved technologies.
- 06_21_01 Syndicate Henchman: I've been monitoring the woman tracking us as you instructed. Scanners indicate a standard comlink as well as a second set of sub dermal transmissions. Analysis suggests that she is neurolinked to an SLD.
Mai's inherited brain engrams can be seen as Shinatama's source of knowledge. But her choice of words include recent events. That makes clear she really knows everything about her big sister.
- 09_31_08 Shinatama: I am an SLD, an android programmed with your brain engrams. I have seen everything you have seen, felt everything you have felt. They used me to monitor the growth of the Chrysalis inside you...
Tech note for later:
Neural links can serve as building blocks for a Nürberger Trichter which has been in the past only a joke. It wouldn't be much different from the senseloop of SLDs except that it would inject sensory feeds of refined quality.
Bertram Navarre: "The idea on improving NL for our purpose came when we took a look at agencies how they collect data."
"When they don't get the information directly from telecommunication companies they can collect minute thermal signals of glas fibres reconstructing the photon signals. The neural link warps around nerves to also collect signals. This has been used for smart prothesis too. This is the soft method."
"If the agencies need to higher amount of information they accessed the undersee cables directly, but due to high risk of damage they nowadays access nodes run by the companies. We also tried to retrieve information by opening some nerves but in the biological environment damage is increased by mechanic stress or pathogen/immune reactions. Therefore the soft information retrieval became our method of choice."
"To me the research on NL was highly interesting to test the signal quality of regenerates nerves in their full length."
"Breakthrough in science nowadays mostly interdisciplinary."
End of growth
Reminded to "The Limits to Growth"? ;)
According to Moore's law the chip industry will reach fundamentals limits for transistor size (2 to 3 nanometers) in 2020. Due to increasing production difficulties 2025 seems more likely.
So is this the end of growth of computing power? Certainly not.
The companies will push forward multi-core processors and vertical stacking. For example, Samsung already uses vertical stacking in flash memory, by now you should have heard of their V-NAND SSD. The idea to use the third dimension should soon find its way into processor production to fulfill Moore's law.
A computer is meant to be a universal problem solver. But special problems require special solutions. So, CPUs got company - most notably - by coprocessors for networking, sound (DSP), graphics (GPU) and physics (PPU). Those coprocessors were - and most still are - available as add in cards. There's a tendency that over time coprocessors are combined on one product for weaker customers.
- mainboards having "onboard" chips: networking, sound, graphics
- combined CPU and GPU: AMD's APU and Intel's CPUs with integrated HD Graphics
- GPU with PPUs: GPU with CUDA (after Nvidia bought PhysX), general purpose GPU (GPGPU)
Like in organic evolution, after a phase of specialization, a phase of socialization follows. ^_^
Progress on the hardware level is only one side of the coin. You also need software to utilize it. A Russian team demonstrated that some scenarios requiring supercomputing can actually by handled on a desk PC after installing a new graphics card (GTX-670, CUDA supported) and self-written software.
As for 2018, still many PC programs can't draw advantage from multi-cores processors. To be fair, not every program need multiple cores - just as a simple text editor. Yeah, for what? However the trend is here to stay: more cores. See Intel's Core X and AMD's Threadripper 2.
After these tricks (stacking, multi-core architecture, parallelism) has been fully exploited, the companies will be forced to turn to new technologies such as spintronics in 2025. Harnessing the magnetic property of electrons will not only result in less power consumption but also high clock rates. In the past years the clock speed stagnated between 4 and 5 GHz due to overheating. Processors based on spintronics won't heat up that fast, so they can operate at higher frequencies. And higher frequencies means more calculations per second.
Oh yeah, and of course quantum computers... You often hear of "breakthroughs" but still practical examples are nowhere to be found. That's because there is quite a number of different approaches.
- Quantum annealing (limited use, not a general-purpose QC), see: D-Wave
- Superconducting electronic circuits
- Ion traps
- Diamond NV center
- Majorana particle (Topological QC)
Each approach comes with it's own difficulties and most parts have to be constructed from scratch and the underlying logic rests on fragile particle states such as entanglement. While powerful quantum computer might just gain traction by 2050, we should see more and more hybridization of processor technologies in the meantime.
2017.02.02 Update: The first blueprint for a significant large QC has been published. The article on phys.org had 5000 shares after one day (counter was resetted), a number that is rarely reached.
The foundation of this kind of QC are trapped ions. They require bulky vacuum chambers. That's not very elegant but due to economics' tendency to create cash cows the development of better approaches will be delayed. It can only be hoped that the ion QC will provide enough computing power to accelerate further research and therefor compensate the economic influence.
NV-centers should take over when the ion traps cannot be shrinked any further thus giving birth to real "large scale" QC.
As you already guessed these numbers (2025, 2050) are just rough estimates. All I can do here is explaining my estimates in some more detail.
Let's make also an approach via economy. A company will only invest a serious amount of money into a new R&D field if it doesn't have another option. If they try it anyway, there's a high risk to fail. Latest example is HP's the machine, a still-hypothetical computer driven by memristors. The technological gap is still too wide.
The end of increase in computer power per equal size doesn't mean the end of innovation but it a massive slowdown.
Companies relying on innovation will be endangered by the unofficial rules of stock exchange: a steady production isn't enough, a company mustn't be stable, it must be growing to satisfy its shareholders.
Capitalistic principles will not chease to exist but a planetary technosphere and slowed down knowledge acquisition will eventually cool down capitalistic economies and allow a Biocracy to be chosen as reasonable political system. - All the more since computers and robots will replace about 47% of all jobs in the next 20 years in the US. So for 2050 with emerging, mighty AIs we can expect even more pressure on economy and society to change dramatically.
- PPPS in BSL-4
- FlexoSteal Suit in BSL-5
- Made of a newly discovered carbon derivative, flexible as rubber but strong as diamond. MEMBRANE system: additionally to a positive air pressure there are two conductive, sandwiched layers which would close a circuit in case of slightest damage. Air recycling: CO2 is filtered internally. Carbon is captured and O2 brought back. The suits are running with just electricity which the boots received via inductive coupling from the ground - it is basically the same wireless powering technique smartphones use. The idea originates from next generation of astronaut suits. Also, the suit has its own computer system.
- FlexoSteal suit for Konoko
- When Konoko was proven to be noncontagious TCTF sci remodeled it to provide protection against weapons and h2h combat. Compared to military Black OP suits, the FS material replaces parts where aramid has been used.
- CDC's remote control suits
- A.k.a. exoskeleton. Used to record body movements and transfer the signals to a robot that copies all moves.
- Airtight exoskeleton for decontamination teams. Heavy models, double size of a human, are also named "Decon Mechs" and "Decons". They are equipped with graphene shields.
Why a mech when you can have a tank?
A realistic, bipedal, GUNDAM-sized robot couldn't be very fast and requires a fair amount of computing power just to accomplish stable and smooth locomotion. Also it is prone to take damage from stumbling and falling. The surface-volume-ratio is worse so that it increases weight spend for armor.
So what could be the advantages of a mech?
Area of operation
Terrain-wise mechs could literally go where tanks couldn't: stone deserts, mountains, deep wilderness. But also in urban warfare mechs could show off by operating inside of buildings if they aren't too big. Compare with Land Mates, Apple Seed.
Basically a tank transports firepower from place A to place B. But nowadays tanks are easy targets and need air support.
Same would be true for 10-meter mechs or bigger.
If you take two-legged mechs, you must maximize their advantages by keeping them small and fast.
From here on let's mix in more fiction.
In order to prevent falls or minimize damage from such, mechs shouldn't be GUNDAM-sized and they need a superb movement. Buttons and levers won't do. You need either a neuro-linked pilot or an AI. So, in a sense, mechs in Oni could be over-sized SLDs in a full-body armor. The mechanic cells of SLDs and graphene shields would allow them the regenerate damaged parts right on the battle field.
Now, how about some martial art? Our mechs (Iron Demon class) are engulfed in armor, heavy weapon would reduce their mobility. Fully packed with sensors they could detect incoming RPGs and missiles. They would have two options: destroy the threat with Metal Storm-like defense or perform a computer-aided evasion maneuver. Missiles can home in on moving targets but those don't change direction. As faster the missile is and as closers it gets to the target the more difficult it becomes for the missile to adept direction. A well-timed evasion could prevent a full hit whereby are remaining damage (blast and shrapnels) are absorbed by the regenerative armor and body.
If the Iron Demon isn't equipped with considerable firearms it should be at least capable of disarming an enemy tank by ripping off its cannon or doing other nasty things to it:
- The ID could climb on the tanks back, grab and pull the cannon until it reaches the maximal angle and break the joint, then ripping it off.
- A "locomotion transfer throw": the ID sprints and grabs the cannon. The ID's inertia bring the tank into motion. After mass and velocity and combined, the ID touches ground with his feet and puts more power into his throw. He swings the tank around to crushes it into a wall or into the ground. Elite Strikers do that as a disarm move but without the running part.
- IDs can crash land on a tank after jumping out of a window or from a not too high roof. We are talking here about 2050's military state-of-the-art materials and mechs not bigger than 5 meters, so this should be okay.
- IDs could be equipped with a sword (taser included) or their legs and arms would be a sharp edge. Fast strikes and kicks enhanced by running (more kinetic energy) could cut though a detected weak spot and damage sensors and outside equipment.
- If the tank is too big: pump graphene gas into the interior and taser the crew and the electronics.
Anyway, the main target shouldn't be tanks but enemy infantry and light-armored vehicles or other mechs. (Yay, close combat action. Here we go.)
In a nutshell: close quarter combat SLD mechs (CCM) gain a lot from their design and movement control. Their body is their weapon, and their reflexes and cognitive skills reduce damage and self-damage.
The CCM cells are capable of showing various color pigments so the mechs blend into the landscape and reach a near-perfect camouflage as long as they don't move.
In urban warfare ID pilots love a run through walls and take the enemy by surprise although the armor is EMP-proof and defects all common Syndicate hand-held weapons. An ID can be fearsome opponent.
Mechs profited from research on exoskeleton which also have civil applications.
- construction work / heavy physical work in general / helping seniors and disabled people
- disaster areas (earthquake area, flooded area, radioactive area (heavy radiation protection))
- space exploration (supervised autonomous robots, exoskeleton on earth serves as remote control)
Since the beginning of the bio crisis, the WCG equipped their reclamation teams with exoskeleton-enhanced Hazmat suit.
Green Village is deployed with civil and military exoskeletons and mechs.
The Iron Demon seen in pre-beta content shouldn't be considered as a piece of serial production. Maybe an old develop version, a prototype, a proof of concept, yada yada. Something Griffin used in a crazy emergency?
Oni offers only two lines about its shield technology. The item description says also "force shield", which might be an inappropriate term, because:
- the force shield is visible to the naked eye,
- pieces can break away when a bullet hits it,
- magnetic/electric fields couldn't protect its user against non-magnetic/non-inducting materials,
- and magnetic and electric fields aren't blocky. (Well, maybe on Dune but not on Earth. XD)
So this thought leads one to think about a different technological basis.
Side note: most of the mentioned flaws can again be explained by gameplay aspects and hardware/software limitations during Oni's creation. However, I don't want those to be an "excuse" for not developing the fiction any further.
Let's start with another question: Atmospheric Conversion Centers clean air for cities, but what would keep the clean air inside and the toxins outside the cities?
Graphene oxide is known to be impermeable to everything except water (and maybe hydrogen). Graphene has so tight of a structure that almost nothing fits between its atoms. It's also pretty transparent, which would let sunlight still reach the interior of our hypothetical shield.
Other graphene layers attached to the first one could align the material along a magnetic field. Pure graphene isn't magnetic, but doping and defects can change the properties of graphene in many ways.
What if the shield gets damaged? Methods of self-assembly and self-healing are currently being explored and could probably be of some help.
- Initiation: [...]
- Healing: Atmospheric shields that shelter whole cities are threatened by gusting wind, changing air pressure, rain, lightning and other meteorologic phenomena. The shield is monitored permanently by laser systems. Fraction causing tension is treated by ultra-short (attosecond) laser pulses generating new or manipulating existing phonons (quasi particle, collective molecule vibrations). Usually fractions can't be prevented from forming. Instead, the lasers tweak phonons to prevent fraction expansion while other beams promote healing with particles from the support layer above. In some circumstances (starting helicopters and airplane) the lasers must cut openings and pulverizing the lose chunk. During thunderstorms, lasers create thin plasma channels which act as lightning conductor. That way, the lightning is guided onto the ground through a opening in the shield leaving the rest of the dome unharmed.
- Fresh air supply: like for water, natural gas, electricity and telecommunication, there are now networks to deliver treated ACC air mixed with oxygen and evacuate carbon dioxide and new pollutants. Captured carbon dioxide is filtered and transformed into new graphene flakes.
Due to the harsh climatic conditions GUR developed additional shield layers that act as solar panels and change its translucence on demand (laser excitation with different frequency) forming a more comfortable micro climate. To prevent built up of heat over day time, the African city domes form openings at the top to let escape hot air. The suction effect powers the nearby ACC wind turbine.
Rain water that runs down the shield is collected at ground level and guided into underground reservoirs.
Personal shield are composed of many little generators, sensors and storages for modified graphene flakes.
The shield collapses either when graphene flakes or energy is consumed. In idle mode the shield keeps operating for several hours.
As the wearer moves the graphene barrier becomes adapted.
Military versions can connect with the electronic firing system of hand-held weapons and create little, temporary holes for projectiles to fly through.
A neuro-link can be used to switch on and off sections at the hands and feet allowing users to exchange things or to guard against land mines.
The newest generation allows users to combine their shields in stationary situations. Also, the flakes are now manufactured in a way that they enhance their bonding strength as more Watt is spend. WCGs tries to improve the shield technology even more by maintaining graphene's superconductor property with an adapted doping recipe.
Due to high electron density and extreme mechanical pressure, next generations of shields are thought to show someday phase transitions also changing light absorption behavior and therefor its color. Inside the Oniverse this is called PT armor by some anime fans in homage to PS armor.
Features of Nishio's back-mounted mech shield
- shield shape remodeler: used to change form and size, e.g. to protect a small vehicle
- support for multiple layers
- (modded VDG) spray nozzles for graphene powder that when put under current creates an explosion, blasting the outer layer away (turning his "blast shield" into an effective 360° low-range self-defense weapon)
- spray injectors for liquid nitrogen to freeze and seal Bioc infected roamers
3D printing got not only popular among civil and industrial-level tinkerers, also criminal organizations try to make use of it. And the Syndicate became a prime example of that. Weapon parts get printed, assembled and sold on demand. Thugs and other criminal customers receive the goods via drone. The Syndicate uses various base materials that aren't on police's watch list. The illegal blueprints are shared over the encryption-protected TITAN darknet.
The Syndicate tries to perfect its own printing technologies to become as much independent as possible. For instance, 2049, they upgraded their African HQ by use of mobile concrete printers.
Bioprinting is also known as tissue engineering.
So far it wasn't possible to bioprint arteries and small blood vessels which are needed for any organ. In 2015, the problem of a sufficient blood supply was pretty much solved. Increasing printing resolution and stability and simultaneous usage of different materials will make it possible to print - in theory - complete humans, on condition that research of iPSC don't run into some heavy roadblocks.
The TCTF is aware that this technology can generate false traces but underestimates it as a purely theoretical threat. The tech is restricted nonetheless to please WCG's worries of an over-growing world population.
Highly organized criminals will use bioprinting to setup fake DNA traces alongside of false fingerprints. One day it will be even possible to fake corpses. With the years the fakes will become virtually indistinguishable from original bodies. A legal application is probably only reasonable for witness protection programs.
The GATC organization experiments with faking corpses to save their assets against lethal threats and then enabling them a new life. Initially GATC intended to use this tech only to provide their wounded soldiers with bio-prostheses.
The first candidate profiting from project "Spare" as in "spare part" is likely TCTF Commander Griffin. He is thought to be very high on the Syndicate's kill list. Griffin is found to have hid away access codes for WCG "puppets". Back then when Griffin was still with Blackstars there was an a lethal disagreement within the GATC administration. The question was whether it was acceptable to brainwash certain politician to sabotage the establishment of WCG. Those defying the sabotage were taken out one by one. But Griffin silently snatched the access codes and killed the research team responsible for the WCG "puppet program". At the same time GATC' military division, Blackstars, declared themselves as a new, independent mercenary group. The remaining GATC administration and Blackstars still work together at some point as their goal that they still agree on is to re-establish the United States of America. Their relationship is to be best described as an obligate symbiosis, neither of them can survive without the other.
"Spares" are products of cutting edge engineering and skillful craftsmanship. So-called cinematic renders of highly detailed full-body scans provide the anatomic blueprint for the corpse. Bioprinting techniques then reconstruct the body. Typically, decedents are identified by relatives based on the appearance. In doubt finger prints, dentition and DNA is used. With the improvements of medical scans "Spare" also need to fake other traits especially signs of aging: bone grow pattern, bone attrition, atherosclerosis, scars under the skin (cicatrization), skin marks and normal scars to generate a plausible appearance that can be checked against medical files. Of course prostheses have to be included if the person has such.
Spares can be identified as such by missing certain traits. Concentrations of isotopes, toxins, and the telomere length are rather difficult or expensive to reproduce.
In theory a perfectly, newly produced "Spare" can also serve as fullbody transplant for a brain...
Hmmm tasty Frankenburger ...
Notes: Why print food when could reload your chemical-bound energy storages directly? -> Omega Chimera
The Syndicate prints food for their HQ staff.
To cut a long story short, the white coats showed, in the future, it will be possible to control chemical reactions with light. This means, you need only a few elementary resources and then build stuff molecule by molecule.
On a second thought, it should also be possible the break apart already existing chemical bonds to harvest elements from common molecules like H2O, CO2, N2, NH3, etc.
Anyway, preferably you would also build specialized nanobots to further accelerate construction time of the actual desired product.
Hasegawa's new lab includes molecular printers so that they can build SLDs and nano-sized tools to probe and manipulate Daodan samples.
Pensatore also used them to dissemble himself with an early Bioc prototype. Mukade found Pensatore's beheaded corpse after unlocking the room by force.
GATC plans some big-scale lethal false-flags attacks. For some scenarios they even try to acquire nuclear material. Securing broken arrows turns out to be rather complicated. So they decided for a slower method. Filtering ionic uranium out of seawater is only an theoretical option. Advanced filtration facilities such as GOP's seawater desalination can do that but the concentration is too low. To speed up the process they throw uranium oxide into the seawater pools. The captured mass is then further refined by polymer filters designed by GATC AI Sophia.
However, Blackstars is rather skeptical about the necessity of such weapons making it even harder for GATC to realize any of their "A-level" scenarios.
The TCTF is aware of such threats and therefore relocates sci staff working on advanced nano filtration to their science prisons but neither GOP nor GATC is on their radar.
The most strange thing about Oni's plasma rifle was that the bolt accelerates over distance.
Let's compare this to a full-blown balloon losing air. But here it is graphene-coated bubble that is self propelling due to a plasma jet at a hole, destroyed at contact. The bubble is magnetized causing electrons to be attracted and fueling a contraction mechanism. The positive charged protons are repelled and can escape only through the one opening.
The "fun" thing is that these coated plasma bolts should do various kinds of damage: shock, burn, and impact.
Based on Pensatore's work which he used on Mukade.
Avatara uses artificial cells to monitor and control the information flow in human brains.
As the new protagonists awaken from their long sleep, the solar system lays in chaos.
Earth disappeared. And where did all the humans go?
A dangerous space journey begins. It's a fight for survival against one own mind, against friends, against enemies and against space itself.
Eventually they discover creatures. Are those aliens or biological remnants of humans that have passed long time ago?
What will you do to get "home"? How much can you endure?
The group reaches the alleged location of human live. What they find is an hostile society that stigmatizes them as memetic and biological hazard material.
This draws on #Molecular printing.
Actually "earthbound" printing would be much easier, but maybe there are conditions (a gas planet?) that justify airborne printing. At least it would be fun and epic...
In the manga Blame you can see characters pop into existence, somehow simply growing. In Oni, similar can be achieved by molecular printing. A Gaia and Aether environment isn't absolute necessary but very helpful. At the scene, molecular machines - invisible to the human eye - carry out the construction. Airborne particles have a less density than in liquids or solid aggregates, so in order to speed up the process, strong air streams are forced towards the construction core. The sky will overcloud and even a controlled tornado can emerge.
The heat sources or magnetic fields would determine the motion of the wind. Inverse tornado wouldn't lift the entity to build.
There would be some kind of collector and filter structures attached to the "core".
Electricity can be harnessed from charged clouds, with or without lightning. Or simply from the ground (Bioc power grid).
Biology made from condensed matter?
Possibilities of synthetic biology can be extended by XNA, adding new nucleic acids to the "alphabet".
Now, what would happen if you even learn how to use even more isotopes and stick only to atoms and molecules that can be condensed?
Pokemon! I always wondered how do these animals fit into such tiny space? Answer: the ball contains pools for fermionic condensates and a memory for the genetic and anatomic blueprints. Of course you need a techno sphere (gaia or whatever) to reach ultra cool temperatures, do fast scans and later on the printing.
This technology is reserved for Beyond Dragons.
Basically networking humans with an revamped Daodan.
Their Daodan genome can now be changed by will.
Gaia picks up the transformation task. It has enough computing power and a database to virtually develop any desired adaption or cybernetic implant.
OCs can combine their neuronal resources.
"Green OCs" are made of biological cells and SLD cells in equal shares.
"Grey OCs" are purely made of SLD cells (nano bots).
RL examples that goes into direction Omega Chimera:
They made it...
temporary redirect Restless_Souls/Summary#Biocracy?
A biocracy can be seen as an expert society or technocracy but it doesn't ignore social demands since every citizen is taken into account. It's by citizens for citizens.
Through the interconnection of minds and help from the Gaia AI, the decision making is also direct democratic.
- The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter.
- - Winston Churchill
Each human in more or less specialized due to his profession. So it happens that in specific discussions, there are always people lacking the specific background information. In theory it's possible to acquire the information but de facto jobs with high amount of working hours prevent that from happening. Free time is more likely spend on social activities, fitness and entertainment.
OCs on the other hand, have more free time and can acquire expertise almost in an instant. They are like walking libraries of specific Wikipedia pages and share these in an instant. Gaia separates facts from bias before compressing, caching and forwarding the information. That way, over time more and more purified knowledge is available for everyone. Neurological repairs and enhancement ensure the IQ and mental fitness required for complex information even up to the old age. Everyone can become an expert in any field.
Direct democracy gets less and less flawed by individuals foreign to a specific topic or opinions formed in cracker-barrel groups.
The Gaia AI actively researches the causes of wrong decisions and starts in new areas only with fully supervised seed groups.
Working title. May or may not be the final name.
The outcome of the multi-biocracy experiment is described as "Nature's Decision".
Meanwhile, in the shadow of the old worlds lurks a deadly threat. A Biocracy relict. A rogue memehunter.
A meme is basically a thought and superficial explained in analogy to genes. They can be created, copied, altered, deleted and can experience some kind of evolution within individuals and societies. If you keep comparing memes with genes, most children get their knowledge and believe from their parents, teachers and other, older authorial and/or charismatic persons which resembles vertical gene transfer while adapting memes from friends or "brothers in mind" ("Brüder im Geiste") resemble horizontal gene transfer. Since not all memes are passed from one person to another and don't keep the same, they can be seen to evolve through selection and mutation.
The Damocles sword within: Information of ERVs and other viral elements can cause damage but also help immune responses. Viral memes (in sense of not agreeing with but occupying space within the host) are more successful in spreading than their biological counterpart but also get less expressed. Their analysis can be used e.g. in a discussion to formulate arguments that stand against the hostile-felt meme standing in analogy to a biological immune response.
Bad memes get also replicated as long as they don't kill their host. The survival of the fittest is an outdated view as also organisms with inherited disease create offspring. A "sufficient" survival rate is enough. And so, also genes and memes can stand in conflict with their own kind and still get passed on. Opposing memes are less likely to kill their host as they can be suppressed/silenced/fixed/solved faster than genes. They result in double standards and are criticized by other persons as unfair. On the other hand the usefulness of a meme depends on its context and perspective while the context of a gene is in most cases its own genome. "One man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter."
An unique property of memes is that they can be encapsulated in other memes. Metamemes.
In natural, biological lifeforms memes and genes can interact to a limited point.
- Gene affects meme: Your genome determines your starting condition, e.g. you are probably going to hate what causes your allergy.
- Meme affects gene: For example, you have a strong determination and decide to change your lifestyle and hence the epigenetic layer to fight obesity.
In Omega Chimeras the memes can fully determine genetic information or any other nature of physical blueprints. - The body can be transformed into whatever the mind seems needed.
Every person is to be seen as a collection of interacting memes and sensory inputs within any physical body.
Biocracy defines lower life as: all life runs code within at least one unit whereby matter and energy is consumed for self-preservation.
Biocracy defines higher life as: any system - may it be an multicellular individual or a single-cellular collective - that by emergence has a mental memory and self-awareness. The requirements for lower life are met as well.
A digitalized mind is not alive and doesn't hold the right to become reanimated unless there is one proponent willing to share his resources.
Willful committed crimes are not longer punished by physical imprisonment. Instead, the crime causing memes are either altered or deleted. These fundamental interventions are often seen critical by non-biocracy societies and cause rejection and political tensions if a guilty member caught on the other's territory.
Biocracies tolerate the existence of other forms of societies but naturally see themselves as the most advanced and rightful ones. This on the other hand can result in a hybris - a false believe in its own supremacy. A possible solution to this flaw is the ongoing multibiocracy project in which many societies put their believes to a test...
If a merged personality is sentenced to delete an "emergent meme", it can decide to split it minds and bodies again or to let delete the meme.
A person that has committed a crime in the past and is now found to have the crime-causing meme missing, cannot be sentenced. Minor damage is be compensated by money or "ER credits". (Energy and resources)
A person found to have removed his own memes can be sentenced to remove his underlying motivations as well. In extreme cases memes are added to take away the pleasure gained from successful crimes in which removing any other memes comes too late and cause feeling of inequality in other persons. For example: a person destroyed properties of another person. Removing the delinquent's motivation doesn't necessary takes away his joy for the damage done.
A person that splits up his memes after the crime into two new minds and bodies, can be sentenced to merge again so that he doesn't escape judgment. If one split-person died, the remaining split-person is altered so that he can never develop such meme again.
As any computer system can be hacked and hijacked, so are biological lifeforms with human-like level of intellect vulnerable to meme injection, therefore reprogramming of neuronal pattern. In the early years, lobbyism was identified as major danger for self-preservation of Biocracies and hence prohibited. Also, all advertisements must contain true information.
Memehunters are so to say police officers fighting memetic corruption and investigate it causes. The very most of them are SLD or Omega Chimera.
During the "big expansion" a few Biocracies witnessed dysfunctional divisions in which memehunters made investigations that ignored any ethical boundaries in order to feed the database. Societies not agreeing with their biocratic neighbors were tragically attacked and destroyed by memehunters.
Memehunters possess the power to alter the mind of other people and execute the will of Biocracies against its own members or those of other societies. To achieve their missions they are given access to GAIA resources, which dramatically boosts their physical and mental abilities. The Bioc grid supports them with just everything and can even backup their personality making them immortal.
A matured Biocracy has no more use of memehunters since all members live in total sync and will be made aware of any error causing or "false" thoughts. Rogue memehunters are officially to be taken down but this remains a difficult task as they tend to build their own planetary support systems. So the biocracies turn a blind eye against them if they stay in exile.
The dominating currency of Biocracies is ER credits.
ER credits are meant to summarize the true value of a product or service.
They come in two variants which can also be combined: Energy and resources.
For common services and goods, ER is just joul.
In contracts the nature of ER can be further determined: for example contracting party could say that their service has a worth of 10 gigajoul delivered in hydrogen of 99,99 % purity.
Risky contracts are partially paid in advanced and the contractor must provide all information necessary to prove his solvency.
Due to very high transparency and absolute knowledge, credits (loans) don't have "interest".
Additional payment as that in capitalistic systems produces virtual money and shall be prevented. The prices are fixes by the energy production and energy consumption of goods. They get updated when whenever these base values change. New inventions are always implemented planet-wide within hours. This ensure an equal price policy.
As a consequence rules of supply and demand aren't in action anymore, and inflation and deflation doesn't happen.
(A joul is a joul... It's a fundamental physical definition which doesn't change its value over the years. Depending on available technology you can use with more or less efficiency. But it's never "worthless". A chemical reaction always cost the same.)
Every Omega Chimera can produce energy by photosynthesis or provide its neuronal resources for cloud computing. Thus, each citizen has an small but time-wise infinite income.
ER credits are seen as an relict of the pre-Bioc era. In the future the concept of currency will fade into Gaia's management software to balance things and have check everything. Communities will then just decide what they want and see if they have resources. If they don't have the resources, Gaia and criticizes develop a plan to collect the missing resources.
Instant energy transport
In quantum mechanics they say, when you measure the state one entangled particle you force the corresponding (e.g. spin) state on the other partner particle. Since the distance between these partners don't seem to play any role, couldn't you transport energy from one position to another? Normally, when the probabilities collapse to a discrete state, no energy is released. It's just information that is changed.
However, scientists try to find exceptions. One possibility: Maxwell demons. Work (ergo energy) can be extracted from a quantum measurement.
One partner of an already entangled particle pair is measured with an Maxwell Demon setup. The original entanglement serves as bridge so that the additional entanglement, hence the introduction of additional energy, can be transported to whatever place to the partner particle. At the second location energy gets extracted again when the second entanglement is destroyed. The original entanglement ideally remains to repeat the process. Flipping spin states would be used to produce a weak yet energetic useful alternating spin current.
A crazy addition to this is the usage of particles from stars because they constantly change states. Their partners are carried in BECs. (Certain merged fermions (matter particle) behave like bosons.)
Maybe, for robustness, the entanglement can be made to exist between cluster rather than single particle.
There's story fragment featuring this tech: boss battle of Yorick and Memhunter. Yorick switches off Möbius' safty protocol. He scarifies the regeneration for a short, full energy output.
Instant information transport
The same technique of instant energy transport can be used to transfer information.
Hyper AIs differ from super AIs in their sheer computing power. In total their computing devices have the size of an planet or are even bigger.
Like Avatara, also Möbius uses cloud computing to host his main brain and controls a synthetic body in the outside world.
Wheels of time
The universe is the only existing example of a true perpetual motion machine.
"Wheels of time" is a nickname for machines that collect energy from vacuum fluctuation of space.
Think about the universe as a constantly flowing river and the machine is a water mile.
The inventors' motivation was to escape a thermodynamical dead when even the last star has died. If big rips doesn't happen you could go on living - you would have bought time, infinite time.
A technique invented by hyper AI Möbius. It allows a space traveler to survive the transition between big rip and big bang.
Vital information is with high redundancy encoded in patterns of particle decay and regeneration. This also includes neutrino oscillations.
Möbius theorizes that the unequal distribution of matter and antimatter is a possible evidence that information can be passed through a transition.
Theory of sum
The trivial idea is that you can achieve a specific goal by any combination of virtually infinite fragments. Specific events or an specific order of events is therefore not needed.
Möbius observes the universe as good as he can and expands and learns with each cosmic cycle.
After myriads of cycles, Möbius is able to recreate Earth in a run that covers itself multiple cycles.
One problem is missing information for a recreation. Möbius can't travel backwards though time but maybe he can read past events.
Even if not, with "logical completion" he can recreate many things by memories. Everything else can be retrieved by trail and error. This resembles the infinite monkey theorem but that's okay because he also has infinite time to work with.
The logical completion is powered by a network of trillions of Matrioshka brains and other megastructures.
Technologies not quite existing in RS
Normal time-travel is highly resource-intensive, impractical and only the time-traveler does profit.
The location and time of the out point cannot be precisely calculated - if at all - as the planet is in unknown motion made up by it's own spin motion, orbiting the sun, orbiting in the galaxy core, orbiting in the cluster core, moving within the filament. The outpoint might be a massive plantar or stellar object or in the depth of galactic voids resulting in death of the traveler.