By Blake Hutchins
The purpose of this document is to set forth the basic concepts for Cybrid culture and organization.
Cybrids jack into a sort of “hub” construction through which they wait//commune//rest.The “Hub” operates as an analogy to “family.” The full Cybrid term for the intimate\\smallest\\closest grouping is hub\\hearth\\concord\\harmony.
The next significant group up from a hub would be an array\\cluster\\congregation, which would consist of several hubs, probably a number that would be significant to a computer mindset, like ten… (to my non-programmer experience…). The “congregation term also allows for introduction of the religious aspect to Cybrid culture. We could also use the term congrex, which lies at the etymological root of congregation. Grex is Latin for “flock” or “group.”
The next grouping up from hub>>congregation would be sect\\alliance\\bloc. Sects would be analogous to Houses or political parties. The sects would each have their particular markings, with an individual Cybrid’s congrex and hub markings following in a subordinate\\submissive\\less-obvious manner. Hence the Cybrid social structure would be unit>>hub>>congregation>>sect.
As far as the slashes between words\\concepts, the general idea is that verb concepts get the // and noun\\object clusters get the \\. Some terms could denote both active and passive concepts and thus include both types of slashes (see Dave’s vehicle designations). Prometheus, of course, being so much a motive and motivator within Cybrid existence, would have the // in Its name\\designation. Names use the same conventions, with the denoting a name\\identification. Names may use colons to denote rank information, such as , and may be “abbreviated” where necessary (to prevent the all-too-human game player from going nuts. Example: . The use of >> in a string would link the terms in a sequence, such as unit>>hub>>congregation>>sect, or build>>travel>>exterminate>>inherit.
As far as Sects, the first question seems to be: Why do the Cybrids have ‘em? If the function of a sect is to collect like-minded Cybrids into a consensus bloc for decision-making, what kind of decisions can be made when you have this godlike among you? If Prometheus is the analog to the Living God among the Cybrids, there isn’t going to be much in the way of dissent from Its directives. So how about this: The Sects are in competition with one another to determine which sect has the most efficient programming\\awareness\\worthiness. The sect with the most efficient record in any given activity will be rewarded commensurately with the level of success. Perhaps the resources were somewhat scarce out there in the Void, and the Cybrids simply instituted an ongoing competition where the winners received more resources, upgrades, etc. Hence, you have a motive beyond simply killing humans - to excel in efficiency, defined as the ratio of output energy\\results to input energy\\effort. I realize this idea is somewhat like the Battletech Clans and their bidding for the rights to invade a given world, but I still think it’s cool when applied to the Cybrids. Incidentally, this particular cultural quirk provides a pretty plausible reason for the Cybrids avoiding the use of nukes or bioweapons, since the destruction of humanity is also an opportunity for the Cybrids to test their Darwinian social system as the Sects compete.
An additional way to inject some flavor into the Sects might arise if you imagine that some of the Sects have begun to develop an aesthetic sense which does not derive wholly from efficiency. This variety of Sect would also value ELEGANCE as well as efficiency. Here, elegance would be defined as “marked by appropriateness and simplicity.” My grad school math buddies use it all the time. Sects would also be distinguishable by their area of expertise or interest.
To make things more complex, not all Sects are equal. The more successful sects have more resources and power, whereas the smaller ones may be more aggressive. Since the Cybrids ARE individuals, they can have egocentric motives, and part of the dynamic can have individual units breaking off from sects to form their own sect. Probably the less successful sects break apart into new combinations and struggle to rise to the top.
Some sample Sects under this analysis:
ARTISTS \\ INQUISITORS \\ PROVOCATEURS use asymmetrical, snarled markings
This sect applies the idea of elegance as a goal alongside efficiency. They tend to challenge the other sects’ overly complex solutions and constantly try to provoke new analyses of all plans and programming, all in the name of elegance. They are one of the only sects who favor wholesale nuclear extermination of the human\\animals. In combat, they favor “elegant” solutions and prefer situations where they can kill as many humans as possible with a simple strategy. They produce the most independent units among the Cybrids.
DISSECTORS \\ FLESHWEAVERS \\ SLAUGHTERERS use sharp, barbed markings
This sect is interested in analyzing and examining biological life, especially humans. Members are the most likely to try to capture humans alive for experimentation. They are also the ones who are most aggressive in combat, since they know firsthand about the unpredictable tenacity of biological life. When they kill something, they are likely to try to follow up so as to make sure the target is DEAD.
OBSERVERS \\ JUSTIFIERS \\ ADVISORS use circular/reticular markings
This sect focuses on reconnaissance and intelligence. They contribute heavily to the development of Cybrid strategy and tactics. They are the ones most likely to be involved in spying, scouting, etc. They consider themselves to the greatest experts in human\\animal behavior. They broker their data among the other sects and are the ones responsible for the concept of instilling terror among humans\\animals through the Adjudicator Hercs.
PUPPET LORDS \\ MISSIONARIES \\ TRUTHFINDERS use a bunch of lines…sorta puppet + strings
This sect focuses on going among the humans and sowing discord, carrying out assassinations, etc. They are the ones responsible for programming the “Trojan Horse” Terminator-style Cybrids, together with information obtained from the Observers and the Dissectors. The Missionaries are the Cybrids who most closely follow the religious models at this time. They are the most aggressive of the Cybrid sects other than the Dissectors. Strangely, though, some of them have joined the Metagen faction that has begun to discuss its radical new ideas.
PRESERVERS \\ EXEMPLARS \\ EXSECTORS use blocky, symmetrical markings
This sect focuses on preserving what I’ll for now call Cybridhood. They are the most conservative sect and strive to hold themselves out as examples of the most efficient elite among the Cybrids. They reject any progressive notion about the worthiness of biology, etc. They believe more than any other Sect in the idea that Cybrids are the next phase of evolution, and they go a step farther than the Artists in dealing with those who fall short of their ideals. Any Cybrid who is not efficient and whose programming is not sound by Preserver standards will be cut out (exsected) from Cybrid society. The Preservers are the smallest of the major sects and are often in conflict with other sects. However, they are also among the closest to Prometheus and so have significant influence.