Bioborg

Modosophonts 5
Image from Arik
Bioborgs are among the most varied of phyles, and may adopt a wide range of forms and sizes. Here a female Sritht is shown next to a typical nearbaseline human for comparison

Bioborgs are humans, animals, or other lifeforms, heavily modified via biocircuitry, biomachinery, biosymbers, bionano, wetware, etc (collectively: bioware). No inorganic components (other than some occasional support or reinforcing structures) are used at all for any of these augmentations. The reason for this may be aesthetic, ideological, cultural, religious, or pragmatic. Bioware mods may range from simple skin-patches to complete reorganising of skeletal, muscular, nervous, digestive, and/or pulmonatory systems. Sometimes the modifications are so subtle that on the surface the bioborg looks just like an ordinary baseline or nearbaseline of its original species. At other times they are so radical as to make the original genomorph of the bioborg indeterminable.

The advantage of using organic mods are obvious. The mod becomes part of the individual's body, is holistically and integrally a part of the same body and chi-energy system. Neo-taoists, yogis, athletes, holistic healers, and a number of martial arts schools, all prefer bioware over cyberware for just such chi-integration purposes. The biomod is maintained in the same way as any other organic component. Instead of an external power source, ordinary food provides fuel, just as it does to the rest of the body. The increase in food-intake naturally differs according to the size, purpose, efficiency, activity and metabolism of the implant; anywhere from negligible to an entire order of magnitude (thus some unwitting bioborgers end up having to have their entire alimentary system redone to cope with the increased requirements of digestion; often this ends up far exceeding in expense and discomfort the initial augment).

Badmod Main
Image from Bernd Helfert

Although good quality bioware should adapt themselves to any host body, this is rarely the case in practice. More often a course of medical nano, immunosupressants, and pheno-gengineering are necessary to modify the host so it doesn't reject the implant. Eventually the implant should acquire the hosts own genetic signature. Depending on the size, nature, and quality of the mod this may take anywhere from only a few hours to a period of days, weeks, or at most several months. There is also the task of adjusting to the new mod via physiotherapy, training, and wetware.

Bioware can be used for almost anything inorganic cyberware can. There are biocomputers, biobatteries, bio-remotes, even biolasers which use special light-producing and light conducting bionanogenic cells. A lot of bioware, such as ch'i-batteries, body gestalts, erotogens, pheromones, etc , have no hylotech equivalent. However, bioware suffers from a lack of modularity, and it is usually fairly traumatic to the body to remove or insert a piece of bioware; unlike drytech which can be done as easily as unplugging the old unit and replacing it with the new.

Bioware is most often used by biocentrist empires and polities like the Zoeific Bioplity and the ill-fated Softbots and Biovirate, Houses like the Genen and the Stevens, and various biosupremist and anthropist groups. It is also very popular among Formac traders, Erotogini, Gothics of various persuasions, heterodox rianths, a large number of provolve species, and many other important cultures and subcultures.
 
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Development Notes
Text by M. Alan Kazlev

Initially published on 19 October 2001.