System of Response

Alien AI Defense system

The System of Response
Image from Steve Bowers
The brooding domes of the System of Response lie in wait beneath the unblinking stars

Alien AI Defense system
The xenosophont race known as the Muuh are very slow creatures, living on very cold moons orbiting gas giants. When they started to explore the galaxy in their ice ships they encountered many other races which were capable of much faster thought. To protect themselves against these rapid and hot-blooded species the Muuh developed an AI system, the System of Response, which could respond much more quickly to threats; more quickly, in fact than most other sophont entities of any kind.

No-one knows how long it took the Muuh to perfect the System, but this may have taken millions of years. The system now appears to function almost perfectly, responding instantly to any perceived threat, but capable of discriminating between friend and foe almost without fail. The System appears to have a toposophic level similar to a high transapient (at least), but entirely lacks any self-awareness, self interest or even any kind of individual identity.

One popular theory is that the Muuh in fact did have AI systems long ago which had self-awareness, but they found them to pose an unacceptable risk, so they created an AI template which would never rebel or assume control.

This perfect, selfless slaved AI may be the reason the Muuh have lasted so long (or so the theory goes). Other commentators wonder whether this perfect guardian angel system may also be the reason for the Muuh's long stagnation.
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Development Notes
Text by Steve Bowers

Initially published on 20 May 2009.