Megacorps

megacorps
Image from Bernd Helfert

Once, they shaped all of Terragen life. Unimaginably powerful and wealthy mercantile corporations, they spanned star-systems and drove commerce and economics throughout the known worlds. They manipulated entire polities and even worlds with ease, waging a never-ending battle of memetic subversion, a war to win the hearts and minds and pockets of their potential customers.

Today the megacorps are largely limited to the NoCoZo, various Free Zones, and any regions, especially in the Outer Volumes or along some of the Deeper Covenant trade routes where, like tenacious weeds, they can establish a foothold free of Sephirotic and hyperturing interference.

Yet for all this they can in the right environment be as powerful and influential as ever, at least within their own spheres of influence, and toward ordinary sapients who are not of a sufficiently high toposophic level to resist their persuasion.

In an uncertain universe where resources on the Periphery were limitless, where fads change every day, where clarketech and meme-relics left by powers from the higher toposophics continually excited the populace and stirred up new fads and demands, the megacorps flourished, and continue to flourish. Avoiding the no-go areas ruled by skittish Caretaker Gods, rogue hyperturings, or feral autowars, they develop their offices in Free Zones throughout the galaxy. Sapients everywhere flock to them, because if you do not have a hyperturing or god looking after you, to be in the employ of the Company is the next best thing.

As long as demand outpaces supply, as long as there are wealth and energy-credits and data processing-allowances to be made, as long as fads drive markets, the mighty transplanetaries and megacorporations will be there to take your erg-credits.

 
Articles
  • Adams Helium  - Text by Anders Sandberg
    Megacorp, later House, of gas giant miners in the Beta Virginis system
  • AgentNet  - Text by Anders Sandberg (slightly modified by M. Alan Kazlev)
    A well known interfacing firm through which one may hire a team to undertake something quasi-legal without revealing one's own identity.
  • Altair Knowledge Designs (AKD)  - Text by Anders Sandberg
    The first hypersentient alife species to evolve.
  • Ancillary Corporations - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    Corporations and megacorporations which provide goods and services for other corporations and megacorporations. An important component of enterprise type corporate polities. The vast majority of corporations in the Inner Sphere are ancillary.
  • Arcadian Biotopics - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    Arcadian megacorp; created the weem and many other popular neogens.
  • Ares Heavy Lifting  - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    Ares Heavy Lifting Inc. was one of the big megacorps to develop on Mars during the Interplanetary Age.
  • Baltic League  - Text by Steve Bowers
    Exploration/colonisation megacorp largely with European roots that sponsored the the colonisation of Danzig and Nathan, among other inner-sphere worlds.
  • Big Five - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    The five main interstellar development megacorporations of the first Federation period - Truth-Santaya Networks, TakiCorb, Terranova Foundation, K4H, and SecureSpace. In the colonies they were very often a law unto themselves. They eventually merged to become the NoCoZo.
  • Birnam Ecotech - Text by Anders Sandberg
    One of the major environment design and terraforming consultancy firms of the First Federation. It eventually merged with the Conver Ambi, adding its expertise to the ruthless ambition and economic power of the corporation/religion/empire.
  • Ceres Astrospace  - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    First Federation ship design and building megacorp.
  • Company-Owned World - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    A planet controlled by a company or corporation and run for profit. This system was very common during the later Interplanetary and the first Federation eras, and has remained common throughout many sparsely settled regions in the outer volumes where there is little government or policing regulation.
  • Contelligence - Text by Anders Sandberg
    Clade of aioid business beings, descended from the First Federation Era New Mars think tank Contelligence. As it diversified and expanded, the Contelligences became a ubiquitous part of Inner Sphere economics. The Contelligence brand is strictly regulated by intra-clade regulations, and has proven to have a high brand name stability. Politically the Contelligence clade has been neutral, with pacifist leanings.
  • Corporate Dirty Data - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    Confidential financial information about a megacorporation that can be sold on the black market. This data set is used in insider trading or sold to the competition. Widely used in the NoCoZo and elsewhere, widely frowned at, but never stamped out.
  • Corporate Religions  - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    See Philosophy of Abundance.
  • Corporate Transcension  - Text by Anders Sandberg, Todd Drashner, and Stephen Inniss
    The transcension of an entire megacorp. Sometimes called transruptcy, since like bankruptcy it typically means the effective dissolution of the original organization.
  • Cryoinvest  - Text by Anders Sandberg
    Cryoinvest became the largest Novan cryonics investment firm during the First Federation era. Now specialises in nanostasis time-shifting investment opportunities.
  • Dauntless Incorporated  - Text by Chris Shaeffer
    Private Defense Agency
  • Ergod Munts  - Text by Anders Sandberg
    Chaos control arms dealers of Fons Luminis; widespread in the 6400's but apparently imploded economically in 6583. The corporation-intelligence (the employees were all linked into an AI-culture constructed by The Church of the Resurrected Ea) announced its withdrawal and dissolution, and disbanded in an ordered manner.
  • Eschatronics Unlimited  - Text by Anders Sandberg
    Sterilization corporation/clade from the MPA, handling the dangerous but profitable work of cleaning up after uncontrolled transcendence events. It is notable for employing baselines and baseline-equivalent nearbaselines in some positions.
  • Exa Energy  - Text by Anders Sandberg
    Interplanetary Era energy megacorporation.
  • Eä Mulsystems  - Text by Anders Sandberg
    First Federation megacorporation. Eä Mulsystems emerged from the merger of Graphos Habeng and Kbelt Aitronics in 3076. It soon became a major development of integrated AI solutions, controlled environments and habitat infrastructure. Although it had no interstellar traffic on its own, it constructed starship habitats and space networks in other solar systems for many other megacorporations.
  • Galactic Information Bank  - Text by John B
    The most profitable of several NoCoZo megacorps which maps, makes easily searchable, and caches large sections of the Known Net for its subscribers.
  • GeneTEK  - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    An important Interplanetary Age biotech megacorporation, GeneTEK incorporated into the "biopunk" Genetekker culture/clade. It was one of the few corps to survive the Nanoswarms, and went on to dominate the First Federation biotech industry, and survives in ossified form as House Genen. Some small hyperturing-run neo-GeneTEK type biocorporations can still be found flourishing in the Zoeific Biopolity to this day.
  • Hidalgo Emergent Order - Text by Anders Sandberg
    Hidalgo Emergent Order was a very expansive tweak-cyborg clade/corp that flourished during the late Federation and Expansion ages, setting up asteroid-based societies in the region between Capella and Pollux and becoming an important regional superpower. Using aggressive in vitro techniques they cloned large populations, but were unable to prevent Conver Ambi from gaining a monopoly on vital nanodesign objects, giving them an ever stronger hold on the Order. Eventually most of the Order joined the Conver Ambi, with the exception of a number of habitats that committed collective suicide.
  • Hosoko Posthegemonic Management Network  - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    Megacorp-Polity that developed out of the Hopomane Empire. The Network rebuilt the links to the region and set itself up as the rulers. It is something between a megacorp and an empire, and thanks to its increasing profitability the owner worlds are reaping great benefits. The inhabitants of Hopomane are not as enthusiastic.
  • Hyperion Corporation  - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    One of the ten top megacorps of the First Federation and Expansion age eras, Hyperion actually predates the First Federation, being one of the few megacorps to survive the nanotech swarms. But the failure to win the Stargate development race was a blow to the prestige of the corporation.
  • Industrial Upgradation Incorporated  - Text by Basu
    Transap Megacorp dedicated to upgrading modosophont societies with transapient technology.
  • Intralaunch  - Text by Anders Sandberg
    First Federation Era Megacorporation.
  • Jupiter Transystems - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    First Federation period interstellar development megacorporation
  • Jurassic Enterprises - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    Interplanetary Age biotech megacorporation specialising in the lazurogenics and sale of extinct organisms.
  • Jurassic Orbitals - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    First Federation theme park in CisLunar orbit. Featured a number of reconstructed and lazurogened dinosaurs and other extinct fauna and flora, many built with genome in storage from Jurassic Enterprises. Among several dinosaur splices and provolves, the derived Dorrahsa - a race of sapient Troodontids, later became well established throughout the galaxy.
  • K4H - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    One of the five main interstellar development megacorporations (or Big Five) of the first Federation period. The others were Truth-Santaya Networks, TakiCorb, Terranova Foundation, and SecureSpace. In the colonies they were very often a law unto themselves. They eventually merged to become the NoCoZo.
  • Lee Interorbital  - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    Interplanetary Age megacorp.
  • LinnEnt (Linnaeus Enterprises)  - Text by Steve Bowers
    A commercial empire in the First Federation era and beyond, dedicated to colonising new systems using Engenerator technology.
  • LungFusion - Text by Anders Sandberg with some notes by M. Alan Kazlev
    First Federation era Penglaiese megacorp. Lung Fusion was for a long time the largest Penglaiese energy corporation, specialising in atmospheric converters, power plants and energy networks. During the imperial period it was aggressively expansionist, using profitable deals with various government factions as well as opportunistic alliances with various hyperturing guanxis to further its growth and become an interstellar megacorp. The corp was made a Conver Ambi subsidiary, and disappeared even before the start of the Second Empires War.
  • Marketer Fleet, The  - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    Marketing cult and para-religion.
  • Megacorporations, The History of  - Text by M. Alan Kazlev and Anders Sandberg
    A brief history of the megacorps.
  • Naso Corporation  - Text by James Ramsey
    Maker and distributer of various nanite based cleansing agents.
  • Neuropoll Inc.  - Text by Anders Sandberg
    Neuropoll Inc. is a polling firm that dates back to the Second Federation, often exploiting advanced psychological and neurological methods to extract as much data they can. They were most known for the neuropollsters, when in the early 6300s, 20,000 citizens of New Emerton (Smith sector, NoCoZo) were wired with a system making it possible for Neuropoll to measure their reactions to a variety of products, everyday phenomena and their desires; this data is then mined to find trends, mood estimates and fashion vectors.
  • Philosophy of Abundance, The  - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    The Corporate Religions of the later First Federation period.
  • Pi Hermes - Text by Anders Sandberg
    Among the more interesting organisations, the original Pi Hermes began during the early Federation period as a detective agency with an unique concept: they recorded virch immersives based on their cases, exciting real-life documentaries about the work of investigators, in which the vircher actually became the detective working on a real (not a fictional or simulated) case as it happens. So successful was this concept that every so often a Pi Hermes media clone is established. At the present stardate there are several thousand pihermes throughout the Inner Sphere (mostly on NoCoZo worlds).
  • Sakawa Corporation  - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    Among the most diversified of the triple-A Interplanetary Age orbital megacorporations. The corporation itself did not survive the Nanoswarms but the associated hyperturing core, including partial uploads of some Sakawa family members, had a long and influential subsequent career.
  • Sargeant Garruf - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    Pseudo-military Corporate Cannibal food chain, early Separate Empires period to today; one of many CrustClown King imitators.
  • SecureSpace - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    One of the five main interstellar development megacorporations (or Big Five) of the First Federation period. The others were Truth-Santaya Networks, TakiCorb, Terranova Foundation, and K4H. They eventually merged to become the NoCoZo.
  • TakiCorb - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    The largest and most important of five interstellar development megacorporations (or Big Five) of the first Federation period. The others were Truth-Santaya Networks, Terranova Foundation, K4H, and SecureSpace. In the colonies they were very often a law unto themselves. They eventually merged to become the NoCoZo.
  • Technologies For Worship  - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    Sophic League megacorp that provides technology useful for to modosophont religions.
  • Terranova Foundation  - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    One of the five main interstellar development megacorporations (or Big Five) of the First Federation period.
  • Trade Federation  - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    Under this system of government, each member polity rules itself and has its own laws, but all polities have signed a trade agreement. This agreement promises not only free trade between all the member polities but also serves as a mutual peace treaty. The different polities avoid interfering with each other's internal affairs. In some cases, if one polity is attacked, the others will join it to fight the common enemy.
  • Tragon - Text by Anders Sandberg
    Exploration corporation/house of the STC, active across accessible space. Named after the mythical "searching robot lizard" of Kolmorian mythology, the organization has been active since the 7000s. It has invested heavily in the Carina Rush and in a recent series of expansion stargates deep into the Sagittarius arm.
  • Transfinity  - Text by Anders Sandberg; amended by Stephen Inniss
    Nanofacturing subsidiary to Vollmark, an Interplanetary Era home microtronics corporation, from 433 to 525 AT (2402-2494 c.e.). Considered by some to have been a major contributor to the Nanodisaster through careless design of its products.
  • Transruptcy - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    The aftermath of corporate transcension.
  • Trillicon Arms  - Text by Anders Sandberg
    NoCoZo megacorp based on Atlantis, famous for selling weapons of all kinds, mostly to ordinary sophonts.
  • Truth-Santaya Networks  - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    One of the five main interstellar development megacorporations (or Big Five) of the First Federation period. The others were TakiCorb, Terranova Foundation, K4H, and SecureSpace. In the colonies they were very often a law unto themselves. They eventually merged to become the NoCoZo.
  • Uservere Affair, The  - Text by Anders Sandberg
    MPA megacorp which collapsed, causing a major crisis in the hypereconomy of the Sephirotic Empires.
  • World-disk Software - Text by Ernst Stavro Blofeld
    London (Old Earth) -based, Information Age corporation; World-disk Software was one of the first companies to introduce neural-networked file system compression. Browsing this file system was done via a 'library' interface, which, due to the unique compression systems would warp and wrap and distort all dimensions inside the construct. The only way to find your way around was with the aid of the Librarian daemon, who manifested in the shape of an enchanted orangutan. The software later became the model for the Alexandria II Bibliotech project.
  • Xweak - Text by Anders Sandberg
    Disinformation corporation, based in Cyberia. Xweak specializes in high-level disinformation, mainly with hyperturing customers. Xweak announced its existence publicly in 6094 through a series of carefully timed publicity stunts across civilized space, all in the form of mysterious apparent crimes. As various beings began to investigate them, they discovered leads to further enigmas. The entire campaign consisted of an escalating series of puzzles finally leading to the corporation.
  • Yasamura Artificial Environments Corporation  - Text by Aaron Hamilton
    The most successful of the Sakawa hyperturing subsidiaries of the Federation period, Yasamura Artificial Environments Corporation was one of the first corporations that developed standard terraforming equipment and procedures; including nanites and large bioreactors.
 
Development Notes
Text by M Alan Kazlev

Initially published on 10 June 2000.