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Sagittarius Transcultural Cooperation

STC
Image from Anders Sandberg

After the Version War and the breakup of the old Sagittarius Sphere, many traders, ontologists, free-zoners, and old Sphere hyperturings began to work with the occupying Dominion, Negentropist and MPA military authorities to create a new, nonaggressive Sagittarius alliance. They reactivated and repaired old stargates and used the two-thousand-light-year long xenowormhole discovered at Tunh to expand their territory far from the Inner Sphere.

Over time they established a sprawling domain which became known as the Sagittarius Transcultural Cooperation. Unlike the Sphere, it was not ruled by any hereditary house or major AI, but it managed to recapture at least some of the power of the old Sphere. It became a federation of independent worlds, mainly cooperating in building and maintaining the wormhole links but also in dealing with a mutual foreign policy. Over time planets have entered and left the Cooperation, but a firm core of approximately 400 major groups ("the skeleton") remains stable.

The Cooperation is spread over a huge volume, with many non-aligned worlds interspersed within the volume. From time to time it is forced to deal with expansive or emerging local powers. So far it has handled it mainly by diplomacy or by collecting fleets from neighbouring systems. Near the edges there are many groups whose allegiances are more a formality than any actual political reality - the Cooperation has no real borders, just a gradual lessening of its influence.

Some of the old powers still view the Cooperation with suspicion. The original Dominion and Negentropist plan of a huge but regulated territory did not come to pass, despite their best efforts. Instead, the STC is chaotic, expansive, under the control of many factions with wild ideas, and much more culturally diverse than many of the other domains. It could become a hotbed of anarchy and trouble (many think it already has). Only the Non-Coercive Zone and the MPA seem happy with the way things have turned out.

At the end of the tenth millennium things are not looking too good for the STC. Recently it has been weakened by internal schisms, and in addition there is the threat of the Laughter Hegemony, which is stirring up dissent in some of the outer worlds where Cooperation influence is weak, and has already annexed some of the STC outposts, almost always on the pretext of a Mutual Co-operation Treaty / Co-Prosperity Sphere / Alliance.

Just as the original Sagittarius Sphere and the current Sagittarius Cooperation are so different in rulership, government, and everything else that only the name unites them, so it is believed that, as both internal and external tensions develop, the Cooperation it will soon either metamorphose into something new again (perhaps a real federation) or dissolve into civil war or change in a completely unexpected direction.

 
Articles
  • Allosaurus (ship)  - Text by Anders Sandberg
    Soft Cathedral carrier ship.
  • Barzelona  - Text by Steve Bowers
    Architecturally obsessed posthuman world.
  • Cocac - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    Seat of the Wormhole Cooperation Assembly of the Sagittarius Transcultural Cooperation.
  • Gilboa Reach  - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    Important STC outpost and stargate plexus in the Serpens sector, consisting of a large L5 orbital swarm of habitats and a terraformed world, Gilboa, whcih is distinguished by its unusual and lush vegetation (a result of an earlier terraforming attempt where gengineered terragen moss and lichen hybridized with indigenous prokaryotes).
  • Jedman II  - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    Outer Volumes Sagittarius Transcultural Cooperation planet, recently visited by the Caretaker-derived artefact known as the Guidestar as a mark of exemplary environmental maintenance by the inhabitants. The planet is famous for its dramatic scenery.
  • Lagoon Nebula  - Text by Steve Bowers
    Emission Nebula in Sagittarius.
  • Laurel and Hardy  - Text by Steve Bowers
    Twin Planets in Scorpio.
  • R'Foxxans, The  - Text by AI Vin
    A polity of superbright symbiont bioborgs that emerged from a mix of the various nearbaseline humans that colonized the ACAF-37274637-8633 system in the Sagittarius Sector.
  • Sagittarius Outer Volumes - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    Extensive region of space coreward of the Sagittarius Transcultural Cooperation and MPA space, popular with development and strategic interests because it is seen as the gateway to the Sagittarius Arm.
  • Sagittarius Periphery Wars  - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    A serious of skirmishes, blights, and territorial wars along the Sagittarius frontier during the middle Empires period. The potentially worst of these were defused by the Specialist in a series of oft-recounted real-life interventions.
  • Sagittarius Preservers, The  - Text by Liam Jones
    A clade of intelligent mobile habitats dedicated to preserving and disseminating a wide variety of lifeforms.
  • Sagittarius Project - Text by Anders Sandberg
    Major exploration project backed by a number of research and colonization megacorporations in the Establishment and early Consolidation era. The Sagittarius Project attempted to set up wormhole links to the Sagittarius arm and continue inwards to the galactic core. Over time, the Project developed into a megacorp-house like most others (eventually becoming the Sagittarius Sphere), and the thrust towards the core was replaced by exploiting the many new worlds found in the Sagittarius arm. Some research vessels are still on their way towards the core, and are expected back in a few millennia.
  • Sagittarius Sector - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    Also, "Sagittarius quadrant", loosely defined region that encompasses much of the coreward Outer Volumes. Also known as "The Corewards".
  • Sagittarius Sphere  - Text by Anders Sandberg and M. Alan Kazlev
    Major Consolidation and Second Federation Empire / House.
  • Serpens Region  - Text by Anders Sandberg
    The vast volumes beyond NGC 6633 and IC4756 in the Serpens Cauda direction is sometimes called the Serpens Frontier. Although the Mutual Progress Alliance expanded into this volume many millennia ago, it has not been systematically explored or settled.
  • Skˇiiws'nnii   - Text by Anders Sandberg and M. Alan Kazlev
    A prosperous alien-human-dolphin hybrid civilisation in the Serpens sector.
  • Soft Cathedral  - Text by M. Alan Kazlev, Anders Sandberg and AI Vin
    Major historical bioist empire/house, developed originally the Softbot Coordinator Systems clade of superiors, which became into the Softbot Cathedrals and eventually the Soft Cathedrals. The Cathedrals developed a bioism emphasizing "soft" biological technology, massive terraforming and aggressive autoevolution.
  • Straight Arrow - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    Former headquarters of the Sagittarius Sphere.
  • Sun Kurp - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    Outer Volumes Sagittarius Transcultural Cooperation orbital swarm. In 8222 the aioid artist Tourist Outer Enrastered Link Connection underwent voluntary deactivation here, leaving behind a small number of poems and art memes behind, the Tourist Cache.
  • Tananana - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    A resource poor STC system. Tananana makes money through tourism, mediacorps, biotech templates, tantric ashrams, and erototech hedonics (some of the old erotocracy Dionysians ended up there). Well-served by wormholes to Cocac, Gilboa Reach, and a number of other prosperous nearby systems.
  • 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.
  • Trifid Nebula  - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    NGC6514 / M20.
  • Tunh Xenohole, The  - Text by Anders Sandberg, with comments by Steve Bowers.
    System with an alien Wormhole.
  • Uyuni  - Text by Steve Bowers
    Salt-covered post-gaian world with relic xenobiota
 
Development Notes
Text by Anders Sandberg and M. Alan Kazlev

Initially published on 28 June 2000.