Culture and Society

Society
Image from Bernd Helfert

Throughout the galaxy, sentient beings enjoy the choice of literally trillions of different pastimes, hobbies, lifestyles, adventures, professions, associations, indulgences, entertainments, dialects, consumables, memetics, and toposophic states. Some have access to nearly all of these if they so choose; others are less fortunate.



Major cultures in the Terragen Sphere

Terragen Metaempires

There are four main cultural divisions in the Orion's Arm region known as the Terragen Sphere: Sephirotics, civilizations that are guided or ruled by transapients that seem to act in the interests of humans and other ordinary sophonts; Ahumans, civilizations ruled by transapients that are indifferent or even hostile to humans and other lesser beings; Nonaligned, signifying civilizations that are neither clearly Ahuman nor Sephirotic, and may be ruled by lower level transapients or even by ordinary sophonts, and finally the Xenosophonts, a diverse group ranging from ancient and powerful civilizations that may surpass anything Terragen to subsophont beings that live in some equivalent of Old Earth's Paleolithic; the only thing the xenosophonts have in common is that they exist within the Terragen sphere but are not descended from or provolved by Terragens. There are also some common organizations or treaties to which any civilization might belong.

Sephirotics

Ahumans

Nonaligned

Xenosophonts




Cooperative Treaties




Galactographic regions


City
Image from P. Bourne (copyright; used with permission)

 
Sub-Topics
 
Articles
  • Asymptote System - Text by Anders Sandberg
    A place where many species converge. Usually trading and network nexuses, and generally core systems for a Cooperative Venture. As time goes by, many species end up in asymptotes when their outside branches die out, go static or transcend. Asymptotes can often be quite dynamic civilizations with vital internal politics, but most long-lived asymptotes have developed stabilizing systems that keep them viable even when the constituent species die out, merge or transform.
  • Civilization - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    Sophont or transingularitan collective society, usually with development of agriculture, arts, sciences, technology, sentient rights, infrastructure, social services, and soon. Our galaxy has seen many civilizations arise and pass away, of which terragen civilization is merely one among many. Advanced civilizations have also been detected in nighbouring galaxies. Civilizations are often rated according to their Kardashev number - the present terragen galactic civilization is developing towards a Kardashev Type III.
  • Earth Romanticism  - Text by Anders Sandberg
    Longing for Earth, the near-mythical home of terragen clades. Since the Great Expulsion Earth romanticism has been an ever-present undercurrent in many conservative and romantic cultures, seeing the separation from Earth as something tragic. Many have idealized the Earth and Earth history, sometimes to the extent of developing elaborate imitations.
  • Glossary  - Text by M. Alan Kazlev and Steve Bowers
    Words used in the Orion's Arm scenario
  • Population - some notes  - Text by Anders Sandberg
    Population figures for the Terragen Sphere in 10600 AT.
  • Technosphere - Text by Mitchell Porter in Anders Sandberg's Transhuman Terminology
    [1] An expanding sphere of civilization/technology, spreading outwards using von Neumann Probes or simple colonization. Judging from how most life behaves, it will gradually restructure matter and energy inside itself in various ways.
    [2] The totality of AI-ruled space.
  • Terragen  - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    Any biont, ai, or any other entity, clade, species, or group that either originated on Earth or, more generally, can trace eir ultimate origin and ancestry back to Earth; or any civilization, empire, polity or organization created or maintained by terragen sentients.
  • West, The  - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    A dominant and ubiquitous aspect of Old Earth Terragen culture, especially in the Industrial and Information ages, named for its origins in Western Eurasia.
 
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Development Notes
Text by M. Alan Kazlev, Steve Bowers, and Stephen Inniss

Initially published on 18 February 2001.