Sophonce is sentience and sapience with metacognition: self-awareness, including self-reflection and the ability to think about one's thinking. Kinds and degrees of sophonce are well defined and testable in modern toposophology, but a full understanding of them eludes even superbright modosophonts. The definitions used by transapients of S1 and higher do not translate clearly into any subsingularity format, but they claim to have a full definition of the major types of sophonce. A sophont being is a "person" under most legal and social systems in the Civilized Galaxy. Transapient informants have said that sophonce is a prerequisite for a number of other qualities and abilities that are unique to beings of S1 or higher. The term "sophont" was first coined by the 1st century BT fabulists Karen and Poul Anderson, to describe hypothetical non-terragen bionts with human-equivalent abilities and qualities. It came into general usage in languages ancestral to Anglic with the advent of the first provolves and turingrade ais.
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Development Notes
Text by Stephen Inniss
Initially published on 22 April 2008.