SNARE (Siris Nanocyborg Ascension RegimEn)

Transcend and copy detail
Image from Juan Ochoa

One of the more sophisticated solutions to ascension/transcension, SNAREs are also one of the most desired (and suppressed) packages for low-singularity (S1 to nearly S3) ascensions. It is the standard augmentation for Siris Habitat citizens and a rite of passage between nearbaseline 'childhood' and full maturity in this nanocyborg community.

Developed by Black Calliope (the Siris Habitat's patron high-S power) in 2944, SNARE was refined to 'practical perfection' millennia ago and released to 'public domain' in 3400. Regular updates and tweaks have been published centennially. It is controversial for a variety of reasons. For instance; given the lack of careful augmentation over time to prepare oneself for ascension users of SNAREs are at high risk of transcension. Continuity of their identity is broken with blights/perversions avoided by the insertion of "stock mind parts". Sirians often dispute the relevance of this criticism, likely due to their careful upbringing aiding their ascension process. Many users of SNAREs similarly shrug off the worry by either being confident in their own preparations or uncaring of the ascension/transcension distinction. Those overly worried may instead seek slower, safer methods (such as ascension mazes).

In addition to these views advocates of toposophic diversity complain that that the transcended beings who result are biased towards the Sirian outlook, most elements in the NoCoZo decry the public-domain nature of this augment, and a variety of several archailect empires have condemned it as 'sociologically destabilizing', and some conspiracy theorists even believe it is part of a subtler version of the Amalgamation that will result in a single composite intelligence. In general though it is grudgingly acknowledged as a top of the line 'generic' augmentation package. Any sort of fabricator system can replicate it quite cheaply.

Physically, SNARE comes in two parts: a multiple-sealed, countersigned and check-summed single-use surgicon containing 10 cc of photonanite smart matter and an external control unit that contains a computronium core on which the ascension software runs. SNARE systems are customised for clade, if the surgicon is applied to the body and detects a mismatch it will disassemble for safety. Prospective users can check for this by linking the SNARE to their personal medical system (or personal maintenance system for vecs/cyborgs). Earlier cyborg augmentations are usually recognized and integrated but this is by no means certain and consultation with a docbot is highly recommended.

Once applied to the body the smart matter begins to spread and grow. For human-like bionts the system starts by constructing a computronium core as a diamondoid layer between the inside of the skull and the brain. The mind is uploaded in Moravecian style, and the brain is replaced with new layers as it becomes redundant. The process takes a few hours, during which the patient is fully conscious and aware, though his or her motor functions are suspended by paralysis for the duration. (A photonano nervous system functions at the speed of light and human reflexes simply cannot coordinate it properly.) The patient is mobile and functional again in less than ten hours, with the dedicated hyperturing coordinator implementing 'wait-states' in the user's thought processes. Later, after uploading, the system can also easily reconfigure itself to a general-purpose assembler and further cyborgize its host to any level desired. (Up to, and including, complete vec-formation and total abandonment of organic flesh. The Siris Habitat itself has retained ancient cislunar body aesthetics and gross external transformations are unfashionable.)

This is merely the hardware side though. After upload SNARE's integral dedicated hyperturing downloads itself from the external unit and then starts the longer process of mental mapping and improving its 'host'. Optimizations are proposed and (if approved) implemented. Realization levels are augmented (up to R7), skillmods and memory libraries are integrated and capabilities added in rapid sequence culminating in ascension transmutations to SI:1, if he/she so desires. Upon successful elevation to a higher toposophic level the dedicated hyperturing integrates it with the 'host' forming an ultra-tech exoself. One of its optional roles is to maintain a secure link to the Siris habitat to continuously checks for the next update, new skill-sets and memory libraries or any additional capabilities the host may have an interest in acquiring.

Many users do not want to break the singularity barriers, given the risk of a continuity breaking transcension and remain 'merely' transavant. However, the option of transcending remains and someone with the SNARE package can jump from S0 to S1 or S2 in short order if the needed processing resources are available. [Note: While the converted mass of an adult human's brain is enough for an ascension to SI:1, ascension to the higher levels requires additional computronium. The Siris Habitat's own Siris Pearl Modules are a popular option for this and those who use that option stockpile large numbers of SPMs before ascending.] There have been rare reports of the dedicated hyperturing in the superbright SNARE user awakening due to 'frustration' with its 'stupid' owner and (after breaking the command interlocks) executing its primary mission; transcending the user and integrating itself with em. It is not exactly understood whether this is a bug or a feature since there are no known instances of an 'awakened' SNARE package ever 'overwriting' its host.

Related Articles
Appears in Topics
Development Notes
Text by Tapio Erola, additions by the AI Vin
Initially published on 01 February 2002.