400 to 530 AT: The Solsys Golden Age

(2370-2500 c.e.)

Nanotech Age
Image from Bernd Helfert

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Governments and corporations prove unable to control cheap and widespread nanotech; the "Backyarders" on Earth in cooperation with a number of Belt colonists and outsiders launch their ships for the Oort halo and the stars, although few are successful.

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The Interplanetary Age

400 AT (2370 c.e.)
400s - The high surveillance society results in psychological discomfort for many personality types, which cannot be cured even with advanced therapy. A safety valve is offered by the colonisation of the Solar system, and by one-way colonisation efforts to the stars, such as the Tau Ceti mission, launched in 465 AT.

400 AT - Fully provolved Siberoo individuals occupy executive positions in certain polar research facilities.

401 - Stasist AIs gradually reach a consensus, after marginalizing the ahumans and their incompatible plans. More: Political Science.

401 - The first paired rotating O'Neill cylinder colony is constructed at the Earth/Moon L4 point.

407 - Development of synthetic symbiotic organisms becomes first a growing area of research and then a growth industry for the next twenty years. Synthetic and gengineered organisms released into the wild begin to have unforeseen and undesirable consequences.

410 - Industrial nano-tech widely accessible. Because of the dangers involved both normal and tweak governments, corporations, and military institutions all keep the lid on nanotech, use special assemblers that only replicated a number of times before self-destructing, have draconian legislation and radical surveillance, and other such devices. The erosion of civil liberties leads to police states, only compounding the tension between the cyborgs and the shapers.

410 - Autonomous bubblehabs, not specifically aligned with an external founding nation, religious organization, or transnational, begin to predominate, particularly in the atmospheres of Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune; a division between 'Inworlders' and 'Outworlders' begins to develop. At the same time, with the rise of the Backyarders and especially the Neotribalist Backyarders, many new immigrant/refugee groups arrive from the high-surveillance polities of Old Earth and other insystem regions of Solsys. The first primitive self-replicating bubblehabs are developed, though most new habs are still simply constructed by their future inhabitants.

410 - Rat provolves developed at the Rat Barrel.

420 - Pearl Fortress announces a plan to leave the solar system.

420's - First creation of the human derived species known as Goliaths (Homo gigantopithecus).

430 AT (2400 c.e.)
430 - Many small groups seek to escape from the high levels of surveillance in Earth states. They build autonomous Freedom Ships, habitats and biospheres, some remaining in the inner solar system and others moving out into the Kuiper Belt, the Oort Cloud, and beyond.

430's - Enhanced internal feedback, called "ultraconsciousness", is added by the Zerodyn R&D Collective. It results in a Hyperautism, a problem with too clear an internal perception.

430's - Interactive food becomes more common.

431 - First Fullair and its autofab template created.

432 - Vollmark, an interstellar era home microtronics corporation, established.

432 - Mabugana habitat opened for colonisation.

432 - Fullairs, bubblehabs built for Old Earth conditions, are available as a nanofab template within the Backyarder culture.

435-465 - Several localised outbreaks of offensive replicator swarms signal the wider availability of self-replicating weapons technology.

435 - Destructive uploading of the human mentality is declared illegal by the Earth Council (formerly the United Nations). Non-destructive uploading is not yet technically possible. However comprehensive Virtual emulations of human individuals are granted full sapient rights (in New Zealand only), and destructive uploading becomes widespread off the Earth.

447 - Last documented appearance of the unidentified AI entity Hal.

450 AT (2420 c.e.)
450's - Power Stilts become a short-lived fad (more: Personal Transport Technology).

450 - Massive growth in the number of bubblehabs in Solsys around gas giants in the outer system, especially Saturn, an event known in local parlance as 'The Blooming'. Many begin to refer to the bubblehabs as the 'Floater' or 'Inworlder' polities to distinguish them from other "Outworlder" societies.

451 - The Valparaiso cycler becomes a hotel in Mars orbit.

457 — A summit at Port Robinson highlights the rising tensions between the Martian Union and the rest of the Inner Council over a variety of issues including immigration, terraforming, and political representation. The Martian Union increasingly acts as a sovereign state.

460's AT - The Farm Analogy, infamous forgery widely circulated on the net, purporting to be an authentic post from one AI to another, showing how they undertake "people farming".

460-510 AT - Phobos' technical school undertakes 'class projects' to build interstellar lightsail probes every four years. A local AI calling itself "_____" volunteers to be the payload for these probes,
forming the basis for what will later be called the '.....' spores.

462 - Valhalla habitat founded.

465 - First successful manned interstellar mission launched, the Tsiolkovsky, to Tau Ceti.

466 - Mabugana habitat completed.

470 - Ram Augmented Interplanetary RAIR ships introduced in the outer Solar system.

474 - The Caracas Treaty attempts to regulate the spread of replicating and autonomous swarm technology and institute a global monitoring authority. However the treaty is not fully implemented by all parties.

475 -The Prudence Foundation colony ship Sure launches towards Epsilon Indi.

478 - Intercession launched towards 82 Eridani.

480 AT (2450 c.e.)
484 - The first Tau Ceti Shuttle 'Red' launched.

486 - "Uruk Assassin" synthetic viral replicator infects SkyPolis Orbital and kills eighty thousand people. The system wide crackdown that follows fails to cure the problem of bio-terrorism.

487 - Several bases in the Juno Confederation, accused of being behind much nanoterrorism, are attacked by a joint Cislunar and Earth strike force. The supposed terrorist bases are later shown to be innocent mining homesteaders.

487 - The Tsiolkovsky arrives at Tau Ceti.

488 - Godfrey-9, "renaissance being", philosopher, artist, and ai-at-leisure, ascends to S1: first toposophic.

490 - The trial of the Minsk 7, independent researchers accused of having spread nanodesigns on the Net and supported nanoterrorism. After a show trial they are executed, and the case helps usher in the new "Molecular Law Directorate" in the EU.

490 - Gengineer Republic ship launched toward Epsilon Eridani.

498 - "Ground Zero" nanite infects Kleopatra, killing 1373 people. The asteroid is quarantined for nearly 400 years.

499 - Shortly before completing the journey to Procyon, a stowaway solipsist AI activates and goes on to overwhelm the corporate slaved AI onboard Zhang Qian.

500 AT (2470 c.e.)
500 - Modified starfish are developed as non-sapient underwater biobots; these will be developed into the sophont Streya clade in the Federation Era.

500 - First work towards provolution of ray-finned fishes (Acties); fully sapient Acties will not emerge until Federation times.

500-528 AT - Sporadic biotech and nanotech based terrorism is countered by increasingly powerful blue goo and restrictions on civil liberties.

500's AT - Transfinity products become very widespread especially on Earth, where their matter compilers, microrepair systems and genius cleaning fluids become market leaders.

501 - Colony mission launched by the ethnic Chinese conglomerate Heavenly Palaces with the help of several Genetekker clades and some corporations with longstanding Genetekker sympathies, towards Sigma Draconis.

502 - The Atlanta Incident: a nanoterrorist threat makes the Atlanta police release the John Wayne Public Protection synsect swarm (later dubbed Dirty Harry). In the ensuing mega-surveillance/swift justice environment over 19,000 people are killed, behaviorally modified or 'body imprisoned' using lock-in paralysis.

505 - Probe launched to GL667 system.

506 - The first large outbreak of rogue replicators in space occurs on the Moon. Tycho is partially damaged, and 483 people killed. The plague continues to harass the moon inhabitants for more than 4 years.

509 - By this date the Cishp own 2/3 of the Titanian surface.

c. 510 AT - First serious splits within the pan-sophontist movement over how much freedom and independence provolve clades need to have.

513 - Paedro Andros Gan, famous cyberian activist, is killed in custody by Javanese authorities. This energizes a wave of nanoterrorism and subversion, as well as speeds up the escape of the Earth intelligentsia into the outer system.

520 - International Nanotech Defense Net developed by an alliance of nanodefense corporations and leased to many regions. The European Federation develops a competing nanodefense standard.

523 - In a landmark case the Earth Trade Association and UN Nanodefence Council order the closing of the otherwise successful Transfinity corporation.

526 - First provolved ferrets, the Putorians.

526 - The energetic but non-lethal "Bermuda Shoestring Assembler" coats much of the North Atlantic with "gruel" forming a hazard to shipping and mass die-offs of some species of marine life.

528 - The GAIA Conglomerate (Global Artificial Intelligence Array) is founded by many national governments, local Free Zones, and a number of different corporations in order to establish an efficient global nanoimmune system.

529 - New World launched for Beta Virginis.

533 - Mabugana Habitat departs Solar System for Epsilon Eridani, following conversion to an antimatter catalysed fusion colony ship.

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The Sundering

  • Academion  - Text by ProxCenBound
    Social movement and associated artificial island city-state on pre-Expulsion Earth.
  • Antarctica (Antarctic Free States)  - Text by Stephen Inniss, Ryan B (Rynn), Centauri5921, Kirran Lochhead Strang
    Old Earth's southernmost continent.
  • Australia  - Text by M. Alan Kazlev and Stephen Inniss
    An island continent between the Indian and Pacific Oceans on Old Earth. It is the smallest on Old Earth, with an area of 8,560,000 square kilometres, and it was not well suited to long term agricultural uses, so it did not contain any major civilizations or polities until the Industrial Age. After several centuries of sustained immigration, Australia became a prosperous nation, and was an important power on Earth during much of the Interplanetary Age.
  • Backyarder  - Text by Graham Hopgood based on original by M. Alan Kazlev
    Generic term for nanotech era interplanetary/interstellar colonists who legend says grew interstellar ships — virtually from their own backyard — out of nanotech seeds. The reality is that most were content with Earth-based or Solsys-based independence. In fact almost all of the small percentage of backyarders who did have interstellar aspirations worked in concert with Belters, who supplied most of the resources as well as much of the technical and practical expertise in exchange for a stake in any planets claimed, and few of this minority actually completed their preparations and of those who did leave the Sol System during the 5th century most never reached their destinations.
  • Bhutan  - Text by Mike Miller
    Nation-state of Old Earth.
  • Black Fire  - Text by Anders Sandberg
    Solsys Geopolitics 2100 - 2500 CE (131 - 531 AT)Genetekker nanoterrorist group, attacking members of the Inner Council including Martian Union, Cislunar Alliance, and Council of Earth installations during the 400's.
  • Blazer, Deeper  - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    Pre-Technocalypse terms for pioneers and adventurers who sort to explore and develop "deep space" (hence "deeper") and "blaze a trail" (archaic expression - origin unknown) out beyond CisLunar space, Mars, the Belt and the main population hubs.
  • Brazil  - Text by Rakuen07
    Major polity on pre-Expulsion Earth.
  • Bubblehabs  - Text by Stephen Inniss, With additional material by Tardigrada 2021
    Artificial habitats that float in a planetary atmosphere, such as a cytherian, neptunian or jovian world.
  • California  - Text by ProxCenBound
    Pre-Expulsion Earth polity, with a history of welcoming the then-radical technologies and types of sophonts being developed at the time.
  • Canada  - Text by ProxCenBound
    The northern portion of the continent of North America on Old Earth. Location of various polities in the pre-Expulsion period.
  • Cascadia  - Text by ProxCenBound
    Pre-Expulsion Earth polity, which followed a philosophy of adhering to nature, and therefore rejected sentient AI, gengineering, nanotech, and space colonization.
  • Chile  - Text by Kirran Lochhead Strang
    Former nation-state in South America, Old Earth.
  • China  - Text by Kirran Lochhead Strang
    A major Old Earth civilization for some five thousand years, China eventually became the most populated country on the planet, with the largest ethnicity and two widespread spoken languages - Mandarin (the language of the dynastic rulers from the north of the country) and Cantonese (the language of the ethnic Han majority). Many human inhabitants of the Terragen Sphere claim Chinese ancestry.
  • Climate Change on Old Earth  - Text by Todd Drashner
    The climate change crisis on Old Earth peaked during the Interplanetary period with a two meter rise in sea-levels.
  • CoreTechs Scandal  - Text by James Rogers
    A corporate scandal during the SolSys Golden Age centered around early mind uploading technologies
  • Ethiopia  - Text by Kirran Lochhead Strang
    Old Earth pre-Technocalypse polity in Africa.
  • Eugenesis - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    Literally "well born", a popular name among a few Martian and Jovian Genetekkers and Cislunar Superiors. Following the exposure of AML atrocities on Phobos, the name fell out of favour, since it was discovered that half the priesthood were called Eugenesis. It was partially redeemed during the early First Federation period, as it had been adopted by Eugenesis of Vesta. While a number of disciples of that famous hyperturing call themselves Eugenesis, and it remains a popular honorific among the Genen, the name is otherwise very rarely used.
  • Extropia - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    [1] Interlinked Information to First Federation age evolving communities embodying extropian values. Included both virtual cultural communities and actual communities in several orbital free zones.
    [2] Belt habitat of Extropist sect, Interplanetary Age to Solsys Golden Age.
  • Fullairs  - Text by AI Vin
    Airborne arcologies supported by warm air. A variety of bubblehab.
  • Haloers, Haloists  - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    Inhabitants of the Kuiper and Oort regions of a solar system (also called K-Belters, Oort-Miners, Outerists, Haloisters, Halos).
  • Indonesia  - Text by MacGregor
    Old Earth polity in Southeast Asia.
  • Interstellar Colonisation Before the First Federation Era  - Text by The Astronomer, Ryan B (Rynn), Steve Bowers
    Every known colony ship launched up to the start of the First Federation.
  • Japan  - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    Island nation in East Asia on Old Earth.
  • Laustrom-Xiang, Hermann  - Text by Anders Sandberg
    The nanoimmune designer who designed many of the protocols that were eventually included in GAIA.
  • Lyonesse  - Text by ProxCenBound, expanding an original by Steve Bowers
    An artificial island in the English Channel between mainland Europe and Britain on pre-Expulsion Earth, serving as the capital of the European Federation. A centre for research into artificial intelligence and measures against anthropogenic global warming.
  • Mabugana  - Text by Worldtree
    Solsys Golden Age habitat with a culture heavily influenced by Japanese and West African-descended groups as well as Martian culture, which partially funded an early mission to Epsilon Eridani.
  • Maldives  - Text by MacGregor
    An archipelago and nation state of old Earth located in the Indian Ocean. Composed of nearly 1,200 islands arranged in 26 atolls, the Maldives sit on a north-south running ridge called the Chagos-Laccadive Plateau.
  • Marsfather Movement, The  - Text by James Rogers
    Religious movement that emerged on the planet Mars during the late Golden Age.
  • Orbital (political unit) - Text by M. Alan Kazlev
    Originally, a nation state or city state based on habitats in orbit around Old Earth. Over the course of the Interplanetary Age the term came to be used for any such state in Solsys. By early First Federation times the term Orbital was used more broadly for any independent or semi-independent state based on a hab in orbit around a planet.
  • Orbital League / Cislunar Alliance  - Text by MacGregor
    The earliest non-planet-based Terragen polity, formed near Earth in the Interplanetary Age.
  • Pakistan  - Text by Kirran Lochhead Strang
    Old Earth polity of the Industrial-Golden Ages, originally a colony of Great Britain, but after independence gradually becoming a major power in its own right.
  • Perpetua Project, The  - Text by Steve Bowers
    A failed project to create a self-improving AI.
  • Ratu Mahendra  - Text by Madine
    Ratu Mahendra — Solsys Era AI designer and activist
  • Solsys Geopolitics 2100 - 2500 CE (131 - 531 AT)  - Text by MacGregor
    The 22nd to 26th centuries CE of the Interplanetary and Golden Ages witnessed the beginning of terragen civilization's spread from its cradle on Earth into the vast frontier of space. Conflict and rivalry between polities, a factor present during all periods of human history, continued as nation states and an expanding array of new political actors sought to secure their interests throughout the solar system.
  • Treaty Org, the  - Text by Steve Bowers
    Important Centralist organisation during the Golden Age of Solsys. Instrumental in the creation of GAIA, but was rejected by Her when She ascended to the Second Singularity. The Treaty Org was originally based on Earth, but after the Great Expulsion moved its headquarters to Luna and assisted in establishing the Bracelet Band.
  • United States of America  - Text by ProxCenBound
    Pre-Expulsion Earth-based superpower, responsible for the first landing on Luna and for creating the Internet. Though its relative importance declined as other powers rose, it continued to be influential in Solsys up until the Great Expulsion, and its cultural influences last down to this day.
Related Topics
Development Notes
Text by M. Alan Kazlev
timeline by numerous OA contributors
Initially published on 12 July 2001.

Additional Information