What’s That Soph?

So, I hear you like demographics. Or, at least, the comments on the last post tell me you like demographics.

Describing the constituent species of the Empire can be a mite tricky, depending on exactly how you define things – leaving aside any nasty outworlder prejudices about the status of neogens or uplifts, some species – relevantly, the mezuar and chiril-{n,m}, don’t have identities which lend themselves to headcount, and thus various approximations must be used.

And complicating things further, of course, is that the Empire’s immigration procedures don’t give a lump of species-appropriate excretions what species you happen to be, which leads to, oh, just over 8% of the population being “other”.

But given that, here’s the rough breakdown in a nice, user-friendly pie chart:

And here is the same data in a table, giving you what those percentages translate to in terms of approximate population numbers out of the Empire’s roughly 2.57 trillion sophonts:

chiril-{n,m}unconventional identity0.36%9,252,000,000
mezuarunconventional identity1.39%35,723,000,000

You may note that even the arthál, with the smallest demographic footprint due to their relatively recent creation and source population of fandom enthusiastic enough to change species, still manage to outpopulate Earth.

And that with 173 billion kaeth around… well, let’s just say the Legions don’t have any trouble recruiting.

20 thoughts on “What’s That Soph?

  1. I’m a bit surprised that there are more digisapiences than ethnic Eldrae! I mean, yeah, the IN needs lots and lots of them for AKV pilots, but still!

    • I’m quite surprised it’s only 12%, I remember reading that 3 out of 5 sophonts in the Empire were digisapiences somewhere.

      • To clarify:

        This is a count of embodied population. If you were wondering why there aren’t a lot more digisapiences, this is why – that, and once people go for The Big Upload, it’s increasingly meaningless to draw lines between the people of machine ascent and the ex-squishies. In fact, the quiddity of perpetual infomorphs tends to get all kinds of fuzzy in ways that would make them very hard to count even if you wanted to.

        It also excludes certain special cases like the Ocean of Souls, the Singing Planet, and all expediters, coadjutors, exarchs, axis subminds, archai and other bits of the Transcend on the fairly reasonable grounds that their quiddities and thus identities are entirely beyond mortal-phase comprehension anyway.

        • What are the ‘Ocean of Souls, the Singing Planet, and all expediters, coadjutors, exarchs, axis subminds, archai and other bits of the Transcend’? They all sound fantastic.

        • Ah, oops.

          Though I guess it would be a little hard to count the number of digisapiences lurking on the ‘net…

          Now, about those AKV pilots, would they count as being embodied while ‘in’ the AKV, or do starships have some bodies for AKV Wing use out of their AKVs?

  2. And mezuar and myneni, if you feel generous.
    I also wonder which species are the most technologically advanced aside from Eldrae themselves. I wish to see articles detailing each clade/culture group within the Empire, but I think it would be a long way to go.

    • I mean, the species within the Empire. I’m aware that Photon Network is the second most advanced next to the Empire.

        • Considering how easy it is to change bioshells, I’d argue that the count here reads more like a census of the breakdown of the types of jeans sophs prefer than of anything sociologically substantial.

          • I think it still has sociological significance. Since, well, majority of citizens will not (at least permanently) change the shells they are born with.

          • As a general rule, while cladism is one thing, it’s generally considered in bad tastes – although not unknown, and obviously outside exceptional circumstances – to go around wearing a different sophont species.

            (Apart from anything else, you tend to look like a schmuck through ignorance of the subleties.)

          • Are any allowances made for those who consider their own species of birth to be “dysmorphic” or “not ‘me’?”

  3. some species – relevantly, the mezuar and chiril-{n,m}, don’t have identities which lend themselves to headcount, and thus various approximations must be used.

    How are species like these handled by the Empire itself for, say, the apportionment of things like the Citizen’s Dividend?

    • Using a race-specific formula derived in strict accordance with the procedures laid down in manual URCS/OBDR-9432 “Protocol Design for Identity Token Management for Sophonts of Fractal and Collegiate Identity”.

      What’s in that manual? Buggered if I know. I’m not nearly as smart as the sophs on the Philosophically Hard Problems Working Group.

      (I mean, I could make some guesses, but I prefer not to commit myself to making the PHP-WG look like a bunch of baseline-grade idjits.)

      • Do the species such as chfsssc and verviani have exceptionally slow rate of procreation? I’m also a little surprised low percentage of esseli, who are masters of biotechnology.

        BTW, how the Empire counts species with ‘unconventional identity’?

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