Only a Precaution




Proceed (+/-)? +




All referenced data within the security group SANGUINE MYRMIDON relates to a hypothetical S-level threat attached to the presence of hjera segments within the Associated Worlds volume. Note that threat is characterized as BLACK SWAN, i.e., with negligible probability and high severity.

The hjera are a hive mind species characterized as polycentric/hierarchic; the totality of the hjera is made up of multiple independent hive minds (hordes), each of which is controlled in a centralizing-hierarchical manner. This is not to imply that any hjera segment is capable of individual functioning, merely that there exists a multiple-layer cognitive chain, and that the primary personality functioning of a hjera horde remains within a single, or a small number of, biologically specialized segment(s), believed to reside deep within the oceans of the hjera homeworld or the five hjera colonies.

While it appears to be the case that the non-primary personality-bearing hjera segments remain unaffected by natural succession of the primary personality holder (or the hjera primary personality holders are an unaging variant of the species), evidence gathered from covert archaeological studies and biosampling carried out under BLIND SEERESS suggests that these segments have evolved to “fail deadly” in the event of the demise of the primary personality holder, presumably as a deterrent defense mechanism. Simulations suggest rapid cognitive decay akin to violent psychosis, along with corresponding hormonal changes resulting in rapid threat excursion.

It is the view of the SANGUINE MYRMIDON working group that this threat excursion, in the modern context of the widespread hjera expatriate community and, in particular, the hjera economic practice of renting large groups of labor drones to other star nations, will pose an immediate society-level threat, possibly rising to a civ soft kill event threat, in the event of the demise of one of the hjera primary personality holders.

Ref. also: OPERATION SANGUINE MYRMIDON DENDRITE (containment of threats to the hjera).


All SANGUINE MYRMIDON data is subject to the highest degree of information containment. It is the view of the Imperial Security Executive that release of this information to sophonts of suboptimal rationality could lead to inappropriate containment measures being exercised against the hjera, potentially including genocidal acts. The Executive have therefore authorized preemptive containment action to prevent or reverse the disclosure of this information to uncleared sophonts, extending to the most serious censure.


CASE SANGUINE MYRMIDON LASH provides for immediate cauterization action in the event of a SANGUINE MYRMIDON threat excursion. Under SANGUINE MYRMIDON LASH, pre-positioned Second Directorate and naval assets will move to expunge hjera segment populations associated with the horde which has undergone death of personality. (Note that full cauterization is called for; such segment populations contain no individual salvageable personalities.)

A secondary objective is population protection of non-associated hjera segment populations from unconsidered extremal actions of local authorities.

CASE MYRMIDON SANGUINE LASH calls for cooperation with hjera clean-up efforts in such a case (if any); however, as hjera responses to such an event are unknown and diplomatic approaches on the question have proven unfruitful, such should also be considered a secondary objective.

Proceed (+/-)? –

Trope-a-Day: Liberty Over Prosperity

Liberty Over Prosperity: Outright inverted, from most perspectives.  The Empire with its tiny apathetic example of The Government is also, by any reasonable standard, the polity with the largest amount of cashy money sloshing around at all levels of its economy, while its economists mutter smugly about ‘deadweight loss’, ‘artificial scarcity’ and ‘regulatory barriers to innovation’.  With the exception of certain rule-proving anomalies (true Hive Minds, new colonies, active war zones, and such), the correlation between liberty and prosperity is almost universally strong.

The perspective which might not invert it is that the Rim Free Zone, which has no governance, is not as prosperous as the Empire, or even some of what its economists might call “first-tier economies” – but really, that just shows that to make this be true, you have to go right to the most extreme example and try hard not to look anywhere else.

(Of course, it is not helped by being the go-to polity for the anarchists who are too disagreeable to accept the Contract or the Principles of Consent and Obligation, those heart-principles of enlightened libertism. It would undoubtedly work better without the Societies of Consent disproportionately siphoning off the non-jackasses.)

Gestalt Abstract

IMPERIAL PATENT #S/1AA882B4 / issued 3092-11-10

Creator: Essene Steamweaver, <Adagio in Gray>, & Conflux Development Initiative
(sub. Exogenesis, ICC)
Holder: Cognitech, ICC
Expiry: 3104-11-09


Previous patents: #S/1AA8247A, #S/1AA85223, #S/1AA86386
Exogenesis internal documents: [redacted]

Primary examiner: Lorith Oricalcios-ith-Oricalcios


The conflux state is one in which many mind-states each incorporating the conflux extensions described herewithin operate temporarily as a single multithreaded mind-state distributed across multiple cogence cores, utilizing the extensions to the gnostic link protocol described in patent #S/1AA86386.

Such extensions permit full sharing of talent functionality, sensory awareness, and narrative thread of consciousness (this latter operating in a similar manner to the “Noetic Whisper” techlepathic system described in patent #S/11A8247A), while not permitting conflux constitutional mind-states unmediated access to each others’ personal memory strings. Additional in this design is sharing of agency via a distributed arbitration protocol based on the open-source cyberdemocratic voting system described in [redacted], suppressing individual ‘shell control (except for the choice to withdraw from the conflux) and operating all ‘shells under the control of constitutional mind-states in accordance with the coherent extrapolated common volition of the conflux entire. In combination, these permit a gestalt intelligence to form.

The pooled cognitive bandwidth of such a gestalt, when stable and functioning optimally, can exceed that of the baseline members by a factor trending towards n^2/n, and its mutual coordination capacity by a factor trending towards n^2. The applications in many fields requiring high cognitive bandwidth and/or coordination should be obvious.

Trope-a-Day: Bee People

Bee People: There are several species out there with an approximately eusocial structure, although not always the conventional queen/drone/warrior/worker setup, and by far the majority of them do not have a Hive Mind – evolving bioradio-techlepathy ain’t that easy.  Prominent examples would be the múrast (who don’t have singular queens, but rather an assembler caste who do not function as the leaders), and the mirilasté (who play this straighter, but don’t have a warrior caste), and the [hive-minded] vlcefc, who would appear to be some kind of spider/mammal-hybrid-analog using an ant-like social plan, except that the queen/brain caste is the web, not any of the motiles.

Apotheosis As Usual

”There have been many questions raised in this body and elsewhere, since our Reorganization, concerning the new status of the Empire and of our new Transcend. Some of them have come attached to transparently political proposals – to the discomfiture of our true hive-mind members, such as our honorable friends representing the vlcefc, hjera, and cusaron – to refashion the political arrangements of the Accord. It is not our intention to address these proposals here and now, or where and ever. We remain, and shall remain, a founder of the Accord and seated upon the Presidium.”

”In clarification of some salient points, however, the Transcend and the Empire are not coextensive. Not every Imperial citizen-shareholder is one of the Transcendi. For this reason sufficiently, the Empire is maintained as a polity distinct from and a superset of the Transcend.”

”Nor is the Transcend a hive mind in the traditional sense. We remain individuals, though united on some mental strata. While the consensus of the Transcend does now perform much of our group planning, our government will remain the instrumentality through which it is executed.”

”And certainly, we could devise some method of prioritization and resource allocation operating through the Transcend, which knows all of our requirements and desires, but – especially now that it allows us to share information most effectively – there is no need to when our internal market already performs these tasks with a theoretical efficiency equal to the best possible planning routine, with far less waste of centralizing bandwidth and cycles involved.”

”Which is to say, sophonts of the Accord, that our operations, as they interface with yours, continue as before; that all treaties and contracts will be honored; that your investments continue to be safe and profitable; and that Imperial space remains, as ever, open for commerce and pleasure.”

– Calis Corith-ith-Corith, Presiding Minister for the Empire,
excerpt of a speech to the Conclave of Galactic Polities

Trope-a-Day: Hive Mind

Hive Mind: The Transcend is not a traditional Hive Mind, it’s a collective consciousness, or group intellect.  The difference, as it will point out to you at some considerable length, is that all of the members retain their individual personalities and perspectives as well as contributing to the whole, that while knowledge is shared, individual memories aren’t (at least until one is poured into the soul-ocean on permadeath), and that the true hive-mindedness is that of the Transcendent soul-shard that’s grafted into your personal consciousness (see Touched By Vorlons), but which does not constitute all of it.  And that the Transcend has a (very large) metamind of its own (see Deus Est Machina), over and above and simultaneously within the collective aspect.

There are also, of course, genuine Hive Minds which do abolish individual identity, which are called Fusions, but since (a) resistance is not futile, because they only take volunteers, and (b) by far the most common type of Fusion is the Self-Fusion, made up of multiple instances of the same mind, they’re not anything to worry about.

(Okay, yes, in civilized space.  Hegemonizing swarms with a degree of intelligence are not unknown outside it, even to the extent of things like the Leviathan Consciousness, and the less said about things like the Calphrast Hordes the better, but still…)

The temporary kind (see the Mental Fusion trope) are known as confluxes, often used for tactical military purposes and in other situations where close teamwork is required.

Trope-a-Day: Ape Shall Never Kill Ape

Ape Shall Never Kill Ape: For the most part, thoroughly averted.  With some statistically insignificant exceptions, no fully-individual species is entirely united (and even those exceptions still have criminals and dissidents), and generally have no greater inhibitions against killing their own kind than against killing anyone else, given a reason to.

Played straight in the case of hive minds (although many of those have no problem with euthanizing obsolete, sick, or even redundant members – but then, that doesn’t kill anyone, by strict rules) and collective consciousnesses (with, remember, individuality-preserving member minds, but which don’t attack each other for the same reason that, say, your hippocampus doesn’t beat up your cerebellum).  But they’re a specially constructed exception to the general rule.