Environmental Vecs

Environmental Vecs
Image from Steve Bowers
Environmental vecs managing alluvial deposition on Wadai Ringworld;
in general, the landscapes on most megastructures require constant management

A class of vecs used to impose control on the unpredictability of planetary environments but integrating the vec or vecs into the planetary environment, normally in a way that allows them to guide and shape pre-existing natural processes rather than simply ride rough-shod over them. Most Environmental Vecs have developed from sub-sophont machines that made up (and on many worlds still make up) the broad class of Environmental Bots.

The most widely-known type of Environmental Vec are the Adumbrans (or Cloud-Vecs). Other types of environmental vecs include ones to control and regulate water flow, in both river and ocean environments, vec windbreaks, and vec tectonic controllers, used to regulate the activity of both volcanoes and earthquake zones.

Environmental Vecs often form part of a planetary Angelnet. In some cases all of these environmental vecs form part of a single sophont individual, which regulates an entire planetary environment in a seamless and integrated manner. Others form part or parts of Gardenmind AIs, AIs who manage the systems for a hab or a terraformed or highly modified planetary environment. Some Gardenminds are modosophonts who use subsidiary expert programs for the smaller projects and transapients for the larger or more complicated areas, with Environmental Vecs working as their agents, in some cases via subservient Gardenmind(s). Some Gardenminds are Environmental Vecs.

On a minority of worlds where they have been used, Environmental Vecs have become the dominant sophont, with different types warring with one another over the optimal path for the environment to take, or simply for resources, such as sunlight. In many cases worlds of this type become very hostile to sophont life, appearing to be a colony world that is devoid of sophont bionts, but with lots of well-maintained technology and habitations which react in ... interesting ways to bionts that disturb the biosphere.

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Development Notes
Text by Tony Jones
Initially published on 04 January 2006.