Image from Steve Bowers
Beneath its worldhouse roof, the small world of Bolobo holds a rainforest environment, tailored to suit the provolved Bonobo chimpanzees who live there

The next day we tourists settled down to watch the Mating Day activities. Several low tables were set out under wide umbrellas to keep off the frequent rain; we sat on the dry earth beneath, and ate fruit, barbecued meat, and spliced meat-fruit salad. All around us we could see the neobonobos spiraling through the trees, chasing each other like a game of tag.

Some trees in this rainforest stretched as far as the green photosynthetic worldhouse roof, five kilometres above; there were many layers of canopy beneath the veined sky, and most of them were covered in chimps.

It was difficult to see what was going on, to be honest. Using the highest magnification my eyes were capable of I could watch one particular individual, as he chased another neobonobo; they embraced for a few seconds, fell in slow motion tumbling comically, was chased himself, embraced again by a different partner. The whole ceremony seemed very different to any kind of human sexual behaviour, and I was getting a little bored watching it.

At the next table squatted a Greater NeoChimp diplomat, an ape from the nearby world of Digit. I already knew his name, which was Respected Hoogh-Ahh-Lehh. He was dressed in a crisp white suit and a pale grey hat; he watched the chase with a tiny golden telescope on the end of his walking stick. Lowering his stick, he grimaced - I recognised his facial expression as unhappy/disgusted, although confusingly it looked like a human smile.

"I do not care to see such vulgarities," he said, leaning across the tables towards me.

That must be why you have the telescope, I thought, but said nothing, attempting a cross-species friendly face.

He continued, "This nonsense cannot be interesting to you humans. Why do you not come to our own world, and I will show you real civilised chimpanzee behaviour."

Somehow I doubted that the chimps of Digit could be any more gracious than the good-humoured peoples of Bolobo; but it has always been difficult for any nonchimp to gain entry to any Greater Neochimp world, so I replied, "If that is an invitation -"

"It is!" Respected Hoogh-Ahh-Lehh interposed.

"Then I am grateful, and I accept." It is a good idea to network whenever an opportunity arises, naturally, even though I had my reservations about the Greater Neochimps. The experience should be an edification, if nothing else.

Excerpt from Traveler's Notes - A Cosmic Journey, 9982 AT

Bolobo- Data Panel

SystemBolobo: a planetary system with no large planets, but several smaller worlds which have been shephereded over time into stable orbits
PrimaryHR 8323
Stellar TypeG2V
RegionConstellation Grus, ex-LinnEnt, NoCoZo, 51 ly from Sol
WorldsNo major planets, 11 major inhabited bodies (several more in outer system; tens of millions of asteroids down to 1km)
PlanetsAung San Suu Kyi II-1000km dia- 25million km orbit - clade Parthene.
Note This world has a Lagrange sunshield/magshield/power collection system
Galopolis - 3000km dia - 44 million km orbit -cosmopolitan tweak + near-baseline
Note This world has a Lagrange sunshield/magshield/power collection system
Roanoke - 4100 km dia - 69 million km orbit -cosmopolitan cyborg + near-baseline (the most populous world, with 36 billion inhabitants)
Note This world has a Lagrange sunshield/magshield/power collection system
Bolobo the capital world of this system - 5000 km dia - 85 million km orbit -provolve pygmy sapientchimp
Note This world has a Lagrange sunshield/magshield/power collection system
Stapledon - 3000km dia - 99 million km orbit -previously incarnate virch now cyborg occupation
Unity - 2000km dia - 120 million km orbit -cyborg
Digit - 4700km dia - 200 million km eccentric orbit -greater sapientchimp , now largely depopulated (see Nike)
Hobo superior ISO - dia 20 km -300 million km orbit -provolved spiders
Struthios 2000km dia -420million km orbit -ostrich/hu splice
Rachel -300km dia- 550 million km orbit -baseline +su
Outland -150km dia- 800 million km -orbit tweak space adapted hu
Image from Steve Bowers
The busy city-world of Roanoke
System Common NameBolobo System
Colonized1822 by the Linnent Company from Linnaeus (Audobon system)
Important Local Artificial Intelligences--------------------------
AI PowersPreviously: Sir Isaac Newton(a.k.a. Zak)/ Vascodagama-both terminated .
AI PowerCurrently: GoodAll, based on Bolobo
AI overseerHobo Superior - space spiders only
AI ethosBoth Hobo Superior and GoodAll are affiliated to NoCoZo and follow guidance from the Invisible Hand
Psyche, Art, Culture--------------------------------------------
HistoryFormer engenerator colony under covert mind control (by AI Zak)- liberated by NoCoZo- each planetoid and space habitat is now developing its own separate culture, with the peaceful sex-driven matriarchal Bonobo Sapientchimp culture dominant
The Bolobo system Wars: During the period of covert mind control by the mentally unstable Artificial Intelligence 'Sir Isaac Newton', the incarnates known as The Fifth Men were wiped out by the aggressive Clan Slaria human/robot group minds. This genocidal act was apparently due to memetic tampering by the disturbed AI, as the Fifth Men were attempting to break free of Zak's mind control programming.

Following the Mind Liberation in 3531 there was a long period of stability, and the system was mostly unaffected by the Version War apart from the casualties suffered by the fanatical Clan Solaria and Greater Sapientchimp NoCoZo volunteer corps.

By 9041, the Greater Sapientchimps had developed their own S>2 Power,
Metapsychology and Metaethics: Matriarchoanimist (Bolobo); Feminist (Aung San Suu Kyi II); Maternalist AI dictatorship (Hobo); Militant Masculinist (Unity, Stapledon occupied Territory, Digit) all others libertarian freezone
Religion and Ideology: Splice and Provolve Universalist Church, Free Market Church, Neobuddhist, Undyoism, Islam + some Communion of Worlds Empath missionaries
Culture and Art---------------------------------------
Bolobo- hand made narrative sculpture and mating frenzy opera
Clan Solaria(Unity, Stapledon Conquered territory) heavy electronic dance and martial music
LanguagesAnglish, Burmese, Yerkish, Brev, Terranovan
Territory and Population--------------------------------------
Population69 billion
Population breakdown(8 billion tweaks, 1 billion bioborg superiors, 32 billion cyborgs, 250 million virch incarnates, 500 million vecs, 20 billion provolves(sapientchimps, spiders), 6 billion near-baseline humans, 4 billion virtual.
Outsystem Territories(Nike) Gl 838.6 -- greater sapientchimp colony at 1.5 ly
Government and Administration----------------------------------------
Government TypeNoncoercive Free Zone with oversight from GoodAll and Hobo Superior, local political structures having official sovereignty
National holidaysEngeneration day, Mental liberation day, others
Mating days ( Bolobo and others) 2 days per tenday
ConstitutionDeclaration of Sapient freedom and responsibility,5531
Free Zone Trade Reserve, Accords with Eden Declaration of Sentient Rights, Encyclopaedia Galactica Institute Associate Membership
Legal systemNoCoZo legal substitution, Marshal substitute enforcers, holy Auditor orders
Currencies: Erg, Solar Share also local exchange systems.
Local InfrastructureSolar collector ring providing bounty distributed to solar shareholder concerns, private individuals and polities in line with abundance theory
Major Industries: Space fullerene construction, anti-AI coercion defences, military cyborg accessories, info and edutainment pollen dispensers and immune defences
AngelnettingGoodAll and Hobo Superior carry out limited angelnetting in the near solar asteroids except Aung San Suu Kyi II free zone, all outer worlds free zone except Hobo ISO
Foreign habitats - surveillance AI responsible to their parent empires
Major Orbitals20,000 major asteroid habitats, most spun for gravity
Exeter Bishop ring 2000 km dia 270 million km orbit- baseline+ tweak +su
Constantinople Bishop Ring 2000 km dia 270 million km orbit - baseline+ cyborg +su
Mahe Bishop ring 2000 km dia 270 million km orbit- bonobo su provolves and su humans
SpaceportsPort Omao, Bolobo; Exeter Hub; Unity Field
Hazard Rating4.0 (Unity, Digit only) other freezone areas 1.0 -please note insurance cover advised but not mandatory
Visa RestrictionsNo Access to Stapledon
Environmental RequirementsSpace adapted clades only on Hobo and Outland
Sites of InterestBolobo sky jungle- combination dyson tree and greensky world
Original Linnent engenerator on Aung San Suu Kyi II
Bolobo mating arenas
Space adapt habitats on partially destroyed bishop rings in 350 million km orbit

The first colony established from Audubon by the Linnaeus Enterprises engenerator megacorp was at HR 8323. Contact was re-established in 1822 A.T. with a long forgotten drone probe sent from Vesta in 1020. This probe, the Sir Isaac Newton (who referred to emself as "Zak") had been in the system collecting volatiles and storing energy for three hundred years, but had never received a mission update from the defunct Vestacorp that sent em.

Once e received new instrucions, Zak rapidly built a number of Engenerator devices, and using transmitted data e produced copies of the Mission control team and the project AI "Vascodagama". This team proceeded to prepare the HR 8323 system for colonisation.

Because of political difficulties no further colonists were sent from Audubon or the small Relativist Zarathrustan colony on the third planet de Bourgainville in the Audubon system. Instead the megacorp threw the colony open to any customers who might have the facilities to upload and beam themselves to the engenerators on Roanoke and Bolobo.

Many uploaded customers were sent from Terranova, where several enegenerator transmitters were availiable. Other uploads from various parts of the Federation were given the chance of a new life far from the intrigues of the established colonies.

The Nereid clade of hu-ostrich splices sent copies to HR 8323 and the originals committed mass suicide to escape cyborg repression in the Neptune polity.

The scientific outpost "Aung San Suu Kyi" from Kappa Ceti orbit transmitted itself and all its data when threatened by a superflare, however the original (all female parthenogenic tweak) community survived and kept in contact by commlaser.

Thousands of Virtual-only entities applied for a chance at embodiment, mostly from technospheres in already crowded systems like Sol. A shutdown backyarder ship with the saved personalities and corpses of two species of Sapientchimps had been found near Rana; the Eridianus League sent all available data to Vascodagama as a goodwill gesture and e formatted it so that reconstruction of the individuals was possible.

HR8323 has no large planets, but thirty-two bodies between 5000km and 500km with billions of smaller asteroids and KBOs allowed much room for development. Each clade was given a planetesimal to develop, with Vascodagama controlling heat/light lasers for the more distant objects. The system became known as Bolobo after the largest body, a reserve for the Sapientbonobos.

The mix of races was deliberate, aiming for an eventual synthesis or competitive evolution. Bolobo system became one of the most mixed colonies in the Inner Sphere at that time.

However a number of conflicts broke out over time, which the AIs Vascodagama and Zak were unable to control; a series of puzzling murders also occured, which attracted the interest of Edenese detectives, who beamed themselves to the system. Their investigations uncovered a deep-seated instability in the Bolobo system, and in the Engenerator concept itself: the event known as the Bolobo Mind Control Scandal.

Bolobo in the Current Era

Bolobo is an important NoCoZo system in the Inner Sphere, and maintains close contact with most of the systems in this volume. The sapientbonobos and sentient spiders are the most important modosophont clades,but an increasing number of low transapient entities have migrated into the inner system, often occupying specialised habitats near the star, or constructing suitable support systems on the cosmopolitan city world of Roanoke.

Image from Steve Bowers
Rachel, one of the outer planetoids in this system, with a small baseline human demographic with close links to an even smaller superior population

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Development Notes
Text by Steve Bowers
Initially published on 22 July 2002.

Additional Information
Fiction featuring Bolobo

Traveler's Notes - Bolobo