Charactersimm, Characterbot, Charactervec

Simulated Personalities

Image from Steve Bowers

A characterbot is a semi-sentient entity programmed with elements of the personality of a celebrity, a fictional character or any other person.

In the Early Interplanetary age there was a thriving industry dedicated to the emulation of various personality traits in artificial form. A very basic reproduction of the personalities of various actors, politicians and other famous people could be recreated in a virtual or robotic simulacrum, by recording the observed behaviour and biographical details of those persons. These emulations were not fully sophont, but were programmed to respond to humans in a very naturalistic way. Robotic simulations of this kind were generally known as characterbots or personbots. Virtual examples were generally known as charactersimms or simply simms.

Other, less famous people were also recreated, often through their own efforts or those of their friends and acquaintances. One very useful tool in the creation of a personality reconstruction was the lifelog, a form of diary where the person concerned would record eir thoughts and experiences in as much detail, and with as much honesty as possible.

A very common form of characterbot or charactersimm was the recreation of an entirely fictional personality, often taken from literature or film, and quite often using the (copyrighted) image and bodyform of various real-life actors who had played those characters in movies. These types of fictional characters became even more commonplace when virch entertainment became popular - a virtual character could be copied quite easily into a humanoid robot with a suitable appearance, or could interact with real-life persons via augmented reality and DNI communication.


By the First Federation era it became possible to build fully sophont vecs at the same scale as most biological sophonts. This made it possible to build charactervecs that were fully sophont citizens. Many of these were former charactersimms or native-born digital sophonts who wished to become incarnate. A small but significant fraction of all Synthetic Humans are charactervecs.

Characterbots and Charactervecs are moderately common in the Current Era. On occasion cases a charactervec may encounter eir original model (known as the alpha) in real-life, and they may become close friends, but in some cases the alpha rejects all contact (or vice versa). Compared to a high-resolution (beta) upload or an engenerated copy, a charactervec is a relatively crude emulation, and may be referred to as a gamma copy or even a fake. Nevertheless, charactervecs (even entirely fictional ones) are considered to be citizens in most Sephirotic polities, (unlike characterbots which have fewer rights).

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Development Notes
Text by Steve Bowers
Initially published on 14 May 2009.

Additional Information
Rewritten in 2017 by Steve Bowers to introduce concept of Charactervec