Vec Recreational Activity involving competitive manufacture

Image from Alex Mulvey
Two civilian ships approaching AmHouse, one in the foreground and one at the mouth.
NoSlau, also known to some as Amha, is a recreational activity (many refer to it as a sport) practiced by numerous vecs across the Terragen sphere. In NoSlau, the manufacturing or disassembly of any number or type of objects is undertaken by vec participants. Multiple "teams" of vecs (or sometimes lone individals) attempt to complete a specific industrial task as quickly as possible or within predefined constraints. However, the main focus of the processes in NoSlau is not the actual production itself, but efficiency of time and/or resources, relative to other vec standards. Even the most efficient NoSlau teams are, nevertheless, still much slower than typical automated systems.

As manufacturing of this type using vecs rather than seeds, automated systems or nanofactories is practically unheard of, vecs that participate in NoSlau typically have special simplified bodies designed for manufacturing. The fastest times that vecs can complete industrial tasks are incredibly slow compared to alternative manufacturing solutions, which is why it is a recreational activity. The manufactured results of NoSlau, more often than not, end up getting disassembled in other NoSlau events. These parts are recycled and used again in a cycle of events.

The culture and name of NoSlau originated in the Vega system in the late second millennium AT, when Vega was quickly becoming a very prominent manufacturing and colonization center for non-bionts. During this time the Terrorlords ruled a system very close by, the Mu Herculis system. These victims had been in Terrorlord oppression for over a century, forced to do unnecessary but labor intensive work by their oppressors simply for the Terrorlord’s enjoyment. Manual labor and mistreatment was all most of them knew anymore.

A large number of them managed to temporarily escape the Terrorlord’s grasp, but only within the system. During their brief freedom from oppression they intercepted several interstellar transmissions from other systems and learned of the large amount of non-biont development occurring at Vega. Believing that they would be able to find work there as vecs, they managed to upload themselves into very old manufacturing vec bodies and flee the system. Even though they would be able to go into hibernation for the trip, they were upset by how much Terragen civilization was developing and wanted to rejoin society as soon as possible. Thus they selected Vega rather than another developed system. However, several others did decide to travel to other systems.

Upon arrival to Vega, the vecs discovered that their help was completely unneeded, and that their only place in the system was as colonists. They were initially overjoyed at rejoining galactic society and having finally escaped their oppressors. As time went on however, their human roots began to show as they started resenting their underwhelming lives in a system void of any biological life. Even having escaped tyranny, they were once again unhappy. Not having the option of transferring themselves back into humans, they began talk of travelling to a different system. One of the refugee vecs is recorded as saying to another named Amha, that although they escaped tyranny and slaughter their lives were still terrible but in a different way.

Amha then joined with several other refugees and created a game in which they all competed to see who could manufacture the same component in the least amount of time, taking advantage of their specialized (yet very primitive) bodies. During one of the first instances of the event, when the same vec as before asked Amha what they were doing, Amha remarked, "Not getting slaughtered." The name NoSlau was born from this remark, and stuck. The game developed quickly and became popular with refugee and other vecs system wide, who had manufacturing bodies created for the purpose. Vega later went on to become the birthplace of the Wormhole Nexus, and so NoSlau easily spread out wherever the wormholes did. It owes its fame entirely to having been created in such a significant location at a significant time..

In the Current Era NoSlau takes place in various types of locations. Volumes set aside for NoSlau in places where vecs live are common. Specialized bodies of all shapes and sizes are created for players to use in the games. On occasion, large structures of many shapes are created for the specific purpose of hosting huge NoSlau events. It is here in these stadiums that the most significant NoSlau competitions take place. Although these stadiums are typically not biont-friendly, having no atmosphere or gravity, they due garner the attention of non-vec spectators who find ways to watch the spectacles.
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Text by Alex Mulvey
Initially published on 21 January 2016.