History #10

And this week we deal with the master biocrystal, cerulite.

This is probably the most difficult to use of all the biocrystals, if only because it only functions in conjunction with the others.

Each of the biocrystal types has a unique shape, and cerulite in particular would look like a weave or a latice, not unlike how DNA might form, more or less (though cerulite certainly wouldn’t form the same shape as DNA). I imagine cerulite latices would form into one of a few number of knots (probably two or, more likely, four), that would be the foundation for a kind of programming language. The arrangement of these knots would then determine the function of that particular piece of cerulite.

Aside from these knots, cerulite would also grow tendrils to attach to other biocrystals, which the knots would then regulate/control.

In particularly concentrated amounts, cerulite can give rise to sentient beings, possibly even sapient beings. Probably not naturally, though. But I imagine creating sentient or sapient beings out of cerulite would be continual project for any civilization that encounters cerulite, much in the way our civilization reaches for A.I. (I think the two would be on some level more or less synonymous or something.)

The primary use for cerulite would be for moderating growth, either promoting it or limiting it for other biocrystals. It would also be the center of some lightly sentient machines, of, for example, self-moving carts or wagons, and, given significant research and invention, other machines.

Thoughts? Feel free to comment with any suggestions, questions, or ideas you might have.

Fabrication: History #9

And this week it’s about cyanite, the biocrystal of auramorphosis.

I’m less certain on the use of this transformative biocrystal than the other two — aurantite and flavite — that is, what the use of affecting changes in air composition and pressure and temperature would have for pre-industrial peoples, at least, though certainly air temperature modification would be quite useful for any people at any point in history.

The most useful, and probably the holy grail of cyanition scientists, would be weather manipulation: the manipulation of air pressure at high altitudes. And certainly I imagine such a blueprint would be available in the natural world, and so would be an accessible introduction into this art.

However, on the one hand, I think that close control of any weather created in this way — that is, specifically moving, say, a hurricane, from one place to another would require some kind of presence in the upper atmosphere where such weather occurs; on the other hand, I think any cyanite meteorological devices not in the upper atmosphere would rather create mists and fogs rather than proper clouds.

But besides the huge economic advantages from weather manipulation (and the likely huge changes of the environment of the world) and the comfort afforded by cyanitic central heating, I imagine some other uses, particularly in combat, such as generating clouds of toxic gases or areas of vaccuum.

Furthermore, other uses might include pneumatics (should rosete or pallidite prove insufficient for moving objects).

Thoughts? What might you use this system, or other systems for?

Fabrication: History #8

This week: Viridition.

Viridition primarily differs from the other transformative magics in that it changes the shape of the object, rather than the form — that is, it can’t change objects into different states of matter or even into different elements or molecules, but must preserve the molecules as they are, merely rearranging them into the form designated by the essence.

That being said, I imagine this would be one of the more useful biocrystals, particularly in that it can very closely, if not perfectly, replicate objects. Certainly it would give a jumpstart on mechanicalization, perhaps even into the bronze age — though only then in a limited way, with textiles and simple tools.

I don’t know how much this would affect the technological development of civilizations: on the one hand, it would certainly add to the leisure and output of civilizations; on the other hand, viridite wouldn’t allow them to discover new compounds, only merely to replicate those compounds which they already possess.

I’m not sure how viridite would deal with forged metals, that is, if the the finished product differs significantly from the raw material enough to qualify as a different material; if the crucible changes the molecules, or just the overall structure. Also food.

Or maybe I need to reevaluate this one entirely, what with its heavy overlaps with the other three transformative biocrystals.

But what do you think about it? Feel free to leave comments; I’d welcome some input!

Fabrication: Pallidition & History #7

Well, I finally figured out how pallidition is supposed to work.

Pallidition is a magnetic magic, that pulls objects towards it. However, in order to do this, it requires an essence of the substance that it attracts.

Rubrite also has some magnetic qualities, but only on objects they touch, not at a distance, and naturally moves those objects. Pallidite does not move objects, but rather they remain attached to its surface.

Being a very simple system, it would have a number of different uses once people figured out proper essences. It could be used to hang things up, keep things in place, and such. Theoretically, one could also use it to attract body parts out of their owner, at least at short range (I don’t imagine pallidition working at a range of more than a few feet, if that, although perhaps a melanite battery could expand the range of it, perhaps). Though wiring the essence properly would probably be tricky and not nearly as efficient as just using a spear or a gun.

I might say that pallidite would be used in all the places a magnet would be used, but the applications would at least be significantly expanded, owing to the fact that pallidite could be modified to work on any number of substances, not just metals.

Fabrication: History #6

And we’re back! Finally not sick or over-busy.

Previously in the History sequence we’ve discussed albate, the biocrystal of appearance, rosete, about autokinesis and movement, rubrite, about allokinesis and moving other things, melanite, about sensation and perception, and aurantition, about modifying solids. This week I’d like to consider flavition, the biocrystal of hydromorphosis — that is, transforming liquids.

The primary usage I would consider, and probably one of the first applications, owing to the high practicality of it, would be water filtration. By placing clean water in an essence container input of a flavite machine, one would easily be able to create more clean water and filter out bad materials. Similarly, waste water could be transformed into clean water and detritus that could then be more efficiently be rid of, or which perhaps would itself be transformed into clean water.

Other uses would probably be the dissemination of liquid medicines, and perhaps also disseminating various drinks — though that at least would be more difficult, owing to the organic nature of many of the kinds of liquids people are wont to intake, such as alcohols and juices.

Are there any applications that you would try, were you to have a biocrystal machine that could transform one liquid into another?

Fabrication: History #5

This week I’ll be discussing rubrition, the magic system tied to the circulatory system. The system effects allokinesis, that is, the movement of things other than itself.

I’m still not entirely sure how the rubrite biocyrstal is supposed to work, save that I think it would have a magnetic or agglutinative property — that is, other things stick to it. But it also seems clear to me that, in a similar manner to rosete, it would be able to move, and perhaps would be compelled to move constantly.

One idea is that rosete is semi-liquid, like mercury. But even if it isn’t, it would certainly constantly carry whatever is attached to it. Probably it would develop some kind of grain (as in wood grain) that would designate the direction in which objects attached to it.

This kind of conveyor system and magnetism would certainly not escape the notice of early civilizations, enabling some basic mechanization even in early agricultural cultures. And in addition to this, small portions of rubrite could also function as simple glues or pins, like wall tacky.

Other uses would be transportation, particularly public transportation, as wires of rubrite could be strung along streets for trams or buses.

Any other ideas? Please comment, share your thoughts.

Fabrication: History #4

This week we’ll be looking at albate, the white biocrystal.

A reminder that I switched the white and black functions in the last post, so all the discussion that applied to albate now applies to melanite, and now albate has the role that melanite previously had.

Albate, then, is the biocrystal of appearance. It would probably form itself into the most complex and interesting shapes, and take on a variety of colors even while it keeps a white rim. Certainly the first use of this would be to make art out of it, multicolored sculptures. And with that people would learn how to create different colors on command, so that either the hues and shades become more particular, and combinations with other biocrystals are discovered.

The primary combination on my mind is one with albate (and cerulite). Using this, observing the color and texture of the surrounding environments, it would be possible to make albate that automatically camoflagued. Perhaps this would even occur in nature, making it possible to make armor out of biocrystal creatures directly rather than needing to develop sufficient knowledge and technology for it.

Furthermore, possibly this could be used to create an invisibility effect, though this would be a real-life invisibility, which has severe drawbacks that camoflague doesn’t possess.

It occurs to me that albate and melanite are more similar than I initially assumed, with the primary difference that the former distinguishes itself by what it reflects and the latter is distinguished by what it absorbs. Albate, like melanite, could potentially absorb more than just light, but also sound or vibration or other kinds of energy, or rather repel these kinds of energies, so that other uses might be things like soundproofing or particularly effective armor, but I’m not quite sure about this point.

But as the integumentary system, upon which this is based, not only covers the appearance of a creature, but also the first line of defense, it may be reasonable to expand albate’s functions from just light to other forms of energy. Though it would require particular programming to specify what kind of energy a piece of albate is coded to repel, and it would absorb others (such as heat, for example) in order to give it the power to resist and repel energies, especially in times of high stress.

Certainly albate armor would be good against melee weapons, but I’m less sure about missiles, especially firearms, which would probably have too great a velocity for albate armor to significantly stop. But, then again, this armor would ideally be better than steel, perhaps in good hands as good as kevlar or better.

Do you have any thoughts on the matter?