Necessary Eagle

Unanswered questions at the end of Starsight (spoilers duh)

13 posts in this topic

I mean, there's a bunch of 'em, but I'm rather sleep-deprived from staying up too late reading Starsight, so I can only remember a few at the moment:

-Why do the delvers hate AI? There's nothing cytonic about robots... is there?

-Why do humans have a special connection to delvers?

-Why does Spensa hear stars, but Jorgen hears slugs?

-Is the delver problem, like, solved now that Spin talked to one? Or is it just that one delver that decided to stop killing? Are there individual delvers, or are they a hivemind? Are there delver politics Spin is going to have to deal with next book?

-Is it true that all those rubber-forehead aliens are descended from humans, and if so what does that imply about early human cytonics?

-Does advanced Cytonics by itself really bring delvers, or is that a misunderstanding/oversimplification/Superiority propaganda?

Edited by Necessary Eagle
Autocorrect keeps finding new ways to ruin "delver"
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AI use cytonic processors. I guess that annoys the delvers, but why they care about that and not the slugs is beyond me

Do they? I think it was just cytonics in general. We've really only seen one cytonic-delver interaction up close.

Brandon said something in an interview about cytonics having different specialties, and that things like cytonic transmission or mindblades might come more naturally to some people than others, even though they might all be capable of the same things with enough practice. It still bothers me that Jorgen couldn't hear FTL comms while flying in space, though.

 

 

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Here's a major question: apparently Old Earth vanished.  Was this intentional?  A cytonic research project gone horribly wrong?  It's unlikely to just be cloaked, since its gravitational influence would give it away.  My guess is that it's hiding in the nowhere, probably fortified and ready to drop back into regular space for round four.

My guess is that Jorgen is either a weak cytonic or just bad at the FTL communication part.  Spensa never hears the slugs, despite owning one.

I like the idea of delver politics, and I think that there is more to the whole delver/cytonic issue.  Why was Spensa able to convince the delver to leave?  Was it something special about her, or just a particularly curious delver?  Maybe early humans convinced one to leave and then got cocky, thinking they could order the delvers around.

Defending Elysium spoilers:

Spoiler

Jason never mentions anything like the delvers, and there's a good chance he's either the original human cytonic or very nearly.  I could imagine that something fundamental changes in the nowhere between DE and the first human war.

Or, just as likely, Brandon hadn't come up with them yet.  It would be illuminating to ask.

I wonder what the delvers look like on the nowhere side?  Clearly there is something on the other side of the portal, because you can mine acclivity stone.

One thing that I would like to understand better is how and why human technology is distributed weirdly.  M-Bot's (old :() ship is beyond even what the Superiority has access to, which is weird because the figments are citizens and they helped design it.  But this never disseminated, so either the Superiority didn't capture much in the way of human ships or something else.  On the other hand, Vapor seems quite pro-human, so maybe the figments are just biding their time and sitting on the tech.

This also applies to the delver training facility: it seems to be about the same age, tech-wise, as the nowhere portals.  And the Superiority doesn't seem to understand either, at least completely. 

More DE spoilers:

Spoiler

Actually, it seems really suspicious that almost all of the modern technology we have seen appears to have been created by humans.  This is the major point of DE, of course, because only humans developed any technology beyond steam power before discovering cytonics.  Given that even the ancient humans knew about the slugs, I bet they invented the slug-hyperdrive as well.

 

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11 hours ago, FirstSelector said:

One thing that I would like to understand better is how and why human technology is distributed weirdly.  M-Bot's (old :() ship is beyond even what the Superiority has access to, which is weird because the figments are citizens and they helped design it.  But this never disseminated, so either the Superiority didn't capture much in the way of human ships or something else.  On the other hand, Vapor seems quite pro-human, so maybe the figments are just biding their time and sitting on the tech.

I agree, that one was a little weird. But then I told myself, that if I were basically forced to participate in some kind of Union while I have superior tech, I maybe wouldn't share it openly either. It's an ace I have and as long as only I have it, I have an edge. In general we don't know that much about the figments (especially if the majority of them shares Vapor's view on humans and the current situation and would support her working with Cuna), but I wouldn't rule out the possibility, that they "not actively" supported the Superiority, or maybe even tried to work a little against some of it's structures.

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20 hours ago, Necessary Eagle said:

-Why do the delvers hate AI? There's nothing cytonic about robots... is there?

M-bot mentions that he uses cytonics to increase his processing speed.  This is why Spensa can "hear" him sometimes.  They are also hate information being transmitted.  This happens a lot in AIs of any kind.

20 hours ago, Necessary Eagle said:

-Why do humans have a special connection to delvers?

They don't.  They just have so many cytonics that they tend to be a big problem for humans.  As to why Spensa could do her thing I personally think it has to do with her compassion and understanding of aggression.

20 hours ago, Necessary Eagle said:

-Why does Spensa hear stars, but Jorgen hears slugs?

They have different specialties because they are different people with different gifts.

20 hours ago, Necessary Eagle said:

-Is the delver problem, like, solved now that Spin talked to one? Or is it just that one delver that decided to stop killing? Are there individual delvers, or are they a hivemind? Are there delver politics Spin is going to have to deal with next book?

  No idea realy.  We still don't know much about delvers.

20 hours ago, Necessary Eagle said:

-Is it true that all those rubber-forehead aliens are descended from humans, and if so what does that imply about early human cytonics?

I personally doubt it.  As to early human cytonics you can read Defending Elysium on Brandon's website for some intell on them.

20 hours ago, Necessary Eagle said:

-Does advanced Cytonics by itself really bring delvers, or is that a misunderstanding/oversimplification/Superiority propaganda?

I personally think that in this case the superiority government is telling the truth.  We did see one called after all.

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46 minutes ago, Ookla the Prolific said:

M-bot mentions that he uses cytonics to increase his processing speed.  This is why Spensa can "hear" him sometimes.  They are also hate information being transmitted.  This happens a lot in AIs of any kind.

 

With all the restrictions on MBot's programming, I almost got the sense that they were afraid the Delvers (or some other enemy) could take AI's over.  Things like - don't fly by yourself, don't engage your weapons by yourself, don't lie, don't reproduce.  It makes me think of how in BattleStar Galactica, they build all their electronics in special ways to prevent them from being hacked by the Cylons.  With the way MBot has acted, he really seems like he is no threat in the traditional "robots take over the world" sense.    MBot uses cytonic computing which makes it seem like he would be opening himself up to bad signals coming in through cytonics.  Maybe a powerful cytonic person could take him over if they knew what they were doing?

Then again, maybe I'm just overthinking this and it's just the traditional AI fears.

 

We still don't know a lot about the human wars and their causes.  There being three wars makes me think of the three Punic wars (Rome/Carthage) in ancient history and wonder if there's a parallel.  Here's my theory/speculation:

1st Human War: Humans start by trying to just operate in parallel to the Superiority, making allies with various alien species who are not "primary intelligence" but this leads to conflict.  Eventually, the Superiority contrives a way to say the humans are dangerous and need to be destroyed.  Maybe the humans accidentally summon a Delver?  There is a long fight where neither side is really gaining much.  Eventually, the humans and Superiority decide to make peace with mostly even terms.  The humans feel resentment because they saw themselves are trying to help the oppressed species of the galaxy, but were painted as villains in the eyes of most of the galaxy.

2nd Human War:  The humans resent the fact that the Superiority has painted them as villains, when they see the Superiority as the true villains.  This time, they start the war with the intent of taking over the spot as the "leaders" of the galaxy to allow freedom of expression, etc.  They lose a lot of their allies over this, who never wanted to start a war.  They have some huge victories early on due to superior technology and skill at war, but over time due to sheer numbers they lose.  They are nearly defeated and in desperation they decide to try to weaponize the Delvers, destroying Detritus.  They surrender.  This time there are extremely harsh penalties - humans are no longer allowed to have any kind of military.  They have to pay reparations, they aren't allowed to travel FTL other than through Superiority transport.

3rd Human War: Humans are thriving because they dedicate all their resources to peaceful purposes.  In secret, they've got some spy programs going on (MBot and others) to stay abreast of galaxywide events.  This time, they try the diplomatic approach to change the way things are.  Maybe ships like MBot are primarily used to spread human propaganda.  They show the example of how successful and good the "overly aggressive" humans are, even though they don't lock up people with different views.  The Superiority leadership decides they can't allow this challenge to their authority.  They make fake charges that the humans are being dangerous again.  The humans deny it, try to lobby against it through official channels, but to no avail.  They are wiped out and sent to the "preserves" to keep the existing Superiority structure in power.  The humans are only kept alive at all because after the fact, many of the Superiority leaders feel guilty about what they have done.

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14 minutes ago, agrabes said:

1st Human War: Humans start by trying to just operate in parallel to the Superiority, making allies with various alien species who are not "primary intelligence" but this leads to conflict.  Eventually, the Superiority contrives a way to say the humans are dangerous and need to be destroyed.  Maybe the humans accidentally summon a Delver?  There is a long fight where neither side is really gaining much.  Eventually, the humans and Superiority decide to make peace with mostly even terms.  The humans feel resentment because they saw themselves are trying to help the oppressed species of the galaxy, but were painted as villains in the eyes of most of the galaxy.

This seems about right.  I think that in this case perhaps the peace was really just a rearmament phase.  Essentially neither side had the upper hand so they both stopped with the intention of finding a weapon that would put things back in their favor.  The other possibility is that the amount of cytronics and radio and AIs summoned a delver or a bunch of them and that it laid waste to everything thus temporarily stopping the war so that both sides could have a rebuilding phase.

18 minutes ago, agrabes said:

2nd Human War:  The humans resent the fact that the Superiority has painted them as villains, when they see the Superiority as the true villains.  This time, they start the war with the intent of taking over the spot as the "leaders" of the galaxy to allow freedom of expression, etc.  They lose a lot of their allies over this, who never wanted to start a war.  They have some huge victories early on due to superior technology and skill at war, but over time due to sheer numbers they lose.  They are nearly defeated and in desperation they decide to try to weaponize the Delvers, destroying Detritus.  They surrender.  This time there are extremely harsh penalties - humans are no longer allowed to have any kind of military.  They have to pay reparations, they aren't allowed to travel FTL other than through Superiority transport.

For this I think both sides are likely researching delvers in a delver arms race type deal.  The humans fail spectacularly and this kicks off war number 2.  Things get destroyed very badly again. 

19 minutes ago, agrabes said:

3rd Human War: Humans are thriving because they dedicate all their resources to peaceful purposes.  In secret, they've got some spy programs going on (MBot and others) to stay abreast of galaxywide events.  This time, they try the diplomatic approach to change the way things are.  Maybe ships like MBot are primarily used to spread human propaganda.  They show the example of how successful and good the "overly aggressive" humans are, even though they don't lock up people with different views.  The Superiority leadership decides they can't allow this challenge to their authority.  They make fake charges that the humans are being dangerous again.  The humans deny it, try to lobby against it through official channels, but to no avail.  They are wiped out and sent to the "preserves" to keep the existing Superiority structure in power.  The humans are only kept alive at all because after the fact, many of the Superiority leaders feel guilty about what they have done.

I think your right in this being a more information based kind of war.  The humans are spread out and no longer have a central organization to strike at so they gather information and allies.  This fails as well although I am not sure how or why.  Perhaps they are betrayed?  Perhaps people like Vapor are involved.

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18 hours ago, asterion137 said:

It still bothers me that Jorgen couldn't hear FTL comms while flying in space, though

Spensa (and her Dad) were doing Gran Gran's exercises to hear the stars for their entire lives.  This informal training made it easier for them to hear the FTL communications.  Jorgen never opened his mind in that way, so he wouldn't hear this without more practice.

Edited by Spacerunner
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11 hours ago, Wit Beyond Measure said:

 

  1. Why are the taynix screaming?  Is it just like when Spensa gets noticed by the delvers?  Or is it something more sinister?

Or because the Superiority get them to jump where they want by making them afraid of staying put?

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I agree that the cytonics involved in M-Bots functioning is the most obvious answer for why AI are supposedly a Delver risk, but I really suspect theres more to it than that since the topic really wasnt addressed in this book

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It feels like right now, we really have no trustworthy sources about the three human wars. The Superiority isn't reliable. The human society doesn't remember. The alien species might not even know.

I don't believe Superiority propaganda about it, but I don't see any reason to believe humanity are blameless either. We have plenty of monsters in our history too.

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On 11/27/2019 at 3:07 AM, asterion137 said:

AI use cytonic processors. I guess that annoys the delvers, but why they care about that and not the slugs is beyond me

I think it's simply to do with the volume of ftl communications. 

Now the slugs are well slugs. They have rudimentary intelligence which uses normal neurons , they do seem to be a bit more intelligent than one would expect. This could be due to more advanced brains or by thier brains using FTL signals instead of synapses. I doubt it's FTL tho. They possibly just  have  more developed brains. I mean the kitsen are basically just intelligent hamsters . 

Whereas mbot sends millions of FTL signals every second to power his hyperfast mind. 

I can see why delvers hate mbot but mostly ignore the slugs.

Also there's the fact that delvers find emotions and thoughts alien and irritating. 

The slugs when teleporting go to the nowhere but they have little emotions and thoughts do I guess they annoy the delvers less.

Mbot on the other hand.... Ooof he drives most humans crazy. I can totally see why delvers would hate him.:P

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On 11/26/2019 at 10:27 PM, Necessary Eagle said:

 

-Is it true that all those rubber-forehead aliens are descended from humans, and if so what does that imply about early human cytonics?

 

Well it might be true. I think it's more likely that there was one humanoid species which originally had cytonics and travelled to other planets 

Perhaps humans are more likely to exhibit cytonic abilities cause we had a lot of these early visitors visiting and breeding with us , compared to other species .

 

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