Jan 29, 2022 2:20 AM
the probecule visits Amenta
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Azurifice agree that being digital is awesome; "We care a lot about uploading but regrettably have never seen it done successfully, our Archivist will explain in more detail our history with it".

Zanmi would like to hold a small press conference for various xenoanthropologists and other interested parties so Makoki can share the history of the Azurifice with them; "Atun Nasumsa, Lucari Miando, and Anund be-Valu de-Naror, and of course any of their colleagues who'd like to join them; we can provide translation services if necessary."

"Our probe's photovoltaic capabilities will serve us just fine for the foreseeable future. However, we are definitely interested in doing some Green and Yellow work to earn local currency to spend on potential business ventures planetside, if that's acceptable to local governments."

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The press conference can be arranged, with some greens who want to turn it into academic papers and some yellows who want to turn it into news items!

Lots of people would love to hire them! They can probably make better money at green work than yellow unless they're planning to contract out access to superior automation of some kind, especially since there are only five of them.

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Zanmi and Makoki are ready to initiate the press conference whenever everyone who wants to show up is assembled! Zanmi will start by reintroducing both of them (herself as Ambassador and Makoki as Archivist); does anyone have any procedural questions before the Archivist gives them cultural and historical context on the Azurifice? (They'll take other questions after.)

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Everyone is assembled! Not in the same physical location, since it's not like the Azurifice are appearing in person.

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Makoki shares the tale of the Rasika, starting with brief summaries of their prehistory and history that touches on their highly communal nature, their love of stories, and their gradual industrialization. She tells them about the Yok Edici, detected too late to prevent, and the tale of the brave survivors who lived the Azure vault; the tragic discovery of the poison making them infertile and their shift to brain scans and uploading research, Orana's terrible discovery and sacrifice, and Rivotra creating the first Azurifice and giving them their purpose. She solemnly recounts how the Azurifice cared for the last of the Rasika as best they could, and their slow expansion into a thriving digital civilization with vast manufacturing and engineering capabilities and a drive to seek out and aid life throughout the galaxy. 

She wraps up by thanking them for listening. (Zanmi asks if there are any questions)

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Oh wow, what a story.

Questions include:

- Do they have an assessment of Amenta's incoming-rock-detection systems? Do they seem okay?
- Is it possible Amentans could upload, based on either advances in imaging technology since then or different brain architecture?
- This cryonics concept is interesting, and wouldn't compete much for space since you could do it in the Arctic, can they say more about that?
- How do they do manufacturing? Automating manufacturing and suchlike is something Amentans suspect they're behind on.
- What kinds of tributes to heroic historical figures are considered welcome?

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"We'd be happy to go over your incoming-rock-detection systems in more detail to discuss strengths and weaknesses! Our ship also has very good instruments for that, for redundancy, and haven't seen any cause for concern. <data packet on rocks the Azurifice are tracking and their orbits; one or two will pass within about a million km of Amenta in the next 25 years, but nothing closer than that>"

"Amentan uploading might be possible due to biological differences, though we have no experience running brain scans on other species and the Rasikan technique kills the subject permanently. We'll be interested in working with your scientists to see if it's possible, though the latest in our imaging technology requires some expensive manufacturing techniques that we'd need to scale up to."

They'd be happy to proselytize talk more about cyronics! The basic idea is to use a specific process to freeze people's brains when they die in a way that won't damage anything, and then store them safely until they can either be scanned and uploaded or thawed and given robotic bodies. The Azurifice have experience running cryonic vaults and would be happy to build and run them for Amentans, since they don't mind the cold.

Azurifice use a hybrid automation model that has advanced RLAs making most of the decisions and escalates to Azurifice in real-time if the RLA gets confused; "we don't expect this to work very well for organic life-forms natively, unfortunately; extremely low reaction times and ability to context-switch rapidly is basically required for this kind of system to work effectively, but if you're willing to let us build compute and storage clusters in your Arctic areas, we could instantiate more Azurifice here to help run automated mining and manufacturing facilities for Amenta."

The Azurifice have built statues of Rivotra and Orana with plaques telling their story. In general, the Azurifice honor their heroes by remembering them, reading their journals and any fiction they wrote, and honoring their legacy. They'd be very moved if Amentan schools incorporated Rasikan history into their curricula. (They also have a steadily-growing pile of translated Rasikan and Azurifice fiction available, which they would like to publish online using a "pay what you can/want" structure if that's legally permissible and something they can get a bit of help setting up.)

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Voa is happy to let the Azurifice set up in their arctic regions, which don't have much going on since it's not seasonable that far north!

That's legally permissible, though irregular; Tapa is the first to get them set up with a bank account that has all the permissions of all the castes and won't automatically declare any of their income out of caste.

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Then the Azurifice (mostly Zanmi and Avaker) will look into setting up a website where they can host translated fiction with a donation link! They start with their personal favorites, as well as some Rasikan classics and some other popular Azurifice short stories. (Muroti tells Avaker to add a comment section, with anonymous posting enabled.)

Makoki, now that she's finished giving her press conference, is recovering in VR, receiving cuddles from the rest of the crew as they work on their various tasks.

light-and-wonder: so what's step 3?
space-ourselves: hold on
space-ourselves: still drawing

 

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Comments roll in! It's daytime in all but the most far-flung parts of Amenta now, and they are ON this "reading alien fiction" thing. There are some donations, though most of them are either very small or weirdly large, like they're coming from a mixture of children and rich people who have no idea what to do with their money but figure giving it to aliens can't be a bad plan. Their bank account comes with a financial advisor who suggests marking a "suggested price" for the fiction, once he notices this pattern to their deposits.

Amenta has lots of fiction too, and pretty soon the Amentans who most like each of the Azurifics have logged this into all the fiction recommendation engines. People Who Liked This Especially Also Liked: all these other things, apparently! For example, Makoki's favorite appears correlated with people who like profoundly tragic media, such as this piece about a purple who goes on a dangerous journey while pregnant to beg for help from a neighboring kingdom to save her people and they refuse her and on her way back she eats something poisonous and miscarries and then, weakened, stumbles into a bandit camp and is killed for her handful of possessions.

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hopelessly-entangled: ;_; this story is so good and so sad.
life-should-flourish*hugs* ๐Ÿ’™
hopelessly-entangled*hugs* ;_;

Zanmi appreciatively sets suggested prices on the fiction. Muroti recommends several more pieces of fiction to be translated and added to the catalogue; Makoki and Penjaga work together to translate and contextualize.

Avaker and Zanmi start looking into opportunities to sell their most-easily-marketable scientific knowledge to interested buyers. Their initial offerings are: 
-Designs for extremely efficient photovoltaic cells, steam and wind turbines, and power transmission facilities.
-Specifications and construction plans for a set of materials that can filter seawater all the way into distilled water without requiring too much energy input, and as a bonus, neatly sorts the byproducts.
-Recipes for several different kinds of reinforced concrete, including variants designed to be: ultra-lightweight, fast-drying, extremely durable, or self-scaffolding. (The last two are noted to be Toxic Until Dried)

a very poorly drawn picture of Avaker and a bunch of purples assembling machinery in the north

light-and-wonder: ...what?
void-your-warranty: Oh
void-your-warranty: Oh I see where this is going ๐Ÿ’™ 
space-ourselves: ๐Ÿ’™ okay so
hopelessly-entangled: ...wait, is that from...
void-your-warranty: Yeah, that's from GEPI! 
space-ourselves: So the plan is basically we earn enough money to hire a bunch of purples and buy a bunch of raw materials.
space-ourselves: And, with their help, Avaker basically plays out the GEPI early-game.
void-your-warranty: !!!!! :D :D :D
space-ourselves
: We want to bootstrap having a physical presence and manufacturing capabilities that we can control.
life-should-flourish: Why purples in particular?
light-and-wonder: ...ohhh. We need businesspeople to help us navigate the local economy.
space-ourselves: Exactly! Almost certainly we'll end up hiring some people from several other castes
space-ourselves: But that'll be something a good businesspurple will be way better at than we could be, and most of the work will end up being done by purples.
light-and-wonder: Okay. So how do we get started?
space-ourselves: Zanmi, I think you should start interviewing purples for the job. We're looking for a skilled CEO who can see that we're obviously going to be the best business opportunity of their life and willing to work with us accordingly.
light-and-wonder: Alright, I'll put out the word.
life-should-flourish: I can help you look at applicants.
space-ourselves: ๐Ÿ’™ I'll keep working with Avaker and Makoki on our money-making ventures.

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Coastal countries bid up the desalination tech. Everybody wants the electricity and the materials science (though, like, how toxic? Do you have to eat it or just touch it or just be near it or what? Are they confident it's toxic to Amentans, how much do they know about Amentan biology at this point?)

It's not hard to put a job listing on WeViolet, Teacup, Marketspace, and/or GoodestServices looking for purples to hire! What would they like to put in the fields for job description, required experience, preferred nations of residency or work permit, qualifications held...?

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The crew is delighted that their technology is in high demand! The high-durability and self-scaffolding concretes are extremely caustic to the touch until they've dried, and emit these fumes while drying, known to have been bad for lungs of the creatures of Doheem. None of the concrete should be eaten. 

To start with, the Azurifice are looking for a CEO-type person willing to do business in Voa on the crew's behalf, ideally with experience doing management in the manufacturing and fabrication sectors. They want someone confident in their ability to put together a team to do unusual and interesting work that will pay well.

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They get plenty of applicants - working with aliens is a big draw - though some of them are from yellows who mention that purple CEOs are usually specific-industry experts, so anyone with experience is going to have mostly experience specifically with some industry Amenta already has and they might actually want a yellow for this.

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space-ourselves: ...huh! I really thought that'd just be a purple thing, for some reason.
light-and-wonder: Can't win em all :p
hopelessly-entangled: she did say that Avaker should be our cultural relations specialist d:

The job listing is amended to "purple or yellow" and left up for another day or so to allow for more people to apply.

In the meantime, do they have any high priority incoming requests? Zanmi is happy to talk to any government officials who have pressing questions for them, with priority given to Voa since that's whose Arctic land they're planning on using. 

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Yellow applicants join the purple ones!

Amentans want to know:

- What are the Azurifice's long-term goals?
- Would the Azurifice care to settle any of these longstanding arguments about science, political philosophy, or whether sandwiches are a kind of dumpling?
- Can they vet this curriculum on Rasikan history and provide more readings for it?
- The linguists want some Rasikan languages to chew on - presumably they had more than one?
- Did they pass any habitable-to-Amentans-looking planets on their way here?
- What are the prospects for communication with the other Azurifice out there?
- Would they like to give their endorsement to this script for a computer animated dramatization of the fall of Rasika?

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space-ourselves: Oh, I have good answers for some of these!
space-ourselves: Sandwiches are absolutely a kind of dumpling.
hopelessly-entangled: ...wait, I thought dumplings were supposed to be enclosed?
space-ourselves: You don't roll your sandwiches into a ball before eating them?
life-should-flourish: what
life-should-flourish: I--
life-should-flourish: but--
light-and-wonder: Muroti! You broke Penjaga again.
hopelessly-entangled: patpats Penj
life-should-flourish: --we don't even eat!
life-should-flourish: I just... how does she manage to have such insane thoughts on things she's never done?
void-your-warranty: a lifetime of practice, really
space-ourselves: ๐Ÿ’™
space-ourselves: More seriously, though, I think it'll be fine to tell them in broad strokes about the next few steps of the plan.
space-ourselves: Speaking of which

a shitty drawing of an ocean-based city

life-should-flourish: ...wait, would that work?
void-your-warranty: ...actually, yeah! I recognize this! Honey, you did you base this off the experimental artificial habitat proposal in 338?
space-ourselves: Yep! We should be able to use basically the same kinds of materials.
void-your-warranty: ๐Ÿ’™ this is gonna be awesome.
space-ourselves: We'll need more data on their oceans to make sure it's still viable here, and we'll want to work with some greens and yellow to figure out the best hydroponics setup to get their food needs met, but
space-ourselves: We actually can kinda print them land once we get our manufacturing capabilities up. 
space-ourselves: Also, the boring-but-important part that I didn't draw is that we can effectively print them land just by giving them better tech, right.
life-should-flourish: Right, yeah. Better materials to build bigger buildings, better desalination and chemical processing for better agriculture...
void-your-warranty: Fusion reactors! *bounces*
light-and-wonder: ...if we build them fusion reactors they're going to want to know why we can't automate their sanitation work.
space-ourselves: ...yeah, that'll end up being true for a lot of things here, honestly. We are going to need to figure out what exactly the safest way forward on that is!
hopelessly-entangled: ...Once we hire someone to build blueprints we send them, the first thing we need to send them is a simple comm setup that we can setup for encryption.
hopelessly-entangled: We need anonymous internet access to do more research about reds.
light-and-wonder: Good call.
light-and-wonder: Penjaka and Avaker, can you two get started on looking through applications for promising candidates?
light-and-wonder: I'm going to go answer some questions.
hopelessly-entangled: ...oh, I'm up for vetting the history course and the film script, and I've got a linguistic history packet ready to share; I'll send it to you.
space-ourselves: Thanks angel ๐Ÿ’™ 

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- The Azurfice's long-term goals on Amenta are to help Amentans by sharing their technology and culture and working alongside them! They want to bootstrap some of their technology and use that to build them things that will help them use the land they have a lot more efficiently.
-- These science things are known to the Azurifice to be true! These other ones are still unknown to them. That specific one they are pretty sure is unknowable? (They hadn't even heard of this one biology thing, gosh.) 
-- "It's hard for us to apply our political science opinions across cultures since our constraints are so different from yours, but personally I would say <extremely consistently socially-liberal left-collectivist opinions>"
-- The Azurifice don't really have informed opinions about sandwiches vis-a-vis their dumpling status
- Makoki vets the history curriculum and sends over several additional sources, along with some commentary she'd already prepared. 
- Zanmi forwards the Rasikan linguistics primer Makoki sent her.
- They did not pass any habitable planets at all on the way here! "The first system we went to had two planets in the goldilocks zone when we departed, but by the time we arrived they'd shattered into an asteroid field. We think they collided."
- Once they get their technology bootstrapped, they can build a basic super-long-range radio array and start transmitting home. Doheem is a little under 3 Amentan light-years away from Amenta, which means they can start getting the latest and greatest in terms of Azurfice technology in around 6 Amentan years if all goes well.
- Makoki reviews the script translation. She makes notes about places where she thinks important context is missing and changes some lines to be closer translations of what actually happened (she'll provide the source texts she's working from and explains her work to the greens doing translation, if they're curious)

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Is there anything the Azurifice are hoping to get out of this enterprise for themselves or did they assign themselves this mission out of general philanthropy?

The greens are definitely curious but might find themselves taking some liberties just to make it more accessible or interesting.

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They're really excited to make friends (both in the sense of "getting to know Amentans" and "instantiating more Azurifice to help maintain and scale their technology and local economy", but it is primarily the philanthropy! They like helping.

...Makoki is capable of appreciating accessibility and interestingness for a visual adaptation, and will only complain a little bit about it to Muroti later.

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space-ourselves: Everyone ready for step 5?
void-your-warranty: Yes!!!
light-and-wonder: Probably?
hopelessly-entangled: Sure.
life-should-flourish: Lay it on us

 a shitty drawing of the Azurifice building ringworlds in orbit around Amenta's sun.

life-should-flourish: ...those random blobs in space are things you didn't delete from the earlier version, right?
space-ourselves: Awww, you noticed! ๐Ÿ’™
void-your-warranty: RINGWORLDS!!!!!
space-ourselves: :D We'll print them lots of land.
hopelessly-entangled: ...won't those take hundreds of years to build?
void-your-warranty: Yeah, and? 
void-your-warranty: We're not going anywhere, and neither are these people's population problems.
light-and-wonder: And there's a lot we can do in the meantime; we'll parallelize.
hopelessly-entangled: ...okay. 

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That's... very nice of them, though of course if they want anything they should feel totally free to tell the Amentans who are very grateful for their generosity. (One might get the impression that it seems like they think there might be a catch, though whether that's because not having one is implausible outright or just the sort of thing one ought to be on the lookout for is unclear.)

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hopelessly-entangled: ...do you think they'll consider "we really think sanitation workers deserve rights" to be a catch...
life-should-flourish: ...ooof
space-ourselves: hahaha burn!
light-and-wonder: Gonna, uh, keep that one to ourselves.
space-ourselves: Good call, fearless leader.
void-your-warranty: Hey, what do you all think of these resumes? I did a first pass...

Zanmi informs the Amentans that they're very happy to hear that; they're still getting themselves oriented but will be sure to reach out if they want anything. They look forward to a prosperous future together! 

Then the five of them start looking over resumes.

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They have lots! Mostly Voans, some people from other countries who want in with or even without the promise of Voan residency. Cream of the crop includes:

- Vertically integrated food magnate, owns farms all over Voa especially potato and sorghum, processing and canning and packaging of everything from cereal to pet food

- Construction company whose head is applying on the assumption that the Azurifice will probably want something constructed

- Purple new grad from a snazzy engineering school who is also sitting on an offer from Integrated Chips North and would like an answer before their deadline please

- Yellow expat from Yvalta who is currently very much in the red financially (that being how the swap was secured) but can point to a work history including lots of managerial team-organizing and cat-herding

- A yellow whose past experience was mostly about hiring government contractors for public works; currently on indefinite parental leave but will come out of it for aliens and a big paycheck

- An up-and-coming furniture company founder from Anitam

- A shipping logistics manager excited for a good reason to build a train to the middle of nowhere in the Voan Arctic

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space-ourselves: ...yikes Yvalta is a disaster.
hopelessly-entangled: ...oh no, this is-
life-should-flourish: ...not our primary concern right now, sweetie. We can look at it later, okay?
light-and-wonder: I think the construction person and the shipping logistics person are both people we'll want to keep tabs on even if we don't start out with them.
void-your-warranty: We might actually want to start building a train early. I'll reach out to them and ask how much it'd cost to build a train to the closer of the resource-rich sites I've picked for initial setup.
light-and-wonder: Sounds good, thanks. 
light-and-wonder: Everyone else; pick your top 3, based on resume?
space-ourselves: Furniture, Chips, Construction!
life-should-flourish:  Food, Furniture, Public Works
hopelessly-entangled: Furniture, Chips, Yvalta
light-and-wonder: hmmm. I liked Yvalta, Furniture, and Construction...
light-and-wonder: Alright, we'll interview Furniture first, Construction second, and from there we can do Chips and Yvalta?
life-should-flourish: We might want to Chips before Construction because of the deadline.
life-should-flourish: I'll double-check when that is.
light-and-wonder: Alright. I'll reach out to Furniture about the interview.

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