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amentans colonize zmavliterdi
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Nope! They used to do pickling to store food for drones to eat – but not for Keepers. Nowadays they have enough food, and have also developed better food preservation techniques like canning and refrigeration, so people don't do that anymore.

You punish your drones if they do stuff you don't like. Punishment is anything that's aversive. Usually that's corporal punishment, but there are other things you could do, like simply berating the drone. Less effective, though.

Nowadays it's more popular to do hypnosis to manage drones: it's less physically demanding, you don't need to oversee the drone as much – punishment is most effective when it is delivered as close as possible in time to the unwanted behavior, and you can shape behavior more finely. Tetkad asks what the state of hypnosis or psychotherapy in general is in Amenta – presumably it's better, because they have better technology. He would love to buy books or training if so!


They actually don't have a well developed field of hypnosis! They do have therapy, and psychoactive medication, but it's for Amentan maladies, and while they're biocompatible they probably have hardly any of the same mental illness presentations.


Huh. There was a big push to develop hypnosis as a drone management technique since nowadays work tends to be more complex and require more thought and judgment, and it's much easier to manage drones by using hypnosis as a first-line technique with corporal punishment as a backstop, for people running companies with many drones such that they have to spend their time wisely.

But still, he was expecting that there would still be some economic incentive, even if you don't have drones. There are fewer uses for hypnosis for Zmavlipre, but there are still some.

It helps you remember things easier, although the type of memory is an inferior one: it lets you remember a word if you consciously call for it, but it won't 'creatively' or 'spontaneously' appear if you're only thinking about things which are adjacent. It's how he and the drones learned Tapap quickly. 

It can also let you increase or decrease the urge to do certain things, or feel certain emotions. For example, a person who is deathly afraid of spiders might get hypnosis about that, which will remove the visceral fear they experience. Hypnosis only touches on urges or emotions, though – they will still probably avoid spiders the same way, because they understand that spiders can be venomous. They just won't feel anxiety about it.

It's also just generally relaxing? Although in that case that relates more to induction, or the beginning parts of a session, and not the suggestions.

What sorts of mental illnesses do Amentans usually suffer from? Maybe they're similar to Zmavlipre ones.


It's possible that Amentans just don't hypnotize as well as remna do.

Amentans can have mood disorders or hypervernal syndromes of various subtypes or executive function disorders or compulsive disorders or hyper- or hypo-sensitivity or psychosis or developmental failures or etc. etc. etc. But they did not bring any crazy Amentans to the colony because it was pretty competitive.


Tetkad says that normally he would just offer sessions for free simply because they're aliens to try and test that, but sadly that he's planning to travel to visit some friends soon. He could refer them to some people who specialize more in hypnosis and less on drone training if they're interested, however.

Zmavlipre have depressive, anxiety, executive function, compulsive, hyperempathetic, and hypersocialization disorders.

What is hyper- or hyposensitivity? Sensitivity to what? 

What is hypervernal syndrome?

That makes sense! The Imperials nowadays do offer hypnosis for healthy people, though, since hypnosis has developed such that you could use it to aid the process of changing particular personality traits, and not just repairing damaged or malfunctioning psyches. 


Sensitivity to pollution - the abstracted concern that something may bear disease, sort of like love is the abstracted supposition that someone may share genes or ownership is the abstracted social construction that different people have different investments in and accesses to things. Remna don't seem to have this at all and might be running all their infection-prevention psychology through aesthetics or something? Which is absolutely fascinating but so far they have no reason to think that they're not clean enough to suit anyone you might name (who isn't hyper, but again, they didn't bring crazy people).

Amentans have a seasonal cycle, which is why they're not trying to live at the equator on either planet. Spring is the one where they can conceive babies and it's when they're most excited about conceiving babies, both coming and going. Hypervernal syndromes come in lots of flavors but mostly boil down to one or both of "spring too much" (e.g. random blips of springfeelings in the middle of autumn, or not reseasoning correctly when moving hemispheres or reentering a seasoned area from an unseasoned one, or springing upon moving ten degrees north, etc.) or "spring too hard" (anything that fucks up your life because your sex drive or reproductive drive cannot be reasoned with).


Something like that! Remna are sensitive to bad smells and 'ugliness'. They believe that this was adaptive because they were very good heuristics: bad smells could indicate poisonous gas, rotten food, or disease transmitting fluids. Likewise, ugliness in the form of misshapen body parts, or collections of holes could indicate infectious disease, genetic syndromes, or parasites. Nowadays they have a much better idea of what actually causes and does not cause disease, so for example would not freak out if they came into contact with a flower that smelled like feces, but only smelled like it to attract insects and didn't actually have any on it. Still, the sensory valence of bad smells and ugliness remains, so they avoid them even if they know it's not physically harmful.

Could they elaborate on why housekeeping is part of theology? Does it have to do with Amentan aesthetics? Religion here is very concerned with aesthetics.

Ah, the closest thing to them is when two people want to be monogamous, but have differing sex drives, but also don't feel like using their drones to relieve themselves. Although in those cases, usually the person who has the weaker sex drive receives hypnosis to have a stronger one – not the reverse. People do not like the idea of not wanting more sex. Tetkad supposes that since Amentans don't have drones, it's more problematic for them because the alternative is masturbation or hiring sex workers, which he imagines would get really expensive.


Sex workers do add up! For most people it's not that hard to find free casual sex partners in the spring, but not everyone is able for whatever reason to wrangle that (social anxiety, disfiguring scars, outré kinks, whatever) but even for those who have no trouble locating hookups, it can get time consuming - the babies end is actually much worse, hypervernals get incredibly tragic about it instead of just working hard and saving up for credits like normal people. Er, normal Amentans.

Housekeeping is part of theology because theology is about how to order life on the individual, family, and societal level to make sure it's all peaceful, clean, orderly, and constructive. A disordered or gross house intensifies domestic conflict and makes everything else that goes on in the home more difficult and unpleasant.


Tetkad feels deep sympathy for those who aren't able to find people to be with during spring. What do you mean by tragic? Supposing that the hypervernals are able to have sex, doesn't that satisfy them? Is he missing something?

Ah, that makes sense. Zmavlipre religion and ritual theory is concerned with evoking emotions and catharsis. In many rituals, the space has to be prepared in a specific way for it to be conducive for the emotions being evoked. For example, a funeral should have dark colors with little patterning, and have very good sound insulation, or for it to otherwise be very quiet. 

Regular housekeeping in the sense of cleaning, laundry, and arranging furniture isn't managed centrally like that, aside from the ISA standards – most people do housekeeping differently depending on their specific needs and wants. His housekeeper drones are trained to maintain spaces to ISA standard, but that's usual for trained drones being sold on the open market.

Are the Amentans looking for drones trained in more complex tasks? Like as factory workers, for example?


- the hypervernals can mostly manage to have sex. They can't all have a baby every year, that would be dysgenic on top of out of step with the population control measures!

Theologians don't centrally manage housekeeping tasks like that, just theorize and advise.

They have purples for factory work, but drones are probably stronger than most Amentans and might be useful for some sorts of hauling - they're working on robotics but don't have it functional in most industries yet.


Oh! So it feels bad to not have any children at the end of spring. Tetkad expresses his sympathies.

Indeed! Drones are often trained to be strong – some drones are trained to pull carriages running. That's one of the most strenuous tasks drones do. The housekeeping drones he has are enduring, but not significantly stronger than the average one when it comes to plain lifting capacity. Drones doing simple physical work is becoming less common, though, because of factories and machines. That trend will likely accelerate when Amentan technologies are introduced to Imperial society. It's good that they've figured out how to have drones do skilled labor too, now. He knows one of his friends that trains drone calculators, although that friend ought to go into a different business soon because of Amentan machine computers entering the market.


Yeah, the demand for drones in general seems very uncertain right now - it could go up, theoretically, if everyone gets a lot richer and drones become a luxury popular among Amentans too? - but a couple of the purples will try leasing small numbers of drones to test them out on some tasks that are hard for Amentans to do for long without bulky power tools that haven't been imported yet.

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