This section details various levels of technological development and contains articles on specific technological topics. The Master Technology Table also provides and overview and reference link to specific forms of technological development at different technological eras.
Ages and Eras
The technological classification of civilization can be difficult even within Human experience and may seem divergent within Alien civilizations, but broad characteristics can categorize societies into a consistent view of technological sophistication. This characterization is most effective in describing a civilization as belonging to a distinct Age of sophistication that defines the scope of control over environment and the effective range of the civilization. Within these distinct Ages, further characterization into Eras of development is more problematic, but can serve to delineate the often drastic changes that occur across the span of a full Age. The following sections provide overviews and links to detailed descriptions of the standard Ages and Eras of technological development.
Also referred to as the Stone Age, this level of development describes a
primitive society with limited impact on its environment. A Primitive Age
society is limited to the range of groups of individuals that subsist by
utilizing the raw resources of their natural environment, for instance by
hunting or gathering. Such societies are limited in scope and ranges that are
similar to that of non-sapient organisms. Control of the environment is limited
to the creation of simple tools out of natural materials (stone, bone, wood) and
the harnessing of fire, wind and water. In the two earliest Eras, a Primitive
Age society may remain unnoticed by causal observers and legitimate arguments
over the sapience of such societies often occur. This Age corresponds to the Human period
from the evolution of the genus homo to about 10,000 BC.
Also referred to as the Metal Age, this level of development describes a
society that has gained limited control of its environment through agriculture,
domestication, metal use and some urbanization. An Agricultural Age society has
the ability to grow to a large size based on the harnessing of its natural
world. Production of foodstuff through domestication, farming or large-scale
harvesting occupies the majority of the population. Urban centers supported by
agriculture lead to increased specialization, supporting a pre-industrial
manufacturing base. Societies can reach sub-continental size, though
communication is limited to the speed of natural beings and forces. This Age
corresponds to the Human period from about 10,000BC to 1800CE.
Also referred to as the Chemical or Newtonian Age, this level of development
describes as society that has mastered the production and distribution of energy
through chemical means. Through this period, the percentage of the population
dedicated to agriculture declines and the percentage devoted to manufacturing
and other industrial occupations increases dramatically. Urbanization and
population can drastically increase during the Industrial Age, and by the end of
the Age, the effects of technologies and populations can severely strain or
alter a world’s ecology. Societies can span a world, and, though forays into
orbital and nearby interplanetary space are possible by the end of the Age, a
true interplanetary society is not feasible at this level of development. This
Age corresponds to the Human period from about 1800-2000CE.
Also referred to as the Fusion or Interplanetary Age, this level of
development describes a society that has learned to understand and harness
atomic energy and has developed an information-based society. The distribution
of data and energy dominates the Information Age, and direct intervention in
agricultural and manufacturing becomes unnecessary, shifting the bulk of the
working population into data, service and leisure or non-productive roles. A
Technical Age society can completely alter its environment, for good or for bad,
through the fabrication of specialized mechanical or biological entities.
Technical Age beings can typically enhance the capabilities and longevity of
their species. During the Technical Age, control of high energy sources can lead
to the establishment of an interplanetary society. Terraformation and long
duration voyages to other star systems are possible, but true interstellar
civilization is limited by energy and light-speed considerations. This Age
corresponds to the Human period from about 2000-2200CE.
Also referred to as the Transformational Age, this level of development
describes a society that has learned how to utilize higher dimensional physics.
Characteristic technologies are capable of defying “Einsteinian” laws by
harnessing vacuum energy, defying gravity and traveling faster than light.
During this period control over biological and mechanical entities meld,
allowing the full scale transformation of biological beings and the possibility
of completely merging and interchanging biological and mechanical entities. The
complete transformation of worlds and the development of interstellar
civilizations become possible. This Age corresponds to the heights of
civilization during the Human period from about 2200-3800CE.
Also referred to as the Trans-universal Age, this level of development
describes a society that has learned to control macro-quantum energies to
manipulate space and time. Control of materials and processes that exist outside
of universal space-time are possible with Galactic Age technology. Whole stars
can be transformed by Galactic Age civilizations, and space-time manipulations,
including worm travel, stasis production, long range teleportation and even
interstellar gateways are possible. A Galactic Age civilization can travel the
lengths of a galaxy and launch long duration voyages to other galaxies. Galactic
Age beings can become effectively immortal. This Age corresponds to the Human
Imperial Era between about 3800-4800CE, though Human technology never exceeded
Stasis Era levels.
Specific Technology Articles
Human Variations and Creations
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