Survival of the Fittest
• Crisis grips the globe in the form of drastic climate changes, energy shortages, and geopolitical instability.
• Initial space expansion creates stations at the Lagrange Points, Luna, and Mars, with robotic exploration of the entire system.
• Construction begins on a space elevator.
• Medical advances improve health and organ repair. The rich pursue genefixing and transgenic pets.
• Computer intelligence capabilities equal and exceed that of the human brain. True AI not yet developed.
• Robotics become widespread and start to replace/invalidate many jobs.
• Modern nations expand their highspeed wireless networks.
• Efforts to undertake mega-scale geoengineering on Earth cause as many problems as they fix.
• Major colonies established on Luna and Mars; outposts established near Mercury, Venus, and the Belt. Explorers reach Pluto.
• First space elevator on Earth finished. Two others in progress. Space traffic booms.
• Mass driver built on Luna.
• Terraforming of Mars begins.
• Fusion power developed and working plants established.
• Genetic enhancements, gene therapies (for longevity), and cybernetic implants become available to the wealthy and powerful.
• First non-autonomous AIs are secretly developed and quickly put to use in research and netwar.
• Experience playback (XP) technology developed and put into public use.
• Violence and destabilization wrack the Earth; some conflicts spread into space.
• Argonauts split from hypercorps, taking resources to autonomist habitats.
• Space expansion opens up legal/ethical loopholes for tech development and allows for increased direct human experimentation.
• Human cloning becomes possible and available in some areas.
• Development of first transhuman species.
• First dolphins and chimpanzees uplifted to sapience.
• Fusion-drive spacecraft enter common usage.
• Extended colonization and terraforming of Mars continues. Belt and Titan colonized. Stations established throughout the system.
• The starving masses volunteer themselves for indentured servitude on hypercorp space projects.
• Augmented reality becomes widespread.
• Most networks transformed into selfrepairing mesh networks.
• Personal AI aides become widespread.
• Earth continues to suffer, but the pace of technology allows for some interesting developments.
• Expansion throughout the system, even into the Kuiper Belt.
• Transhuman species become widespread.
• Nanotech assemblers become available, but are strictly controlled and jealously guarded by the elite and powerful.
• Uploading and the digital emulation of memory and consciousness made possible.
• More species (gorillas, orangutans, octopi, ravens, parrots) uplifted to sapience.
• Pods see common usage, amid some controversy.
• Simmering tensions on Earth escalate into outright hostilities and warfare.
• The TITANs evolve from a high-level distributed netwar experiment into self-improving seed AIs. For the first few days, their existence is unsuspected. They advance their awareness, knowledge, and power exponentially, infiltrating the mesh both on Earth and around the system.
• Large-scale netwar incursions break out between rival states on Earth, sparking numerous conflicts. These attacks are later blamed on the TITANs.
• Massive netwar ensues and major systems crash as TITANs begin open attacks and wage war with autonomous machines.
• Conflict quickly spirals out of control. The use of nuclear, biological, chemical, digital, and nanotech weapons reported by all sides.
• TITANs engage in mass forced uploading of human minds.
• TITAN attacks expand to other parts of solar system, heaviest on Luna and Mars. Numerous habitats fall.
• TITANs suddenly disappear from the solar system, taking millions of uploaded minds with them.
• The Earth is left a devastated wasteland, a patchwork of radiation hotspots, sterile
zones, nanoswarm clouds, roaming war machines, and other unknown and hidden things among the ruins.
• A wormhole gateway is discovered on Saturn’s moon Pandora, presumably left by the TITANs. Four others are later found (in the Vulcanoids, on Mars, on a moon of Uranus, and in the Kuiper Belt);
these are collectively referred to as “Pandora gates.”
• Expeditions are sent to extrasolar worlds via the Pandora gates. Numerous exoplanet colonies established.
• First contact with the aliens known as the Factors shocks the system. Claiming to act as ambassadors for other alien civilizations, they provide little information about life outside
the solar system and warn transhumans away from both seed AI and the Pandora gates.
• An attempt to raise a generation of children using force-grown clones and time-accelerated VR fails miserably when most die or go insane. Dubbed the Lost Generation, the survivors are viewed with repugnance and pity.
• Present day.