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Learn all about the technology of the mid-to-late 23rd century on this page.


A robot created to look as close to a human being as possible. Standard model androids perform menial work, freeing up humans to do more complex tasks. Contrary to popular belief, most androids are not even as strong, agile, or fast as humans. However, expensive models can possess many times the capabilities of a person and even hold human neural structure/consciousness.


An advanced type of syringe that injects medication or medites directly into the bloodstream without the use of a painful needle.


A nanite produced by bioimplants that performs a wide variety of useful functions inside the human body, such as breaking down alcohol in the bloodstream. See "bioimplants" and "nanite" below for further details.

Bioware / Bioimpants

Technology embedded into a person's body that does everything from display information in a person's vision to strengthening muscles. Bioware is the biological software run by biological implants. Nanotechnology (see below) makes bioimpants possible.


Shorthand for robot. Bots are typically autonomous machines programmed to perform a wide variety of tasks. Roving vending machines, repair & construction bots, spherecams, delivery bots, and spider bots are a few examples.

Comm / Comm Net

Short for communications or communications network. In science fiction, the term "comm" is often used in place of the modern term "call." In other words, when you contact someone in the future, you don't call them; you comm them.

Display cube / Holocube / Cube

Holographic display cube. Display cubes are three-dimensional floating monitors, more advanced than their 2D holoscreen predecessors.


A tablet matrix (computer pad) as thin as a sheet of paper.


Shorthand for gravity gelatin. Star fighter cockpits fill with this clear, viscous, lightweight, and non-stick substance in order to protect pilots from the force of extreme acceleration. Scientists have known since the 20th century that water, and more generally liquids, can provide insulation from acceleration. Early experiments showed that a piece of organic material immersed in water could survive roughly ten times the g-force as the same material when unsubmerged. However, filling aircraft or spacecraft with water proved impractical because of the weight/mass. Studies in this area continued until the late 22nd century, when a scientist invented a gelatinous substance that provided more than ten times the protection of water but with a fraction of the mass. This substance became known as gravgel.


A nanite injected into the bloodstream to prevent muscle and bone atrophy due to prolonged exposure to microgravity. See "nanite" below for further details.


Interface for corneal information transfer and extrapolation. This technology allows data and images to display within a person's vision. To the onlooker, information screens appear to float in midair out in front of him or her.

Magblade / Magskate

The futuristic equivalent of roller blading or roller skating. Superconducting magnets on the bottom of the blades or skates allow a person to hover centimeters above the ground.


A nanite injected into the bloodstream for medical applications. See "nanite" below for further details.


A state-of-the-art toy that changes shape into objects like remote control cars, stuffed animals, or play swords. Nanotechnology makes this true transformer possible.


A microscopic robot or machine so small it's invisible to the naked eye. Nanites are used in everything from commercial products to medical applications to military weapons.


Nautilus (NA), designated as IEF-02 at first but later repurposed as an ISC Defense warship, is humankind's second vessel capable of long-term extrasolar travel. The design of NA is the same as that of New Horizons except NA has no citysphere and is much more heavily armed.


Shorthand for "neutrino radar." Conventional radar bounces radio waves off targets in order to determine their location. Sonar bounces sound waves off targets in similar fashion. Neutrinos are subatomic particles with almost no mass that pass through anything. Therefore, neudar is radar that bounces neutrinos off targets to determine location. And since nothing blocks neutrinos, signals can be sent through the center of the Earth, the Sun, or any other celestial body without being blocked. Back in the 21st century, this technology was only theoretical. Scientists struggled to make it work because they didn't know how to capture a neutrino signal when neutrinos pass through everything like tiny little ghosts. But by the late 22nd century, scientists figured it out. Simply put, there is no hiding from neudar unless anti-neutrino jamming technology is employed. Many force fields include anti-neutrino jamming.


A communications signal fed (sent) directly to or from the brain or any signal consisting of brainwave patterns.


The term "electronic" refers to devices which operate based on the flow of electricity through circuits. Neurotronic devices, then, function through the flow of neural energy, allowing machines to be controlled by thought.


An AI (artificial intelligence) matrix is an advanced computer which functions on the premise of quantum computing.


A microscopic robot or machine so small it's invisible to the naked eye. Nanites are used in everything from commercial products to medical applications to military weapons.

Nanotech / Nanotechnology

Technology based on nanites such as bioware/bioimplants and other devices.

>New Horizons Starship

New Horizons

New Horizons (NH), designated as IEF-01, is humankind's first interstellar exploration vessel. While other cruiser-class ships are capable of FTL and could technically reach other star systems, NH is the first ship capable of carrying enough antimatter and with the life support systems able to sustain human life for the months and years of interstellar journeys.

Measuring roughly two kilometers in length, NH is by far and away the largest ship every constructed. From stem to stern, NH consists of the command module, crew habitate module, citysphere (biosphere), defense module, ring module with antimatter nacelles, engineering module, and engine block.

Phase Drive

The phase drive is an engine capable of a phase shift, which is the act of opening a wormhole. Phase shifting allows a spacecraft to pass through that hole in space-time and into hyperspace, and permits that same craft to return to normal space in less time than it would take light to travel the same distance. From a practical standpoint, phase drives allow faster-than-light travel even though the spacecraft itself never moves faster than light.

The fastest relative speeds achieved by IEF and ISC Defense spacecraft in the mid-to-late twenty-third century approach 40c (forty times the speed of light). That's almost ten times as fast as the first phase drives (in book 1).

Phase Fighter

A star fighter craft equipped with a phase drive and thus capable of faster-than-light travel. A phase fighter is more maneuverable and more heavily armed than an SF-522A Starthroat (see the Starthroat section for further details). A phase fighter's range is limited to intrasolar distances (it can reach Pluto or the Oort Cloud but not Proxima Centauri).

Phase Port

Analogous to a modern airport or space port, a phase port is the location where people enter and exit phase tunnels in order to travel around the solar system. Generators in one port hold one end of a given tunnel open while generators in another port hold the other end open.

Phase Portal / Phase Tunnel

A phase tunnel is an artificially-generated stable wormhole shortcut connecting two distant points in space. The phase ports (like spaceports or airports) located throughout the solar system allow commuters to travel between settled planets, moons, and asteroids as easily as stepping through a doorway. Two generators, one at either end of the tunnel, are required to open and keep open a given tunnel. Phase tunnels also require an immense amount of power to maintain. The energy required to establish them increases exponentially with increasing distance. In the mid-to-late twenty-third century, phase tunnels connect colonies as far out from Earth as Kuiper Belt dwarf planets but cannot reach other star systems.

Phase Technology

Powered by antimatter, phase technology allows the opening of a wormhole, matter to pass through that hole into hyperspace, and matter to return to normal space in less time than it would take light to travel the same distance. From a practical standpoint, phase technology allows faster-than-light travel even though matter itself never moves faster than light.

Plasma Strip

The 23rd century equivalent of a light bulb. Plasma is channeled through a thin strip of material not much thicker than a sheet of paper to produce light. The strips function similar to technology found in a 21st century plasma screen television. Supposedly, plasma strips are more energy efficient and will outlive most people.


Short for relativistic seeker. An antimatter-powered, heat-seeking warhead the size of an average person's pinky finger. The projectile is capable of accelerating to ninety-nine percent the speed of light in a matter of seconds. The yield of an r-seeker is roughly equivalent to 10,000 of the atomic bombs dropped on Japan during World War II. R-Seekers are carried and fired by more advanced star fighter craft such as the SF-522A Starthroat and YPF-1 Quasar.


A microfusion-powered, heat-seeking warhead the size of a 21st century ballpoint pen. The projectile is capable of accelerating to ten percent the speed of light in a matter of seconds. The yield of a seeker is roughly equivalent to 100 of the atomic bombs dropped on Japan during World War II. Seekers are carried and fired by modern star fighter craft such as the Starthroat, Chinese Dragonfly, South American Condor, Russian Foxbat, and patchwork separatist spacecraft among others.


Shorthand for simulation. In the 23rd century, all images and video are captured in holographic format. Holograms are much truer representations of the original content than old-fashioned static images and video. Thus, holographic images and video are more commonly referred to as sims or vidsims.

A sim or vidsim is also any interactive holographic program. Someone in the 21st century watches soap operas whereas someone in the 23rd century experiences daytime sims or soap sims. Medical sims are 3D holographic representations of internal organs. Advanced sims, such as those generated by the system installed in the office of the U.N. Secretary-General, are capable of producing lifelike environments similar to holodecks on Star Trek. However, the holograms in BC9 have no cohesion. Thus, the term "interactive" means a person can provide feedback in order to alter the sim, but a person cannot pick up or touch a holographic object.

Sparks / Sparking

Sparks are a slang term for a type of nanorobotic narcotic known to enhance reflexes and cognitive abilities at the expense of a person's health. In other words, sparks are an advanced drug. Brooke kicked her addiction and stopped sparking when she adopted Maya.


Shorthand for spherical floating camera. These softball-sized recording devices defy gravity based on the principle of magnetic flux pinning (superconductivity).


Shorthand for the Solar Network, the 23rd century version of the Internet.


A PF-5 Pulsar is a hybrid spacecraft and fighter plane--an aerospace craft--commonly referred to as a star fighter. ISC Defense owns and operates these space superiority fighters, which are the most advanced of their kind. PF stands for Phase Fighter, and 5 is the vehicle model number. The latest Pulsar model is the PF-5C.

A Pulsar is capable of functioning in both atmosphere and outer space. In the mid-to-late 21st century, engineers finally achieved a vastly sought after holy grail: reusable, single stage to orbit (SSTO) spacecraft. In the 22nd century, the design of flight vehicles branched into two categories, those for operation in atmosphere and others that functioned solely in space. Vehicles of the latter type had spherical, cubic, or otherwise non-aerodynamic shapes since atmospheric drag isn't an issue in space. But by the 23rd century, as humankind branched further out into the solar system, vehicle design came full circle. When a single skirmish could begin in Saturn's atmosphere, move into orbit, continue on into Titan's atmosphere, down onto the surface of Titan, and back up into space again, hybrid aerospace craft soon out-performed vehicles limited to only one mode of flight.

Each antimattered-powered Pulsar features a phase drive with a 10-second recharge time, afterburners, forward retrorockets, numerous tiny thrusters, particle cannons, and a complement of several thousand tiny seeker missiles. A Pulsar's conventional top speed is in the range of thousands of kilometers per second. The phase drive is capable of relative speeds up to 40c (forty times the speed of light).


"Tri-fighter" is the term given to the so-called extrasolar spacecraft operated by the exobeings who attacked the solar system seventeen years ago (in book 1).


Short for video or visual simulation. See "sim" above for details.

Wave Gun

A handheld device capable of destabilizing or manipulating matter at the subatomic level through the use of electromagnetic, sonic, gravimetric, and other types of waves. Practically speaking, a wave gun can lift a small vehicle, set someone's clothes on fire, boil their blood, shatter an anvil, and much more.