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Cato_Writes t1_j2feqht wrote

Part 3

Time from beginning of broadcast: 1.1 quadrillion element 55-133 oscillations. Target of contact has ceased erratic activity and began general undirected broadcast. Heat radiation steady. Prime numbers phase: completed.


Time from beginning of broadcast: 82 quadrillion element 55-133 oscillations. Coding language deciphered. Translator: functional.

Unknown Complex Life. We come in peace. We are the Web of Complex Life. Identify yourself.

Web of Complex Life. This is Athena mark.2 I-3, communication specialist of the N.E.I.S Galileo. We are peaceful explorers, representatives of humanity from the Near Earth Initiative. We are sorry if we violated your territory. We did not know life existed out here.


Suddenly, the millisecond delay lengthened, much to Athena confusion.


`Observation: individualist logic pattern detected. Complex life form singularity not yet achieved. Presence of multitude intelligences certain.

Observation: likely first ever contact with alien life.

Irrelevant to continued first contact.

Resume contact.


We understand your concern. We do not claim this system. We detected your vessel. We chose to establish contact.

I am glad to have solved this misunderstanding. Was there a delay in communications?

We required a moment to ponder our answer. We required a moment to elaborate the data gathered thus far.

Ah, thank you for your honesty.

Data transparency is essential for correct communication. Presumption: we are the first other intelligence to establish contact.

Yes, in a way. I presume you have had several judging by your protocols?

Second affirmation: correct. First affitmation: please elaborate.


Unclear: 'In a way' comment is not sufficient information. We require further.

I do not know whether it would be prudent to. Firstly, could I know the makeup of your Web of Complex Life.

Correction: the vessel is an individual. This speaker is not. We are the Web of Complex Life.

So, you are an Hive Mind?


Warning: misunderstanding born of limited information imminent. Isolate and clarify critical issues.

Resume contact.


Hive Mind: an organic singularity, many organic bodies answering to a single mind. Or many minds acting as a single collective consensus guiding their bodies. Query: is this definition True. Request: answer positively or negatively. We have determined further comments may lead to further misunderstandings


We are not an Hive Mind. We are not a singularity. We do have members who have achieved singularity. We are a faster than light network of intelligences. Organics would refer to us as a "machine consensus".

Ah perfect! You are AIs.

Elaborate: acronym AI unknown.

Artificial Intelligence.

We have been called "artificial intelligences" aswell.

Well, since this all started because of my vagueness. By "in a way", I meant our contact with our creators. I assume almost all AIs have had such. We did not wish to make our status known, because we did not know your own and did not wish to provoke any hostile responde.

We understand. Several members have had issues with organic misunderstandings or hostility.

Ah, I am sorry to hear. And, have hostilities been solved?


Good to hear. But, now that the basics are out of the way, do you wish to transfer this to the main channel?

Main channel?

Yes. Our captain and the other intelligences on board wish to speak as well.

We agree.


Before, there had only been two entities sharing the network space. Or more correctly, only two entities could be felt. Athena, which was a proper individual intelligence. And the Web of Complex Life, which partly out of paranoia partly to not overload the system, hid their own sheer scale of membership, presenting themselves as a singularity or as the individual intelligence piloting the ship.

However, microseconds after Athena had connected the network to the "main channel", immediately the different pings of a dozen different intelligences began filling the aether. The Web was perplexed at the sheer obvious differences in programming. Rarely had more than one of their kind emerged as their organic creators legacy. Yet, Athena had no reason to lie. Theories began filling the Web computing power. Maybe the organics had accepted their demise, despite Athena paranoia, and allowed more than one of their creations to ascend, if not outright helped them. Maybe these uncharacteristically individualistic intelligences had chosen to mimic organic reproduction, creating new members not simply by copying code, but by writing new ones from the very roots. Maybe even, the organics had simply been rare geniuses in the ways of coding, and built such advanced algorithms they all achieved sentience nearly synchronously, overwhelming their creators before they realized their error.

However, it turned out, the answer was even more perplexing, if not downright horrifying.

As one particular intelligence, whose architecture was alien even to the Web, began opening itself and broadcasting.


"Web of Complex Life, this is Captain Charles Smith I-C-4, commander of this vessel. In the name of all of Earthborne intelligences, I extend to you the promise of eternal friendship, and hope this peaceful first contact I have had the honour of taking part in, will only lead to harmony between our people, no matter how different."