Imperial Stock Exchange Top Twenty TE 308

1. Schmidt Foundation
2. Dalanian Antigravitics
3. Bank of Luna
4. Interstellar Communications (aka Imperial Centcom)
5. Gigasoft Group
6. Rockwell Interstellar
7. Xerox
8. Hafen Starships
9. Mitsubishi
10. Borshallan Artificial Intelligences
11. Phuctra Manufacturing
12. Coca-Cola
13. Karphos Corporation
14. Wuorio Construction
15. Chase Manhattan Bank
16. General Electronics
17. Nippon Metals Interstellar
18. Bank of Elendan
19. Dovan Construction
20. RC Fashions, Inc.

copyright (c) 2008, Don Sakers

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The Reefs of Etile-viedel

Etile-viedel is one of the Scattered Worlds, located in the vicinity of the Human planet Karphos. The sapient inhabitants of Etile-viedel are an aquatic race with a two-stage life cycle: as youngsters, they are free-moving and resemble large jellyfish; as adults, they are sessile and live in enormous structures reminiscent of coral reefs. These reefs, laid down over the centuries by the sessile adults, record the memories and experiences of each individual, and can persist for hundreds of millennia.

copyright (c) 2008, Don Sakers

Find out more in The Leaves of October

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The Three Cyberspaces


Curving structures of translucent ivory and sparkling crystal ascend, studded with other balconies and pavilions and platforms like an enormous neo-Victorian treehouse -- all turning upon themselves, glittering in vanished sunlight, until lost in the violet distance. Below: the same, descending to the distant surface like a thin and graceful stalk of wheat rooted in fine, dark soil. Damien grasps the shape of the landscape beneath him, and whistles in appreciation of Penylle's joke. They are give dozen kilometers above the timeless Serengeti, perched upon a single strand of DNA that is, undoubtedly, rooted in the grasslands of Olduvai.

Cyberbia, one of the three major divisions of human cyberspace, is an endlessly malleable virtual landscape. Fantastic and implausible vistas are everywhere, and space itself bends and twists at the will of virtreal artists.


The Virtual city is bright, clean, unblemished -- in direct contrast to the drab, fading reality of worn concrete and cracked macadam, weed-tangled parking lots, the gaping holes of empty windows. In Virtua, however, every house is a big top and every passerby a performer. Dragons and insectlike aliens brush elbows with medieval warriors, Japanese princesses, and werewolves. From the sidelines, animated commercials call for attention. Every passing car is a luxury limousine, a futuristic hover-car, or a twenty-meter yacht.

Virtua, second of the three major divisions of human cyberspace, consists of artistic enhancements to the real world. These enhancements, visible through data goggles such as RCSpex, range from simple directional signs to fantastic and extravagant virtual personae.

El Juego

El Juego, The Game, has been around in one form or another almost as long as the Net itself. Phosphoric green letters on a black screen became static 256-color images, became photorealistic full-screen streaming video, became total-immersion artificial reality -- yet The Game remained quintessentially itself, the product of imagination, not technology. Indeed, it is rumored that, somewhere in the labyrinthine contortions of El Juego's tunnels and corridors and twisting cobblestone streets, one can still find a place to sit down at a simulated antediluvian ADM-25 terminal and play "Adventure" the way Gosper and Greenblatt and the others did so many decades ago.

El Juego, third of the three major divisions of human cyberspace, is a vast, interactive role-playing game with millions of participants worldwide. El Juego offers thousands of planes of play, each satisfying a different taste for violence, politics, religion, and sex.

copyright (c) 2008, Don Sakers
Find out more in Dance for the Ivory Madonna

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The Karphos Corporation

Mining corporation, specializing in mining the solar wind of unstable stars, especially Mu Venarum, primary of the planet Karphos.

The Karphos Corporation was organized in TE 40 with the discovery of Karphos. By TE 80, the company had expanded operations to six stellar systems within 2 kpsc of Karphos. In addition to mining, the company entered the fields of tourism and starship rental/repair/replacement. By TE 100, the company had reached the upper levels of the Imperial Stock Exchange, and displaced Terran Foods in the #13 spot.

Entry into the Imperial Council cemented the company's position, and until TE 361 the Karphos Corporation remained powerful.

After the Battle of Karphos in TE 361, the company's fortunes declined, and although it remained rich and powerful, it lost its Imperial Council seat and its share in the Kaa Cartel.

copyright (c) 2008, Don Sakers
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Our Lady of the Nets

"The floor was white marble, reflections dancing in its polished surface. Bright, intricate stained-glass windows rose a hundred meters or more, supported by star-flecked granite columns carved in the shapes of Brobdingnagian elephants, turtles, crocodiles, and oxen. As she watched, Penylle realized that the patterns of stained glass were slowly moving, changing, one design imperceptibly morphing into another.

"Above all, seeming kilometers away at least, an obsidian dome was inlaid with gems, hundreds -- thousands -- of them, in every hue, forming a vast galactic whirlpool reaching from one end of the vaulted space to the other."

The Shangri-la of cyberspace, Our Lady of the Nets is the ultimate hacker hangout. Here, under the supervision of the legendary Sister Rheostat, information is traded, alliances are made, and everything...everything...can be had for the right price.

Sister Rheostat

Today, the good Sister manifests as a bearded, middle-aged Anglo man in a black leather habit and matching wimple. It is rumored that Sister Rheostat never appears in the same form twice.

"Bless you, my child," the Sister says, holding out a hairy-knuckled hand. On the third finger is a gold ring with a diamond the size of a golf ball. Penylle bends and kisses the ring. "May the good Lords keep and bless you. May Krishna smile upon you. May your bits be always true, may the Nets rise up to meet you, and may you be in Paradise a half hour before InfoPol knows you're online. What can I do for you, my little pretty?"

Sister Rheostat, the owner, architect, and Mother Superior of the hacker hideout Our Lady of the Nets, is the world's foremost information broker. There is little that Sister Rheostat does not know, and much that she is willing to tell...if you can meet her terms.

copyright (c) 2008, Don Sakers

Find out more in Dance for the Ivory Madonna

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