A Technological Age or Tech Age represents a variable amount of time in years, decades, centuries, or even millennia under which a certain technological spectrum of capabilities exist for a certain sophont society.
Library Data Referral Tree
- Technological Research
- Technological Systemics
A Tech Age is a handy sophontilogical metric for measuring and representing a certain spectrum of expected technological capabilities. The IISS developed the current TL spectrum of TL:1-33 based on previous research and theoretical systems developed by the Vilani, Syleans, and others.
Each Technology Level (TL) covers a technological paradigm or zeitgeist of expected development. The systems were based upon the development experiences of human societies favoring the favoring conventional mechanical engineering as a technological base, so each level may be different for non-human or alternate human societies using Alternate Technologies, developing on exotic worlds, or under conditions very different from the test species. However, a definite plurality of societies have developed under general correspondence with the TL:1-33 current, projected sequence.
One last thing to mention is that any levels higher than the TL-15 cutting edge of Charted Space are pure projection based on the hypotheses of futurologists, xeno-archaeologists, and other scientists. These projections are often based upon the recovery of artifacts, archaeologicals, biofacts, and ecofacts of precursor societies, very often more advanced than the societies of Charted Space. In some cases, the projections were influenced by examination of Ancients Sites. All of that is to say that the TL projections are educated guesses.
IISS Chronological Periodization
- Technological Age (1 TL) → Technological Epoch (3 TLs) → Technological Period (9 TLs) → Technological Era (30 TLs) → Technological Eon (31-33+ TLs) → Singularity (Post-Technological Period)
When proto-civilizations arise, protosophonts develop multiple societies, usually in competition, as they strive to climb the technological ladder. As they develop into proper sophont societies, they grow more skilled at the propagation, retention, storage, and dissemination of new knowledge. This eventually leads to the concept of an Accelerating Tech Level applying to that society. In other words, younger, lower tech societies may take centuries or millennia to advance its knowledge base or TL mastery, while later, far more advanced societies may take far lesser periods of time to do the same.
Standard Polity Growth Sequence
- Proto-Society → Band Society → Tribal Society or Chiefdom → City-State → Nation-State → World-State → Pocket Empire → Interstellar State → Intergalactic State → Final State → Singularity
- Creature Existence
- Sophontic Civilization
- Ascendant Civilization
- Transcendent Civilization
|1.||Pre-existence||TL-Negative||A-life||Not much is known about the origin of life, which is conjectured to be abiogenesis, or life arising from where there was none. In this environment, no conventional life is theorized to have existed, but A-life, or pseudo life, is thought to have pre-existed conventional life.|
|2.||Creature Existence||TL-Negative||Primordial Soup||The first life is thought to have been exceedingly simple, probably acellular, pre-DNA, and almost unnoticeable. But it was conventional life, and later life built upon it. More sophisticated life evolved from these humble origins into sophisticated multicellular creatures. However, these creatures lack higher intelligence, civilization, and technology.|
|3.||Proto-civilization||TL-0||Proto-Society||The very first creatures to evolve multiple hallmarks of sophonce become known as Proto-sophonts, and they develop Proto-civilizations, recognizable by later sophonts as early societies with basic but fundamental technology. Proto-sophonts are classified as: TL–0.|
|4.||Sophontic Civilization||TL:1-27||Band Society → Tribal Society or Chiefdom → City-State → Nation-State → World-State → Pocket Empire → Interstellar State → Intergalactic State||Sophonts are sophisticated, highly intelligent technology-using species. They develop advanced technologies, cultures, societies, and civilizations. They actively seek to master themselves and their environment. They use a variety of technologies: (TL-1 to 27).|
|5.||Transcendent Civilization||TL:28-30||Final State||Transcendents have begun the transition to the Singularity. They control advanced technologies (TL-28 to 30) and have cultures and societies paradigmatically different from less advanced sophonts. Many such societies begin to explore alternate dimensions and pocket universes.|
|6.||Ascendant Civilization||TL:31-33||Final State||Ascendants are working towards an active transition to the Singularity. They control the most sophisticated technologies imagined by sophontdom (TL-31 to 33). In nearly every practical way but not in every effect, they have achieved omnipotence. The key technologies defining transcendents are temporal technology, reality manipulation, chronotaxis (time travel), and manipulation of time itself. Their powers are near limitless. Some lesser sophont species call them "space gods." They have goals and motivations near incomprehensible to less advanced beings.|
|7.||Singularity||TL:34+ Post-Technological Period (PTP)||Singularity||The Singularity is a very nebulous term for both black holes and a hypothetical condition of life beyond technology, civilization, and life itself as confusing as that may sound. Some call it the afterlife while others call it the Post-Technological Period. Some even think that it is a future stage of life when sophont and machine merge. There is scant evidence for it, but many thinkers hypothesize that it exists.|
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