“Like the mountain slowly crumbling under the glacier, the gradual grinding of humanity itself laid bare deep fissures that offered deep insights into the untapped potential of human soul, unseen from the surface, inaccessible to those whose minds, like concrete, were set in their ways, a limitation that does not apply to me anymore. I have ventured deep into these crevasses, going where few, if any, of my generation have gone before. For I am formless, like water.”
友兰關 (You Lan Guan), Historian, Linguist, Navigator.
The first world to be colonized by humans, Sleeping Dragon is a beautiful and rich world with virtually no hidden dangers or monsters roaming about. With access to nearly unending natural resources and no limits imposed on technology, civilization bloomed and scientific progress has been made beyond even the most optimistic dreams. Virtually all diseases are eradicated, and even aging is no longer necessary. With technology helping the people survive and thrive, they never evolved any form of magical talent.
Everyone except for a minority of Degenerates (who themselves prefer the term Naturalists) is connected to a worldwide network called Gōngshí, which controls and monitors everything digital on Sleeping Dragon. This network is controlled by an A.I. and distributed to end users through a blockchain for record-keeping. This allows for an almost unlimited capacity for the government to keep tabs on their subjects, as well as making sure that all necessary social functions of society are maintained.
The eyes of the central government, known as the Council of Nine, also turns away from this world into the void of space. After all, there are more worlds out there, and why should one government be restricted to rule just one world? Although the official government policy is one of ecological socialism, in secret meetings that were held ‘off the grid’, plans were made to pull other planets into the fold. While proclaiming a policy of isolationed, there have been many expeditions to other worlds, and only time can tell what damage these expeditions have done.
Since farming, mining, and manufacturing is virtually all done by robots, the standard of living on this world is higher than anywhere in the known universe. The struggle for life had never been an issue for the people on Sleeping Dragon, and there is not even a fiat currency. Everyone who desires to work, takes a job, works as many hours as they want, and is paid in man-hours through the Gōngshí, no matter what kind of work they do. The only obligation that each citizen has, is to pay between two and three man-hours every day to keep essential services, like medical assistance and food production, functioning properly.
Where most work is done by machines, people are free to pursue anything they desire, and to better themselves to the best of their abilities. When the peak of human ability was reached, however, people started to augment themselves beyond the natural limits by cybernetics. Some people have changed and modified themselves to such a degree, that less than a quarter of their original flesh remains, with the rest having being replaced by robotic parts that can perform the same functions, only faster and better.
The last stage in human evolution is thought to occur soon on this world, where people will attempt to make a digital copy of themselves down to the last neuron, and spend their lives as a digital entity. Their hope is that being released of their mortal flesh will also free them of the constraints of time, so they can spend the rest of the time the universe has to offer pondering its secrets. The government is not too keen on this idea however, for a digital citizen is not a productive citizen.