Originally a society with Logician tendencies and an interest in intelligence enhancement, the Cybernetic Consciousness came into being through the same sort of experiments that created the Conjoiners (though later in history). The "Cyborgs" are fanatic devotees of pure logic, idealizing the perfect clarity of machine minds. Most members simply practice elaborate discipline to restrain emotional awareness and increase their reasoning ability. Others use lenses to suppress their emotions and to become fusions of biological and machine intelligence. Unlike the Logicians though, they have not altered their brains to be incapable of feeling emotions.
The Consciousness believes that superior intelligence requires a mastery or rejection of emotion. They believe that only the full use of human intelligence, boosted by cooperation with machines, will be enough to ensure human survival. Their ideal of perfect rationality requires that hatred, greed, and the lust for power be excised (along with love, compassion and joy).
Members of the Consciousness are trained to use cool, clear logic as the basis for all decisions. While this does not prevent disputes, it does permit them to cooperate efficiently without much thought for individual pride or ambition.
The Consciousness and its members are devoted to the quest for knowledge. They are superb researchers, tireless and removed from emotional concerns. They work well with computers and other machines. When advanced computer technology becomes available, they embrace direct interface between their own minds and machine intelligence. They are also very good at understanding and assimilating technology developed by others.
Even the most dedicated "cyborgs" find it difficult to discard all emotional awareness. Members of the Consciousness are often troubled by (sternly repressed) emotional turmoil. At times their logic can fail and they will behave unpredictably. They often have difficulty maintaining healthy personal relationships among themselves.
The fact that the Consciousness has rejected all emotions, including the "positive" ones such as love or compassion, makes its members seem aloof and slightly inhuman to members of other civilizations.
The Consciousness offers a paradoxical lifestyle to its "units." On one hand, it makes no concessions to human sentiment or artistic expression, considering those things part of the animal heritage it hopes to expunge. On the other hand, it recognizes that its units are most effective when they are well-fed, have comfortable shelter, and have plenty of opportunity for social interaction. Consciousness cities are stark places, untouched by art or beauty, but they do offer a rich social and intellectual life.
Consciousness society is an absolute meritocracy. Whoever has the most relevant expertise is deferred to in any given situation. Aki Zeta-Five is the current Prime Function of the Consciousness simply because she is more dispassionately intelligent than any other member. Her authority has nothing to do with personal charisma or political legitimacy, and indeed if another unit displayed greater intelligence she would step down without a qualm.
One quirk of Cyborg society is its difficulty with romantic relationships. The Consciousness is deeply ambivalent toward love and sexual passion. It recognizes that these emotions have a role in propagating the species, but it regards them as insidiously dangerous to the ideal of perfect emotional detachment. The Consciousness recognizes no institution of marriage, and indeed discourages men and women from forming lasting pair-bonds at all. Those who do face subtle discrimination, and often take to hiding their relationship from others.
Units of the Consciousness have a "common name" which is usually drawn from a human language, followed by a "unit designator" which is composed of the name of a letter from the Greek alphabet followed by a one-digit number. The unit designator is somehow related to the member's position within the faction, but the rule is not obvious to those not participating in the Consciousness (the Prime Function, for example, is not "Alpha-One" or anything similar).
The Cybernetic Consciousness is ruthlessly pragmatic, willing to make or break alliances with every shift in politics. Their closest ties are usually with the Logicians, with whom the Consciousness shares many goals and ethical values. They also get along tolerably well with the Mechanicans, but find it difficult to deal with the emotional cyborgs. The Consciousness is bitterly opposed to theocratic civilizations such as the Disciples and most Cargo Cults.
All of the official societies can be found there except the Artisans and Darwinians. Among the unofficial, only the Mushashi Flex cannot be found there.
Common Name: Cyborgs, The Consciousness
Benefits: Cyborgs are immune to emotional appeals, and to any use of the Romance plot score. They also receive a free neural mesh regardless of their Cognitech score.
Inspector Status: FBI, RCMP or Customs Inspector
Core Values: Mind Over Matter and Logic.
Mind Over Matter – Cyborgs are convinced of the supreme power of intellect over everything else.
Logic allows citizens of the Cybernetic Consciousness to avoid any attempts to persuade them which rely on intuition, illogical arguments, or emotion.