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So, this doesn't have to be like hard, hard science, it just has to be close enough to science that you could plausibly say, “well, maybe with a lot more technological development, and if some of the conspiracy theories about secret science that the governments are supposedly suppressing turned out to actually be true, and if there were AGIs to design really advanced things, this could be maybe not totally impossible.”

So, in my universe, future transhumans have developed, what they call, telepsionics, or scalonics. It's based on the concept that dark energy (which in my universe is also the same thing as tachyons, which is also the same thing as the scalar waves that this guy called Thomas E. Bearden talks about, which is also a fifth fundamental force carried by a type of boson called a “scalon”) warps spacetime, such that it can be used to do things like levitate objects, move them around, rearrange molecules and atoms (anything larger than the scalons/dark energy waves themselves), so, basically, with enough energy and enough precision, do basically anything that magic could do.

It used to require gigantic machines the size of the LHC to convert enough electrical energy into dark/scalar energy to have much of an effect on the macroscale, but like computers, these machines were miniaturized; to the size of a building, the size of a desktop, the size of a smartphone, and eventually the size of a nanobot.

So now they put these things inside the bodies of transhumans (their bodies are more or less colonies of nanobots at this point, with a few cells here and there, for old times' sake, but even if those die, they can just assemble new ones later) that are basically like lasers or magnetrons, mentally controlled, which can blast out focused fields of dark/scalar energy. The power source is a wireless electromagnetic field that they beam out from big generator cores, though if they're not near that, they can recharge from power packs, solar, nuclear, antimatter, whatever kind of energy source they've got available. Eventually, ZPE/vacuum energy becomes the power source of choice.

So, my question is, basically, how do I present the system I've described in a way that it is 1) the most sort of generally scientifically-plausible-sounding (at least to people who are willing to accept that the laws of physics are discovered to be different in ways X, Y, and Z in this universe, but in ONLY ways X, Y, and Z—once I've explained what the laws of physics are now, they're immutable, like the real laws of physics) but also 2) the most powerful in terms of actually being a system of what is effectively magic, despite being described in a psionic/technological way?

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    $\begingroup$ I'll make a full sized post in a bit, but this is a big topic. You've thrown enough of the laws of physics up in the air that anything is theoretically possible, even probable. The most important thing is going to be self-consistency. For example, what do these transhumans look like, given that they have the raw power to rewrite entire universes at their fingertips. Do they retain their human form? If so, why would they choose that shape over something more efficient, like a sphere? Why can person A do ability X but person B cannot. Those sorts of things. $\endgroup$ – Cort Ammon Dec 30 '15 at 22:00
  • $\begingroup$ @CortAmmon Yes, true. The self-consistency is the thing I'm sort of alluding to in the last paragraph of my question. They do tend to shapeshift themselves into spheres when they're flying around at speed. Some retain humanoid shape when they're just sort of lounging about, but others turn into dragons, or floating clouds of dagger-like mirror shards, or living abstract sculptures or whatever strikes their fancy. $\endgroup$ – Josh Zmijewski Dec 30 '15 at 22:06
  • $\begingroup$ @CortAmmon And as for what makes one more powerful than another or be able to do different abilities, in my universe, it is a result of (in no particular order) age and experience, interest in that particular telepsionic discipline, personality, practice, (in real and virtual worlds) strength of will, and basically faith (similar to in Warhammer 40,000, if you're familiar with that). $\endgroup$ – Josh Zmijewski Dec 30 '15 at 22:09
  • $\begingroup$ And if you need a reference for the tone of the world (which may or may not be relevant to your answer) it's like Warhammer 40K mixed with Eclipse Phase mixed with Rifts mixed with Mass Effect mixed with Dragonball Z mixed with Dark Sun mixed with CthulhuTech. $\endgroup$ – Josh Zmijewski Dec 30 '15 at 23:35
  • $\begingroup$ @CortAmmon are you saying that the spherical-human assumption is actually VALID in this universe? And if they can change other things, it could be a spherical human on a frictionless surface. $\endgroup$ – iAdjunct Dec 31 '15 at 3:58
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So I read the linked page to get on common ground with you in terms of understanding how your scalons are supposed to work.

On that note let's debunk that page:

  • Note that I always stand by my interpretation of usable energy as flux. Or flow of on a gradient of potential between two measures. Since I do so I may be misapplying it but the asymmetrical regauging as described in your link sounds like tapping the gradient of the medium your sitting in, in whatever fashion. For example by setting up a thermocouple to tap heat gradient. Not entirely novel, but in this case it's talking about the Zero-Point Energy which I imagine would need more exotic apparatus. It also seems to assume the local vacuum is a constant value everywhere with no local variations there may be no harm done with that assumption but as AFAIK that's false.
  • The Whittaker paper referenced is at a glance just reducing number of variables from 6 to 2. Basically he found a way to reduce 2 vector fields needed to describe EM interactions to 2 scalar fields, and still have valid physics. He did not reduce the gravitational field to an EM field or anything else.
  • The cell regeneration part is a true story but the interpretation is AFAIK false and is assuming that all effects are coupled reversibly in the system. Chemistry shows that to be false at times.[1] The main idea presented is that moving forward in time you have an EM field and if you play the field time-reversed with a double amplitude you can reverse the "time action" of the target going forward. That means that altogether this model wouldn't work everywhere to reverse things as it only reverses the EM field part of the equation. Consider an atom with many neutrons but only one electron and proton. Yes it will breakdown quickly but that doesn't change the fact that you can't reverse any of its interactions with just EM interactions. You could reverse other waves with corresponding ideas. "Negativity gravity" or a similar substitute works for gravitational fields.
  • What this all means is we still haven't unified the fundamental forces but if we did and we assumed everything was reversible and deterministic... Then we could run things backwards. Not a novel idea. Unfortunately things aren't likely to be deterministic or even local.[2] There's a Bayesian quantum mechanics view where we assume that quantum mechanics is entirely deterministic we just don't know anything about the physics of the hidden variables. But as always in science, hidden variable theories might be the truth but it is definitely non-standard as it usually assumes part or all of your current model is invalid.

In summary he used techno-babble, misapplication of theory, misuse of terminology, and more to support a theory that's plausible but wrong. If he reworded a big chunk of it then it could sound even more scientific. But then we're about to due that with scalons so meh.

Lets play with scalons now!

So assuming government suppressed tech is: Zero-Point Energy, "Anti-grav"/"Time-travel" (pick your realistic solution from the long list of options here), and for development speed reasons AGI. That means we can design things that need inordinate amounts of energy and design them quickly. We can also alter EM and gravitational fields. We still have no control over strong and weak nuclear interactions so we can't transmute elements or work on raw quarks but we can do a fair amount. I'm assuming with our Zero-Point Energy harnessing we understand and can manipulate enough of the vacuum to create pairs of anything in said vacuum, collect one and fire off the anti-particle to destroy something else. So we can't transmute but we can create and destroy which is virtually identical macroscopically. We still need to supply the difference in energy but our ZPE can do that and we probably are manipulating the vacuum fluctuation for ZPE in the first place to generate energy (someone was researching a way to do so using the Casimir effect if I recall correctly). These are our raw powers in a completely scientfic world (stretched a bit because anytime you posit future-tech there may be unknown walls in physics, etc.).

Now if we make a so called scalon in your universe and are able to manipulate it what you really have is a unified force particle with a 4D waveform. So your 5th particle/force is like the independent variable of the universe's equation, it doesn't even matter if a Grand Unified Theory exists for the other four: if your scalon controls all forces it IS that theory. You have two choices now[3]:

Scalons are independent variables:

  • If it takes no inputs you might as well call scalons God Particles. If independent , this would imply that any system interacting with a scalon would need to contain a scalon, a collection of dependent variable can't manipulate an independent after-all. As for why EM waves work for controlling scalons the answer would be that they don't. Just as the wire in a computer doesn't control it but the electron. Your scalon would be manipulating things through any of the five forces at it's disposal and being an independent variable would only be able to receive input from another scalon, this may or may not mean that scalons are coupled deterministically, they could just be coupled probabilistically and retain more control over their portion of the universe (perhaps by proximity like an electrical charge). The input method is just the medium like the wire, the actual principle at play is two scalons synchronizing/interacting. The effect would be the physical results, the cause would be synchronization/interaction.

    The funnest part about the independent interpretation? The fact that you have control over the independent variable assumes you actually exist on a higher plane, your conscious exists in a single/collection of scalons, or are deluding yourself that you actually have any control.

Scalons are dependent variables:

  • If it takes an input of EM waves then you have no independent variable in the scalon and you are assuming a fully deterministic system in order to do all of the things you want with said scalon. If we want them to be controllable with light or magnetism then they would need to by necessity not bend those forces completely around themselves. So you would have them be at least slightly visible to one of those forces. You could mask that visibility with production of the right substitute energy/force in the right way. You're now talking about something which has more "computational power" than a pure atom since it's expected to be able to mimic a universe when you look at it from any angle at any reasonable wavelength of light in addition to its manipulation superpowers that go beyond a normal atom.

As far as technological progression:

Since they can manipulate atoms your would jump from LHC size to nanobots instantly. Same blueprint, smaller hardware. Any increasing stresses could be handled directly by scalons hooked into Zero-Point Energy for power needs.

As far as reality warping face-offs go:

If you're reality warping with scalons then quantity, control, and application determine your power.

  • If you're actually a scalon and are deluding yourself that the cause and effect is reversed (that is that the other atoms actually have any control as dependent variables) then you're limited by what's physically possible more than normal. The more that you understand what you actually are and accept it the more control you have. The more your act directly though your scalon instead of through the layer of your other atoms. Basically like using your subconscious directly and ditching your conscious. With full mastery of every psionic/scalonic discipline being the ability to know what a scalon fully is and "believing it".
  • If your a somewhat-dependent scalon you can rope in non-scalon particles to do calculating (yes you brain actually has some thought from electrical impulses but you can do the programming from the seat of your scalons, want to have a circuit to calculate pi instead of doing it in your scalons? Just construct the synapse in your brain). As a result of the computonium that is the universe to a scalon, your actual understanding of how non-scalon things work actually increases your power. This of course implies you're reading the results that your circuit comes up with (thus being at least semi-dependent on the regular-atom's results. You can still be independent though). If your not reading the results then that implies it was just an effect of the real cause (your scalon cooking up pi), so this whole bullet is a crutch until you can move to the first one completely.
  • Synchronizing/interacting with other scalons definitely increases your power. Think of it like cells and groups. If it's synchronizing then other scalons are like cells in your person, they contribute to the whole. If they just interact then you influencing them is like competing for leadership of a group.

So your answer to scalonic magic that is most general/plausible/powerful/magical:

A scalon is a particle that is the actual cause of everything in the universe. It is the independet variable and everything else is an effect, a dependent variable. The sole actual will in the universe is inside a scalon. It has a region of influence that extends outward from its center and is inversely proportional to distance. Humans either have scalons and don't truly believe the scalon to exist thus they distort their view of the world to exclude them. Or they have no scalons and no free-will and the scalons are excluding themselves from visibility. There's your scientific magic :).


[1] There are one-way chemical reactions due to the statistical nature of the chemistry. The entropy is always entropy and it guides the rolling of the die so that the chemical reaction plays out the way it does.

[2] On the point about physics being non-local: I might be reading into recent journalism hype but it sounded like this was determined by old experiments and equations I've read about before (transitioning from hypothesis to "cannon law")

[3]The fact that this independent variable exists in the way that dark matter does would seem to imply its either has a input of light in its equation or it uses it's own equation to bend light around it. Since we're adding your condition that scalons can also rearrange molecules and atoms they must have control over the strong and weak force. Since scalons can control scalar energy your assuming a 5th form of energy tied to these particles and that it can be converted to/from EM energy. That implies that it either depends on an EM equation and it isn't an independent variable but part of the system or it's an independent and due to its near-omnipotent nature a source of a lot of the hidden variables etc.

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  • $\begingroup$ Do you believe in scalons? $\endgroup$ – Black Dec 31 '15 at 4:52
  • $\begingroup$ This kind of answer definitely points to my first instinct when I read the question. Ditch as much of the pseudo-science as possible, and build a soft-magic system with just enough pseudo-science to make it seem scifi. You have clear behaviors you want to see in your world, and that's good! However, in an effort to develop a hard-magic explaination for them, you created a system that is dangerously powerful and can easily rip your storyline apart with inconsistencies at the slightest mistake. $\endgroup$ – Cort Ammon Dec 31 '15 at 5:05
  • $\begingroup$ @CortAmmon True, it is ridiculously powerful. It either assumes every particle is god-like in its vicinity and that you either are said particle(s) or are at the mercy of them with no free-will. However cosmic censorship helps at this point. Clearly we weren't abusing scalons from the get go for tech. So the intended progression is either not our own, or the scalons (us) know nothing about themselves. Since we're slowly learning about how the brain works it's not a stretch. As more about the scalons is revealed (through experimentation on our own scalons or allowed revelations) = more power. $\endgroup$ – Black Dec 31 '15 at 5:13
  • $\begingroup$ @OP If this is too much power: I would probably ditch the particles you describe and add them as an insane fuel source and do seperate nanobots for each magic power you want. Most of them have real realizations but ridiculous power consumptions. You could probably post a question for powers you couldn't figure out. (Hint: warping has a post). Getting nanobots that produce nanobots off of blueprints with a core of the energy particle would pretty much work. $\endgroup$ – Black Dec 31 '15 at 5:25
  • $\begingroup$ @Black Very nice answer! This gels pretty perfectly with the things about my psionic/scalonic system that I have already imagined, so, I'm probably going to go with this answer. No, it's not too powerful at all, it seems just about right, I like the way you describe how the more a user of these powers learns about their own scalonic nature, the more powerful they become with it. I think I want to make it an independent variable, then. Having it be a God-like Particle with the power to control everything in the universe is on-target with how I was envisioning it going! $\endgroup$ – Josh Zmijewski Dec 31 '15 at 11:06
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I was navigating and saw the title of this question and realized I disregarded it almost completely. Choosing to answer the question body over the title. So here's an answer that addresses only the title and completely ignores the body text.

A semi-realistic system of psionics based on nanotech and dark energy?

Alright so we have dark matter and dark energy and nanotech that manipulates those through some applied phlebotinum. We can warp spacetime obviously since all things with mass do so. The crucial feature is that said mass is invisible and is incredibly dense and/or in large quantity. If we can use it to levitate objects that must mean we can manipulate it at a distance. It must have a tendency to not interact with normal matter and light or we would have found it by now surely. But it must have a tendency to be repelled away from itself like a gas or we would have clumps so massive we couldn't practically use them. We would need to place a nanobot, have it move physically to a location, and then power on to draw the dark matter to itself. Said matter would attract just like a normal mass. If you pulsed the nanobot you could attract then reposition then attract again. Using nanopulses or faster and a ton of power. The dark matter would want to unconcentrate at the fastest speed it could manage. Mostly because it would have the vacuum created by concentrating it pulling on it. If the nanobots create a distortion the size of the supplied power and have a massive power source they can make alterations as small as a quanta of energy allows or as large as their power allows. For large distortions your looking at massive power (want to directly fuse atoms through gravity? You need moar power! poor nanobot at the center T^T) Do you want to reduce power needs? Increase the speed that scalons/dark matter spread and/or reduce the energy cost for the nanobot to attract them. Note that if you have spread speed fast enough and attraction energy small enough you can produce infinite energy by spinning a turbine, etc. So be careful here. But then again you power requirements are going to be ridiculous anyway (but Worldbuilding is here to help).

The to-do list:

  • Make a warp drive.
  • Make a levitation device.
  • Build a nanocomputer that can calculate the pulses to manipulate molecules.
  • Protein folding just became slightly directed!
  • Rip things apart by pulling in various directions!
  • Rip things apart by inducing a high enough gradient in gravity.
  • Form black-holes!
  • Build worm holes and time machines with spiraling black-holes!
  • Find the missing link between gravity and electromagnetic waves to make lasers on command!
  • Add more to the list with the power of dark matter!
  • Find some uses for dark energy! It's like clear light right? (OMG clear lasers! wait a second aren't laser already...) But wait! Dark energy is supposed to be accelerating the expansion of the universe... If it was a laser... That sounds like ❤ REPULSOR BEAMS
  • Implement psychokinesis with repulsor and gravity nanobots!
  • Find something else to do with the power of gravity and anti-gravity at our disposal.
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  • $\begingroup$ Ha! I love it! Yes! :D Though I still want to hear CortAmmon's answer… but I'm pretty sure your first answer is going to be my Best Answer. Though this one gives me some fun ideas too! $\endgroup$ – Josh Zmijewski Dec 31 '15 at 11:12

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