The story takes place in the distant future, around 2720. Mankind has spread out to the stars. Over a hundred worlds have been colonized with multiple polities governing various groups of colonies. The story takes place on a planet called Dominion.
History of Earth and the beginning of the human Diaspora.
2092: The secret of maintaining a stable fusion reaction is finally discovered. A new revolution in energy begins leading to finally realizing the dream of cheap, clean and nearly limitless energy.
In the decades that followed, great leaps were made in the fields of medicine, nano-technology, and propulsion.
By 2150, average life spans were pushing 200 years and the Earth was becoming increasingly crowded. Permanent colonies had been established on the Moon and on Mars
2187: A practical faster than light drive was invented. The inventor was not tied to any existing government and released the knowledge in such a way that it could not be easily restricted.
A wave of exploration occurred over the next 100 years.
It was discovered that Earth-like worlds were actually quite common and that most contained life very similar to what exists on Earth. So similar to the life on Earth in fact that it was theorized that some intelligence must have seeded life throughout the galaxy from some common source. Despite so many Earth-like life bearing worlds being found, no extra terrestrial intelligent life or any evidence of intelligent life has ever been discovered.
This discovery gave some resurgence to the major religions.
In 2250 a wave of outward colonization began, some retained close ties to Earth and others maintained little or no contact with Earth.
Over the years since, many subcultures, feeling either real or perceived persecution, gathered together the funds to establish their own colonies far from Earth.
Almost all vehicles are fusion powered. Reaction-less thrusters exist that push/pull against the fabric of space itself; these come in all sizes from just a few kilos of thrust to thousands of metric tons. Primarily these are used for sub-light and maneuvering in space or to propel aerodynamic aircraft in planetary atmospheres. FTL drive for interstellar travel
FTL drive systems exist that, depending on available power and the amount of mass that has to be moved, can achieve speeds up to 15 light years per day.
General ship classes
Fast Courier: These are relatively small ships with minimal cargo capacity and the ability to carry up to a dozen passengers on top of their small crew. These are the fastest ships, reaching speeds up to 15 ly/day
Military Warships: These vary in size and class. They are around twice the physical size as an equivalent ocean going warship with the same crew size. Devoting more power to weapons and shields than to drive systems, they are limited to a speed of around 5 ly/day
Passenger Ships. These run around twice the physical size of 20th century ocean going passenger ships of similar capacity.
Passenger ships can be further subdivided into two categories by speed.
Fast passenger ships run at speeds around 5 ly/day
Slow passenger ships run at speeds around 3ly/day
Cargo ships: Running the gamut from fairly small to massive ships and covering both open cargo bays, capable of taking heavy machinery, to container ships. Smaller lighter cargo ships can run at up to 3 ly/day and heavy cargo ships, equivalent to oceangoing super tankers and mega container ships, run slower at around 1.5 ly/day
Interplanetary craft are usually referred to as shuttles or boats. These range in size from the approximate size and passenger capacity of a speedboat, to the size of a small cargo ship. Many, though not all, are FTL capable to shorten interplanetary travel times. These differ from true interstellar craft in that they don't have sufficient life support capacity for interstellar travel.
Aircraft mostly use either ducted turbofans or low power reaction-less thrusters combined with an aerodynamic lift and control surfaces.
Most short and mid-range transportation is by ground vehicles. These are mostly wheeled vehicles similar to 20th century vehicles, except that they use electric motors powered by a miniature fusion power plant. Various levitation vehicles do exist, but since they require significantly more power than a wheeled vehicle. They are usually only used for highly specialized tasks or as rich men's toys.
Three categories of nanites
These are the least expensive form of nanites
They are used in:
Constructing cybernetic implants in place without surgery
Manufacturing (fabricating objects molecule by molecule)
Recycling: disassembly on the molecular level
Stored power (micro battery) These are single use
These are used for:
Demolitions: on-site disassembly of very large objects
Weaponized nanites (disassembly of biologicals)
Nano-fusion or chemical power from chemicals drawn from the intended environment (oxidizing sugars for biological use)
Self powered nanites are extremely expensive
They are used for
Military use, mostly for recon and defense against weponized nannites
Mostly wet-ware, machine / mind interface. Not inexpensive. Many upper class have comp/comp implants allowing direct mind access to local networks.
Interstellar communication: A form of FTL radio exists that can in theory transmit near instantaneous messages across hundreds of light years. However in practice this has not been possible. To the date that the story takes place, no one has managed to transmit a message with a high enough data density for either real time voice or video more than 2 light years. Even simple Morse code messages have to date not been detectable at more than 10 light years. This has limited interstellar communications to electronic messages archived on fast couriers heading towards the final destination of the message.
Planet wide Internet like computer networks. Mix of publicly and privately owned servers. Generally referred to as Planet Net or <Planet Name> Net
Personal tablet computers are almost universal. Only the poorest of the poor do not have them. High speed processors, more ram and storage than a 20th century high end desktop computer (still considered a thin client in the time period of the story), wireless communications, both 2D and holographic display capability.
Medical technology has advanced to the point where most non life threatening injuries can be fully repaired within a few hours and even the most severe injuries can be fully healed as long as the patient is still alive when he / she arrives at a medical facility. This is largely due to advances in nanotech, allowing assisted cellular regeneration and repair of bones at the molecular level.
Advances in medical knowledge and technology have allowed the aging process to be slowed across the population. Increasing basic life expectancy, baring disease, accident or violence, to 200 years.
Self powered medical nannites originally developed for military use, they were intended to provide rapid regeneration to injured soldiers to keep them on the battlefield longer. The first prototypes started trials around the year 2400. It took another hundred years for anyone to notice that they also, still further, slowed the aging process. Because they are programmed to the individuals DNA, while they slow the degenerative process of aging, they do not slow the growth process through full physical maturity; making them safe to administer to children for those who can afford it. These are extremely expensive, costing more than a typical single family home.
Available birth control methods are more effective and more convenient.
Shots are available for both men and women that will cause temporary sterility for approximately three years. Another shot that will reverse the first, before it wears off naturally, is also available.
Implants are available for both genders with the same effects, but that last ten years. Fertility will resume within 2 to 3 months of the implant being removed or depleting.
When the first wave of interstellar colonization started in 2250, Earth was still divided amongst many squabbling nations.
In 2300 a new push to create a global government was started.
In 2350 Earth and the entire solar system came under the control of a single government. The new government was corporatist, highly socially conservative and riddled with corruption.
Anything even remotely sexually or morally deviant was subjected to severe persecution.
Part of the push against sexual deviancy was due to the ever growing population of the Earth, which by 2350 had reached 15 billion. A hundred years of interstellar colonization had only slowed down population growth.
In those early days, most of the colonies were governed completely independently. Distance and slow communication made interstellar government difficult to maintain.
.... There is more of this story ...