2130 to 2139
This is the first full decade of the Interplanetary Republic. Astounding developments are seen in space, with the Ice Giants and the Kuiper Belt being colonized, while the Martian Seperatist Movement ends. And then, remarkable changes in governance occur towards the end of the decade with the establishment of the Interplanetary Council.
2130. Like the Martian Pride that began in the previous decade, the residents of the Moon are now feeling a sense of pride and unity, though, unlike the Martians, this does not lead to a desire for independence. In previous decades, residents of the Moon felt close ties to their original countries: people at Armstrong City considered themselves American, people at Chang'e City considered themselves Chinese, and so on. But by this time, those ties are fading. The residents of the Moon—or Luna, as they are now calling it—are beginning to see themselves as Lunars.
2130*. The Grand Tour ship, having been launched from Mars with its 2400 people, reaches the outer Solar System. It first drops off 600 people on Europa, then 600 more on Titan before heading further from Terra than any humans have gone before. After a year of travel, it drops off 300 people each on Titania and Oberon, the two largest moons of Uranus. The final 600 people settle down on Neptune's moon Triton a few months later. Life is difficult here, at a distance of two to three billion miles from Earth, more so than on the moons of Jupiter and Saturn, which are in turn more difficult to live on than Mars and Luna. But the chosen colonists are all dedicated, intrepid people who sought out challenge, so they manage. Naturally, they are also forced to be pretty much on their own, as typically it takes three to four hours for messages from Terra to reach them.
2132*. The IPAF begins a top-secret new project termed Project Warlock. The aim of this project is to create an ultra-elite team of megasoldiers—termed Warlocks—even more powerful than the regular supersoldiers in the regular IPAF forces. The first 100 Warlock candidates are chosen at the age of 12 and pushed to the limit with physical and psychological training. In addition to combat training, they are also trained in infiltration, disguise, and cyber-combat. They receive transhuman upgrades like regular military, but even more powerful and cutting-edge. The Warlocks also have the powers to read minds and see the future, thanks to powerful intuitive skills honed by transhuman upgrades. In other words, they will become transhuman psychic supersoldiers.
2133. After four years of tense, armed standoff, the Martian seperatists stand down. Fortunately, there was impressively little violence from either side, and eventually a compromise was reached. Mars would continue to have a governor, but Martian politicians would receive representation at the highest levels of government as well. Several of the highest-level diplomats on both sides are awarded IPR Awards for Preservation of Peace.
2133. With their newfound sense of unity and pride, the Lunars are granted permission by GSEC to begin terraforming Luna. They set to work immediately, determined to make it as hospitable as Terra itself. The cost of this venture is estimated to be, by 2016 standards, $84 trillion, somewhat less than Mars, as Luna is considerably smaller and closer to the resources of Terra.
2134. By this year, Luna is no longer the most populous body beyond Terra. That honor now goes to Mars, which has a population of about 2.31 million, over Luna's 2.29 million. In the coming decades, Mars will gradually pull further and further ahead as terraforming progresses. The Jovian moons collectively reach a population of ten thousand in this year as well.
2135*. A second Grand Tour ship is launched, this one going even further afield than the first. This one is slightly smaller than the first one, with only 2000 passengers. It will drop of colonists on Pluto and Eris before delivering several hundred IPAF personell to the moons of Planet IX, which has been named Posiedon.
2136. Another milestone in human ectogenesis is reached in this year, as it is the first year in which more than half of all newborns are synthetic. Only a small minority of people continue to oppose synthetic rights, and their numbers will only continue to dwindle over the next half-century until only Luddites oppose the idea of synthetic humans.
2138*. A massive change in governance is occurring to address the problems posed by scaling up conventional democracy to fourteen billion people. The most fundamental of these changes include replacing the president of the IPR with an Interplanetary Council, whose members are elected by direct popular vote. Initially, the Council consists of three Terrans, one Lunar, and one Martian, though it will grow in time. Meanwhile, the legislative branch is replaced by the general public. Anyone at all may propose bills on the webnets, and anyone else may comment on and tweak them, while the Interplanetary Council is tasked with determining public consensus. Essentially, the Solar System's governance is being crowdsourced. One of the popular terms for this type of governance is "wikidemocracy".
2138*. The first candidates selected by Project Warlock are turning 18 and completing their training. 54 have reached the end of training successfully and another few hundred or so are in the pipeline. The first 54 members of the Warlock Force are secretly deployed into various covert roles, mostly on Terra and Mars.
2139. After decades of research and development, the first antimatter engines are becoming viable. While producing antimatter and allowing it to contact matter—the main method by which antimatter bombs work—is a waste of energy, there are other ways, such as to collect antimatter from space, or to get energy from it in less crude and wasteful ways than simply smashing it into matter. These breakthroughs come just in time for the Alpha Centauri probe, which is nearing completion.
2139*. After a four-year journey, the second Grand Tour ship comes to rest on a large, rocky moon of "Planet Ix", as it is known in military jargon. The IPAF declares the planet, its moons, and their orbitspaces as military property and off-limits to colonists. This done, they set about building a secret military research facility, as well as several physics labs, also for military purposes.