Highlands World

the official guide

Introduction   ⤵

Highlands World is the most unique world of the human diaspora. It is not a planet; not in the normal sense. It is a cluster of asteroids. Seventeen sizeable ones, along with hundreds of smaller objects and billions of tons of rock and dust formed into a cluster of thirteen bodies.

At the center is a 583 kilometer diameter aggregated planetoid gravitationally forged into spherical shape and covered by a sea with a few populated islands. Around that central world, are twelve smaller irregular bodies, some of them made by the combination of smaller asteroids. Each of the twelve outer bodies is closely anchored to the central world by eighteen kilometer diameter graphene pillars.

The entire collection is enclosed within a Xiao-Ketterling envelope that holds a single atmosphere. Gravity lenses (gravions) provide lunar level (1/6 G) gravity at the surfaces of the outer bodies and Mars level (1/3 G) gravity on the central body.

Highlands World is unique not only physically, but also in its cultural diversity. It was colonized by its mission crew over 500 years ago and has developed a unique civilization. It is thus the third oldest human civilization after only Terra and Shepherd's World. It is open to limited tourism. But before you go, browse the information on this Highlands World official guide site to learn more about your destination and to find instructions on obtaining visas and arranging for your trip.

Highlands World Almanac   ⤵

Almanac Index Page

Highlands World 3D View

Highlands World: A Very Brief History   ⤵

Highlands World was constructed over nearly a million years of building and terra-forming by the Triamon and its Servos and Robots. The ATV crew settled Highlands World 493 years ago. The Church of Accession grew from a cult to prominence by 420 years ago and instituted the campaign against the ‘Dragons’. Original settler, cyberneticist Jorge Anderson, let loose his lockout virus preventing use of the peristaltic transport system 352 years ago and was murdered by the church and declared a martyr. Highlands World was left in a nearly medieval state for the ensuing 250 years until the events related in Highlands World in Crisis 107 years ago. Much has changed since that time,

Highlands World Today   ⤵

Since the events of 107 years ago, related in Highlands World in Crisis, the failing infrastructure was gradually repaired, A greatly expanded network of EM (electro-magnetic) roads replaced the antique cable car system (except on Giardin) and gravion transports replaced the cable powered sky-cars (except for the two still operated by Giardin.)

The incredible Airliners still operate as always and are a popular travel method, even today. The Raison Steam Aeron became ubiquitous with the “water-gas” (hydrogen) bladders only recently replaced by aerofoam as developed on Shepherd’s World. The famous Zero-Zone on Berlan has been preserved and there are several resort hotels within its boundaries where guests can engage in near zero G activities. (It is a popular honeymoon destination.)

The government proposed by Saem Arythor was successfully instituted, although not without some serious conflict. Highlands World now operates as a universalist democracy in the style of Shepherd’s World. Even the former anarchist Highland of Giardin joined the universalist government movement.

A few Servos are once again seen on the surface, including some humaniforms. Artur, the AI component of the original ATV Triamon that created Highlands World still maintains its infrastructure, but Marcus and Helena Mendelsohn, the human personality components of the Highlands World Triamon applied for and were accepted as the human components of the first of the SETI Expeditionary Ships (SETIES). They were joined in that effort by an A.I. with the personality component of the famous Azi.

Highlands World operates several mining colonies on Poison, its LaGrange primary and has paid off its outstanding mortgage with the proceeds of that venture. It has, however, successfully declared independence from ownership by the original investor company and has recently petitioned for full membership in the Confluent Worlds Assembly.

Night-time on Highlands World still features the gorgeous Van Gogh sky and the beautiful Halo still dominates the heavens as it will for millions of years to come.

Visas and Travel   ⤵

Visas are required for visits to Highlands World. To apply for a Visa, go to your local Universal Visa office. Visas are availble for stays of 7 days, 30 days and 90 days. Cost through the Universal Visa system is t50 per day. Certified physical and mental health evaluations are required. Average time to obtain a Visa for Highlands World is 60 days.

Transportation to Highlands World can be arranged through various Licensed Interstellar Travel agencies. From Terra, average travel time on a first class liner is 34 days and will cost approximately t5,000 one way. Meals are provided on first class liners.

Bargain fares as low as t1,500 one way can be had on several freighters with travel time averaging 85 days ship time. Most freighters serving Highlands World make between four and seven ports of call during the seventeen transits to Highlands World. Meals are provided at cost and average t15 per person per day. For freighter passage, inquire at your local travel agency.

The Literature of Highlands World   ⤵

Before you travel to Highlands World, or if you can't go right now, read some of its literature. The historical novel Highlands World in Crisis was written anonymously by Marcus Mendelsohn, one of the two human personality members of the ATV mission Triamon. Mendelsohn compiled his narration from the wealth of "overheard and recorded" conversations and the remembrances by many of the people involved. It was written shortly after the events recounted and according to the person's involved is quite accurate, even where he is obviously conjecturing things of which he had no direct record.

Highlands World in Crisis: (seven books available in three volumens)

Imminence: (Volume I)

Kindle download. Paperback on Amazon.com. Redeem a paperback coupon.

Endeavour: (Volume II)

Kindle download.

Resolve: (Volume III) (Coming Summer, 2015)