The Pattern Jugglers are collectives of marine organisms that inhabit widely scattered water-covered planets. They act as a form of biotechnological data storage system, recording the minds and memories of anyone who communes with them. Nobody, including the jugglers themselves, knows their origin, although the inhibitors seem to avoid attacking Pattern Juggler worlds.
In Absolution Gap it is suggested that marine ecosystems continue to exist beneath the Pattern Jugglers. Whether or not they exhibit consciousness is up for debate, but in either case they are certainly advanced, capable of spontaneously gathering large rafts of complex organic systems and producing structures as advanced as superconductive strands. Human swimmers in Pattern Juggler seas appear to be infiltrated by the alien organisms(s), often resulting in out of body experiences and giving the swimmers short-lived periods of heightened consciousness and mental clarity. Some swimmers also report feelings that they encountered the memories or minds of other past swimmers during their immersion. Repeat swimmers, however, face the risk of the sea taking too much of a liking to them, in which case they never return to land. The novella Turquoise Days goes into more detail about the Pattern Jugglers.
Pattern Jugglers record the neural structures of sentient beings who enter their oceans, and are capable of rewriting the brains of swimmers. Normally this involves giving them heightened abilities, such as expertise in mathematics. These abilities typically last only a short period of time, but sometimes they can last for the better part of a lifetime. It is possible to persuade the jugglers to perform desired modifications to the minds of human swimmers, normally by remembering special trigger symbols coded for a particular transformation. Although in order to successfully persuade the Pattern Jugglers a price may be required, such as the Alpha-copy of Calvin Sylveste, given to the Jugglers by his clone/son Dan Sylveste in the Revelation Space book.
Read more about this topic: Races In Revelation Space
Famous quotes containing the words jugglers and/or pattern:
“They say this town is full of cozenage:
As nimble jugglers that deceive the eye,
Dark-working sorcerers that change the mind,
Soul-killing witches that deform the body,
Disguised cheaters, prating mountebanks,
And many such-like liberties of sin.”
—William Shakespeare (15641616)
“The kind of relatedness to the world may be noble or trivial, but even being related to the basest kind of pattern is immensely preferable to being alone.”
—Erich Fromm (19001980)