In Universe Gun, I’ve made a big deal of the planetary syzygy between Mars and Earth. The Sun comes between the two planets as their orbits place them either side of it, like it does every 400 days, and nothing in the combined technical arsenal of these two sci-fi worlds is capable of communication between the two.

At the same time, space-bending technology is commonplace, and used to create cheap affordable compact housing on Earth.

Ranged teleportation is available to QMAC. They teleport their Dummies from a central silo over 100km ranges out of convenience. This isn’t just remote controlled rapid-printing either, because Coriolis Boy and Star Girl 3000 use this system to travel from Paradise City to Bradchester (think London to Manchester), so there’s definitely some space-bending going on there.

So what’s going on?

I’ll attempt here to outline the rules for tesseract technology in the 37th C of Universe Gun.

Spacetime Distortion

I first came across the idea of space time distortion as a kid, via the late great Carl Sagan and Cosmos.

First off, space can be distorted – that’s a real thing. It’s basically what gravity is under relativity. Concentration of mass/energy distorts spacetime, stretching it like a rubber sheet. The more energy you concentrate in one spot, the more distorted space becomes, and the more other mass/energy is attracted.

NASA have made some very tiny baby steps into this kind of tech already. 

200 years ago we worked out how to send Morse code messages across telegraph wires. You’re now reading this on an internet that can casual channel moving pictures in realtime. The only difference is that we’ve got much better at engineering the transmission of information down wires. It’s likewise not unreasonable to assume that the current NASA tech of our world would evolve into some kind of macroscopic spatial distortion in 1700 years, without the need for “magic” Life Star orgone technology or superpowers.

In Universe Gun, we have commonplace technology that can distort space locally. I’ve called these tesseracts – a mathematical term that refers to a four dimensional cube. As a cube is to a square, so a tesseract is to a cube.
Static tesseracts are the easiest to create. Just stretch space on the inside as shown in the diagram below.

I’ve decided that the energy requirements should scale very steeply with size. Stretching a 1m cube into a 3m cube (as seen in #1) can be achieved with solar power on the cubes. Stretching a bigger space, say 1m to 30m cubed would require not 10 times the energy, but 10^6 times the energy. So if we meet anyone who lives in a giant tesseract soon, it must mean that they can afford to pay a very big power bill!
Also, stretching a very small region of space into a habitable space, even a small one, would require a very powerful energy source of some kind.

Teleportation over distance would be much more difficult. If spacetime is conveniently curved so that your start and end points are very close by (like points on a folded piece of paper) you’re in luck. This is the “gravity express” that Sagan talks about, but is limited by the curvature of spacetime in the higher dimension. Riddling spacetime with wormholes as a means of public transport seems quite risky and hard to grasp.

Long Range Teleportation
Alternatively, you could use a principle like the Alcubierre Drive.
You stretch space behind you and compact it in front of you and thus move without moving. It’s physically possible to do this (but requires very tricky engineering) to break the lightspeed barrier, so moving a few people or droid s 100km doesn’t violate physics. It would need equipment at either end, possibly a grid of traingulation arrays for concentrating the space warp exactly. Thus such a system makes sense as a static grid on the Earth’s surface, but couldn’t be extended to space. Mars and Earth are too far apart and move around too much relative to each other to allow for interplanetary teleportation.
I will admit I’m doing a bit of retroactive explaining here, but this fits the observed facts in Universe Gun so far, so its now official canon. QMAC can open small wormholes between different points on Earth using  a bulky static teleportation grid.

Orgone-based Teleportation
That’s the hard science, relatively speaking. Enter the magical element of orgone.
Ms.Amazing was able to bend space (Spatial Origami, power #56), in a way that defied physics as much as Coriolis Boy twisting an entire building to pieces does. This power has been lost since then. If anyone appears who can bend space now, then its pretty well… amazing.

Universe Gun #4 will kick off next week, with the opening chapter Magic Rings!

See you in seven, six-dimensional space-surfers! Dr Mike 2000, 24 May 2015