Yes, the Technocracy remains on the bleeding edge of science, but some of its studies have come full circle. The Macrotechnicians are a Methodology focused on large-scale physical sciences and “simple” construction technology. To some, they can seem like throwbacks, emphasizing, as they do, solid engineering and chemistry. Macrotechnician projects, however, provide improvements in almost every aspect of Technocratic devices and other Conventions and Methodologies find they must give them grudging respect.
The Methodology traces its roots back to the same builders, artificers and engineers the rest of the Convention does. In the Renaissance and after, the High Artisans moved away from studies of civic engineering, metallurgy and material science, leaving such things for their Craftmason cousins, and instead favored micro-architecture, computers, and cyborg science. Until recently, material engineering languished as a pastime for engineers among the Sleepers while It-Xers focused on computing and number-crunching.
With the step-back in the Pogrom and the re-emphasis on human achievement, many Iterators have also stepped back from computer and weapons design, instead heading back to substance analysis and development. The Hardsuit program, which replaces HIT-Marks, requires new advances in materials, chemicals, biorecycling systems, and power supplies. Initiatives to end urban problems, reduce pollution, and find alternatives to current devices need innovators in large scale construction and vehicle engineering.
Re-enter the tool-users and tool-makers.
Founded in 2000 when the Convention finally recognized the need for a specific categorization of its engineers, mechanics, maintenance crews, chemists and architects, the Methodology was born by separating out TM Managers and BioMechanics with these skills. While the initial split was hard and caused them to loose Syndicate funding, they quickly proved themselves and when it was recognized that all future devices would be coming from them, their budget octupled.
Macrotechnicians rarely, if ever, create a new thing. Instead they rethink what is and figure out how to do it better. To this end they often work with the Void Engineers' R&E, the NWO's Q-Division, and more recently the Deviancy Scene Investigators of the Progenitors. The Methodology is split right down the middle, though, between the scientists and engineers on one side and the field agents on the other. The first tend to use computer modeling and heavy industry while the latter: technicians and combat engineers, take the tech into the front lines.
Architecture: Iterators in this field focus their energies on superstructure. Designers, engineers, welders, stonemasons, crane drivers, you name it, are all present here along with city planners and other consultants. They design and build Constructs for other Conventions as well as the skyscrapers, houses, bridges, highways, etc... of tomorrow for the Masses.
Vehicular Science: Iterators in this field work with everything from drones to locomotives and airplanes to cranes. Again, designers, engineers, and technicians ply their trades here. For the Union they create the black helicopters and supercars Technocrats know and love while they improve their mundane counterparts for the Sleepers.
Weapons and Armaments: Iteration X still plays in this field as well. Better plasma cannons and hardsuits come off the line for Technocrats while improved ballistics and other weapons enter into the Consensus.
Chemical Sciences: Even something as tried and true as Chemistry can be improved. Better bonding agents, polymer production methods, and ultraviolet ink, you name it.
Material Sciences: Better armor. New alloy production methods. Metallurgy. All these things can get the scientists of the Macrotechnicians excited.
Sphere Focus Edit
While older members will focus on the specialty sphere they had before the formation of the Methodology, whether that be Mind, Forces, or Correspondence for TM Managers or Life or Matter for BioMechanics, new members tend to specialize in Matter.
The Macrotechnicians are in a peculiar spot in the Convention. As a new Methodology, most of the higher-ups are all from either the TM Managers or the BioMchanics and bring those insights to their procedures. The TMMs insist they are necessary especially as the other Methodologies become more specialized. Someone has to do the hands-on work. They can at times, though, be seen as rejects from the other methodologies and it can lead to strong rivalries. The relations can be especially hard with the BioMechanics because the tools they make can often make biomechanical devices redundant or obsolete. Some whisper that making the new Methodology was a ploy to get more funding for non-cybernetic projects. Macrotechnicians are also often the recipients of elitist prejudice as they are seen to be working with "simplistic sciences" rather than "cutting edge computers" which the Convention has focused on for so long.
The Methodology does have a particular culture as well. They are more likely to reject the use of Implants. (Another point of tension with the BioMechanics.) The have a pretty tightly-knit hierarchy. They also enjoy sharing their work both through academic papers and working together in their labs.
For all its struggles, the Methodology is proving itself time and again as a critically important part of the Convention.
- MTA. Convention Book: Iteration X, pp 60-61.