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«The Mech Touch (Web Novel) - Chapter 5656 From Follower to Pioneer

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Chapter 5656 From Follower to Pioneer

This chapter is updated by Novels.pl

There was a huge difference between becoming a pioneer and a follower in new technologies.

A pioneer had to invest a disproportionately large amount of time, effort and manpower into developing useful new technologies.

A follower merely had to wait for the former to do all of the work, then proceed to reap most of the rewards while paying just a fraction of the cost.

Ves was both a pioneer and a follower in technology. Most good mech designers tended to have at least a little bit of the former, or else they wouldn't have been able to make much progress.

There were so many fields of technology that no single mech designer could become a leading authority in all of them. The more sophisticated the tech, the greater the time, dedication, ingenuity and affinity required to progress beyond the prevailing standards.

No one could excel in any area. This was especially the case for first-class mech designers who simply did not have the capacity to master more than a handful of high technologies to an advanced stage.

Their inability to push the frontier of those high technologies did not affect the quality of their mech designs. It was not necessary for them to master all of this science and engineering to a perfect degree. As long as they learned just enough to configure and adapt the complicated tech in a mech design, then that was already enough.

Mech designers constantly had to manage their time by setting priorities. Ves often wondered whether it would have been nice for him to specialize in certain technological fields that aroused his interests.

From armor systems to stealth technology, Ves had come close to investing a serious amount of time into specializing in those subjects!

However, his rationality always reasserted itself and made him realize that he would just be spreading himself out too much.

A jack of all trades was a master of none.

This adage applied particularly well in mech design!

In the end, Ves had organically chosen to major in E-technology and minor in luminar crystal technology. These were fairly narrow specializations, but both of them were strong enough to carry his products forward. His current successes vindicated his decisions.

He also dabbled in other interesting technologies. Just like every self-

respecting mech designer in the Age of Dawn, he put a lot of effort into deepening his understanding in both phasewater technology and hyper technology.

He happened to possess special conditions that enabled him to vastly speed up his understanding of both new but already essential techs!

However, if Ves was being honest with himself, he had not thrown himself into phasewater technology and hyper technology as much as he could have. There were many other mech designers who had embraced them to the point where they spent all of their research focused on these newfangled scientific frontiers.

Even if their talent, augmentations, research environments and support networks were inferior to his own, their hard work and dedication enabled many of them to exceed what Ves was capable of in these respective fields.

This was the power of specialization.

Though Ves really would have liked to develop a greater level of competence in phasewater technology and hyper technology since he had such great affinities with them, he simply did not have enough time.

He just allocated just enough time in brushing up on those fields and developed the occasional homebrew solutions to keep up with the mech industry and avoid falling behind.

Given that he already struggled to maintain his current technological edge despite the fact that he literally had multiple minds to work with, he felt quite reluctant to adopt yet another minor.

This was why Ves never showed too much enthusiasm for embracing archetech.

Intellectually, he knew that the alien tech base was considerably superior to regular human technology.

By doing away with a lot of fragile and relatively inefficient circuitry, archetech utilized the properties of exotics in a fundamentally more effective manner.

Ves even had the hunch that archetech might be able to replace conventional tech entirely as long as it became accessible enough!

However, the barrier to entry was steep. The arche managed to make do because of their lifelong studies in this tech base. They also inherently understood the exotic tech a lot better because their own archeshells served as native interfaces for their own tech.

Humans did not possess these advantages. As much as Ves wanted to integrate the advantages of archetech into his own mechs or at least the high-

end ones, the difficulty and time commitment were too high.

This was why he had largely ignored the captured archeship that possessed a huge amount of research value.

It was painful for him to leave aside such a rare and valuable prize that others would kill in order to possess.

The most he could do was to let a few dedicated research teams poke around the vessel and allow them to become reasonably competent experts in this field.

Yet that was far from enough to integrate archetech into his mech designs in the short term. The tech was so radically different that it was not really proper to treat it as an isolated component that Ves could selectively plug into his works.

He could either go all-out or leave it out of his mechs entirely.

For now, Ves had chosen to adopt the latter approach. There was no need to overcomplicate his work without good reason just because he wanted to add more shinies to his projects.

Perhaps he would revisit this topic in a few years once the scientific community had managed to decipher and infer all of the essential principles of archetech.

A few years was enough for a healthy batch of pioneers and early adopters to build up a considerable first-mover advantage in archetech. As long as they did a good job, they would reap the rewards for their dedication, but that did not matter to Ves.

All he cared about was getting his hands on a coherent textbook that could systematically teach him how to work with archetech without too much extra effort.

While Ves had settled on becoming a follower in the field of archetech, Gloriana clearly signaled that she wanted to take the opposite approach!

This was why the two failed to come to an agreement right away. This decision was too consequential for Ves to simply say yes without any further challenges.

He understood the logic of her arguments, but that did not mean he was willing to support her strategy!

"Are you truly sure you want to switch from becoming a follower and become one of the early adopters of archetech?"

"I do." His wife replied with a serious expression. "I have already considered this decision extensively ever since we first came into contact with the captured archeship. I excel in material design, so my foundation in the related fields of archetech is considerably better than yours. I am confident that I can progress quickly into this emerging field as long as I receive sufficient support. I first need to catch up to the progress of the current pioneers in this field. Their research is largely confidential or private. If I want to access their privileged knowledge, I will have to redeem them for a large amount of MTA merits."

This was already an immensely difficult ordeal. Not everyone was willing to spill all of their secrets, especially when it was fresh to the point where its lack of proliferation directly enhanced their value!

The best way to overcome these difficult barriers was to pay more. It might take tens of millions if not hundreds of millions of MTA merits to persuade those greedy pioneers to throw a few scraps at the Larkinsons!

"Okay. Let us assume that this step will pan out. What is next?"

"Then we will design the Dark Zephyr Mark III as a genuine archemech. I am fully aware that there is a high likelihood that the framework of archetech that I have mastered at that point may not be sufficient or complete enough to design a complete machine. We will have to conduct our own research and develop the necessary design solution as we go. I am aware that the upgrade project will suffer significant delays as a consequence. It may take twice as much time before we finally complete our drastic upgrade project, but this should be the only time this happens. Once we design our subsequent archemechs, we will be able to reference our older solutions and complete our assignments faster."

In other words, Gloriana intended to treat the Dark Zephyr Mark III Project as a trial and a learning project. Venerable Tusa Billingsley-Larkinson would no doubt become frustrated at the agonizingly slow pace of development due to the need to figure out a lot of new stuff on the spot.

This project would proceed anything but smoothly if Ves agreed to Gloriana's bold initiative!

However, Ves could not help but become attracted at the prospect of becoming an early mover in this field. Archetech could turn into one of the Larkinson Clan's persistent selling points, just like Ves' living mechs and Ketis' extraordinary swordsman mechs.

"You will have to shoulder most of the burden alone." Ves warned. "You know quite well how busy I am these days. It is impossible for me to become a pioneer in this field. I am already reluctant to become a follower because I will still need to devote a lot of time in understanding the basics of this alien tech."

His wife smiled as she placed her delicate hand on his shoulder. "There is no need for you to struggle over this issue. Let me be responsible for this matter. I will be doing all of the hard work. I am fully confident that I can master archetech fast enough to start doing serious design work in as little as two months."

"That sounds nice, but what about me?" Ves wondered. "I can't keep up with you when I already have so little available time. If my understanding in archetech is way too far behind compared to you, it will be difficult for me to contribute to the design of the next iteration of the Dark Zephyr. It is like asking me to code in a completely new programming language that I have yet to learn!"

Gloriana responded with a reassuring smile. "As I have said, let me take charge. I will study as many sources of knowledge as I can and conduct practical experiments if that is enough. Once I have built up an adequate foundation, I can compile textbooks that are especially tailored to your learning style so that you can efficiently close the distance to my level of understanding. I can also tutor you in person if that is what it takes. At that point, I can call myself a tentative expert in archetech, so I will be more than qualified to tutor you, Ves."

For a moment, Ves imagined that he had gone back to school.

He would sit attentively behind his school desk while Gloriana the teacher would smack him across the face because his attention had drifted away again.

"I have to admit that your plan makes sense. It actually sounds viable…"

His wife did not come up with this idea on a whim. She properly accounted for most variables. She had to since she shouldered most of the responsibility for turning archetech into a workable addition to their upcoming mech design.

There were a lot more issues that Ves and Gloriana needed to address in order to make it work.

For example, who would repair the Dark Zephyr once the upgraded machine got damaged?

Archetech was based on such a strange and exotic architecture that it was not compatible with conventional human tools and methods!

Gloriana also had to do a lot of work to translate a lot of parts and systems into their archetech equivalents.

It was impossible for her to do all of this thankless work by herself, so the only viable way to get around this problem was to obtain existing component designs from other research groups.

This was bound to cost a fortune!

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