An FAQ Part Two; Or, Your Hume Questions Answered
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Do you, too, have a question (or questions) about Humes? Put them down below and they will be answered.

Q: What do areas of high (or low) Hume concentration look like?
-Dr. S

A: An area of low Hume concentration is a very strange place indeed. Without the stability of ordinary reality, regular humans can alter the area to their whim, granting temporary reality bender-like abilities. These should not be confused with the real thing, of course; they are merely a projection of a higher-Hume frame of reference on a lower-Hume environment, and the 'abilities' vanish as soon as the subject leaves the area. In addition, since reality is much less dense in these areas, the incidence of spontaneous anomalies and universe breaches are significantly higher. However, these anomalies/breaches do not vanish when taken from the vicinity. The reason for this is unknown at the current time.

An area of high Hume concentration, on the other hand is a very strange place. To normal humans, it appears vivid and overpowering, a place of a superworldly aura. Remember how the Himalayas have a high Hume concentration? This applies to all mountains—there's a reason they're often sought out as a place of enlightenment. To reality benders, on the other hand, these areas are flat, grey, and earthy. Since the Hume concentration in these areas are usually close to (or higher than) the reality bender's own levels, they have significant trouble exerting their powers in these areas; in some cases being completely restricted from affecting the area. As such, reality benders tend to avoid these areas, instinctively or otherwise; the currently-in-construction Site-35 (augmented with special Scranton anchors and located in the Himalayas) promises to act as effective containment for reality benders when completed.

Q: Is it possible for a regular human to become a reality bender?
-Dr. S

A: Yes; and there are many, many rituals and gimmicks that promise to do so. However, the list of actual techniques to do so is very small; and is currently being compiled.

Q: Is it possible for animals to have hume fluctuations as well?
-Dr. S

A: Yes! At least one cat is suspected of it, as well as several dogs and some fleas; there is evidence coming in that certain whales may be capable of it as well. It is also hypothesized that inanimate objects are capable of this, but testing has been difficult and the hypothesis is unproven.

Q: Do we have any methods by which to test for Hume fluctuations at a great distance, such as interplanetary or further?
-Dr. K

A: At the moment, no. As I understand, a great many options on this front are being tested, but until then, we can only measure Hume concentrations locally.

What are our options for detecting reality affecting entities at such distances?
-Dr. K

A: As mentioned above, effectively none.

Does being in the vacuum of space alter the nature of Hume variance in any way?
-Dr. K

A: Short answer: No. Longer answer: space is a little strange. Its baseline Hume concentration is slightly higher than Earth concentrations, with the same variations seen on Earth. In fact, it is hypothesized that most of space has a Hume level equal to (or lower than!) Earth's norm, and that galaxies and clusters act as Hume concentration areas in the same way that mountains do here on Earth. However, this is only an educated guess until we can find an actual method of testing it.

Are large and low Hume ratings expected to remain unusually high or low in parts or organs of a reality bender when detached or their user becomes deceased? Are there different Hume concentrations in certain organs rather than others? If so, which?
-Dr. R

A: A good question, and one we haven't studied much at this time. Preliminary results seem to indicate that all organ Hume concentrations are higher than the baseline, with the heart, liver, and brain possessing the most concentration; but these levels are not as large as those present in the reality bender when alive. As the reasons for this are unknown, and as the possibility of some freak Hume fluctuation or contamination cannot be crossed out, all of this is speculation at the moment, and needs to be verified by further research.

Are there any noise or interfering "background signals" when measuring Hume concentrations in areas supposed to be "clean" of reality-bending effects?
-Dr. R

A: Yes! Basically, what we've seen is that in a completely isolated area freed of outside influences, the baseline Hume concentration seems to fluctuate up to +/- 9 centiHumes. So two readings taken in the same place in different times can yield significantly different Hume concentrations. The reason behind this phenomenon, by the way, is unknown at this time.

Has any cognitohazardous, infohazardous or memetic effect been related to alterations in Hume ratings? (To clarify: this is a question on the respective effects these agents have on human psyche and brain chemistry, and not on the various anomalous effects affected individuals may display after being exposed to them; that is, can information alone and its knowledge change Hume ratings?)
-Dr. R

A: No, none of the above materials or effects have been linked to Hume concentrations. It appears that these effects do not affect the local reality, instead creating changes solely in the affected person's thought processes and brain. However, the anomalous effects displayed after exposure can (and have) multiple effects on Hume concentrations (see SCP-1425 for more information on this.)

Finally, this is partly a request. Several medical doctors and health officers of the Foundation Medical Branch have requested access to miniaturized Scranton Reality Anchors to test their prolonged effects on human beings, particularly on possible relation to altered mental states and the general well-being of operators and civilians. Is there any way to request access to them for testing purposes or have these matters been looked into already? In case this has been tested, when will you publish a paper on it?
-Dr. R

A: Well, from what we've seen on personnel working on SCP-2000, Scranton anchors don't seem to have any negative effects in the short term. All such requests for long-term testing would have to be funneled through the Ethics Committee, and all papers produced thus can be published on the SCP Foundation's internal servers (basically the Foundation's private arXiv.)

Have any locations or objects with zero or negative Hume values been discovered? What might such values represent?
-Dr. T

A: As of yet, no. In nature, the lowest Hume concentrations we've ever encountered have been in the vicinity of ~.27/.28 H; which, while low, is still quite far from an "absolute zero" concentration. Artificially, we've been able to get concentrations down to .15 H; again, low, but still quite far from that perfect zero. While it is theoretically possible that a zero Hume concentration can exist, it is incredibly unlikely that such a thing can exist naturally in nature or can be artificially created without massive repercussions, as such a thing would not be considered "reality" as we think of (or experience) it. As for negative Humes…we haven't even put any negative numbers on the Kant counter dial, so how would we even know what we're measuring? (And that's ignoring the fact that negative Humes would probably indicate that something's gone horribly wrong in the general structure of the universe, and that, as such, whoever's holding the Kant counter should probably be getting the hell out of Dodge.)

It has been mentioned that the SRAs work via "siphoning off" reality from other universes, for lack of a better term. Are there any effects, negative or otherwise, that are known or theorized to be caused by the SRAs outside of their desirable primary effect?
-Dr. N

A: For the universes we're siphoning the reality from, probably quite a lot of negative effects; including, but certainly not limited to: generalized reality breakdown, an increase in anomaly instances, increased reality transparency, an upswing in nonlinear time areas, chronological anomalies, spontaneous localized reality collapse, and a whole host of other things that we haven't even considered. That's why we calibrate our SRAs (nice acronym; I like it) to only drain reality from dead universes. These include universes that are already in their last legs, i.e. undergoing heat death; universes that have been through one of the -K class scenarios (except for IK, for obvious reasons) and thus have no surviving life; and universes that, for whatever reason, had no life, sentient or otherwise, to begin with. While the SRAs likely hasten the death of these universes, it's generally considered an acceptable trade-off since these universes generally have nothing worth protecting, and since there are an infinite supply of other, identical, universes floating around as well. As for other effects of SRAs in our universe…that's a good question, and one that definitely merits a long-term study. As mentioned above with SCP-2000, short-term exposure to SRAs do not appear to have short-term detrimental effects, and no long-term effects have been observed. As for any actual long-term effects from short-term exposure, or effects from long-term exposure…your guess is as good as mine.

One of the junior researchers in my department recently theorized that Hume levels propagate in the form of 'reality waves'. Is there any merit to this theory? If so, could an object become 'out of phase' (invisible and incorporeal) with normal reality if its 'reality waves' were out of sync with its surroundings?
-Dr. F

A: From what I can make of it…no. I mean, as quantum physics tells us, all particles have a wavelike nature (and all waves have a particle-like nature.) While there are ways to become out of phase with normal reality, these methods don't directly involve Hume manipulation—you could just pop into another universe, or try to stay in half this universe and half another, or you could change your matter state, or stuff like that. But while these things are cool, they do not, sadly, involve Humes.

What is the average Hume level in vanilla humans? In normal reality?
-Researcher W.

That's a very good question, and one that we've already answered in this paper!

Are there any known reality-benders who can increase or decrease the Hume concentrations in themselves or the surrounding reality at will?
-Researcher W.

Under the Hume-centric definition of reality bender, all known reality benders exhibit this property (with the possible [?] exception of SCP-343.)

If an entity with higher-than-average Humes is a reality-warper, what happens to entities with lower-than-average Hume levels?
-Researcher W.

Good question! Not much research has been done on these people yet, but the initial results seem to indicate that they are unable to push back against reality, leading to lives that end up being…well, whatever reality wants them to be. These are the stereotypical "charmed" or "cursed" people, and their lives usually end up resembling certain stories or tropes. Out of the five people the preliminary tests followed, one recreated the original Grimm brothers version of "Cinderella" down to the dialog used, one had a string of unusually terrible bad luck (among other things, they owned several thousand dollars worth of shares in Enron, were struck by lightning five times, and lost a finger when their cell phone batteries exploded), two were middle managers, and one had served as an O5 for over fifty years. What this means is still hotly debated, and more research must be done.

Since Hume concentration determines the ability to manipulate reality but not the individual states of objects within the area, then SRA's can't actually negate anomalies, right? As in, they can prevent reality benders from making further changes, but they can't actually negate existing anomalies that do not actively require low hume settings or changes in said settings.
-Researcher T.

Right. SRAs can only fix the ambient Hume level in its area of effect. Most anomalies cataloged so far are not exerting Hume influence on the surrounding area, or indeed demonstrating Hume variance at all, and so SRAs cannot be used as a one-size-fits-all negation device.

First, what is the relationship (if any) between Humes and Thaumatological processes (as outlined in those seminar transcripts we got from the GOC)? Can said processes interact with Humes? And finally, does the "Type Green" designation that the Coalition's headgear gives to reality benders have anything to do with their higher hume content?
-Dr. Sh

As of this time, research into (obviously inferior!) GOC reality-cum-bender meterology has not yet been implemented. If one's musings are inclined towards such topics, it might prove a fruitful field of further figurations. As for type greens…well, despite the (obviously inferior!) terminology, they are effectively reality benders; as such, all previous musings on the topic can be applied with little to no problems.

Are Humes composed of matter? And if so, do they have mass? What state of matter are Humes?
Dr. -Ws

As far as we can tell, individual Humes are both massless and infinitely massed.

This is not correct. Humes are not a particle; they are a measurement. See below.

Wait, I thought Humes were how reality stability was measured (like degrees and temperature), but now you're telling me they're particles?
-Dr. Sh

You are correct; Humes are a measure of reality, not a particle. The previous answer was in error. See above.

I'm curious how these two concepts would interact, and indeed whether they are even reconcilable or whether, like some other pairs of theories (I forget which, relativity and quantum mechanics maybe?), they could both be accurate representations of the universe and yet contradict each other: the concept of Hume levels that can be measured on a linear scale, and the concept that the universes within the multiverse are layered on top of one another, with any universes "below" another one constituting what that universe considers "fiction". (Though if you look into the premises behind Operation OverMeta, they clearly aren't arranged in a neat stack, but more like a fractallizing, spiral web.) So:

Q1: As you go down the stack from most real to most fiction-within-a-fictional, would you see a trend in natural Hume levels declining as the realities get less and less real?

Q2: Do humans created via SCP-1304 exhibit abnormal Hume readings? Could a character use a device similar to an SRA to pump themselves full of an insane number of Humes and jump to a higher layer, effectively becoming an author-god to their home universe, but feeling no more powerful because the universe they can now rule just by rewriting it is nothing but a fiction to them?

What if a real person tried that?

Rambling1: Or could it be the other way around? Perhaps "fictional" universes and the "real" universe existed independently of each other from the start, but those we see as "fiction" are able to bleed into the minds of our world's authors because they're even more real than ours? That would certainly make SCP-1304 make more sense.

Rambling2: The potential discrepancy between the theories of linear Hume measurements and layered realities arises when you connect them in reference to universes that aren't stacked, but rather tangled up like a web, as I mentioned earlier. For example, what if I wrote a story about three men, Abel, Brian, and Chris, and said that each wrote a story, and that Brian was a character within Abel's story, and Chris a character in Brian's story (therefore his reality is, to Abel, a story-within-a-story), and yet Abel is a character within Chris' story. How can the three have Hume levels corresponding to their relative levels of reality when each one is simultaneously above and below the other two? Or would they end up all having the same Hume levels? Would the Hume levels be thrown into turbulence by the three realities competing for influence over each other due to their circularly-referential natures?

Could that be the source of the anomalous fluctuations in the real world?
-Mister J

Humes have as much relation to metafiction as fish do to…not-fish? Humes only serve to describe individual realities, and cannot be used to compare separate realities due to their inherently subjective nature. Thus, there is no contradiction between metafiction and Humes; however, Humes also cannot be used to make any observations or assumptions about metafictional constructs.

Q: East Asian thaumatologists such as Taoists or Shugenjas prefers to live in the high mountains. Isn't it contradictory to your explanation?
- Dr. Relpek from Korea

A: While high Hume concentrations make reality bending more difficult, they do not make it impossible. In this case, reality benders who live and train in high-Hume areas got the equivalent of strength training. This made mountains an attractive place to live for reality benders, as it provided a way for them to improve their skills. The practical 90th percentile limit is 6000 metres; however, even after this point, reality bending is possible, if prohibitively difficult. Only at a concentration of 100 Humes is reality bending completely impossible.

Q: Then, why the Western thaumatologists didn't do that?
- Dr. Relpek

A: Most Western wizards were frauds, liars, or not reality benders. While some wizards may have went to mountain ranges such as the Alps for similar reasons, it never developed into a persistent tradition.

Q: What does a 0 Hume universe look like? How about a 100 Hume universe?
-Dr L

There is no absolute Hume scale. This means that a global Hume level of 0 is just the Hume level of the pocket universe we've chosen to be 0. It is the differences between local Hume levels that is responsible for Hume-based phenomena. A universe that has been globally set to an arbitrary value (see below for more on this) will look like our own, only with a greater or lesser imbalance in localized or individual Hume levels (meaning more or less reality bending).

Q: Hypothetically, if the Foundation was able to somehow change the universe's Hume levels to 1 for every person, place and thing, would all anomalies cease to exist or at least stop being created?
- An Intern

No; as mentioned above, it is the differences between localized Hume levels that result in Hume-based phenomena. It has been hypothesized that there is some inherent feature to reality benders that causes them to create a Hume imbalance in their surroundings; without addressing this feature, a Hume imbalance will still exist. In theory, if EVERY part of the universe was fixed at 1 Hume forever then all anomalies that involve Humes would cease to be anomalous; however, we have no ability to even comprehend what would be necessary to fix all Hume readings at the same level, and we have not been able to establish that all anomalies are due solely to Hume-based effects.

This is a good time to announce that, following extensive study, the global Hume scale has been renormalized to a scale of 0-100! To see this in action, please visit the original paper here. For historical reasons mentions of centiHumes on this page have not yet been changed; however, please multiply them by 100 to get the proper Hume levels.

Q: I've seen above that an entity which hume level is below average lives a really spectacular life. Is SCP-503 one of these examples? Or is it an independent anomaly?
-Dr Hal

Unfortunately, we have not studied SCP-503, and cannot draw any conclusions either way. More research in this area is definitely needed.

From: Dr. Bob Graham To: Doctors James Caldmann and Carlos Rzewski
Subject: Regarding Hume Disturbances

If Humes are altered in such a way that they become distorted and malformed (if possible), can it alter reality? If so, will it create anomalies (be it in phenomena, physical objects and/or entities, memetic anomalies, cognitohazards, etc.), alter certain objects, directly respond to pre-existing Hume-altering anomalies, or just straight up end the world?

Apologies for the rather long question, but I am doing some crucial researchim writing an SCP that does this pls help -baubius right now, and it would be appreciated if you could respond as soon as possible.

In a word, no. Humes are just a measurement scale. What you're proposing is analogous to modifying a Kelvin and making temperature end the world or something. Humes aren't a particle; they're a unit.

Q: If two objects that could change Hume levels of those around them tried to changing the Hume level of each other would the changes happen or would both objects be able to cancel out the changing Hume level?
-Dr. Kostya

As of now, hume changing anomalies are few and far between, so research is limited. The best answer I can give now is pretty simple, it depends. If two objects used equal amounts of energy to change the hume level of an area to two different values, the value created would be the average of the two (for instance if one wanted to change the value to 100 and 1 to 0, the hume level would change to 50. This means that in specific circumstances hume changing entities can cancel out.) If one object used more energy, the hume field would skew towards its outcome. This is consistent with a tendency for the hume-levels of an area to even out. The generalised formula for this would be:

x = e1/e2 * (x1 + x2)/2

where x is the produced hume level, e1 is the energy level of the hume changer which is attempting to create the highest level, e2 is the energy level of the hume changer which is attempting to create the lowest level, x1 is the higher hume level and x2 is the lowest hume level. Basically, as e1 moves up, the produced hume value also goes up, and as e2 goes up, the produced hume level goes down.

Q: In the previous paper it was stated that there are a few known ways to increase one's own Hume level. However, is it possible to decrease it? If so, could this be used to initiate more research on beings with low Hume levels?
-Dr. B

Q: Are SCPs with inconsistent internal topologies or inconsistent internal timestreams examples of environments where some anomalous aspect of the site has a reality-bender level of Humes, and is able to reshape the site as it wishes?
-Site-12 Question Box

Q: If I carried around a device which lowered the hume levels in an area around me and increased my hume levels, would I effectively become a temporary reality bender, and if so, with a strong enough device, could I become more powerful than even SCP-343?
-Dr. Grey

Q: Reading through this had to lead to questions about the nature of 'Nobody'. If someone had a perfectly average hume level, could that lead to a person who can't do anything to change the world around them?
-Dr. Wright

Q: Where, exactly, were the highest and lowest hume levels ever recorded found?
-Researcher B

QA: What would "i" value hume level be? Like the square root of negative 1. Would it not exist because "i" doesn't exist?1.

QB: Then what about negative "i"? Does a being with negative "i" hume level be less nonexistant than "i" or be the opposite meaning it's more existant than anything.
~Dr. Bone

Q: Theoretically, could negative humes exist despite their obvious contradiction of Kejel's Laws of Reality?
~Containment Specialist Matism

Q: You both said that 0 Humes is both absolute zero but also an arbitrary value needed for comparison? Like, which one is it?
-Dr. Foreman

Q: You said what activation of SCP-668 temporary rises Hume level to to astronomical (>670 Hm; or 67 Hm? It is become very more worse to understanding after renormalization) levels across all known space. This effect must to interact with other anomalies in all the world, which are related to Humes, is not it? For example, activation of SCP-668 must temporary suppress or make weaken abilities of reality benders and thaumatologists. Also, this activation temporary must make all normal people as people with lower-than-average Hume level, is not it? Or, maybe, information from previous part about SCP-668 is incorrect, partial or simply outdated, and new researches of SCP-668 have shown new details?
-Dr. Murzei

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