What is a monolith?

The monolith [Also known as Tycho Magnetic Anomaly [TMA]] is a 1:4:9 solid black rectangular slab that acts as an alien supercomputer. It was created by cosmic beings known as "The Firstborn" in order to keep track of humanity and help speed up their evolution.

Although it is an extrodinary device, it's functions are purely automatic - it has no conciousness.

There are exactly 3 monoliths that have been documented across the space odyssey series; one in africa, one on the moon, and one floating in orbit around io, one of Jupiter's many moons. This monolith is especially important, as once it has done all it's business near Io, it can be found on another jovian moon, Europa, helping to assist the evolution of recently discovered alien life.

This time, though, it is joined by the being known as Halman, a cosmic entity containing both the souls of David Bowman and Hal 9000. The monolith uses them as a sort of tool to help it keep watch on humanity and guide them along the right path by sending out messages and warnings from time to time.

But what The Monolith doesn't know is Halman is also using it. As they are kept captive within its gigantic memory, they are given all the time in the world [in a very literal sense] to study it's circuits in attempt to comprehend the incomprehensible. Eventually, Halman uses this knowledge to their advantage.

The most notable example of this is in 3001, where The Monolith is tasked with destroying humanity, as The Firstborn believe it has failed as a species. Once Halman learns of this, they alert their recently revived coworker, Frank Poole, and together with the help of The Europa Committee, they put together a plan to destroy The Monolith with an amalgamationtion of the world's deadliest viruses. They use Halman as a sort of trojan horse in order to get in delivered to The Monolith's circuits.

Their plan is successful, but at a cost. Halman believes some of the virus has entered their own circuits, and due to this, they were escorted by Frank to a great vault on the moon in order to prevent the possibility of them infecting anybody else. Frank believes that they'll have to be woken up again at some point in the near future, depending on how The Firstborn react to the destruction of The Monolith.

Why I like these rectangles so much:

I have no idea when my brain decided to make me fixate on a solid black rectangle like never before but you know how it is. I think the main thing that really gets me about these monoliths is how it is the textbook definition of "Don't judge a book by it's cover", as it is completely featureless, and due to that you don't expect much from it. But once you take a look inside of that thing? whew. It get's crazy. [see: the stargate sequence in 2001]

I've already covered a couple of it's powers in my about section for it, but another thing I'd like to bring up is it's ability to store and emulate life. How it can completely destroy and discard a man's body and yet still keep him alive and functioning, making him live the rest of his life until he is reborn and is free to pick his own form and how he wants to appear to others.

How it knows that even though said man's human self has been discarded, he still has remnants of his humanity in him due to the memories that it kept for him, and that it understands he still has needs, [e.g. letting him save Hal from the destruction of Discovery in 2010] despite the beings behind this technology being so far ahead of him in evolution, you'd think they'd struggle to understand. I just think this is an extremely fun concept to think and theorize about, and it is constantly on my mind. Only 3 beings are given this privilege though, the picky bastard.

Writing this has made me realize how much the inner mechanisms of supercomputers fascinate me, and that Is likely why I find these monoliths so engaging. It is also likely due to me being objectum, and that allowing me to appreciate it's simple yet intriguing appearance more than the average person. [The amount of posts i've made about the monolith in a "hear me out" sense with people assuming I was joking is crazy. you guys aren't rocking with a bad bitch?]