Isopters and the Relativity of Communism
My daughter is inventing, for online-gaming purposes, a fictional race of beings. She calls them Isopters, which is the scientific name for termites; and these fictional beings have a hive mind. It's a classic SF trope; and like all such it is a poetically alienated view of humankind. Us as hive-mind critters.
Part of the fun of fantasy is working out the outlandish implications of taking the premise literally. Thus she and I have worked out that Isopters have the usual social-insect castes; queen, drone, workers, soldiers; that the workers do all the actual thinking, the queen and drones are just the hive's genitalia; that therefore it is a comic gaffe for a visiting human to address the queen.
They communicate by radio; they have a Web of shared thoughts, memories and sensations. They are monocular, but share visual data, so when two are present in a place they have depth perception. They have individual identities, but it’s superficial; underneath they are one. When you talk to one, you talk to all.
Though unified, still Isopters possess sufficient individuality for competition and rivalry. They can disconnect from their Web, for more originality, but less safety. This balance between self-and-all defines Isopter society.
One lovely detail that Hannah came up with is that Isopters are not given names at birth, but numbers. But also they can earn names, either praising or insulting, depending on what they do. Hannah deduces from this that Isopters would be astonished that all humans are given names at birth - and not just one, but two or even three, one of which we don't even use! I chimed in, playing Isopter, “You get names just for breathing? That's Communism!”