An Outside Context Problem (or OCP) is an extreme, typically unmitigable, existential threat faced by a civilization.[1]

An OCP possesses grossly superior capabilities. An affected civilization typically lacks either an expectation that such capabilities exist, or the technical knowledge to understand them[1]; hence it lacks effective countermeasures against the OCP, and the means to develop such countermeasures.[2]

A civilization that encounters an active and aggressive OCP is typically destroyed, subverted, or enslaved.[1]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Excession, chapter 2.2
  2. Excession, chapter 1.2

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