| "I once thought I could save the world... now look at it"
— Spoilers for Deus Ex: Mankind Divided follow!
The Neural SubNet, or NSN, is an advanced network that allows its users to communicate with each other in real time via virtual settings through the use of interfacing chairs and servers. The chair itself was developed by Connaught Technologies, but it is unclear if they also helped develop the NSN.
Due to requiring a large amount of physical space to house the interfacing chair and servers, the NSN is impractical for the general public. By 2029, Jim Miller of Task Force 29 uses one to have confidential meetings with his boss, Joseph Manderley. Various Illuminati members, including Lucius DeBeers, Morgan Everett, Bob Page, Volkard Rand, Stanton Dowd, and Elizabeth DuClare, seem to also have NSN devices of their own, using them to appear in several clandestine meetings.
While in a NSN conference, users can move around freely like they were occupying real space and appear to carry out actions like they were physically there, such as leaning against the virtual conference table. It is unclear if they can “feel” in the virtual setting or it is the machine reading the brain signals on how they react to a conversation (like folding one’s arms).
The development of NSN technology has also brought forth a type of hackers known as Rippers, who use a black market version of open-sourced NSN technology for hacking purposes. In the game mode Breach, players take the role of a ripper attempting to access secure information stored in the Palisade Blades.
As the NSN device requires a large amount of physical space, and is unwieldy to use compared to computers and phones, it is possible the reason it is used over other communications is for security purposes and, to a lesser extent, to be able to see others in the conversation. It also appears that past conversations can be deleted from the memory cloud, possibly another security feature, but it is unclear if they can be recovered if deleted.
As another security precaution, only authorized users can access a NSN device through the use of a specialized keycard that contains their information and avatar. However, this can lead to an oversight in security as, if lost, an unauthorized user can use it to access the NSN using that person's appearance. As demonstrated by Adam Jensen, he was able to portray himself as Jim Miller while he used the NSN to find data on the servers. In some cases though, it is possible to change from one avatar to another. When Delara Auzenne was sitting in on a Council of Five meeting, she was disguised as Elizabeth DuClare, and only when she was alone with Lucius DeBeers to give her report did she reveal her real image in the virtual setting.
Virtual Appearance Edit
Like most virtual settings, meetings within the NSN can have different appearances. With TF29, the virtual room is completely illuminated and is very sparse except for a large, circular table with chairs and TF29's logo on the table. However, in DeBeers' virtual conference, they tried to make it like an actual room, complete with a chandelier, crackling fireplace, mahogany table, walls of books, elaborate chairs, floor, and rug, and dimmer lighting.