The Akashic Records are a vast library designed to hold all knowledge and writings in the universe, as well as a complete history. Although it comes somewhat short of its goal, mainly with respect to history predating its founding (such as the mysterious tlalfarans), it is nevertheless the largest collection of knowledge to exist anywhere in the world.
The Akashic Records are physically located in the city of Hevan, in a large building purpose-built for the storing of records. The interior of the Akashic Records building is filled with shelves arranged in seven concentric circles, with two additional aisles crossing through to the centre. Space within the library is folded over upon itself many times – if you head widdershins around the shelves, you move ever deeper into the library, while travelling clockwise takes you inexorably back towards the entrance. This is a helical path of sorts, only the third dimension is not height but rather a sort of depth; the path appears flat, yet with every circuit you come upon different books.
These physical shelves contain all manner of written records. Books, of course, are numerous, but there are also scrolls, stone or clay tablets, and many other types of recorded writing. The Akashic Records contains copies of every book, magazine, newspaper, or other publication every written on Earth (or any other planet for that matter). Though these documents are sorted, the sorting scheme is somewhat arcane, accounting as it does for area (Earth counts as one area), era, author, and title, and perhaps a few other things as well.
To the left (clockwise) of the library entrance, and after every 360 degree circuit into the library, there are a set of teleporters which provide a shortcut to particular areas of the library or, more importantly, back to the entrance once you have found what you were looking for. Other than the set by the entrance, these teleporters occupy the place where you would have normally expected the entrance doors to be. With thousands of miles of bookshelves, some sort of quick travel is essential to those browsing in person.
The Akashic Racords are not limited to the recording of physical writings, however. They also store digital writings. Though it does not go as far as the Internet Wayback Machine in producing frequent snapshots of the entire visible Internet, the Akashic Records in some ways does much better – it replicates only original writings, but includes some things posted on the so-called “dark web” or “deep web”, portions of the Internet which remain invisible to search engines (including the Internet Wayback Machine).
Digital records are stored on the terminals in the centre of the library. There’s a separate terminal for each section of the library. The terminals are magical in nature and offer only an index-style listing of the documents they contain, as well as natural browsing via hyperlinks between the documents.
What the Akashic Records do not replicate are letters, missives, chat conversations, and the like. It only replicates published works, whether it be online news articles, blog posts, or actual printed books. The line here is blurry, and generally the final decision for whether the Akashic Records replicate something comes down to how the author feels about it (though they are never directly asked).
The Search Engine
Of course, the Akashic Records would not be very useful without some means of searching it. The Akashic Records are equipped with a sort of artificial intelligence of magical origin which is responsible for responding to search queries. Someone physically present in the Akashic Records can communicate with this AI easily, just by thinking it.
However, this feature is not limited by proximity or range. Simply knowing of the Akashic Records’ existence is sufficient to form a search query for its AI by focusing on the Akashic Records in their mind and thinking about what they want to find. Often, spoken incantations are used to keep the query focused. The response may come in the form of requested knowledge directly inserted into the brain, or a book or other piece of writing replicated into the person’s hands.
Though the Akashic Records do not distinguish good writing from bad when it comes to replication, the AI does have some heuristics for lowering poor or hateful writings in search results. The AI also does not return fictional writings unless explicitly requested in the search query.
Every so often, employees of the Akashic Records incarnate on various planets, typically in groups of three, to aid in their data collection process. Such individuals typically display an easy grasp of all sorts of knowledge, learning exceptionally quickly. Depending on the place and era, they may be called geniuses, fates, muses, or any number of other names. The Norns of Norse myth were avatars of the Akashic Records. The same individuals are also known as the Fates of Greek Mythology.