A Cymek was a type of thinking machine who used to be a human, but at some point in time had been converted into a cyborg: a robotic body controlled by a legacy human brain. They lived in the ten-or-so millennia before the establishment of the Spacing Guild.
The cymek's human brain was held in a preservation canister filled with electrafluid. In this state, and with frequent upkeep, the brain could live for tens of thousands of years and could control interchangeable robotic bodies through thoughtrodes.
Types of Cymeks
Cymeks could be broadly separated into two categories:
- Titans - the original 20 persons who conquered and ruled the Old Empire until the rise of Omnius. It is not known how many of them became cymeks and who died as humans
- Neocymeks - all cymeks who came after the establishment of the 20 Titans.
Despite once being human themselves, cymeks considered themselves superior to and the natural overlords of humans, whom they considered weak in both body and mind. Consequently, the cymeks referred to humans in a derogatory manner, by using the term originally coined by the original Titans - hrethgir. Omnius and his servants later adopted this term.
Their ability to detach from their robotic bodies proved both a major strength and a major weakness for the cymeks. Without their bodies they were vulnerable to numerous forms of manipulation. Thus newly created cymeks were often indoctrinated into total subservience to their new masters, either Omnius or the Titans.
List of known Cymeks
Behind the scenes
Cymeks are never mentioned by Frank Herbert in his original Dune novels. They are the creation of Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson, and feature prominently in their Legends of Dune trilogy of novels.