Theory:Technopathy

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Main Article Theories about technopathy Main Discussion

The following fan theories are about technopathy.

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Theories

Theory Citations Notes
Micah's ability's primary function is not technopathy, but a form of empathy which allows him to identify "problems" with any organic or inorganic system through physical contact. In every instance where Micah exhibits technopathy, he touches the mechanical device in question and concentrates, causing bank machines to dispense money (The Fix), locked elevators to work (How to Stop an Exploding Man), etc. + Micah receives a $2,000 laptop from his grandfather and then dissembles it. (Six Months Ago) Later, Micah fixes the logic board of his laptop, possibly using his powers. (Genesis) Having disassembled the laptop previously would have given him a knowledge of mechanical (computer-related) devices, teaching him how they work in order to identify "problems".

+ While hugging his cousin Monica Dawson, Micah deliberately places his palm on her back in the same manner that he touches the mechanical devices he has manipulated in past episodes. (The Kindness of Strangers) He then tells her that he wishes he could fix her dreams.

- We all wish things. There is no evidence that he did or could do anything to "fix her dreams".

- Monica is able to make tomato roses using her powers before Micah hugs her and touches her back. (The Kindness of Strangers)

Micah's comment was about Monica's dreams to better their present situation and not her fears about her abilities.

It is possible that if Micah had a working knowledge of how the human body works or at least the brain, he could "fix" Monica in some way (with a rush of endorphins or another naturally-occurring chemical to lift her spirits).

It's also possible that Micah's ability revolves around manipulating electric impulses, which would account for effects both in machines and humans, affecting hardware and the nervous system.
- Asking a machine to perform a rapid search of the entire internet like he did for Tracy involves pushing a machine far past it's normal limits, and would require more the manipulating electric impulses.

- Micah has stated multiple times that his power allows him to "talk to machines", without referring to using it on any other kind of object.

+ He could merely be unaware of the extent of his abilities. When he hugged Monica, he could just be trying to see if his abilities would work on her.
It would appear that he ultimately failed however, suggesting that his power is limited to technopathy.

- Micah changes the traffic lights without touching them when in the car with Niki.

He was still connected to them, he had a cell phone with him, he was using it to "connect" himself with the system that controls traffic lights.

+ In The Hard Part Candice is impersonating Niki. Micah seems to grow suspicious only after hugging her.

- Micah is smart, you don't need to have powers to be smart.

Sylar's intelligence is a side effect of his powers.

That is debatable.
The result of Micah's empathy ability, combined with knowledge of how things work, expands its power, resulting in his being able to manipulate organic and inorganic systems through physical contact. See above. + His knowledge of technology allows Micah to alter the way technology works. He can cause programs to work within their parameters and may be able to alter their parameters and/or physical configurations as well (he may have fixed his laptop's motherboard using this power in Genesis).

+ If Micah were to learn the anatomy and physiology of the human body (or any organic system for that matter), he may also possess the ability to work within their parameters or alter their parameters and/or physical configurations.

- Micah has explicitly called his ability "talking with machines".
- Despite some similarities, humans are still very different from machines.

- This borderlines on Micah having two abilities; the writing staff has said numerous times that everyone has one basic ability.

+ It isn't necessarily two abilities. Niki refers to Micah as her little genius; being able to control machines upon physical contact (an ability demonstrated moderately late in the season) would not account for this. Micah could be a genuinely gifted child who also happens to be an evolved human.
- Giving him the ability to manipulate people and machines would be two different abilities however.
Micah's ability may evolve into electronic communication. Matt's ability eventually evolved into being able to project thoughts into other people, rather than just reading minds. + Bridget Bailey and Matt both seem to have evolved their power in some way.

+ He gets the traffic lights to change in Powerless without any physical contact to them.

- He was using his mom's cell phone to relay electronic signals, rather than just his mind alone.

- Hana stated in one of her conversations with Micah in corinthianlasvegas.com that she can't talk to machines like he does, suggesting that technopathy and EDT are fundamentally different (albeit similar) abilities.

+ Illusion can be used to create illusions, but not to read minds. Telepathy can do both. EDT and technopathy may have a similar relationship.

It is possible that Micah could imitate electronic communication through his technopathy, interacting with the computer's software. Though he would still have to do this through touch unless he used a cell phone or his PDA seen in Cold Snap.

Micah's ability actually involves detecting and interpreting electrical signals. These can come from machines or human beings. The Kindness of Strangers. + Micah places his hand on Monica's back in a manner similar to his manipulation of machines. He is able to realize that her dreams have been broken even though he had no idea why she was unhappy. The common element between machines and humans is electrical signals.
- Micah may simply be attentive. Monica wasn't hiding her emotions.

It is also hypothetically possible that Micah possesses a variation of electric manipulation, which, in combination with his mental (not necessarily intuitive) aptitude, could allow for him to "speak" to machines and affect humans' nervous system.

Micah's ability is a more advanced form of activation and deactivation. Micah can turn on a unplugged "devil" (Bully). Matt can turn on an unplugged TV (Turn and Face the Strange).

Both can manipulate electronic devices.
- Baby Matt wasn't shown doing anything other than turning things on and off.
Hence the "more advanced" part of the theory.
It would make more sense to say that Baby Matt has a less advanced version of Micah's ability.
Micah's ability is only technopathy, controlling machines. The scene where he tried to "fix" Monica was him expressing his wish to help her, and innocently attempting to use his power on her, but ultimately not succeeding. None + While similar in some aspects, machinery and biological organisms are very different objects, and therefore could likely not be manipulated in the same fashion.

+ Micah never "fixed" either of his parents with his ability, even though they were arguably worse off the Monica was.
+ Micah himself said, "I wish I could fix your nightmares for ya", implying that he couldn't.


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See Also: 9RedTime travelTechnopathy