* {{Defictionalization}}: Due to TranslationConvention, the characters are actually speaking a fictional language called Orth rather than English. A friend of the author's developed the language as a full-fledged ConLang at the author's request.
* FridgeHorror: The following sentence:
--> ''The fill wiring diagram of how about came here from extramuros and from small feeder maths in the region, and how they moved from one math to another, was complicated, and not really worth explaining.''
** That's right: there's something that Creator/NealStephenson considers too complicated to explain. It's like being told that there is an upper limit to infinity.
* FridgeLogic: At one point the fraas build a Faraday Cage, to keep any signals from entering the room. A few minutes later their badges respond to a signal from outside. It is never commented on, but clearly such a signal should not have been able to enter the room.
* GeniusBonus: This is a Creator/NealStephenson book, after all. The philosophies and scientific theories, or "theorics", mentioned in the book have RealLife counterparts.
* TearJerker: Suur Ala and [[spoiler:Fraa Erasmas, just before kicking off the Antiswarm]]
* WhamLine: "'In my world,' said Zh’vaern, [[spoiler:'we call it a Faraday cage.'"]]