Much of the groundwork for the plot of Virtual Shadows was originally conceived for Synthetic Illusions, including the story behind the tumultuous Fringe worlds Klistosi and Venovi and Ines's backstory.
In Artificial Absolutes, it's mentioned that the reason even office buildings have internal defense guns is because of a deadly attack on a high-profile building years before. In Virtual Shadows, the details of this attack are revealed, and its aftermath is the impetus for the villain's actions.
Virtual Shadows includes several references to "Takes a Hacker," a standalone prequel short story about Jane as a 16-year-old, which is part of the Brave New Girls anthology. These include Jane's rudimentary programming skills, a cameo by Vieve Hua (a primary character in "Takes a Hacker," and a mention of George Blumenthal (another important character in the short).
The second to last chapter of Virtual Shadows was the very first one conceived for the book, which was plotted backwards during the planning stages.
During the beta reading phase, the author wrote a false ending to the book to prank one of her friends. In this false ending, Jane's ship is shot down, and she crashes into a mountain and is buried in an avalanche. This was a reference to the joke "rocks fall, everyone dies."
Kozen Float is named for horror author Stephen Kozeniewski, as are Kozen monkey-rats. In the book's universe, Dr. Kozen was a famous biologist who discovered many new species of non-intelligent alien life, hence both a space habitat and an animal being named after him.
The planet Zabett is named after fantasy author Elizabeth Corrigan.
Artificial Absolutes and Synthetic Illusions each have eleven point-of-view characters, with four having perspectives in both. Virtual Shadows has ten, eight of which also have perspectives in Synthetic Illusions and four of which have perspectives in Artificial Absolutes.