Sprites are digital, sentient entities that technomancers can compile. They are creatures of resonance. Hackers have a hard time explaining their existence. To a hacker, they appear to be complex programs formed out of nothing. Many technomancers view sprites as pets or digital friends, while others see them as the spirits in the machine.
Sprites can travel to and from the Resonance Realms at will. They can also use the Resonance Realms as a short cut to access nodes instead of having to travel through the Matrix. However they can only access nodes that they already have access privileges to or that contains the technomancer that compiles them. Otherwise, they have to hack the node like normal.
Particularly powerful sprites can become free sprites once their services to their technomancer ends. Usually only sprites with prolonged interactions with meta-humanity go free, meaning mostly registered sprites. Unregistered sprites usually return to the Resonance Realms; some believe this is some kind of Matrix safe guard. Once freed, many free sprites feel liberation from no longer needing to take orders while others feel a loss of purpose from losing their connection to their technomancer.