Some commentary on your notes at the bottom as I understand them as they are written. If read the way it sounds, then the length of all material bodies travelling in the ether is 0. IE, since light propogates instantly (and therefore has infinite velocity) then the ratio of any objects velocity to that of light is 0 unless that object is also an instantly propogating mechanism.
As a commentary on making everything in Ghyll relativistic even at low speeds, ie, things like the distance to grandma's house, this is going to make a map nigh impossible for Ghyll. One time the distance could be 8 hours to an individual observer walking at what he believes is a fixed pace while another time it might be 3. In addition, two observers starting off at nigh identical times might arrive days, months, or years apart from one another due to some simple factor like the fact that they can't be standing inside of one another when they start.
Also, if distance of any material is a function of such an astounding range of factors, then life would have a difficult time functioning. Buildings would change and contract based upon whether you took a bath or not, the distance between sub-particles in your body might become vast due to a way you moved your arm.
My thoughts are that at least for sanity of mind we ought to try and keep ourselves living in what could at least marginally be called a Newtonian Universe for everyday life. Things like rolling a rock up a hill should always result in it coming back with a relatively predictable velocity, because otherwise the difficulties in creating a functional society are almost too vast to surmount.
Exotic behavior could be limited to a subset of materials which defy some but not all of the laws of Newtonian physics or are relativistic within somewhat constrained bounds. IE. A bindlet ball isn't suddenly going to become the size of the world or shrink out of existence, because both of those would preclude ever having a game. --Araes Domandred 08:39, 20 Sep 2004 (EDT)
I actually abandoned the physics of the thing for precisely those reasons, going with a more mystic "Historio-Physis" effect. That is, the size, and shape of things is mutable, but not while you're watching. Kinda cheezy, but fits well with the overall project of this lexicon, gets me out of drawing a map, and helps explain why everything in Ghyll seems to depend on elaborate calculations involving a zillion variables. --Joe Bowers 14:10, 20 Sep 2004 (EDT)
Fascinating. Kind of a reverse Heisenburg effect? --DrBacchus 14:27, 23 Sep 2004 (EDT)
Please note that I've hooked the accuracy of the entry to the accuracy of the sources, so if you really hate this stuff, or think there is no way giant insects would be trying to recreate the world and gain ultimate power by writing an encyclopedia (that monster of consensus :), you can always make it clear that Doc Rockett is a total crackpot or Mother Mutton ate babies or whatever. I don't want to spoil anything for anybody. --Joe Bowers 17:09, 23 Sep 2004 (EDT)
Nice piece of work - and the bit at the end opens up many opportunities for future scholarly debate. Love it. --Dok 19:56, 23 Sep 2004 (EDT)
A very heady entry, but enjoyable to think about. To play the devil's advocate, instead of commissioning you to draw a map of Ghyll, it would make the most sense to commission everyone to create their own map of Ghyll <g>. Seriously though, if we are giant bugs, then this philosophy seems to tie in with known behaviors of Earth bugs: wasps, ants, and assuredly others, are constantly growing their homes and being rebuilt or redesigned, and scent trails eventually erode with disuse, being replaced with more widely agreed upon (continually used) paths. Hell, only very few humans are trailblazers: we invaribly walk on the path that has been put before it, never swaying. Does group think and consensus ever solidify a location? --Morbus Iff 20:58, 23 Sep 2004 (EDT)
I'd really like this- I've been banging my head against the table for the last few weeks trying to get a method of (1) assimilating the buckets of geographical info into a sketch/visual outline, and then (2) not taking a zillion liberties with distance and relationship, and sucking authorship away from the creators and crew. I've also been doing some research into "Wiki Whiteboards"- it's be great if folks could add a point or region to a rough sketch, and then at (long) intervals I could draft it up in "Map" style. Unfortunately, none of them seem baked enough to justify their use. As far as how solid things are, I guess the body politic has to decide that. The whole thing may even just be a political/religious phenomenon (although that's not what I was thinking when I wrote it.) --Joe Bowers 12:37, 24 Sep 2004 (EDT)
A whiteboard would be interesting, but my previous investigations into them have arisen the same conclusions as yours: they're just not exactly what we need. Had you gotten my email on ASCII maps like those in NetHack? That'd be easily changeable by everyone, with no necessity of talent <g>. --Morbus Iff 12:40, 24 Sep 2004 (EDT)
Oh, my, an actual map of Ghyll? Well, I've done a bit of mapping over the years, mainly poorly, but with a program called Campaign Cartographer. Not much help for updating for everyone, but fairly nice to look at when it's done. I like the whiteboard idea. That way we could all edit it. What have you all looked at so far? --Doctor Phineas Crank 13:23, 24 Sep 2004 (EDT)
Funnily, Phineas, that's one of the programs we've been exploring, along with an opensourced equivalent at http://autorealm.sf.net. The big downsides with them are the cost, both timewise and monetarily, to get them going. I'm also worried about the fact that AutoRealm isn't updated anymore - I don't like the idea of learning something that I'll never use for anything but one project. Both, however, solve the "I'm not an artist" ideal: since they're tile based, it becomes less a matter of "I CAN'T DRAW A TREE" but "OoH, I put a tree on a mountain! Excelsior!" Another option I've been looking into was taking these tiles and moving them into a Photoshop/GIMP sorta format, editable in lots of existing apps (and cross-platform - the previous programs are Windows only). The biggest problem with a Photoshop based approach is that there are no decent tiling tools: it becomes much harder to do layouts. --Morbus Iff 13:38, 24 Sep 2004 (EDT)
Right. Oh, God, I don't believe I'm about to suggest this insanity... I could do the map if you wanted. Oo, I feel queasy now... Seriously, if you can't find some other way, I can get at least a base started for you. CC2, as we call Campaign Cartographer, is a bit of a challenge to learn when just starting out. And, as for cost, well, it's worth it, if you're going to be doing lots of maps. For this project, though, it's probably not worth the cash. Unfortunately, there aren't too many other viable options either! Well, in any case, you can see my work at http://www.fantasist.net/cartography.shtml It doesn't show you everything that CC2 can do, but it gives you a pretty good idea. --Doctor Phineas Crank 13:52, 24 Sep 2004 (EDT)
Remember, you offered! As for CC2, I'd be running it under emulation on a dual 2ghz machine - early experiments with it suggest that very large example maps cause a lot of tile redraws - nearly every single move seemed to cause every tile to be slowly redrawn. Is this normal? Even with the emulation overhead, I can't help but feel I should be getting more out of dual 2ghz processors. As for the whole "getting started" part, I think that may be a good idea: staring at a blank slate and fifty foreign buttons is certainly mood swinging. If anything, I could always screenshot your stuff then bring it into Photoshop to mess with <g>. Presumably moving things around should be easier with a base too. So, if you're willing, I'd be interested in looking at what you can do. Tell me: if you make a map using the default set of uber-colorful tiles, how hard is it to make it look archaic, such as this Boston image (recognizing, of course, that its a city, not worldview, but still...) or hand-drawn?. Is there some sort of filter in CC2 to apply after the fact, or do you start with that preconceived view? /me stares at daunting 150 page PDF manual. --Morbus Iff 14:25, 24 Sep 2004 (EDT)
How hard is it? Damn near impossible. Allyn, the guy who did the Boston map is a professional graphics "dude" who spends every waking moment mapping. The hand-drawn is more doable. As for running it on an emulator... Well, I've never tried. In theory it could work, but I would imagine that redraw time is terrible. I usually use the symbols that shipped with the product, or make my own. In fact, I made my own hand-drawn style. Also, I should have a fairly large collection of hand-drawn style that I bought with an upgrade and symbol pack not too long ago. I'm out this evening, but I'll take a crack at it in the morning. If I'm still sane. --Doctor Phineas Crank 14:37, 24 Sep 2004 (EDT)
This rocks! I'm looking forward to the results! --Joe Bowers 21:44, 24 Sep 2004 (EDT)