Manual Jump Calculations, Catastrophic Success, and Prophecies

Manually calculating a jump? It’s something like this.”

A kind Referee will permit on-the-fly jump calculations for intensely skilled savants and incredible talents. Perhaps tied to math, or psionics, or good AI processors in the skull.

I would allow it in rare occasions… but with a small percentage of “extraordinary success”, where you get something like this kicking in:

The Traveller who started the journey, is not the same person who returned.


The Prophecy is TRUE

In Stellar reaches #27, there is a long, involved story of a migration of Solomani who, assisted by their relatives in the Imperium, make a year-long journey to a new home.

In the story, the driver is in part a desire to beef up the strength of a minor ruling house, and in part a desire to reconcile both Solomani and Mixed Vilani family members, and so show the way to reconcile the Imperium and the Confederation.

But suppose the motivation is more heavily driven by a prophetic vision: someone who actually sees the coming fall of the Imperium and the destruction of Charted Space, and so gathered his people to relocate to safety.

Perhaps to the Domain of Deneb, behind the claw, where the AI Virus won’t reach.  Or to an obscure but habitable world: a place where they can dig in for the coming collapse, with a hidden location that’s secure from the inevitable robot rebellion?

Hmmm….

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Dimension X – The Outer Limit

The Vilani believe in honouring the ancestors.

I am not as deep into the past as they are… but there’s something to be said, to remembering what was done before, the good and the bad. It sets a baseline where you can build on, inspiration and direction you can strengthen or reject in favour of another way.

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The World Made for a Child

Shelter tells the story of Rin, a 17-year-old girl who lives her life inside of a futuristic simulation completely by herself in infinite, beautiful loneliness. Each day, Rin awakens in virtual reality and uses a tablet which controls the simulation to create a new, different, beautiful world for herself. Until one day, everything changes, and Rin comes to learn the true origins behind her life inside a simulation.

A rather interesting situation for Travellers to run into. The kinder, softer inverse of Ray Bradbury’s story.

(The two videos and stories can even be pushed into a contrast of hard-edged Solomani individualism and a soft-tone Vilani collectivism. But I generally portray the Vilani as a good deal more tougher, commanding, and masculine than the Japanese, Chinese, or other Asian group-first societies.)

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The World That the Children Made

I can definitely see a Ruling House with unusual succession/inheritance traditions.


The World That the Children Made

Happy life, with the machines
Scattered around the room
Look what they made, they made it for me
Happy technology

Outside, the lions run
Feeding on remains
We’ll never leave, look at us now
So in love with the way we are

Here
The world that the children made
The world that the children made

Every night, they rock us to sleep
Digital family
Is it real, or is it a dream?
Can you believe in machines?

Outside, the beating sun
Can you hear the screams?
We’ll never leave, look at us now
So in love with the way we are

Here
The world that the children made
The world that the children made

Here
The world that the children made
Here
The world that the children made

Here
The world that the children made
Here
The world that the children made


From the ending of the original Bradbury short story,
“The Veldt (The World That the Children Made)”

“Well, here I am,” said David McClean in the nursery doorway, “Oh, hello.” He stared at the two children seated in the center of the open glade eating a little picnic lunch. Beyond them was the water hole and the yellow veldtland; above was the hot sun. He began to perspire. “Where are your father and mother?”

The children looked up and smiled. “Oh, they’ll be here directly.”

“Good, we must get going.” At a distance Mr. McClean saw the lions fighting and clawing and then quieting down to feed in silence under the shady trees.

He squinted at the lions with his hand tip to his eyes.

Now the lions were done feeding. They moved to the water hole to drink.

A shadow flickered over Mr. McClean’s hot face. Many shadows flickered. The vultures were dropping down the blazing sky.

“A cup of tea?” asked Wendy in the silence.

Never let it be said that the children of Nobility lack manners.

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Black Hole Farming… and Black Hole Bombing

The above video is a fast and reasonably accurate summary of…

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Understanding The Imperial March

Everyone’s Favorite Imperial Theme Song.

Actually, I have a stronger interest in Imperial culture, not Imperial military power, so my personal theme remains Peter Buffet’s grand, spacious and serious Nebraska:

But if you just like adventure and exploration, it’s better to point to another musical analysis by 12tone, Africa:

Now, that’s adventure!

 

 

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Rockefeller Wealth Generation

Sure, moving quickly and being able to see what others missed helps in starting up big time  wealth generation: but to stay in the big leagues, government connections to back cartels, monopolies, and licensing restrictions “to protect the public” goes quite far.

And most Imperial dynasties and ruling houses are uninterested in the hard work to stay competitive in the free market, when they can use the cheap and easy ‘stroke of a pen’ to make laws to punish innovators who take ‘their’ profits and ‘their’ customers.

Fortunately, not even the Vilani-culture nobles have been able to recreate the truly static, unchanging economic structure of the First Imperium. When large tyrannical systems die, they stay dead. Even when partially rebuilt, the old times never truly return: the Second Imperium was a freer place than the First, and the Third freer yet.

And, in the 1248 Milieu, the Fourth Imperium is unlikely to ever truly reach the scope and scale of any of her predecessors. The only real possibility of doing so was if the Domain of Deneb/Regency of Deneb had remained united: with her huge economic advantages over the ruins of the rest of the Imperium, she could have successfully reasserted Imperial Authority over ex-Imperial Space… but the Regency fell apart.


Sadly, businessmen are generally libertarians when they are small… and fascists (“government-business alliance”) when they are big. There are those who are able to resist crying out for government protection when times are hard, but they are few and far between.

And who hears (…or cares…) about those few men of integrity? Who sees the legacy and benefits, resulting from the evil and the corruption they did not do?

No one but God, man. No one but God.

In our actual history, this  corporate nonsense has been going on since at least Charles I (“Why Lovers of the State Hate Uber” https://www.garynorth.com/public/14332.cfm), if not far, far longer. In Traveller history, its a deeply Vilani thing, so you have shadow-emperors (who were also megacorporate leaders, of course).

And in Marc Miller’s Traveller (a.k.a. “T4”), Emperor/Business Magnate Cleon Zhunastu built his fortune from a variant of cold fusion, Fusion Plus.

 

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