Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Can You Hear Me Now?

The cross-generation planning method of harnessing the game-changing power of immortality as noted last time requires good communication. The kind of communication that it requires is about the quality of the communication. It doesn't matter the quantity if it is concise and clear. It also makes no difference in regards to time if preservable writing is an available option in the setting. What does have some impact is the timing. A small impact in this case, but on its own communication times can be their own game changer. As with everything else communication time can be enhanced either by technological or fantastical means. Understanding just how it changes things can be something of a challenge. It is, right now, something still being figured out for real.

Most fantasy settings are set in a time where messages can be relayed by horse riding couriers. There can also be carrier pigeons--the Egyptians and Persians first used them 3,000 years ago. This was a huge improvement over people made to run messages far away carrying only a verbal message and making the use of multiple runners along a longer route. Since this is a fantasy setting, and not a strictly historical one, magic comes into play. It would start with magical carrier pigeons that could fly faster and longer. It would end with the scrying version of video conferencing at the other end of the spectrum. In between are tomes that writing appears in from another copy, telepathic style messages, oracles that know things from far away lands, and lesser deities as couriers.

Information is power when it is put to use. Using it in a timely manner is an important way to capitalise on it. It doesn't matter whether it is intelligence for battlefield planning, trading information, spy work, or organising research. Good speed for information flow negates the importance of distance. It makes the world a smaller place and that changes the dynamic of many things. It also should involve more direct communication, cutting out middlemen who can distort the message. This is because the fast communication form should also be as easy as it is fast, which does add some constraints in the fantasy settings. It is only fitting that the magical method of fast communication is not only fast in passing the messages back and forth, but also fast to initiate.

Mood: vertical.
Music: Communication Breakdown by Led Zeppelin and Legions by Stratovarius.

Led Zeppelin: Led Zeppelin
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Stratovarius: Visions
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