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1  Santharian World Development / Santharian Artists Workshop and Resources / Re: Elving City Hall- Seeker Masterwork Pic on: 11 June 2009, 18:18:42
The last version is perfect. It fixes any criticisms I might of had.

BTW: I tried to contact Wren (who wrote the entry on Elving) by all possible means, but haven't managed to get through to her. You know, the greatest girls are the most difficult to get to... lol
2  Organization and General Discussions / Discussions, Development Ideas & Proposals / Re: Linguistics tutors on: 09 January 2009, 05:22:34
Pitch of sound is determined by its frequency - its vibrations per second. A middle C on a key board has a frequency of about 261 vibrations a second for example.

I previously gave the example of those with perfect pitch. Those individuals in real life that can hear if a note is even a few vibrations a second away from the correct pitch. Yet to most of us (me included) the note sounds the same. Our hearing is simply not that sensitive. This works on the same principle.

Elves can differentiate the in between pitches that sound the same to most human beings. In human music we have tones and semi tones. In Elven music this is broken into smaller divisions because their hearing is more acute. They hear the frequencies between semitones.

My theory is built around pairs of words.  Screwtounges alternate each word - from one language to the next. For example: I want to say in Welsh and German 'My Name is Wren'. (Wren y dwi in Welsh, Ich heisse Wren in German.)

The screw tounge would then utter the following pairs of words:
Wren Ich
y      heisse
dwi   Wren

The talent of the screwtongue is as I said a sort of 'the tongue is quicker than the ear' and the illusion is heightened by pitch. Its basically a sleight of tongue rather than hand. The words are said quickly at pitches separated by intervals that are undefinably different to most listeners. Because to humans (and presumably many other races) the words appear to be at the same pitch and are spoken so quickly, it fools the mind into thinking the two words are simultaneous, when in fact they are in fact very brief pitches separated by fine intervals.

Its unlikely, but probably no more of a breakage of physics than than summoning balls of fire from thin air and throwing them at people...

Is that clearer? I don't think I can explain myself better than that, so if not we may need to abandon this idea and find a better solution.
3  Organization and General Discussions / Discussions, Development Ideas & Proposals / Re: Linguistics tutors on: 09 January 2009, 00:55:26
He wants the two languages simultaneously. I think I've given a fairly good exploration of possible mechanism. I know the post is long, but occasionally I do say things that are worth reading.

4  Organization and General Discussions / Discussions, Development Ideas & Proposals / Re: Linguistics tutors on: 08 January 2009, 09:10:10
Ok, I want to make this a trait that very, very few people are born with. It's not inherited, not magical, and cannot be learnt.

So its an inherited trait no?

Sorry - nit picking mode off.... :) So basically you're describing something akin to slight of hand, but with the tongue. The tongue is quicker than the ear?

This could be feasible. And  - actually - elves are probably rather suited to what you are describing. It may be that gnomes or brownies may also be good for this although I am not familiar with their present state of development.

I'm not a physicist but I'll explain my reasoning as best as I can. Human understanding of pitch is made up of our interpretation of vibrations per second. In musical terms, our smallest division of pitch is a semitone, but the distance between each semitone in terms of vibration per second or hertz is different. So we use cents to measure the interval, which expresses the ratio between the two frequencies.

Individuals with perfect pitch are able to detect the tiniest deviation in hertz, so as with all the best science fiction - we can extrapolate - in a completely non scientific manner that theoretically it might be able to distinguish all the vibrational frequencies in between a semitone interval. My invention of a quarter tone was a flawed one, but it is a useful description, a sound midway in that ratio.

Elven hearing is considerably more acute than human hearing (http://www.santharia.com/culture/salaen.htm). This leads their music to have a wavering, shimmering sound to human ears, as we cannot detect all the subtleties of frequency they can.

Screwtounges could potentially work in elves (and potentially humans) is that they say the alternate words quickly at frequencies that are too similar for other races to differentiate, so that the sound is like two languages spoken simultaneously.

In elves the hereditary aspect would be the ability to speak quickly enough. Elves are naturally measure communicators, so this would be unusual. In humans it would be the need to inherit both 'perfect pitch' to be able to differentiate in the same way as elves, and the ability to speak that fast.

The BUT in this sentence is that elven and human screwtounges would sound like they were talking gobbledegook to other elves. They can hear the difference in pitch. So Human and elven screwtounges could never act as mediators where one of the parties would be elven.

However, there is no rule that says that screwtounges have to work the same way in other races. Sheer velocity might be an option.

Biology says that small animals must be metabolically quicker. Hence gnomes and brownies might be predetermined to speak more quickly.  Certain individuals might be born that could speak pairs of words so quickly as to give the impression of two words at the same time. This technique would work regardless of species. But its more likely to be something that would need to be learnt. The underlying skill is inherited, but it needs to be perfected.

But you would need to speak to the developers of these smaller races to see if that fits in with their general concept of what a brownie or a gnome would be.

Hope that helps. Give me a shout if anything is unclear.
5  Organization and General Discussions / Development Master Plans / Re: Xaramon Master Plan Discussion on: 08 January 2009, 05:36:20
Its not an objection to your entry Talia - more an attempt to bring the individual entries into some semblance of order. all the entries in the region are very different so it would be appropriate, as you say to adjust them slightly to form a more cohesive whole.

But I'm anxious not to go forging ahead and make life dificult for a more cohesive climate entry or for Mina's master plan.

Nsiki: I'm not arguing its not good grazing land or agricultural land. Its on the map. It needs to stay.

I'm arguing that we need to find a good reason for the steppe to be there in the first place and that will require a certain amount of adjustment of the surrounding entries in the province to achieve it. The problem with the "Stan" countries: Krygistan, Tajikstan, Uzbekistan as examples is that they are continental interior Steppe.

Actually to be fair, that's the problem with the map. See - it can only be caused by Continental interior patterns if the prevailing wind comes from the east. If thats the case, then there is no good explanation for storms as the lakes really aren't big enough to act as a convection water source for them. And there's no mountains to explain a rain shadow effect if they are coming from the west.

But then I'm using a real world model. And thats not what we're dealing with :) So I really need an understanding of where the current santharian model of climate is at the moment and that's something I don't yet have time to really get to grips with. Hence the question! How detailed is that - do we have tides and currents or is it more general?

6  Organization and General Discussions / Discussions, Development Ideas & Proposals / Re: Linguistics tutors on: 08 January 2009, 05:13:47
What's particularly interesting (and rarely explored) is idiom and how even if you're fluent in another touge you will always maintain a tendency to express ideas in the manner of your parent language.

That makes this a particularly difficult skill to explain. You can grasp the words and the grammar, but you're still separated by idiom. Does that make sense?

Do you intend for this to be a genetic or magical ability. Or one that is learnt?

And It's going to require two pairs of vocal chords. Unless it is a sort of pshycic connection rather than spoken. Many of the elven entries and stories hint toward elves having a talent for pre-cognition and heightened intuition, but I've always stopped short of allowing psychic powers as such. As aylsse says - bit to X-Men.

However, Elves are never likely to be good  'screwtounges' candidates I suppose, they're to community centric, too inward looking, to really develop a magical or genetic trait in this direction. However, long lifespan means they have the time to learn in a way many races don't.

Its hard to help when its unclear what we need to help with :)

7  Organization and General Discussions / Non-Santharian Stuff: Life, the Universe & Everything / Re: For all our female readers! on: 04 January 2009, 10:00:08
meh. no weight loss for me til I quit the glass of red wine after work when I get home.

I might have to quit the job before that happens :P
8  Santharian World Development / Places and Map Design / Re: Ar'styey'zom? on: 04 January 2009, 09:23:28
There is NO WAY I am typing Ar'styey'zom on any kind of regular basis! I'm dyslexic and it will kill me!   :P

Seriously however a consider reply to your post is as followed:

I am not yet convinced by your requirement for a homeland. So please convince me :) Why is this required? Tolkien's elves don't have a homeland as such. As already specified there was the ancient kingdom of F'v'cl'r and it is my understanding that this is an attempt to replicate the bliss they had in the ages predating humanity.

The nature of this bliss is not defined, but given the nature of light elves (see below) I think this unlikely to be a physical place.

We leave the origins of the tribes vauge for a reason. We allow for the tribes to have their own origin understandings. Certainly all the tribes in Northern Sarvonia share the F'v'cl'r origin understanding.

 ( NOTE: I shy away from the use of myth or story as I've already said - I have no wish to be drawn on whether I consider it fact or fiction and thus influence the views of other developers - I prefer it to be interpretable just as our own theology and religion is. There is a lot to be said for allowing ambiguity - especially when creating a world with a history as rich and long as Caelereth's. It allows for the temporal axis to be expanded. )

Most Sarvonian elves hold the F'v'cl'r myths also. But one might consider this an empire (even a hell) rather than an eden.

However, eden is the Thealon forests to most Sarvonian elves. Elves are elemental beings. Light elves are closest to being elemental and therefore closest to the their elemental gods and to Ava herself. This is the ideal, the desired state that wood elves aspire to. Again I have deliberately never categorically specified whether such ascension/evolution is possible. I cannot say whether nirvana is an obtainable state so I see no need to speculate on ascension either.

Please go away feel free to dig a bit deeper in the other elven entries provided by myself and others on the site. In particular I'd refer you to the Thealon entry and Dala's Katya Dragonseeker story. Then please come back and tell me I'm wrong :D I like change.
9  Organization and General Discussions / Development Master Plans / Re: Xaramon Master Plan Discussion on: 03 January 2009, 23:48:47
Hi Mina

I'm going to pick up the Shivering woods and the Vontron bring them into line with your master plan. It would be good to fix in our minds what the climate of the region is before I start.

The Votron Entry talks about the region being temperate - no snow, but storms in winter.  However, Horth is on a steppe land, with good fertile grazing. That doesn't really make sense as Stepplands are normally where there is there is not enough water for tree growth, but not dry enough to be forest.

There are no major features to explain why storms would reach the forest and no further. No good reason for a rain shadow effect. It makes far more sense for the forest to be fed by underground streams that feed and flow from the Aerlian lakes to the north. Eleven forests can have slightly different micro climates so happy for it to continue to be slightly warmer than surroundings, with no snow. Would just take the storms away.

XImax reads: The temperature here varies immensely with the seasons. From the blistering inferno of the summer, to the chill breezes of autumn, to the frigid, icy winters, and to the unceasing deluge that is spring; Ximax is never entirely comfortable. Still, a certain peace is always present. Though some of the guilds maintain boats for the typical spring downpours, there is a rare calmness in falling rain in Ximax. Likewise, in oppressive heat or cold, the mind almost literally flees to higher thought. And though the weather in autumn is not particularly pleasant, the unique beauty of the ripening fields and orchards cannot be denied...

Typical Xarl never makes things easy! But its a great entry and I'd like to keep it, it kinda makes sense against the idea of a continental steppe.

Does anyone have any input into the Climate thing please before I get started?
10  Santharian World Development / Places and Map Design / Re: The Rimmerins Ring on: 03 January 2009, 01:17:42
I know you had a lot of issues with the elf side of this.

Just a quick note to let you know I think you've got this pretty spot on now....

However, the Ahrhim are not a large tribe so 100 is probably a little high. But you've tempered it with not more than, so its more of a quibble than anything else :)

11  Organization and General Discussions / Announcements and Web Design / Re: Server downtime on: 30 December 2008, 23:50:45
did seem to be down pretty much forever. How am I supposed to NOT do my essays if the site isn't up?
12  Organization and General Discussions / The Northern Sarvonian Continent / Re: Caelerethian Drastic Climate Changes on: 23 December 2008, 23:08:21
Yay Summary! I like summary.

The severing of the Quallian from the main Ziephyr would be a good candidate for a climactic event. I could push the date of this back to meet and proposed climactic events.
13  Santharian World Development / Places and Map Design / Re: Auturian Woods, a revision. on: 23 December 2008, 23:03:40
The short answer is no, but a north south divide may not be applicable either.

The long answer is No - this is a generalisation. I think there would be some variation. But I don't know it is as simple as a north south divide.

There were only three elf tribes in the north last time I was here, so I may have some catching up to do, but the Injerin are very principled, the Meladhrim are nomads so non-applicable.

Yet the Quealhoirhim have no qualms about enchanting a whole city (may change this a bit to be a days gone by thing. we'll see) where the Ahrhrim or the Ylfferhim would hate the idea.

So I guess what is palatable and what is not depends on tribal out look. I'm fairly flexible about this as long as its not too outlandish - they're wood elves not demi gods.

14  Santharian World Development / Miscellaneous / Prevailing winds in Sarvonia on: 19 December 2008, 23:31:02
Did we (I have a vague memory) ever establish the direction of the prevailing winds in Sarvonia.

Looking at the santharian map and the positioning of heaths and steppe it would make sense that the major prevailing winds run from the adanian eastward. I can't find any reference to this but I might be wrong?

Talia you have any more idea about this than me?
15  Santharian World Development / Places and Map Design / Re: Auturian Woods, a revision. on: 19 December 2008, 23:17:08
Right I've been having a ponder.

What if its a bit of both. I actually don't see that the two concepts are mutually exclusive,

As you say Talia it seems correct somehow that the forests might stand out from their surroundings. So perhaps by magic there is an influence on the climate - but I would like to set the guide that it should not be deviant from the surrounding overall climate. If a region is Cold and dry, then perhaps the forest might be a wetter a little warmer, with its own microclimate. I'm quite happy with that as long as it is not so different from the rest of the province that its in that it sticks out like a sore thumb. They should still belong to that ecosystem.

Your entry on re-reading suggests a mildening of the local climate rather than a dramatic change. So that is fine.

But it also makes sense that as elemental beings the elements are no hardship to the elves as Judy suggests. If everyone is happy I will work on both these principles going forward.
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