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 Post subject: Timeline - let's reach a consensus
PostPosted: Wed Mar 02, 2011 9:40 am 
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The Skybrary straddles the line between canon and non-canon; it serves both sorts of content. Compared to the voluminous amounts of excellent RP that has been written, relatively little within the Skytopian Universe bears the coveted "Dev-sanctioned canon" label. In most cases, the "non-canonized" content is obvious (such as half of the current Alpha 2 article). The "canonized" content is primarily limited to statistics (plane locations, costs, mission data and the like). As I mentioned elsewhere, "canonization is not a prerequisite for Skybrary content. If it were, I doubt we'd have need for more than one shelf."

The Timeline was based on the compilation of various writings by Skybrary Founder Alonso Rei and is intended to serve as a general 'sequence of events' reference. When extrapolated backwards or forwards any distance at all, the '1 real-life month to 1 Spytopian year' convention seems to make RPers unhappy. Indeed, recent Dev-approved RP has generally made a mess of this formula.

Several posts in this Forum, most notably beginning with Zabrak!'s post here and Prince Harris' post shortly following, propose some options and discuss the pitfalls. One major one being that the Devs have expressed a desire that one not be created.

So, with that in mind, let's kick around some proposals and find one that'll stick. If not for RP purposes specifically, then one that can be used to establish when major events occurred within the Skytopian Universe and give folks a general idea of what year it is.

Should other RPers just get over the fact that their characters can't remain 18 in perpetuity. Is Calvin, who was "born" in 149 AU, actually 90 Skytopian years old? Is RP entirely exempt from such constraining silliness as what year it is? Or is Skytopian time, as Zabrak! suggests (in the post linked above), especially fluid during resets and/or Dev-approved RP?


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 Post subject: Re: Timeline - let's reach a consensus
PostPosted: Wed Mar 02, 2011 11:46 am 
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Calvin wrote:
Is Calvin, who was "born" in 149 AU, actually 90 Skytopian years old?


Yes. :remywicked:

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 Post subject: Re: Timeline - let's reach a consensus
PostPosted: Thu Mar 03, 2011 2:20 am 
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People seem to like the flexibility to stretch and compress the timeline. Some pilots fought in the Skytopian Civil War, other pilots of the same apparent age weren't born yet.

The most important function the timeline currently serves is to place events in an order.

(It's important to have numbers for this, so that we don't always have to refer back to a central list of events. It's also important that these not be just serial numbers from that list, because we need to be able to insert things in the middle without breaking all references.)

A problem arises when people try to compare these dates: a difference of 20yrs here may be worth a difference of 80yrs there, or even in the same place for two different skyrates. But everybody basically agrees on the order of events: the sign of a difference is correct.


I haven't thought of a formalism that would capture the ordering of events without inviting people to subtract the dates, but if one could be found, that might solve all our problems.


We could move in the other direction, towards a more rigid timeline. This would take away some of the prized flexibility, but it would return a bounty of shared worldbuilding, as everybody could suddenly agree on ages and dates and years and Thursdays. The chief problem here is how to pull everybody's individual stories into the New Timeline without messing somebody's up, which is probably impossible.


Or we could do what I understand was done at the end of Skyrates 1: skip the timeline forward, saying "That all happened before and it's not very important precisely how. Now we're in a new age, with better record-keeping."


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 Post subject: Re: Timeline - let's reach a consensus
PostPosted: Thu Mar 03, 2011 6:57 am 

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My warning on the Timeline was not about the sequence of events or whatever else you're claiming. As far as I'm concerned, this is just about the current date being listed as 239/240AU, which is irrelevant for roleplay and should be ignored. Djonin Starkiller changed his backstory because he read the timeline and assumed he'd have to be 80 to be CAF and that bothered me. My other reply to Hetros asking about the timeline was clearly intended to be flippant because there aren't real answers (except for G-squigglies).

My reversions of Calvin's edits were because he uses a lot of weasel words. Some people believe that the use of such phrasing is potentially a less than optimal choice of wording because it may diffuse a sentence into a statement that is somehow not quite as clear. I went overboard with adding references and facts to prove my point, but I do tend to do that and I apologize if you are offended.

However, compare:
Timeline wrote:
For Skytopian events, BU means "Before Upheaval" and AU is "After Upheaval". The "Upheaval" referred to here is The Great Upheaval. Skytopian years (AU) are measured by real-life months. In February 2011, the Skytopian Calendar year was 239 AU.
The calendar counts how many years have passed since the Great Upheaval using the suffix A.U. for "After Upheaval." (June 2009 marked the year 220 A.U.)
These are the sorts of statements that you should be making vaguer. If we want RP to be flexible, then why is the Skybrary asserting the current year at all? The Timeline itself is perfectly capable of doing that without it being stated outright.

Actually, why include fictional years on what is largely a non-fiction timeline: why not have separate fiction and non-fiction timelines? We do have Template:HistorySeries as a fictional timeline series box (which, incidentally, needs to be updated and have the Tortugan Upheaval date fixed).

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 Post subject: Re: Timeline - let's reach a consensus
PostPosted: Thu Mar 03, 2011 9:53 am 
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Arikatas wrote:
My reversions of Calvin's edits were because he uses a lot of weasel words. {snip} I apologize if you are offended.
Of course I was offended; "weasel-wording" is an anathema to any serious wiki sysop. That said, the most recent edits seem to clarify things nicely - at least for now. However, I would counter that the Skytopian date - that is, what year it is at this moment - does have relevance to some people. Hopefully, those people will continue to speak up within this thread.

Edit-wars aside, there are multiple issues in play here and Eskay, once again, has hit the nail on its head.


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 Post subject: Re: Timeline - let's reach a consensus
PostPosted: Thu Mar 03, 2011 2:01 pm 
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Calvin wrote:
Of course I was offended; "weasel-wording" is an anathema to any serious wiki sysop.

TEH WIKI DRAHMA! OH NOES!! :shock:

Calvin wrote:
However, I would counter that the Skytopian date - that is, what year it is at this moment - does have relevance to some people. Hopefully, those people will continue to speak up within this thread.


I like to know what year it is, because it is annoying to try to figure it out on my own. I usually use the Skytopian year to tell how many months it has been since something has happened. Also, Skytopian years are very important for Emerald Republic elections. :chatty:

RP-wise, I haven't RP'd yet, but I intentionally left out the year Kevin was born, because it is just easier to say how old he is.

And I'm getting extremely wordy and am starting to confuse myself so I'll shut up now. :cheeky:

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 Post subject: Re: Timeline - let's reach a consensus
PostPosted: Thu Mar 03, 2011 4:41 pm 
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RP doesn't skip years ahead. It's played on a day to day basis so I don't believe it's a good idea to skip several years ahead with each reset, especially not 19 years. In RP no one will acknowledge the time skip and no one want to go from being a 24 year old pilot to 43 just like that, at least not most.

If what I've read in the wiki adds up, there are 12 months in the skytopian year and it seems to have the same number of days, so I think a year needs to be picked and advance it 1 for each true year that passes

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 Post subject: Re: Timeline - let's reach a consensus
PostPosted: Thu Mar 03, 2011 5:38 pm 
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Anything officially canon needs to be internally consistent. Stuff that isn't canon isn't going to be consistent, so obsessing over characters not aging properly is silly.

In-game explanation:
1. Time slows down as you travel faster. (Special Relativity)
2. Most characters spend their lives at max speed.
3. Often while in the presence of physics-altering substances like Unobtainium and Skystone.
4. Therefore, character ages are unlikely to have any relationship to the actual calendar.

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 Post subject: Re: Timeline - let's reach a consensus
PostPosted: Fri Mar 04, 2011 11:18 am 
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^ WIN


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 Post subject: Re: Timeline - let's reach a consensus
PostPosted: Fri Mar 04, 2011 3:53 pm 
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I'm of the opinion that unless I have a fairly good reason, my characters ages are going to move at one year per year.

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 Post subject: Re: Timeline - let's reach a consensus
PostPosted: Wed Mar 09, 2011 6:02 pm 

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Calvin wrote:
Stuff about establishing a timeline.


Might as well try herding cats. :remygross:

...this does give me some Fun and mostly unrelated ideas, though. :remywild:

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