Letters Column for May 2006 (Schedule Updates, Etc.)

Good morning!

I’d like to tell you about some of the things that are going on here at Hitherby Dragons.

First, I am doing better.

I’d like to say that my being better means that I’ll go back to daily entries. However, it doesn’t!

I’ve started keeping a little better track of how much time goes into Hitherby, and it turns out: the reason that I’m behind on things like categorized pages, revising the bonus content for the third monthbook, updating the timeline, and, in fact, just being cool and collected when it comes to doing canon?

Hitherby is hard!

Right now, three hours a day just isn’t enough for daily entries. I spend too much time up too late trying to get posts up and not enough time organizing things and building a buffer.

So I am going to give Hitherby 15-20 hours a week. If that’s enough to post every other day, then so be it. If things get easier and I can go back to daily entries, I’ll do that.

Either way, I suspect June will be erratic.

Some other notes!

Are there any lawyers reading this who would be willing to write a letter on my behalf? Basically to the effect of “Please provide Ms. Borgstrom with a full accounting of books sold, moneys owed, etcetera?”

Everything takes much more time than it should. The RPG I promised you is coming. ^_^

The computer that many of you donated money for last year is finally here! Her name is bubbletea and she is a nice little BenQ Joybook that actually holds a battery charge! I am embarrassed that it took ten months, for which I will blame dukkha, the pervasive universal characteristic of suffering.

Speaking of which, donations for May totalled $75. Thank you!

Thank you for your kind words,

ADamiani
BrunorBL
bv728
cariset
chaomancer
dan_percival
David Goldfarb
Dryn
Eric
ethan_greer
GoldenH
Insomnius
James Wallis
JoeCrow
Luc
Odious
Mithrandir
Penultimate Minion
rpuchalsky
rylen
silversmoke
Taliskar
tylercat
Vincent Avatar

I really, really like Florensky’s Pillar and Ground of Truth, of which the first four books are about why A = A.
— Odious

It seems like the biggest problem with a pillar and ground of truth would be lightning. But those books sound cool. ^_^

Martin wants to create a fiction that takes the truths he sees in the world and supports them — you know, suffering is there, so he’s going to make it meaningful, not try to hide it.
— rpuchalsky

What do you mean by a fiction?

My month is complete.
— Vincent Avatar

Yay! Now you can funnel us future stock information!

Well, that is to say… it’s obviously not a god. It’s a collection of writings. But (Hitherby) seems to be a fictional effort at making sense at the world.
— Eric

Hm!

I think that’s fair. Ultimately Hitherby Dragons will result in a map of Jane’s world, which is analogous but not identical to our own. Blake would suggest that in so doing, I remake the world. Borges, conversely, would just say, “Wouldn’t it be funny if she did?”

So does software stop running when the computer stops? yes. But that doesn’t stop copies of the software from running (your example of the human code interpreter is a copy of the software running on an competing computing platform). Does software stop being software when the computer stops? no. But it is not capable of running. A apt anology might be between a computer and time. A computer/interpreter running is to software as time passing is to humans.
— GoldenH

How would a human experience it, do you think, if time broke down and the universe weasels had to substitute a backup time?

(sorry, I couldn’t help but be reminded of Trotsky’s “ABC of Materialist Dialectics”)
— ADamiani

“When is a dialectic not a dialectic?”

“When it’s ajar!”

Hee hee hee hee hee hee hee hee.

(The terrible, terrible thing is that, on telling that joke, I experienced deja vu.)

But…but reforging the world is so difficult! You have to cut Fenris’ chain and everything!
— Ford Dent

Dude, that chain’s alloyed with bird spit. I mean, seriously. Your roto rooter will handle it.

So we see that the difference is that isn’t’s can’t have large-scale effects. This strikes me as being like the passage of time in the Marvel and DC universes: it only works if you don’t look at it too closely. I mean, just where do you draw a line between large-scale and small-scale?
— David Goldfarb

In fairness, dissolving under careful observation is a characteristic of most things in the real world, too. ^_^

Unfortunately, Blake forgot to document the pair of displacer beasts also in the room, who are guarding a potion of invisibility and a plus one sword.
— Eric

Oh, man, no wonder I’m not maintaining the expected wealth for my level.

Incidentally, I’ve been thinking about Martin’s brush with nonexistence in Tre Ore. My current understanding is that he nearly defined himself out of existence. He had already said, “…the monster’s responsibility won’t ever negate mine.” He’s trying to operate on a level beyond that of the monster.

Now, as we saw in “Questions and Answers”, the monster is capable of twisting concepts of what is right. So if Martin accepts those concepts in his self-definition (”Do you have the right to do this?” “Yes.”) then the monster automatically gains the ability to twist him. There’s no being who operates on that level, for whom “the monster’s responsibility won’t ever negate mine” is true. So Martin would be defining himself in a way that would exclude his own existence — the only way that the monster couldn’t negate him would be if he didn’t exist. It’s significant that he’s asked the question by a wogly, contradiction embodied.

Instead he says “That’s not important to me.” I.e., he rejects the concept of rights, choosing to operate on a wider level.
— David Goldfarb

That bit there is dense with meaning, isn’t it? ^_^

I think that you are close but also that even if the monster fell over dead that Martin would still have problems executing his dharma in a context of rights.

And that’s all the time I have for today! I’ll try to finish this up as soon as I can. ^_^

Rebecca

8 thoughts on “Letters Column for May 2006 (Schedule Updates, Etc.)

  1. Blake would suggest that in so doing, I remake the world. Borges, conversely, would just say, “Wouldn’t it be funny if she did?”

    This sort of thing, I suspect, is while I find Blake to be interesting, Borges is the one of the pair I find myself actually reading on a regular basis.

    -Eric

    (Also, Inferno, I, 32 just rocks, which is no doubt why my copy opens to it when placed on its spine.)

  2. I’ve started keeping a little better track of how much time goes into Hitherby, and it turns out: the reason that I’m behind on things like categorized pages, revising the bonus content for the third monthbook, updating the timeline, and, in fact, just being cool and collected when it comes to doing canon?

    Hmm.

    How much of these overhead activities are things that could be done by fans with a bit of spare time?

    Some, obviously, couldn’t. But it seems to me that things like the timeline could be done by readers going over canon entries and compiling lists, possibly in parallel with each other to permit them to compare versions to check for errors and omissions.

    Are there any ways it would be possible for fans to help with such aspects of the noncreative side of things?

    -Eric

  3. What do you mean by a fiction?

    Well… let me see if I can make an answer that’s reasonably short.

    It seems to me that when people try to find out things about the world, that comes under the category of discovering truth. When they try to assign meaning to what they’ve found out, that comes under the category of writing fiction. Or maybe this is just a particularly Hitherby-influenced viewpoint.

    According to this classification, theology is fiction, as is pretty much any belief that something in particular is important. Those are nonstandard uses of the term, yes. It does have the benefit of forestalling people who believe that truth must be exclusive truth — that because they find something meaningful, everyone else must do so as well. Of course, fictions that large numbers of people believe in become important in themselves. This maps pretty well into the categories of “brute fact” (gravitation) vs “social fact” (race).

    Of course, Martin is sort of a special case, because he presumably has the ability to change the nature of the Hitherby world by making isn’ts manifest. His fiction could become everyone in his world’s truth. But it still starts out as fiction. Also, Martin is in a metafiction in which the levels are sometimes a bit blurry. (Miss by going up one level too high, and you’d have to say “Martin’s plan is fictional because he’s a fictional character in Rebecca’s writing”; miss by going on level too low, and you’d have to say “Martin’s plan is fictional because the way in which he influences the fate of the characters in Jane’s fictional Legend-plays is through his contribution to the Player’s communal authorship.”)

  4. How would a human experience it, do you think, if time broke down and the universe weasels had to substitute a backup time?

    Would we experience it?
    Have I experienced it?

    I don’t believe in the non-existance of things I haven’t experienced. But I also know that paradoxes exist, so I can answer it. If time broke down, I could experience it, but only during a period with time.

    I think we experience time alot like love. Sure, it exists, but not as a physical force. (people should only use the cetrifgual force in love songs, btw). If one day, the flying spaghetti monster decides to go on vacation and hire universe weasels to do his job for him, what we experience depends entirely on if the universe weasels are invisible savant-kings or foreign nationals who are working for below minimum wage and have no idea what they are doing.

  5. Well… let me see if I can make an answer that’s reasonably short.

    So it turned out you couldn’t then?

  6. If you still need help legally, e-mail or pm me through Maps. I’ll do what I can to help.

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