Book 5 - Prologue 12

Experiential Calculus 1 & 2

Book 5 - Prologue 12
Comic - Book 5 - Page 12

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Anomynous 167 wrote:
The most obvious reason why Cryptolemy's group survived. Had the whales killed Cryptolemy and his ilk, Fumo's chains would have depopped and he'd fall into the water. Not merely that they were the most likely means of his survival.


His chains are what's keeping him alive in more ways than one - he still needs his upkeep paid. And while being fugitive would have made it possible to survive entirely on forage (if feral Warlord even can become fugitive), at sea without Seafarer special he effectively doesn't have any move to try doing anything, be it moving away or foraging.
greycat wrote:
Umbrathor wrote:

Unrelated: Cornuto helm. Apparently, cornuto means ‘horned’ in Italian, as in a horned helm, like Vikings wore.

Vikings didn't actually wear horned helmets. But if Rob thinks they did, then it might be Signamantically linked.


Minnesota Vikings do.
Vendanna wrote:
I blame the unix cherokees, that are sistematically holding the page out of my reach.


Cherokee? Or Apache?

Umbrathor wrote:
[D]o not mistake a model of reality for Reality.


Noah: [D]o not mistake a model of reality for Reality.
Crypto: Reality IS the model! I can SEE the framework! They are the same!
Noah: Let me try this another way. Don't forget to stop to smell the roses.
Crypto: Why?
Noah: Because you can't calculate the experience of smelling a rose, you...
Crypto: Actually, I can.
Noah: Oh. Um.

Umbrathor wrote:
The fact that Mathamancers can see Look-Up Tables that no one else can see, probably means that many ‘unknowable’ stats are visible to at least one caster discipline.


... which is why I REALLLLLLY want to know what happened when TGMTTA and/or Charlie did a state-whatever with one of every caster type ... because you know they both have to have tried it at some point. I want those stories, Rob!!!

Umbrathor wrote:
For a long time I have wondered how Findamancy’s ability to look up information in the game database works.


Probably a pivot table.

Arci wrote:
So Mathamancy appears to be the lines between the stars, but predictamancy is the interference pattern between them. What then does Findamancy look like I wonder.


If your analogy is accurate, the relationship probably relates to the Heisenberg uncertainty principle, which states you can either measure a thing's position or velocity, but not both at the same time. Mathamancy may be the ability to measure quantities, Predictamancy may be the ability to measure velocity (or direction/rate of change), and Findamancy may be the skill of knowing where to look/what to measure.

If what I've written is true then Crypto's approach was essentially to measure the quantities of everything multiple times, then manually calculate the Predictamancy. And he didn't need Findamancy because he just measured everything. In this paradigm I'd say Predictamancy is sort of like a weather map that has a static drawing with arrows showing the direction/strength of wind. That drawing is built upon data sets. Mathamancers have certain skills/insights with working with the raw data tables, Predictamancers have skills looking at the overall picture the data sets build, and Findamancers can find a subset within the dataset if you can describe it well enough.
Fla_Panther wrote:
Vendanna wrote:
I blame the unix cherokees, that are sistematically holding the page out of my reach.


Cherokee? Or Apache?


Cherokee because it was what the error said to me.
Hero of Shadows wrote:
I really doubt that the whole of Mathamancy is based on astrology, it's most likely a distinct school within the discipline used by some but not by all.

Similar to how Bill described his golem designs as being of the "monstrous school".

I also have to blow my own horn a little, in a previous update I went on a tangent about how astrology might be portrayed in Erf with Mathamancy being one of the options (the others being of course Predictomancy and Carniemancy)

I really, REALLY hope, there's a better description of Mathamancy coming than the astrology analogy. (Astrology best fits as pure Carnymancy that borrows math ideas at random.) Yes, in the past the terms were confused, but there's so many more interesting ideas from math than that.

That part of this update remains painfully hard to read, especially given the thought and sympathy applied to the other casting disciplines in Erfworld. To conflate or reduce math to astrology is pretty abhorrent. You could do do much more if you look to how math relates to the world, post-enlightenment, when we started to have the idea of science.

Mathamancy could be the (too tedious to actually apply outside a link) underpinning of Thinkamancy, or the (inapplicable without infinite juice), discipline of "Mathematical Anymancy" or any number of other ideas that have some compassion and respect for how math affects us in the real world. Here's hoping Nedry/Krypto is just a terrible misguided mathamancer. Erfworld has done much better with its ideas for other disciplines, and can do a lot better here.
This update was really gripping to read. Excellent storytelling.
gchristopher wrote:
Hero of Shadows wrote:
I really doubt that the whole of Mathamancy is based on astrology, it's most likely a distinct school within the discipline used by some but not by all.

Similar to how Bill described his golem designs as being of the "monstrous school".

I also have to blow my own horn a little, in a previous update I went on a tangent about how astrology might be portrayed in Erf with Mathamancy being one of the options (the others being of course Predictomancy and Carniemancy)

I really, REALLY hope, there's a better description of Mathamancy coming than the astrology analogy. (Astrology best fits as pure Carnymancy that borrows math ideas at random.) Yes, in the past the terms were confused, but there's so many more interesting ideas from math than that.
Spoiler: show
That part of this update remains painfully hard to read, especially given the thought and sympathy applied to the other casting disciplines in Erfworld. To conflate or reduce math to astrology is pretty abhorrent. You could do do much more if you look to how math relates to the world, post-enlightenment, when we started to have the idea of science.

Mathamancy could be the (too tedious to actually apply outside a link) underpinning of Thinkamancy, or the (inapplicable without infinite juice), discipline of "Mathematical Anymancy" or any number of other ideas that have some compassion and respect for how math affects us in the real world. Here's hoping Nedry/Krypto is just a terrible misguided mathamancer. Erfworld has done much better with its ideas for other disciplines, and can do a lot better here.

You see, the problem you have with Mathamancers is that you've always envisioned them as mathematicians, and not the math-magicians that was implicit in their names.
gchristopher wrote:
To conflate or reduce math to astrology is pretty abhorrent.


I think what's abhorrent is that you're conflating Erfworld's version of astrology to Stupidworld's version of astrology. Unlike Stupidworld, in Erfworld Astrology may in fact be a real thing. As someone else in this thread mentioned, if Erfworld runs like a computer simulation where everything connects to pseudo-random number generation then astrology in Erfworld may actually be verifiably tied to other things happening in Erfworld. If the number generation is NOT random then it only makes the case that much stronger.

In real life people fail to check their own assumptions all the time, but much of the time it slides past because their assumptions are based on beliefs about the real world which are usually true. I see people also failing to check their own assumptions here in the Erfworld forums, but here it's much more problematic because we are not in fact talking about Stupidworld. We're talking about a fantasy world. Your assumptions may not apply. And they may apply much less here than elsewhere.
Fla_Panther wrote:
I think what's abhorrent is that you're conflating Erfworld's version .... to Stupidworld's version

Anomynous 167 wrote:
You see, the problem you have with Mathamancers is that you've always envisioned them as mathematicians, and not the math-magicians that was implicit in their names.


I appreciate the replies! I'll try to do better! What I'm trying to say is that the way other magical disciplines are written in Erfworld are great because they are so sympathetic to and understanding of their Stupidworld counterparts.

Take Carnymancy: Stupidworld Carnies also suffer a lot of social stigma, and some do in fact make their living selling entertainment in the form of games that are rigged (subtly or not) against their customers. There is a stereotype that carnies lie and steal, and Erfworld strongly alludes to the modern gypsy culture that lives outside our economic systems. Carnymancy in Erfworld starts out with a sympathetic view of these people, blemishes and all, and from there, builds out a wonderful system of magic based on the (very real) idea of how your own self-image can make you capable of more than would otherwise be possible. The "Carny" power comes from a compassionate, sympathetic take on Stupidworld.

The same applies for Hippiemancy. You've got all the Stupidworld tropes of psychedelic drug users, pacifists, and flower power, accepted wholeheartedly into the Erfworld characters, but in a very sympathetic take where the positive aspects of those people are expressed as magical powers.

Mathamancy presents the same opportunities, where there's worlds of interesting takes on math, logic, mathematicians. (Let's not forget that Stupidworld Isaac is most known for writing some very clever equations and also being an inventor of calculus.)

Math in Stupidworld has all of the same possibilities as an Erfworld discipline; people who are stigmatized and misunderstood, negative connotations, and subtle, but deeply held characteristics that could be made magical. Building a magical discipline around them will work best if it has the same kind of thorough thought that Carnies and Hippies get.

Consider a few:

Everyone in Stupidworld is forced to learn all kinds of rules and equations to do basic calculations, balance your checkbook, find X, whatever. These have next to zero to do with how a Stupidworld math-person spends their time and attention. Math (professional math) is mostly about trying to find more elegant, beautiful, or concise relationships according to systems of rules so obscure that most people have never heard of them. Maybe there's a fundamental disconnect between how mathamancers are viewed (as useful tools) while ignoring their true value. (As rigorous explorers of things too abstract or difficult for most to bother with.)

Imagine how an Erfworld Mathamancer could be forced to do boring calculations and probabilities day in, day out, because their ruler never lets them spend their juice on interesting questions?

Or maybe Mathamancy could be tripped up on axioms, trying to understand Erfworld from base principles, but being trapped against the impossible complexity of getting much past the true meaning of things like "1 + 0 = 1"?

What about someone like Paul Erdos, maybe a Stupidworld story like Erfworld Noah, someone who vanished completely into math, where you have to do a research project to even realize all the things he influences around you?

Or maybe Mathamancy could be like Stupidworld math before computers; where things we consider simple and easy now were immensely hard, or simply impossible, because it was just too much work (juice?) to perform the calculations. Think of how the Katherine Johnson and other black "computers" were portrayed in the Hidden Figures movie for her work on the Apollo program. (Also Ada Lovelace, who invented a mathematical expression of computer programming before we happened to have computers to do anything about it.)


The point is, there's an entire Stupidworld of math, history, heroes, frauds and failures, to consider with the same compassion and sympathy that the other Erfworld disciplines are written. It would be a tragedy to the quality of Erfworld writing to see that missed here.

I'm a little reassured by the Nedry signamancy here. That's hardly a sympathetic starting point, so hopefully there's much better explorations of Mathamancy waiting for us in future years of Erfworld. :)
Fla_Panther wrote:

... which is why I REALLLLLLY want to know what happened when TGMTTA and/or Charlie did a state-whatever with one of every caster type ... because you know they both have to have tried it at some point. I want those stories, Rob!!!

Mathamancer + Carnymancer = Matrix? Almost literally, seeing the code in front of you and being able to manipulate it to your advantage. I can just see Charlie hooking up with a Mathamancer and looking out and just... seeing the code. Talk about an existential crisis. Or an epiphany moment. I guess it depends on the result. Maybe both, with how Charlie is reacting.