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PostPosted: Wed Mar 06, 2013 2:10 am 
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Ah, janaba1! You're knowledge of the internet surpasses even that of my own!

I don't think that, when an age is destroyed that it magically disappears from its link. You can write to a different, yet almost exact one, like has been said many times already, you can break a link off from the world described, like with tearing pages out or damaging the linking panel, but when an age is "destroyed," its more like a "world dies" than it is "erasing a universe" Example: [spoiler]Dont forget that one time, in the Book of D'ni, when they sent a maintainer suited fellow through into an age whose state was unknown and the poor guy came back half melted from a super nova that had destroyed the world on the other end of the link. Presumably, the problem was not in the writing, but in the fact that the ages star exploded.[/spoiler]

Basicaly, if someone doesnt damage a book that disrupts it's link, or if you don't alter it's text to change the world you will promptly visit, you can most definitely link to destroyed ages. And die fantasticaly. I think that's why books would be retired on occasion, i.e. "destroyed" ages.

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 06, 2013 4:27 am 
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DLordofTime wrote:
This theory also states that in the timelines of the universes, every alternate event at any given moment spawns an extra universe. For example, there's a universe where you went left instead of right, or you walked slightly faster or slower... You get the idea. Now, before each event, the universe doesn't know which one will happen.


Going off on the tangent, I've never really embraced the concept that different outcomes CAUSE new universes to be spawned. My assumption has always been that there are many, many universes that-- at this moment-- are identical to ours. When you come to the point of choosing right or left.. in some of those universes, your doppleganger chooses right, in others your doppleganger chooses left... thus, both outcomes are explored in different universes-- but those universes already existed prior to the choice being made.. the alternate choice didn't create the alternate universe.

This is why I always rejected the notion that altering history via time-travel would create an alternate universe. Except, of course, in the Myst milieu... where it seems to be canon that Ages can be 'split' into two if, say, the Grower links backwards in time & alters the history of the Age --[spoiler] (i.e. as appears to have been done in Kadish's vault{s}.) [/spoiler]

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Note: This is why big sweeping changes migrate the link to an entirely different Age. Such an outcome isn't possible in the future of that Age, no matter how things work out, so the link goes to an Age where the outcome is possible.


Ahhh.... You made me like this theory, by the end of it. If there is any possible way a change can be 'bourne' by the existing Age, then your link remains intact... but if said change is simply not 'organic', given the status of the current Age, then the link dissolves and your Age is replaced with a doppleganger. I sense a few elements of 'parallel time' theory in there. Clever!

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 06, 2013 5:38 am 
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I think I realized the biggest flaw of all...

The idea of infinite branching universes/ages suggest that there are many (infinite) different versions of all of us right? Okay, so you decide to write a descriptive book to a specific age, this book can only take you to one place. The descriptive book is part of the universe too, so it's also subject to the same laws... and now there are many "branching" universes after that moment you finished the book, but they all have the same exact link book to the same exact place.

When you finally link to your age... you link into an INFINITE AMOUNT OF YOURSELF linking in from ever so slightly different universes!

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 06, 2013 6:40 am 
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Ehren wrote:
The idea of infinite branching universes/ages suggest that there are many (infinite) different versions of all of us right? Okay, so you decide to write a descriptive book to a specific age, this book can only take you to one place.


I think we're getting off track, here.

But yet.....

Presumably a doppleganger of you will write a book that links to a separate 'doppleganger' Age-- your duplicate-self would link to a duplicate of the Age you wrote, not to the SAME Age you wrote.

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The descriptive book is part of the universe too, so it's also subject to the same laws... and now there are many "branching" universes after that moment you finished the book, but they all have the same exact link book to the same exact place.

When you finally link to your age... you link into an INFINITE AMOUNT OF YOURSELF linking in from ever so slightly different universes!


Nope... because if there are infinite duplicates of you, and infinite duplicates of the Age you're in, there will also be infinite duplicates of the Age you wrote--- and, like parallel lines, they will never interact with each other. Those infinite versions of yourself would each link to a separate version of the Age you wrote.. so it's highly unlikely that any of them would ever meet.

Altho--- that might be an interesting story... a D'ni writer who met 'himself' in an Age.

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 06, 2013 7:40 am 
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HarveyMidnight wrote:
I think we're getting off track, here.


Off track of what? I don't think it was off topic.

HarveyMidnight wrote:
Presumably a doppleganger of you will write a book that links to a separate 'doppleganger' Age-- your duplicate-self would link to a duplicate of the Age you wrote, not to the SAME Age you wrote.

~

Nope... because if there are infinite duplicates of you, and infinite duplicates of the Age you're in, there will also be infinite duplicates of the Age you wrote--- and, like parallel lines, they will never interact with each other. Those infinite versions of yourself would each link to a separate version of the Age you wrote.. so it's highly unlikely that any of them would ever meet.


But then could it still be argued that the place(s) existed even without the writers writing them? If it was a pre-existing place then the identical books would all go to that same place.

At the time, I thought I was making a smart argument with what I said... I feel like the concept for pre-existing ages would have to run into some problem of this nature, where infinity runs into itself somehow...

This is like really complicated to think about, there is too much to consider at once, and it's too easy to think in circles.

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 06, 2013 12:21 pm 
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Ehren wrote:
HarveyMidnight wrote:
I think we're getting off track, here.


Off track of what? I don't think it was off topic.


Well, primarily because of this:

Quote:
This is like really complicated to think about, there is too much to consider at once, and it's too easy to think in circles.


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But then could it still be argued that the place(s) existed even without the writers writing them? If it was a pre-existing place then the identical books would all go to that same place.


No, because I think it's still based on the inability to grasp 'infinity' as a concept.

Imagine if you had a set of dice that rolled all the numbers from one to infinity. What are the odd you'd EVER roll the SAME number more than once? One in infinity.

Even if you, yourself, were to write the same exact description, twice, in two different books, word for word... you'd still MOST probably end up with two identical, but specifically different, Ages... 'fate' or the 'Great Tree' or whatever you want to call it, still randomly 'selects' a link out of an an infinite number of Ages. And it doesn't matter HOW many times you write the same Age, word for word- all you'd end up with, most likely, is a bunch of books that link to multiple identical Ages.

[spoiler]In fact, Atrus even does this, when he tries to repair Riven in The Book of Atrus: he writes 10 identical Ages, in order to tryout different methods of repairing the Riven Age, before he actually tries to change the Riven book itself. None of those 10 descriptions linked to the same Age.[/spoiler]

Even if an infinite number of you, wrote the same exact Age, word for word... it is still ridiculously unlikely that any of those books would end up linking to the same Age. Not 100% impossible, per se, but so unlikely as to be 'effectively' impossible.

----------------------------------------

But... I'd like to get off the whole 'infinity carousel' anyway-- I think the most obvious evidence that the Ages already exist before they are written, is from the Book of Atrus:

[spoiler]Gehn's 37th Age was inhabited, and Gehn forced the people there to worship him as a God. Likewise with Riven. But many of the people in Age 37 talked to Atrus about how they feared and worshiped 'the Whiteness' a mysterious myst that surrounded the lake, for many generations before Gehn came to their world. The 37th Age had a history of things that at least spans back generations before Gehn ever wrote his book for the Age.

Similarly, when Atrus wrote his first Age, "Inception", there were birds there.. and his first thought was, "I didn't write birds! There is a 'random' element of things that turn up -- not everything in an Age was added by the description. There actually is a whole universe of stars, planets, plants, diseases, inhabitants... which are NOT included the written description. Where do those things come from? Such things can only be there 'naturally', if the Age has a history of its own, of events that took place before anyone ever linked to it. That evidence of a history, is proof the Age already existed before the description of it was written.[/spoiler]

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 06, 2013 9:24 pm 
The laws of cause and effect can be 'applied' to the timelines to allow us to at least comprehend the theory. Basically, the two timelines are indistinguishable before the event, and unique after. Thus it can be said that the event 'caused' the divergence. Yes, it was always going to happen, but things must be caused, right?

On time travel, no-one can agree on what happens when you travel back in time. Some believe that you must fulfill history as it happened while you are are there. Others believe that a new timeline is spawned (see previous paragraph). My opinion: we will never travel back in time, so what's the use in worrying? Leave that to Yeesha!

The theory is logical in inception, and obvious in implementation.

'One in infinity' is defined as zero. The only objection to this is that you cannot grasp the notion of infinity as not a number. I'll say it right here. Infinity is not a number. It is a concept. Strictly speaking, it does not exist as an entity. It is only a concept, an idea, in our minds. There are an infinite number of infinities. The 'largest' (whatever that means) is infinity raised to the power of infinity, repeated an infinite number of times. All infinities here are in terms of this infinity. See? It is very hard to grasp. Even David Hilbert and George Cantor found it difficult to grapple with infinity (and during the writing of this post, I mis-typed infinity in just about every conceivable way. All infinity of them!) To cut a long story short: infinity is weird; get over it.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 06, 2013 11:13 pm 
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An interesting hitch to consider is the ancient D'ni who Atrus met in Channelwood. Did he link from D'ni Prime or a parallel? Even with infinite points, there must be an infinitesimal chance of two actors arriving at the same plank.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2013 1:38 am 
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Enzan wrote:
Even with infinite points, there must be an infinitesimal chance of two actors arriving at the same plank.


Exactly. A "one in infinity" chance is NOT the same as zero chance. It is as CLOSE as you can get to zero without actually BEING zero... but it's not zero. There remains a sliver of possibility.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2013 2:29 am 
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HarveyMidnight wrote:
Even if an infinite number of you, wrote the same exact Age, word for word... it is still ridiculously unlikely that any of those books would end up linking to the same Age. Not 100% impossible, per se, but so unlikely as to be 'effectively' impossible.


Does it matter how unlikely it is? It still has to exist "out there" somewhere.

I understand that a writer isn't defining every last thing in the universe of the age they are writing, so in that sense they would get a random universe out of many that could match. But we also know that it does "decide" on a specific place at some point, otherwise everyone who used the book would keep going to different but similar worlds.

It is unavoidable that this same book fixed on the same age would exist in other alternate worlds. it doesn't matter even if the chances are low of descriptive books in two specific alternate universes lining up to the same place, since all the universes where it did match will still link to the same place. So you will definitely be meeting those other yous in the age. And there will be many alternate versions of the age that also have multiple yous linking in to it too.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2013 3:45 am 
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Quote:
It still has to exist "out there" somewhere


Not everything has to exist or be possible in an infinity. For example within an infinite set of ODD numbers you will NEVER find an even number, it's just not possible. In the same regard, being in the same place/age/universe as yourself may not actually be possible within the laws of this (fictional) multiverse.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 07, 2013 11:32 am 
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It is good that someone is reminding everyone that we're talking about a 'fictional universe' with
its infinite possibilities, but with some by Rawa not too precise, but quite clearly delineated rules
the D'ni adhered to for linking and using the Art and its impact on the resp. ages ... :P

Magic8889 posted an interesting link to a document describing that matter on page one of this thread ...
You can find this information, Rawa's remarks on that subject, also in the Linking FAQ on the D'ni Desk
Reference, and there's a nice Lockergnome interview with Rawa posted on DPWR, scroll down for his
take on the 'the quantum mechanical basis of the Art'... :)

So, maybe it is not so easy to not mix up this fictional universe with our own infinite, multidimensional
reality and its workings on all levels etc., but that might collide in this conversation when it gets lost what
we're talking about here, the 'real' or the 'fictional' one ... :D

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 08, 2013 12:23 pm 
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Ehren wrote:
It is unavoidable that this same book fixed on the same age would exist in other alternate worlds. it doesn't matter even if the chances are low of descriptive books in two specific alternate universes lining up to the same place, since all the universes where it did match will still link to the same place.


NO.. because as I said...there are still any number of elements in an Age that are completely outside the "control" of what you write--- things show up in an Age, that were never written in by the Author.

And I really don't think the authors were describing whole UNIVERSES.. When Anna wrote the island of Myst, for example, she probably just described an island & some details about the planet it's on. There's a whole universe of billions of stars & planets, etc, that are part of the Myst Age which SHE didn't include in her description. if you copied the Myst book word for word.. you'd get an identical island--- on a similar planet, sure.... in a different galaxy, in a different universe-- the bulk of which is NOT likely to be similar at ALL to the universe Myst is currently in.

So even "identical Ages", aren't likely to even be similar universes.


I think the only way more than one of these 'dopplegangers' of you would link to the same exact Age... is if they actually were trying to describe an entire universe, down to how many stars, how many flecks of space dust, how many planets and moons and comets and gallons of water and bunnyrabbits and microbes, etc, are SPECIFICALLY present in that whole universe, down to its atoms... and specify that NOTHING else is there BUT what they describe. Your lifetime just isn't long enough to craft a single description that complete.


But that's the POINT, isn't it? The Art doesn't create a new universe... so you don't NEED to write in that much detail.


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So you will definitely be meeting those other yous in the age. And there will be many alternate versions of the age that also have multiple yous linking in to it too.


Nope. My problem with this is that it has never happened in any of the stories. There's not a single bit of story canon that supports your theory, and the science behind ALL of this is sketchy at best because it's only theoretical.

So I don't know what your basis is, to insist it is "unavoidable" or will "definitely" happen. It starts to sound like you're not really interested in understanding the 'rules' of how linking works in the canon, so much as just trying to poke holes in it just to be arbitrary & argumentative.

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 08, 2013 2:56 pm 
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 08, 2013 4:12 pm 
Quick rule of thumb: Is it necessary? If not, then why worry about it?

Application: I have never met myself from another universe. Therefore there does not need to be any sort of rule which promotes the possibility of this happening.


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