Recent diary entries
Many hundreds of years ago when all the world was ocean the Great Seamonster swallowed a particularly large and tasty tuna fish. The fish stuck in her throat, but with her immense strength she ground it down and crushed it until all that was left was a compact stone, the size of a large pebble. Wanting to be rid of it, she coughed it up onto the surface of the sea.
It floated there, growing to become a reef, and then an island. The reef was strong and surrounded a large lagoon, in which was another tiny island. On the top of the island was a mound and near the mound was a tree, a fig tree, which birds from all over the world came to, and ate. The Great Seamonster was frustrated, since she was too large to reach the island over the reef.
The birds that came to eat the figs flew all over the world, dropping seeds into the ocean. The seeds grew to become islands themselves and where many seeds dropped together, mountain ranges formed. This went on for hundreds of years, and for all this time the Great Seamonster was frustrated, since she couldn't climb over the reef to reach the tree. Meantime, plants and animals, growing from the fig seeds, spread over all the new lands in the oceans.
The Great Seamonster nursed her rage and devised a plan. She hunted down a marlin and, as with the tuna fish, she swallowed it and crushed it in her gullet. Coughing it up, out came a pebble which floated on the sea and grew into a coco de mer. Soon the nut became the first woman, Kitani, who populated the world. Her children spread to all the islands.
Although the Great Seamonster had meant Kitani to find the fig tree and destroy it, Kitani was wise. She swam to the island of the fig tree and lived there for hundreds of years, looking after the tree. When she died, her children protected the tree. The Seamonster's rage continued.
Eventually people from other parts of the world, less wise than Kitani, found the island. They cut back the forest and ate the fruits from the fig tree. The fruit was so tasty they decided to dig up the tree and take it back with them, away from the island. None of Kitani’s people could stop them.
The fig tree died.
Soon the sea began to rise and the storms raged. Many died in floods. Land stopped forming. Mataki, a great-great-grandson of Kitani, knew there was only one way to stop the land falling back into the sea and the Great Seamonster swallowing up the land once again. He sailed the oceans of the world, looking for a seed, the first fig seed from the first tree. This seed, he thought, would grow once again into a fig tree if he planted it in the right place. He called to the birds, who led him across the oceans in his search. After many years, in a far-away city, he found a shrivelled seed. He placed it in water from the island lagoon, and through osmosis it absorbed the liquid and became plump and ripe.
Mataki took the seed and planted it on the island where the old fig tree had once stood. The tree grew, but very slowly, and it bore few fruits.
The island is Kitani, named after the first woman. Within its reef the tree Mataki planted grows on the small island, protected and beyond the reach of the Great Seamonster. Its seeds are still eaten by birds and fall into the ocean, or onto the land, creating new islands, mountains, forests, fields, villages, towns and cities.
On the island, a myth endures.
Although there are a few amazing articles in the wiki, there are also a LOT of stubs, unfinished, deprecated, abandoned, confusing and unreadable articles ... plus multiple templates. Has anyone got ideas how we could improve the quality and generally make it something more like the real wikipedia? At the moment it is just growing more and more arms without getting any more believable, or coherent - in fact, just the opposite, despite some valiant attempts.
Happy mapping Udi
Responding to Luciano's challenge, I would like to know a bit more what other mappers think about this area. The map is obviously far from complete - and there are still relics of earlier experiments there - but, all in all, what in this city is wrong? What should I focus on deleting and reworking?
For background, there is info in the Kėzėpölān wiki, but all this is tentative (especially the economic stuff). The main points may be:
very limited private car ownership
focus on family life and education
commitment to 'self-sufficiency' in food production, wide use of marine resources
commitment to hi-technology and industry
commitment to development of sports and arts
you can of course critique these as well.
Happy mapping Udi
Following up hmniak's diary entry about 'Geovision', I saw a comment that there aren't any other international competitions, other than sporting ones.
In fact there are a few:
The Martanidia Prizes are international prizes in Science, Medicine, Literature and Peace - equivalents of the Nobel Prizes.
The Jko Prize is an international art prize - equivalent of the Turner Prize, but extended internationally.
There is also the Cruz y Lopez prize, a prize for architecture.
Maybe there are others...
Happy mapping Udi
I have been puzzled for a while by this: http://opengeofiction.net/#map=18/-45.70595/70.17565
There is a white 'island' here, but in JOSM there are no nodes or coastline ways there. It is over a month since I changed it. Originally it was a district maritime boundary which I managed to accidentally tag as natural=coastline. But although I've removed the coastline tag - and shifted the way slightly - the white area remains. So it looks to me as if the render hasn't updated on this bit of coastline. Can anyone tell me why, and if there is a way to fix it?
Antarctica is a real world place and, to fit in with the general policy of not using real world place names in OGF, really we should be using another name for it. So, looking for ideas. We do have the Mahhalian name 'Hhokkoameddemet' (fidelly ኦቆዓሜጬሜት ) but it would be rather strange if we all used that. Some thoughts on the Antarctica talk page. Anyone have any suggestions?
I suppose this is another attempt to move the debate on from Demuth's previous entry (sorry Demuth). Basically, I think that some of us are struggling with fitting our countries into OGF, especially with new countries. Has the time has come to accept that OGF is not just a collaborative platform: it's a collaborative project? If that's the case, it means we need to work together.
How do we do that?
There are different ways. We could let it go on as it has been. That means people build individual countries and work out the framework those countries fit into afterwards.
The problem is, the more countries there are, the harder it is to do this. If two nearby countries have different ideas, its even harder. What if the country next door has a climate warmer than it 'should be' for the latitude; that will mean your country will have to be warmer too, or there is a 'verisimilitude problem'. So there has to be collaboration. Or you want to use English to map your country: there must be some connection with 'Ingerland' at some point in your country's history. Again there has to be collaboration.
In fact, there has to be a framework. Whether this framework is built after a country or before it still has to be there. This is an idea for how we develop a framework.
There is an order:
- Tectonics: work out where the continental plates are, where the mountain ranges are, how the plates have moves
- Climate: fix the climatic regions of the world, based on the distribution of mountains, ocean currents, weather systems
- Work out the distribution of biomes and evolutionary history, including the evolution of humans
- Work out the basics of human history, population expansion, major civilizations
- Develop the major historical religions
- Look at colonisation and imperialism
- Look at modern social and political issues
As you read down the list you may see that more recent things require increasing degrees of collaboration and of communication, mainly because there are a lot of countries already. But it makes sense to work out the things at the top of the list first.
As we work through this framework, we can make decisions that become fixed - the OGF canon. We can leave some things open-ended, but some things do have to be closed. Even things that are fixed will always be able to be added to, in detail and depth.
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, we do need some 'community guidelines', because what we will be collaborating on will be, in some ways, controversial; different people will see it in different ways. That is not 'political correctness' it is just 'getting on with each other'.
- Criticism should be both given and received respectfully
- Global decisions involve the community
- The community decides whether a global decision becomes canon or not
- The community works to ensure that developments fit into it the canon and add to it
We all know that in the real world anyone who ends up finding OGF is in a good position, with access to a computer, to the internet, to some spare time. We are a very small minority of the people in the real world. But the OGF world doesn't need to be like the real world in terms of 'fairness'. We should all have a chance to contribute our ideas and creativity.
Do we start?
Last month I focussed on a small area of territory as part of Luciano’s challenge. It was the first time I’d managed to do that, and I found it really rewarding. I don’t know if I’d be able to do it again – my attention is already wandering. Meantime, it would be great to get some feedback, so if you’re interested and, while its still fresh, here is the [District of Sanaray, Urne, Yshon etc] in the Free Doonist Republic of Shadze-Ma. Maybe its not all of interest to you - but skip down to the end.
The main settlement is the town of Yshon, vaguely modelled on the town of Castro, Chile – approximately the same latitude and level of development. So we have a ferry port, docks and various other features. No rail infrastructure on the islands, but I intend to add buses in future. More buildings and features still to be added.
The north-western islands are pretty rural, some with tracks rather than roads, for example Otaeay, Jangruy, Nerezen/Valizen.
The same goes for the north-eastern islands, but the main (international) airport is located on the only flat ground suitable for a big runway, on the island of Urne. The independent island district of Tayfir – with old castle – is situated not far away.
The southern islands are much less cultivated, with areas of largely unmanaged austral forests. I suppose they’re hillier with much steeper slopes, as on Dshon.
There are a few peculiarities – which will be wikied at some point when I have more time:
The micro-state of Dulan situated a few km to the south (I can’t tell you why its a micro-state yet – I’ll work it out some time).
The Semi-Autonomous Area of North Karg – a pilgrimage site for Tlönists, with the site of ‘the Non-Clock’ a ''hrön ''. Various other bits and pieces continuing the same themes: agriculture, docks and light industry, religious tourism.
Finally, the statue of the Pointing Man famous throughout Shadze-Ma, (and maybe beyond). I give you a challenge, not a hard one: spin the man – make him point to something you find interesting. Could be in Shadze-Ma, could be somewhere else in OGF. Try not to move him off his pedestal, just rotate him (easy in JOSM: just press ctrl+shift - but I don’t know about ID and Potlatch). I’ll have the first spin, then its down to you...
Happy mapping - and thanks again Luciano.
A layer from JOSM is currently uploading which outlines the river systems and jungles of central Commonia. Its a big file and will take a while, and I don't know how it will turn out yet; I'm expecting a few glitches, which I will sort out as soon as I can. The rivers are partly based on rivers that were already there, partly new, but I haven't removed any rivers, only re-used previously drawn sections in slightly different ways, to make them a bit more logical - to me anyway. I have tried to base them on river patterns in the Amazon and Congo, while using what was already there. The jungle fits in between many of the river multi-polygons. Although there will be a lot of landuse=wood there will still be plenty of places for people to build in central Commonia.
As part of Luciano's challenge (which I've already failed) I'll also alter some of the 100s of km of straight-line roads in Commonia, as I check through the upload data, either replacing them with other forms of transport or making them more realistic by adding curves, etc.
Is it blue - or is it not blue? It has been removed from the list of 'open to edit' countries. If it is not blue, what is the status of the edits in that country and the wiki content written about it? Cheers Udi
Hello friends. The Intercup has now been established. This is a football competition equivalent to the OGFIFA World Cup but for integrated mixed-sex teams. It has been held every 4 years since the first competition in Freedemia in 1992. There are eligibility requirements for countries to enter and there are also requirements for winners, runner-up teams and hosts.
The main page of the competition is here: http://opengeofiction.net/wiki/index.php/Intercup
So far, only the 1992 competitions and 2000 have wiki pages. See http://opengeofiction.net/wiki/index.php?title=1992_All_Peoples_Cup and http://opengeofiction.net/wiki/index.php/2000_InterCup . Countries that meet the eligibility requirements (see the talk page for the respective competition) can fill in the spots in the table for these competitions. The requirements to take these spots are deliberately quite hard achieve - countries that take them must have put some effort into both mapping and wiki, especially on football!
Perhaps demand for places in the competitions will be low, but the wikis may also serve as a template as to how spots in the 'official' OGFIFA world cups - and other competitions - could be determined in a way that reflects the importance of football in a country, rather than on the 'first-come, first-served' basis that has happened until now.
Happy mapping to you all Udi
Between 1820 and 1960 the islands of Kėzėpölān (also known as Pėzėpölān, Pėzėkölān, Pĕzepŏląn, ||.|.///...////-// etc.) exported up to 500,000 tonnes of slate per year. The geology of the islands provides abundant deposits of high quality slate. This slate was exported around the world for use in roofing and stonework. Price for the exported slate was negotiated on a barter system, although foreign currencies were also used. Export was direct to ports on the Asperic Ocean, but overland trade to countries futher afield and onward shipment may have also taken place. The export was co-ordinated by the Ingerish Slate Company Ltd. until 1870 and by the Kėzėpölān Slate Co-operative from then on. The deposits were finally exhausted in the 1950s, by which time much of the main island had been quarried away.
I am hoping that countries around the Asperic Ocean would have been part of a trade network linked to this. Knowing which countries might have been involved would allow me to introduce a way in which immigrants came to the islands and work out how their culture developed. The map is blank at the moment (i.e. showing the situation before major quarrying), but the islands are in development.
Also, perhaps note that the World Championships in stone-skimming have been held on the islands since 1904. Join the trade network and give one of your citizens a chance of victory in them!
Best wishes to you all Udi
Following discussion with a few of you, I've finally got around to creating a wiki of the historical wars, conflicts and revolts our countries have suffered from. It has to be said that we appear a lot more civilised that the real world is!
However, in the interests of bringing countries alive - and this is all it is - I would like to suggest to you all that the world is the war it is today partly because of the way conflicts have shaped us. Unless people here have been expanding into areas where no-one has ever been before - and there must be places like that - there will surely have been conflicts between one tribe and another tribe, and between one nation and another. Whether you speak the same language or entirely different ones, there will have been times in history when people disagreed, or maybe things were just better in one country than in another, and people wanted to take it away. And what about the civil wars that caused so many nations to turn out the way they have, with one sector of the population having more power than another. How did your country manage to sort that out, when the one next door has gone the other way?
Whatever your position, please realise that the conflicts wiki is not intended to be a place to promote one form of government or ideology over another, but to help bring countries alive and help them fit into a bigger OGF picture. Feel free to put any ideas there.
The best to you all Udi