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Old 11-14-2023, 04:39 PM   #781
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Default Re: 'Imperial Culture' (non-canonista)

Restricted games.

This is a custom of exploiting athletic events for revenue production. Tournaments will be restricted to restricted attendees often the entourage of a given state's cultural atache.

The purpose of this is to allow the games to be taped and released to the public in a controlled manner. Auctioning the right of broadcast provides revenue and incidentally provides gaming halls a soft incentive to abide by licensing requirements.

Adventures can involve sneaking into games to get an illegal recording, being hijacked on the courier carrying the recording, government intrigue around a tournament, underworld intrigue around a tournament (insert joke about similarity), etc.
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Old 11-19-2023, 10:10 PM   #782
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Artemis Hall:

When the first Lunar Base on the South Pole of Luna was built, it was first a lone outpost. This evolved into Aldrin City. When artificial environment technology was satisfactory and transport regular enough to make luxuries available, Artemis Hall was built. This was a simple Cafe, Bar, and Diner. It's fare was attractive and became better recommended as time went on. It was also know for such gimmicks as a low-grav gymnasium.

As the owner grew prosperous he built Artemis Palace, a first class hotel. Later after the conquest of Nusku, Artemis Tower was built exploiting not only the friendly environment but the possibilities of grav archetecture.

Unfortunately the overhead outgrew the demand and the original owners were bankrupted. The chain was then purchased by a Terran public/private corporation to provide liberty for merchant and naval officers.

The original Artemis Hall, Artemis Palace, and Artemis Tower are still there, kept as cultural treasures. All three have had reproductions elsewhere in known space. Under Imperial Law a cultural landmark is trademarked and reproductions have to be licensed. As the original owner is not available to claim the official owner is the Emperor and as with other similar historic sites permission can be requested of the appropriate local noble.
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Old 12-01-2023, 10:17 AM   #783
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Dataforest:

A term invented by the Nuskan social philosopher Dr. Enli Johnson during the Interstellar Wars era. It comes of the realization that the advent of modern computers made it no longer possible to separate packages of data as conveniently as when they were bound by the constraints of such mediums as paper. For instance any new literary production could have not only internal links but links with material outside it's supposed borders and they were mechanically indistinguishable. Enli used the analogy of an ecology, or of a family based society where the border between one family and another is arbitrary and imposed by custom as everyone is technically related. He distinguished from the concept of cyberspace (whatever name it went under on a given world), by accepting all media as part of the data forest not just electronic, and all genres, not distinguishing between fiction and nonfiction or the different genres of each in this regard. However Enli also created the useful concept of a "datagrove", which is material said to share the same characteristics such as sharing an author or publisher. The datagrove system is a matter of convenience as there are different ways to classify; for instance author X may declare two clusters of works that happen to be linked as one datagrove or two (and sometimes patent law specifies that, giving the author control over filing). Another common usage is the works of an author as published on one planet or another, or different publishers of the same author.

The custom has remained in place over the ages in libraries across the stars as it was so obviously useful. It remains a technique to give order as websurfers jump seemlessly from one publication to another.

Another metaphor used by Enli was the "databurg" and using "datahalls" in place of the sylven analogy.

Not coincidently it is common for the net on many worlds to create use an screen image of either a forest or a city as a representation of the navigation of cyberspace. Sometimes both images are used.
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Old 12-01-2023, 01:37 PM   #784
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Web subscription:

Many worlds charge for the use of the web. Sometimes it is a state imposed tax for the straightforward purpose of gaining revenue. At other times it is similar to a luxury tax, or a tax on narcotics:it is meant to discourage immoderate use of something felt to be ambiguously moral or potentially addictive, or distracting from fruitful labor. Alternatively some governments are constitutionally forbidden to tax the datanet or bound to tax impartially to limit the infringing on free exchange of information. This has caused ideological conflict in many worlds.

Another source of subscription is the servers themselves who often charge ordinary users as well as advertisers, sometimes charging more for given sites. One of the services often paid for is secrecy. There are many ways to do this from elaborate cryptography, to roundabout series of cash transfers to paying in solid currency (some users go to the point of wearing a disguise when they do so; covert operatives are of course stereotyped as doing so but there are plenty of ordinary users who do).

On worlds with an elaborate code of hospitality, guarding a users secrecy is considered a point of honor. This is notably the case on Tizon.
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Old 12-03-2023, 05:12 AM   #785
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Default Re: 'Imperial Culture' (non-canonista)

Quote:
Originally Posted by jason taylor View Post
Dataforest:

A term invented by the Nuskan social philosopher Dr. Enli Johnson during the Interstellar Wars era. It comes of the realization that the advent of modern computers made it no longer possible to separate packages of data as conveniently as when they were bound by the constraints of such mediums as paper. For instance any new literary production could have not only internal links but links with material outside it's supposed borders and they were mechanically indistinguishable. Enli used the analogy of an ecology, or of a family based society where the border between one family and another is arbitrary and imposed by custom as everyone is technically related. He distinguished from the concept of cyberspace (whatever name it went under on a given world), by accepting all media as part of the data forest not just electronic, and all genres, not distinguishing between fiction and nonfiction or the different genres of each in this regard. However Enli also created the useful concept of a "datagrove", which is material said to share the same characteristics such as sharing an author or publisher. The datagrove system is a matter of convenience as there are different ways to classify; for instance author X may declare two clusters of works that happen to be linked as one datagrove or two (and sometimes patent law specifies that, giving the author control over filing). Another common usage is the works of an author as published on one planet or another, or different publishers of the same author.

The custom has remained in place over the ages in libraries across the stars as it was so obviously useful. It remains a technique to give order as websurfers jump seemlessly from one publication to another.

Another metaphor used by Enli was the "databurg" and using "datahalls" in place of the sylven analogy.

Not coincidently it is common for the net on many worlds to create use an screen image of either a forest or a city as a representation of the navigation of cyberspace. Sometimes both images are used.
This reminds me of a forward to a copy of Utopia that I used to have. Thomas Moore wrote that book at about the time when scholarship was bringing to be organically changed by the sheer number of printed books. Ordinary merchants could own libraries as large as monasteries had held in Anglo-Saxon times. The whole business of various authors writing notes about their meetings with Raphael Hytholay (a fictional character) is a game about intertexuality. The same thing you're talking about.
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Old 12-03-2023, 08:28 AM   #786
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Clan Champions part 2:

In Stephenshold and Athena/Hecate dueling is legal (on Athena/Hecate it is legally limited to non-lethal weapons, usually a shock rod or fierah wielded as whip, but in the more Aslanish Stephenshold no such limit extends and the prevailing style is dewclaw/aloi). In both polities champions are an institution. They possess an analogy to Legal Enforcement Powers.

Designated Clan champions are limited to fighting in Clan quarrels similar to other places. However supporting lesser status, and less well trained clan members is one of the duties of gentry. This could sometimes include entering the lists on a clanfellows behalf especially if there is an anomaly like a dispute between a freeperson (the word commoner is not PC here) and another member of the gentry, or if there is simply a disparity in training.
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Code Duello Caledonia:

Dueling in the Principality of Caledonia is less common than it used to be but still very much exists. The code is fairly traditional. The weapons for gentry are normally either the great claymore (two-handed) or the small claymore (a basket hilted version of the Italian side sword, usually paired with a shield, cloak, parrying rod, and/or dirk in the left hand). For commoners the normal weapon is the quarterstaff or the shillelagh. Fighting between gentry and commoners is permitted-it is considered that doing otherwise would make status an excuse to insult with impunity-but the weapon choice is a compromise and conventions vary. Armor, that is worn rather than carried in the off hand, is forbidden unlike in sporting contests. Caledonian Aslan of course fight in their traditional manner as do many humans.

As all Caledonians have honor to lose or gain, the main limiting customs about who may give challenge to whom are common sense ones. Minors cannot fight adults obviously. Some categories of employment are forbidden to fight by the nature of their office such as churchmen or judiciary officials. Active duty military, constabulary and emergency services personal cannot fight someone above or below them in a chain of command and no one can give challenge to an officer of the law in the rightful performance of his duties.

There is usually two seconds and an umpire. They negotiate the terms of the contest beforehand and the umpire enforces them. This process is actually fairly quick, for the location is fairly well known; some settlements even maintain a traditional dueling ground, usually somewhere where a lawman will be a long time coming and have an excuse not to hurry. The umpire is the only one allowed a firearm: pistols are not at all fashionable for dueling in Caledonia, though target shooting is a popular sport.

Legally, dueling has an equivalent status of manslaughter with the escape clause "at the court's discretion". What that means in practice is that generally duelists are likely to be given no more than a nominal punishment. The law is meant not so much to forbid dueling but gamesmanship. If someone does something the court considers beyond the bounds of propriety-like using a deliberate provocation to try to turn it into a respectable form of assassination rather than a means for free citizens to settle their quarrels-the court will usually punish to the fullest extent.
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Old 12-03-2023, 09:19 AM   #787
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Electronic feudalism:

Because of the tendency toward cybercrime and similar dangers protection webs have evolved on the data net to imitate the ones in solid space. Often they have the same persons: gentry and nobles often maintain cyberwarfare specialists in their retinue and some of these have the status of huscarls. They also often maintain a warrior like CoH. Another provision nobles can afford is specialized hardware and software for the purpose. Discounts on tribute are also often given to nearby neighbors or other lower status people with "friends and family" type connections.

Among Aslan this service naturally extends to clan members and members of allied, vassal, and liege clans. Usually the one in charge is the KO's consort, Dowager, or female sibling, and cyberwarfare specialists are usually female: males usually only learn cyberwarfare as a secondary aspect to such male skills as starship weaponry rather than as a specialty.

Traditionally a user will pay a protector to do such things as create defenses and launch attacks on intruders. This can be paid for in cash but is also often paid for by service. Obvious services include contributing reciprocally to a protector's defense of his clients for instance by cooperating in a DDOS upon a particular offender, or simply by assisting in maintenance. Sometimes the pay will be in service in solid space such as delivering goods to a gentlesophant's home or office.

The result of this system as in solid space is a system of rules to keep cyberwarfare from getting out of hand, analogous to the bloodless rustling contests of pastoral peoples. These are enforced by traditions of compensation and threat of retaliatory sabotage which can turn into a web feud. Again mirroring solid space.
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Old 12-06-2023, 05:02 PM   #788
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Tree symbolism:

Due to their fondness for invoking Celtic and post-celtic legend Caledonians have a symbolism around trees. Noble families, clans, guilds, and cities have trees as symbols (a custom that has exported to other peoples) and sites for ceremonies. In the days of warlordism, the violent overthrow of a dynasty was emphasized by the cutting down, and burning of a tree an event still memorialized in elections and rugby tournaments where a pole bearing the standard of a rival is first set up than cut down to the accompaniment of much in the matter of whiskey.

Another symbol is the use of the leaves. The first copy of important political, legal or religious document is often written on solid paper made from the leaves of trees from a noted orchard-the greater the status of the trees the greater the status of the document. Likewise any book that is expected to be produced in an artistic fashion (such as a project by the Guild of Illuminators) is likely to have such treatment. Connoisseurs talk of this the way the wine connoisseurs talk of vineyards.

Note: The company Releaf Paper specializes in producing paper from fallen leaves in real life.
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Old 12-06-2023, 05:29 PM   #789
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Dewclaw Heraldry:

Aslan have differing customs regarding their dewclaws. While some clans consider it a point of pride to go bare clawed, others have various types of decoration. Some paint it red-the associations are obvious. Others have stripes. One popular method is to use micro heraldry. Implants made to fit the claw or the thumb are also popular and a skilled surgeon can make sure the cavity regrows to keep it from interfering with the use of a dewclaw as a weapon or tool (Aslan use dewclaws as ad-hoc screwdrivers for assembling and disassembling small arms, and other such tasks). The implant usually contains something appropriately martial like an Aslan saga or a role of the warrior's ancestors, or the name of an enemy slain in battle. Some Aslan tape sparring sessions and have their best performances placed in a dataholder.

This fashion is of course mainly common among Aslan from hi-tech societies, such as Caledonian, Imperial, or Darrian Aslan.

Another variation is to use the claw as a place to wear decorations on formal occasions. This is common in the Hierate and the Imperial Aslan Guard regularly issues dewclaw rings as regimental honors.
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Old 12-08-2023, 01:52 PM   #790
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Parole:

According to the Imperial Rules of War a parole is a bond signed by a prisoner or detainee to allow limited freedom. The limits of it vary. An open ended parolee is allowed to return to his home country as long as he does not bear arms against the captor or a specified ally of the captor until ransomed or exchanged. This by the way is a loophole sometimes used to allow the bearing of arms against a cobelligerant of the captor; indeed captors have been known to use this as a silent way to diddle a cobelligerant they disliked or sweeten a proposed future negotiation with an enemy. Stricter paroles can resemble house arrest with the parolee obliged to remain within a certain radius or be interned by a third party such as a neutral nation or the Imperium, or a repatriation bond broker. The more lenient types of parole are usually given to nobles or other well known prisoners who cannot use anonymity to hide.

Civilian enemy nationals caught by the outbreak of hostilities are usually paroled but confined to a radius until exchanged. Diplomats receive a different sort of parole. Usually their embassy or consulate is quarantined but retains extraterratorial rights as long as the parent government exists. This is to allow diplomatic personal to broker their national interest on the other countries soil in wartime, and to open truce negotiations. However the strict quarantine is there to prevent it being an espionage base and diplomats under such circumstances can only communicate with authorized mediators (among which counts such mundane things as suppliers of foodstuffs). Violators of such "diplomatic parole" lose their immunity and can be interned.

Breaking parole counts as perfidy in the Imperial Rules of War and is punishable as such up to and including capital punishment depending on the aggravation or mitigation of the instance. If a Parole breaker is sheltering in an Imperial starport pursuers can sue for extradition, unlike with escaped PWs and other war refugees who are usually given asylum so long as they do not use Imperial territory as a base for active operations. The biggest penalty for parole breaking is often social rather than legal at least for members of the ruling class. A successful parole violator is usually not worth the trouble to pursue in an Imperial court but is likely to be given the same pariah status of any oathbreaker.

Parole negotiation tends to be handled by lawyers and diplomats specializing in such matters, usually the same ones as handle repatriation bonds, ransom and exchange, mercenary contracts, prizes and other lawful plunder, and in general matters having to do with relations between belligerents.
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