The Quintessential 5th Conversation Thread

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Re: The Quintessential 5th Conversation Thread

Post by sangi39 » Mon 27 Nov 2017, 13:50

Ahzoh wrote:
Mon 27 Nov 2017, 12:55
It annoys me that I can't find the specific tutorial for making rivers. It mentioned fractalizing, tributaries, and modifying the width of a path correspondingly. I see dozens of similar tutorials but not the specific damn one.
My guess would be that it's because rivers are pretty dependent on a huge number of factors and they can change pretty quickly on a geological timescale compared to things like tectonics and even climate. I mean, look at the number of border disputes that have come about because the borders were defined by a river that has shifted its course over the last few decades or centuries thanks to erosion and the depositing of material. A lot of world-building tutorials are pretty much attempts at "best guesses" and rivers are probably one of the hardest aspects to pin down beyond "flows downhill, joins not splits, start small get big, etc."

Rivers, I suppose, are also a bit more small-scale and local when compared to things like tectonic plates, orbital mechanics and climate. So whereas climate can more or less be determined by things like wind direction, proximity to the ocean and ocean currents, mountain ranges blocking wind, atmospheric pressure and annual changes in temperature (which are largely determined by latitude and the size of the landmass), with rivers you have to take into account things like local elevation, the sort of rock that the river flows over, whether or not the river receives enough water to not dry out for some or all of the year at some point (which can be affected by local climate at the source of the river or somewhere else down its path), and it's pretty hard to say with any certainty where a river's source might even be other than "probably high up", and can vary from a temperate marsh to glacial melt-water.

It also involves a lot of back and forth. You can plot out the paths of major rivers, for example, but you then need to work out local elevation to account or that path. The more you zoom in, while the same basic rules still apply, you either come up with the paths of tributaries first and work on elevation from there, or work on elevation and then the rivers, but then you still have to tie that in with geology and local climate as well.
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Re: The Quintessential 5th Conversation Thread

Post by Ahzoh » Mon 27 Nov 2017, 14:09

No, I mean, there is a specific tutorial I read before that I can no longer find. I think it was on the Cartographer's Guild.

Yea, rivers are hard; I can never figure out where to put them and how many.
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Re: The Quintessential 5th Conversation Thread

Post by sangi39 » Mon 27 Nov 2017, 14:13

Ahzoh wrote:
Mon 27 Nov 2017, 14:09
No, I mean, there is a specific tutorial I read before that I can no longer find. I think it was on the Cartographer's Guild.

Yea, rivers are hard; I can never figure out where to put them and how many.
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Re: The Quintessential 5th Conversation Thread

Post by Ahzoh » Mon 27 Nov 2017, 14:19

sangi39 wrote:
Mon 27 Nov 2017, 14:13
Ahzoh wrote:
Mon 27 Nov 2017, 14:09
No, I mean, there is a specific tutorial I read before that I can no longer find. I think it was on the Cartographer's Guild.

Yea, rivers are hard; I can never figure out where to put them and how many.
Ohhhh, was it this one?
No, the one I read had a picture of some simple lines which was a main river and a tributary and then showed it fractalized.
And that site really doesn't like to work on my computer because I'm always having connection issues with it.
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Re: The Quintessential 5th Conversation Thread

Post by DesEsseintes » Tue 28 Nov 2017, 05:06

From Yahoo news:
Complicating the country’s understanding of her identity, British people don’t differentiate between being black and biracial, and Markle is referred to by residents as "black."

Link: https://www.yahoo.com/news/meghan-markl ... 54059.html

Am I the only person to have a WTF reaction to this? I would like to hear the opinions of other UKers on this, as I do not think this is the case. Also, I find it extremely odd that a news article should generalise about the attitudes of an entire nation like this.
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Re: The Quintessential 5th Conversation Thread

Post by Ànradh » Tue 28 Nov 2017, 07:55

Puts me in mind of the time I watched a Trevor Noah stand up show with my girlfriend. (Bit preachy at times, but funny guy.)
He was doing a bit where he claimed he likes to play 'Spot the Black Person' in really white countries, like Scotland, in this instance.
Trevor: "There's one! No, statue... There! Ah, reflection... "
Her, turning to me puzzled: "Isn't he mixed race?"
Me: "And also South African; they probably think of him as black too."

I feel like it just demonstrates that racial classifications are predominantly social constructs.
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Re: The Quintessential 5th Conversation Thread

Post by Ahzoh » Tue 28 Nov 2017, 08:00

Ànradh wrote:
Tue 28 Nov 2017, 07:55
I feel like it just demonstrates that racial classifications are predominantly social constructs.
They most certainly are.
I recall there was a time when Asian immigrants in America literally had to decide between associating with black people and becoming a person of colour or associating only with white people and becoming a white person.
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Re: The Quintessential 5th Conversation Thread

Post by elemtilas » Tue 28 Nov 2017, 12:36

DesEsseintes wrote:
Tue 28 Nov 2017, 05:06
From Yahoo news:
Complicating the country’s understanding of her identity, British people don’t differentiate between being black and biracial, and Markle is referred to by residents as "black."

Link: https://www.yahoo.com/news/meghan-markl ... 54059.html

Am I the only person to have a WTF reaction to this? I would like to hear the opinions of other UKers on this, as I do not think this is the case. Also, I find it extremely odd that a news article should generalise about the attitudes of an entire nation like this.
Ya, that's weird. Even by American journalistic "standards" that would be a pretty weird story.

And here in the backwaters of civilisation I was under the impression that "passing for white" was something people did two or three generations ago when it actually mattered in society. Why can't we just let her "pass" for being Meghan Markle and let be at that?
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Re: The Quintessential 5th Conversation Thread

Post by Lao Kou » Tue 28 Nov 2017, 14:35

This strikes me as rather slipshod "journalism".
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Re: The Quintessential 5th Conversation Thread

Post by Frislander » Tue 28 Nov 2017, 14:50

Well if hadn't heard about her being black/mixed-race before I saw any pictures of her I might have assumed she was white at first, but that's just me I think. Also the press doesn't universally refer to her as black, the BBC in particular takes great pains to point out her mixed racial heritage. I think it's a stupid point to make, like we definitely can make the distinction if we need to, but at the same time I can't really point to anyone in the national media who definitively identifies as mixed-race. There's Trevor Noah as mentioned above but even then I only saw him as being black until just now.

That's not to say that race doesn't work a bit differently over here, because it definitely does, but just that it doesn't work so differently that we don't recognise the concept of mixed-race at all.
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Re: The Quintessential 5th Conversation Thread

Post by sangi39 » Tue 28 Nov 2017, 17:31

Ànradh wrote:
Tue 28 Nov 2017, 07:55
Puts me in mind of the time I watched a Trevor Noah stand up show with my girlfriend. (Bit preachy at times, but funny guy.)
He was doing a bit where he claimed he likes to play 'Spot the Black Person' in really white countries, like Scotland, in this instance.
Trevor: "There's one! No, statue... There! Ah, reflection... "
Her, turning to me puzzled: "Isn't he mixed race?"
Me: "And also South African; they probably think of him as black too."

I feel like it just demonstrates that racial classifications are predominantly social constructs.
At least going by how he's talked about it, and talking to a couple of South African friends of friends, at least under Apartheid, when Trevor Noah was a child, he was considered "coloured", with a "white" Swiss father and a "black" South African mother (the terms are still used apparently, but "coloured" is falling out of use).

He also performed a bit of stand-up, in South Africa I think, talking about the inclusion of people of South-East Asian descent being classed as "black" by the South African government after the 2006 decision to allow them to benefit from the post-Apartheid "Black Economic Empowerment" programme.



As for whether people in the UK not distinguishing people black people and "biracial" people, uhhh, it probably depends on who you ask. I've certainly met a handful of people who wouldn't class Meghan Markle as anything but black, despite her father being white, while others would consider her "mixed-race" or "biracial". From what I recall, though, Markle herself identifies as "mixed-race" so I guess if it must come up then I'd suggest the media go with that (IIRC, that's the guideline the National Union of Journalists uses).
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Re: The Quintessential 5th Conversation Thread

Post by OTʜᴇB » Tue 28 Nov 2017, 17:48

I've kind of based "Black" and "White" purely on colour (as the two words do fall under the category of "colour"), but thought nothing of it. It's a helpful identifying feature if you need to describe somebody to someone, but I don't see it as anything beyond that, as there isn't any other information in that. With that in mind, I normally use "Black", "White", "Middle-eastern", "Asian", and "South American", but only to describe appearance. If I was asked to group a small population in some way, this distinction wouldn't even be something I'd consider as it would be utterly meaningless and somewhat arbitrary - then as soon as you throw mixed-race people into the mix, any kind of distinction like that immediately becomes ludicrously complex and not worth my time.

But with the point about just calling mixed-race people "black", I sort of do this, but like I say: descriptive purposes only; means pretty much nothing to me.
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Re: The Quintessential 5th Conversation Thread

Post by esoanem » Tue 28 Nov 2017, 18:09

DesEsseintes wrote:
Tue 28 Nov 2017, 05:06
From Yahoo news:
Complicating the country’s understanding of her identity, British people don’t differentiate between being black and biracial, and Markle is referred to by residents as "black."

Link: https://www.yahoo.com/news/meghan-markl ... 54059.html

Am I the only person to have a WTF reaction to this? I would like to hear the opinions of other UKers on this, as I do not think this is the case. Also, I find it extremely odd that a news article should generalise about the attitudes of an entire nation like this.
I'm very confused by this. I associate that sort of one-drop mentality very strongly with the US. I might refer to her as mixed-race (if I knew which I had not previously) but certainly wouldn't as black. Many people may also publicly describe themselves as black, but still call themselves mixed-race when offered it on a form or similar (in a kinda opposite way to how lots of pansexual people may call themselves pan but tick the bi box on forms). In general, I think people are likely to describe someone as black, white, or mixed race based primarily on skin colour/hair texture/etc with mixed race generally only being used for people with 'ambiguous' or 'disagreeing' features; also, for people you know, people are likely to adapt to whatever labels the person tends to use themselves.

I've never heard people use the word biracial here though; that seems to be almost exclusively USican with us always using mixed(-race) for anyone whose ethnicity has more than one significant part.
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Re: The Quintessential 5th Conversation Thread

Post by elemtilas » Tue 28 Nov 2017, 19:12

esoanem wrote:
Tue 28 Nov 2017, 18:09
DesEsseintes wrote:
Tue 28 Nov 2017, 05:06
From Yahoo news:
Complicating the country’s understanding of her identity, British people don’t differentiate between being black and biracial, and Markle is referred to by residents as "black."

Link: https://www.yahoo.com/news/meghan-markl ... 54059.html

Am I the only person to have a WTF reaction to this? I would like to hear the opinions of other UKers on this, as I do not think this is the case. Also, I find it extremely odd that a news article should generalise about the attitudes of an entire nation like this.
I'm very confused by this. I associate that sort of one-drop mentality very strongly with the US. I might refer to her as mixed-race (if I knew which I had not previously) but certainly wouldn't as black. Many people may also publicly describe themselves as black, but still call themselves mixed-race when offered it on a form or similar (in a kinda opposite way to how lots of pansexual people may call themselves pan but tick the bi box on forms). In general, I think people are likely to describe someone as black, white, or mixed race based primarily on skin colour/hair texture/etc with mixed race generally only being used for people with 'ambiguous' or 'disagreeing' features; also, for people you know, people are likely to adapt to whatever labels the person tends to use themselves.

I've never heard people use the word biracial here though; that seems to be almost exclusively USican with us always using mixed(-race) for anyone whose ethnicity has more than one significant part.
I'm not used to hearing "biracial" in the US either. "Mixed race", "multiracial" those seem more common. What I think is more common in America is for people of obviously mixed subsaharan African heritage to simply be labelled "black". Or "African-American".

As people become more and more mistizo, the old terms become less and less useful.
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Re: The Quintessential 5th Conversation Thread

Post by Creyeditor » Tue 28 Nov 2017, 21:27

I feel like I don't have a very elaborated vocabulary for racial distinctions. I saw her and thought she was British, because of the context. Then someone said she was US-american and I thought she was US-american. My wife than asked where she is from and so we found out here mother was african-american, but that was way beyond my first thoughts. I have to admit that I find it difficult to distinguish between 'mixed race' and 'black' beyond the point of someone self-identifying as such. IINM in Germany people usually identify as belonging to the same 'group', because they share the same expreience of discrimination and so on. I mean, what's the point in distinguishing? It's something about US american society that makes it important, right?
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Re: The Quintessential 5th Conversation Thread

Post by Ànradh » Tue 28 Nov 2017, 22:22

Lao Kou wrote:
Tue 28 Nov 2017, 14:35
This strikes me as rather slipshod "journalism".
Ah, now that is common for the UK. ;)
(I'm aware Yahoo is American owned.)
sangi39 wrote:
Tue 28 Nov 2017, 17:31
At least going by how he's talked about it, and talking to a couple of South African friends of friends, at least under Apartheid, when Trevor Noah was a child, he was considered "coloured", with a "white" Swiss father and a "black" South African mother (the terms are still used apparently, but "coloured" is falling out of use).
Yeah, it figures.
Creyeditor wrote:
Tue 28 Nov 2017, 21:27
I feel like I don't have a very elaborated vocabulary for racial distinctions. I saw her and thought she was British, because of the context. Then someone said she was US-american and I thought she was US-american. My wife than asked where she is from and so we found out here mother was african-american, but that was way beyond my first thoughts. I have to admit that I find it difficult to distinguish between 'mixed race' and 'black' beyond the point of someone self-identifying as such. IINM in Germany people usually identify as belonging to the same 'group', because they share the same expreience of discrimination and so on. I mean, what's the point in distinguishing? It's something about US american society that makes it important, right?
Yeah, my first thought was "Oh, God, I hope we don't have to pay for this wedding too..." I simply have no interest in either of them beyond that.
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Re: The Quintessential 5th Conversation Thread

Post by sangi39 » Tue 28 Nov 2017, 23:12

Ànradh wrote:
Tue 28 Nov 2017, 22:22
Yeah, my first thought was "Oh, God, I hope we don't have to pay for this wedding too..." I simply have no interest in either of them beyond that.
We probably will in some way, although Prince Harry has apparently said that the Royal Family will pay for the wedding. At the very least, the worldwide viewer ratings for the event are likely to be pretty high (potentially in the hundreds of millions as was the case for Prince William, Prince Charles (at least to Diana), Prince Andrew and Princess Anne (at least the first time)).

Actually, does anyone know the payment process for royal weddings here in the UK? I seem to recall that the various members of the Royal Family have an income set for them by Parliament, and that they also take in money from their various estates and businesses, but where does the money for a royal wedding actually come from? Presumably it can't be included in the government's budget before the event actually happens, so is it taken into account during the creation of the next budget? Or does the government's budget set aside a certain amount for various other royal expenditures in advance? In other words, does a royal wedding (or any expenditure on the royal family) change budgets in any way or do they have a target/limit on expenditure like other services that are taken into account by the government's budgets?
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Re: The Quintessential 5th Conversation Thread

Post by esoanem » Wed 29 Nov 2017, 00:23

The royal family own some property that they hold personally whose profits they are entitled to. The profits of crown property though are surrendered to parliament in exchange for a stipend (as part of the Civil List). This is a slightly odd situation and basically happens because one of the previous kings ran out of money and had to get bailed out by parliament who set these terms.

A lot of state events (such as royal weddings) are payed for directly by the government rather than from the royal finances (it's a somewhat narrow distinction as the royal finances also come from the government) and, whilst the royals have said they'll pay for this ceremony, they haven't said they'll pay for the security which is likely to cost an awful lot in and of itself and that money will still need to be conjured up from somewhere as the economy continues to be tight and Brexit causes whatever chaos it ends up doing.
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Re: The Quintessential 5th Conversation Thread

Post by Frislander » Wed 29 Nov 2017, 00:46

esoanem wrote:
Wed 29 Nov 2017, 00:23
This is a slightly odd situation and basically happens because one of the previous kings ran out of money and had to get bailed out by parliament who set these terms.
Well to be honest that doesn't really narrow it down much, most kings have run out of money at some point, some more spectacularly than others. However I think this was actually part of William of Orange's reforms, which he needed in order to finance his continued warring on the continent. Or that might have just been things like the Bank of England and the Civil List came later, I can't quite remember despite having done this shit for A-Level.

I'm not too fussed by the idea behind the stipendiary system myself, seeing how much of the money is coming from estates they do own anyway. It's when governments, particularly Tory ones, feel they need to lavish yet more money upon them in addition to that that I start to go hmm.
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Re: The Quintessential 5th Conversation Thread

Post by elemtilas » Wed 29 Nov 2017, 01:26

Creyeditor wrote:
Tue 28 Nov 2017, 21:27
I feel like I don't have a very elaborated vocabulary for racial distinctions. I saw her and thought she was British, because of the context. Then someone said she was US-american and I thought she was US-american. My wife than asked where she is from and so we found out here mother was african-american, but that was way beyond my first thoughts. I have to admit that I find it difficult to distinguish between 'mixed race' and 'black' beyond the point of someone self-identifying as such. IINM in Germany people usually identify as belonging to the same 'group', because they share the same expreience of discrimination and so on. I mean, what's the point in distinguishing? It's something about US american society that makes it important, right?
I just think it's weird beyond imagination. In America, sometimes people ("mixed ethnicity" or even "pure") will identify with one or the other for any number of bizarre reasons. Sometimes it's ancestry (or traditional ancestry), sometimes it's cool factor, sometimes it's financial gain or social prestige. (Financial gain = if your last name is Juarez, make sure you tick "Latin American" or "Native American", so you can get scholarships & grants & participate in the Great American Quota System aka affirmative action; social prestige = being "European-American" but pretending to be "Native American" so you can affiliate with a tribe and dance at a pow-wow)

What is worse, in America, very frequently people will simply assume an identity for you. Of course, this used to be a de facto (and even de jure) part of the culture. Even though Miss Markle doesn't appear to be particularly mixed, there was a time in the US when, if the fact of her parentage got out, she would be declared legally Negro. Her own declaration notwithstanding.

I personally don't get it. Now that genetic test kits are so readily available and so many people are learning exactly how dog-gone mongrel they really are, I just don't see any basis for the distinctions. America definitely is moving backwards on this account. Time was in the US, not too long ago, when a kid could grow up in the US without ever experiencing ethnic or racial or social bias. Dr. King's dream had come true. For a short while. Anymore, I think it's probably as bad and in many ways worse than the situation was long ago.
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