Baron von Skippy on 9 Apr 2003 03:08:01 -0000

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Re: [spoon-discuss] Step one on the road to InterNomic II

Ambassadors are responsible for promoting and propagating trade and/or diplomatic relations between the Nomic they represent (the "home Nomic") and the embassy Nomic. This definition is purposefully open-ended; diplomatic relationships may span a wide range from peaceful trade to open war. In order to promote trade, Ambassadors must protect the ruleset of their home Nomic to prevent theft of definitions of items defined in the ruleset of their home Nomic. As such, Ambassadors may veto any proposal whose passing would create one or more rules or sections of one or more rules which are, in their opinion, overly similar to one or more rules or sections of one or more rules in the ruleset of their home Nomic. When an Ambassador vetoes a proposal, they must provide one or more URLs which will lead to the rules they are trying to prevent the copying of. In order to prevent misuse of this power, the Administrator of the Ambassador's embassy Nomic may override this veto if e feels that the reasoning behind the veto is not sound.

This copyrighting of rules... I'm not sure it works for trade. If we develop and produce Whoopass, and try to trade it to another Nomic, it seems to me that the other Nomic will be unable to use it unless Whoopass is defined for them, too; such a definition would, under the copyright restrictions, have to be something completely different from its definition here. Or, if another Nomic decided to invent a currency, we could veto, simply because we have BNS; unless their currency is substantially different from BNS, it would count as a violation.

-You must have missed the part where they agree to comply with our rule on Whoopass, which defines the effects. True, it still might not mean anything, but that's fixable: Add a section to the Whoopass rule which defines the effects in their game. Then we still have total control of the rule, but they can use the thing.-

That still doesn't stop us from vetoing their fledgling point systems.... also, I approve of the interchange of ideas between Nomics. If another Nomic comes up with a very elegant way of doing something, are we not allowed to follow their example? Much of our justice system was based on various other Nomics; should we have to give that up and go back to the original system to 'protect' other Nomics?

-You're not listening here. This only restricts the theft of ideas which define /objects./ We could copy their justice system verbatim, and it wouldn't be theft. What, are you going to try to sell judges? Well, I guess if you can buy them... anyway, you also can't sell BNS, so they can take currency. And finally, their Admin can override any vetoes made by especially anal Ambassadors.-

C.5.1.1. Trade
Objects may be traded between Nomics by first having both Nomics agree to recognize the rule or section of a rule which defines each object. To do this, the Nomic which does not have the object defined in its ruleset may pass a rule with text along the lines of: "<Name of game> recognizes <name of other game> Rule <rule number>." If a rule in the ruleset of one Nomic which defines an object is changed, and another Nomic has recognized the rule, the other Nomic must be notified promptly.

What if another Nomic wants, say, Big Sticks? They'd have to recognize B Nomic Rule 301; that also includes Big Rocks, Sirens, Athames, Monoliths, Radar, Bait, etc., not to mention also defining The Grid, Grid Squares, and abilities of Players.

-They could choose to recognize section F.2. of B Nomic rule 301. "Objects may be traded between Nomics by first having both Nomics agree to recognize the rule /or section of a rule/ which defines each object."-

And how do sections fit into the "<Name of game> recognizes <name of other game> Rule <rule number>."?

-"Agora recognizes B Nomic Rule 301.F.2."-

Also, this could lead to unpleasant bits being included in other Nomics' rulesets - when we define an object throughout multiple rules, they must find every such rule; and we must remember what these rules are so we can notify them. Even worse, things like Orc's Mass list will be all in a single section; thus, a Nomic recognizing everything to do with our Big Sticks will suddenly be forced to have Mass defined for their players, as well.

-I don't see the problem. If they want it, they'll have to recognize everything. They don't have to take everything - we don't have Mass yet, do they necessarily want it? Things will do different things in different Nomics, I'm sure, because not all Nomics have a Grid, those that do don't necessarily have the ability to walk on them, none of them have Entropy... I could go on for a while on this tack. Who cares what they do with them, just so long as they buy them? They can't use them against us in a way not defined by our rules, after all.-

Or what if something gets, say, Less is More'd out of its original rule? If they'd adopted our Big Sticks before Big Sticks were moved to 301, they'd be left with a rule stating that they adhere to a nonexistent rule of ours.

That could cause problems...
-"If a rule in the ruleset of one Nomic which defines an object is changed, and another Nomic has recognized the rule, the other Nomic must be notified promptly."

Yes, but the fact that we let them know the rule changed doesn't fix the fact that the rule changed.

-They'll have to adjust the number they're recognizing, or stop recognizing it. If we repeal something and they liked it, they can propose it in their game - as it's no longer ours, they can have it.-

Also, this doesn't say anything about substantial changes - what stops Nomicron or Agora from selling us objects they define, then suddenly changing the definition of said objects to read, "if at any time a player of a game possesses one of these, and the game e's in is called 'B Nomic', then e, and all other players of that game, must forfeit all Nomic games they play immediately."?

All your rule says is that they have to notify us of the change; we'd still have a rule declaring that we abide by their rule.

-We de-recognize the rule and go to war. Perhaps there should be a timer on that. Say, their rule changes don't affect us (and vice versa) for 5 days? Anyway, what was our Ambassador doing when they proposed that? E should have come screaming back to us immediately, don't you think?-

In some games (Agora comes to mind), while they tend to move very slowly, if they all get together they can create, vote on, pass, and implement a proposal within a day.

You think even the Council can respond that quickly?

-Not listening to me... add a sentence saying that it takes, say, a week for rule changes in other Nomics to "travel" to our ruleset. Plenty of time for the Council to break off our support of the rule, which leaves us with undefined objects which we may wish to get rid of, lest they blow us up but good.-

C.5.1.2. The Suber
There exists a unit of currency called the Suber. For any given Nomic, one Suber can be traded for a number of points (or the nearest equivalent, if and only if the Nomic in question does not have points as a method of scorekeeping/currency) equal to one ten thousandth the number of points (or equivalent unit) needed to win that game of Nomic. Prices of objects to be traded should be defined in Subers in the rules which define them. One Suber is also equivalent in value to one B Nomic Shilling, as defined at .

Does that mean that 10000 BNS can be traded in for a win? And games without score-based victory conditions have no use for Subers? This would cause some interesting effects in some Nomics... especially ones like MacroNomic that have, or rather had, victory conditions based on the accumulation of a scalar quantity, but not a score-based quantity... (theirs was by 'Loyalty' to the ruling >> party).

-10000 BNS can't be traded for a win under our current ruleset; there's no exchange rate between BNS and points. And there's no exchange rate explicitly stated there, although some Nomics may choose to let their members trade Subers for points at their discretion. Such is not our business.-

If Subers are identical to B Nomic Shillings, then 10000 of either can be traded for a Win in any game. If not, then the last sentence there is entirely wrong - they're not equal in value, as I'd rather have 10000 Subers than 10000 BNS.

-Then you come up with a better way, please. I'm willing to take criticism when it's constructive. The point is that just because something is equal doesn't mean it's tradeable. Take the BNS sentence out, if you like. The point of that was to make this new currency easiest for this game to adapt to. Like spreading the dollar around the world. It's not necessary, just convenient.-

Better to have each Nomic define its own exchange rate, in terms of what that Nomic has.
-Okay, then one B Nomic point is worth 10^10^10^10... Subers. There needs to be a rule for it, or inflation will get out of hand. Points are nearly universal. Maybe something could be added to the formula - like, say, the maximum points per turn. For example, in Nomicron, you can get up to 20 points per turn (up to 10 for a prop plus up to 10 creativity bonus), whereas here... 5 Prose props in Haiku form is a maximum of 18 + 15 + 10 per proposal, that's 215 points in one turn... it's not likely, but it's been done. Although that's also inaccurate - no one ever does that. What about a formula which took into account the mean points for a passed proposal (ignoring frills like literary bonuses) and the number of days in a round/turn/nweek/etc.? So we figure how many they need, how many they get, and how fast.-

Then you look at something like the FRC, where victory is linked to score, but not linked to a set amount, and 'proposals' can grant increases in multiple values, many of which are somehow linked to winning, and the number of days in a round can go from seven to fifty, or higher... If the nomic in question is too fundamentally different, the standards *will* break down.

-New idea. The first Ambassador to link to each new Nomic establishes an exchange rate and reports it back. The rate information will be posted on the Wiki, say? It'll get wierd, but I guess it's the only option at the moment.-

My thought was that there could be a certain number of Subers which exist. Each Nomic which subscribes to the Suber rule can possess some quantity of said Subers. Players can get Subers through trading with other players, either within or without eir home Nomics; then, say, we could have a rule declaring that one Suber could be traded in for 5 BNS; Subers spent this way would end up being owned 'by the game', but not necessarily by any player in particular. Thus, Subers would never be created or destroyed; they would only change hands.

-Too painful. Who keeps track of all of it? Without a central authority, that is?-

C.5.1.3. Use This Section
In order for a Nomic to have Ambassadors to other Nomics, that Nomic must have a rule or section of a rule which is functionally identical and which does not conflict in any way with Rule 625.C.5.1 and its subsections in the ruleset of B Nomic. Identical phrasing is advised, if possible. (The rule in question can be found at .)

Wouldn't that be a copyright violation? And what stops them from having ambassadors if they don't have this section? Seems to me that it's just the section they don't have.

-It's not a rule that defines an object, so it's okay. And if they don't have it, they don't trade with us, which is sad, but we'll get over it. And if they don't have it but do produce our stuff, we go to war. If we have a reasonable chance of winning.-

I quote:
"As such, Ambassadors may veto any proposal whose passing would create one or more rules or sections of one or more rules which are, in their opinion, overly similar to one or more rules or sections of one or more rules in the ruleset of their home Nomic."

That says nothing about differentiating object rules from non-object rules.

-It was supposed to... what did you do with that clause? Damn. Okay, imagine that that bit was always in there. Does that help any?-

And if they don't subscribe to our Ambassador rule, how do we 'go to war' with them?

-Um... we replace their entire ruleset with "proosal proosal proosal?" Or we masquerade as them on discussion boards that attract hackers and declare their web page to be totally hack-proof? You know, the usual way.-



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