Asimov - Psychohistory - Mostali - Beer

From: _______________________________________________________________________________ (rowe@CSUA.Berkeley.EDU)
Date: Thu 22 Jun 1995 - 10:30:01 EEST



>From: Peter Metcalfe <P.Metcalfe@student.canterbury.ac.nz>

>People are more problemsome. Given that Psychohistory, Asimov Style, is
>ludicrously improbable, the only way you can predict such things is like
>if they abide by a natural cycle. For instance you can be pretty damn
>sure that the Telmori are going to attack at the next full moon. The
>prophecies of the HeroWars are of this kind casue anybody knowlegable in
>the cycles of the Hero Plane can basically see that there will be a time
>when &etc... They can't pinpoint the actual date cause it's like a weather
>forecast.

While this bit about accurate prediction Asimov style being ludicrously improbable is true for people, it is not true in all cases. In fact, it is central to the Mostali existence. Mostali percieve time and action differently than humans. For instance, they have instant knowledge of the time of events given by Mostali of other castes using different work-schedule time systems. Or, when a cannon is shot, they can tell you exactly where the ball will land from just observing the initial flight of the ball. The closest human parallel would be the type of idiot-savant who can barely talk, but can multiply any two numbers of any size instantly. Extend this type of perception into all life and you are closer to how the Mostali think. It is this ability which creates the 'Schedule' and allows them to live their lives in contented harmony.

As an example, I was talking with some Mostali friends of mine about Tales of the Reaching Moon. They gave me the exact release dates for the next 72 issues. Of course, there is always some error in the predicability of these things, but I was assured in this case the error was set at an acceptable 1.3%. This being primarily due to the unpredictable effect upon the Reaching Moon Megacorp of great British Beer Shortage of '03.

Cheers,

eric



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