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About this blog

Thoughts, analyses, and reminisces

Entries in this blog

The Scarabsburg address

Four score and seven days ago our fathers brought forth on this Cyberverse, a new nation, conceived in Maroonity, and dedicated to the proposition that all pixels are created equal. We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all pixels are created equal, that they are endowed by their Admin with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Infrastructure. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men and Women, deriving their just po

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Reparations or no reparations?

Before this entry takes off, let me clarify - this is a moral argument, not a strategic one. Obviously, regardless of who is the aggressor in a war, he who is the victor also has the most power in deciding how much reparations should be. There is not much to be said if we go strictly by the "might makes right" argument, so instead I will present an alternative view about what could be considered "right." First, there are two assumptions that I must make: 1 - Power is relative. If we have tw

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The Purpose of War

In Vladimir's latest blog entry, Thesis, Antithesis: the Story of a Great War, we saw the creation of a theoretical framework for describing political trends in the Cyberverse. Underlying these trends are two basic axioms: war is inevitable, and political power does not last forever. The reasons why can be analyzed in detail, but they basically boil down to the fundamental nature of the Cyberverse, namely, that this is a game, and it is no fun when one gets stuck in a predictable scenario. T

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Political Dueling

I know we are all so hyped up about the drama surrounding GGA*, and on a lesser note, Jonathan Brookbank, but perhaps we can take a step back, and consider an idea, the concept of "political dueling." A couple of months ago, one of our past triumvirs, Brian Reimer and Duncan King performed an "honor duel." I don't recall the outcome, only that the winner would be decided by who lost the most score (or something to that effect). It was a good way to blow off steam, and use the war system which

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A new age of CN?! Say it ain't so!

It ain't so. I'm not referring to the argument that Karma will turn out to be just as bad as NPO and friends. That's a different argument altogether which I won't be taking up. Instead, I'll be looking at a different angle - what this game really is. The fact of the matter is, Cybernations is much more of a political simulation than a war simulation. It's fairly easy to go months upon months without engaging in a single war, but the political process of arriving to that point goes on nearly

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Congratulations, Sparta

The NPO war and political machine no longer holds the position of #1 alliance in the Cyberverse. It essentially held that title, more or less consistently for the period of nearly 3 years, easily dominating the history of Planet Bob. Instead of looking back to figure out how we got to this point (which has been talked about ad nausea), I think it would be far more interesting to instead look on the future, and start figuring out what will happen. To start this article, we have to note two imp

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CN Ideology and Philosophy

Folks, there is a difference between "ideology" and "philosophy." Often, people confuse the two on our beloved Planet Bob, marking their beliefs as "philosophy" when it would be more apt to describe them as "ideology." So what marks them apart? To be fair, they aren't mutually exclusive, but roughly you can describe philosophy and ideology as follows: Philosophy: A system of thought that describes and explains an aspect or multiple aspects of the uni/cyberverse, and then makes recommendatio

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Game theory and small alliances

First, I would like to apologize for my readers as I will be using some OOC references. I'm usually against doing such a thing, as that's how I like to play the game. But, this is a blog, and I think we can bend the rules a little here... For anyone who has been in New York City, they are probably familiar with how insensitive people can be. Likewise, for those who have traveled to smaller towns, people seem to be much friendlier. This phenomenon is not just heresay, but has been studied by

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"Honor, uhh, what is it good for?"

Apparently to some people, absolutely nothing. Treaties have been canceled on both sides at the last minute. People have left their alliances to fight against the big bad NPO. So here's a thought to people: Stick to your word. That means that when you sign something, whether it be an application to enter an alliance, or a signature on a treaty, there is an intent to honor your word both in law (doing what your alliance requires of you), and in spirit. According to the lettering of the trea

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CN versus RL

It's been about two weeks since I wrote a blog. I needed a break - RL has been busy. And maybe it's because I play CN too much, or because it's simply true, I've found several correlations between RL and CN which I find to hold true. The two in particular are concerns of efficiency in an organization that is not democratic, and one dealing with people. For the first one, I had a job interview at the Office of Inspector General for the Department of Transportation. That's the OIG DOT (yeah,

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Oranizing an alliance, part II

From last week, we discussed the four primary departments when it comes to organizing an alliance. Now, what about leading those departments, and leading the alliance as a whole? That question will be the subject of this week's blog. First, we need to establish the need for a leader, for a ministry or for an alliance in the first place. Leaders contribute two aspects which are vital towards any organization - direction and cohesion. What's important to note is that these aspects are more in

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Organizing an alliance, part I

For some of you, some of this stuff may seem obvious. For others, this could be a replacement for a late-night brainstorming session with your alliance mates. Either way, hopefully you'll find it valuable. Some time ago, I posted an article a friend wrote up called, "Spectrum." In it, he wrote out one possible way to organize an alliance - and I believe it could be effective. But one interesting aspect of spectrum was that the head of each department was chosen in a different manner - the M

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Yay, Regent!

So I've been devoting my CN time to a few projects that have been taking up a lot of my time. Hopefully, you guys will be able to see the fruits of some of my labor (along with a few others) in the coming weeks. But, since my brainpower has been devoted to other things, this will be a fairly light blog entry. So I found out this past weekend that I got appointed to the position of Regent. It was a "double majority" vote from the council (3 out of 5 votes required) and the triumvirate (2 out

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Do the ends justify the means?

Recently, I watched a good movie that got me thinking about one of my favorite subjects, does the end justify the means? Answering this question, I am uncertain.. in order to answer this question, I think it is appropriate to take it to the extreme case - where the desired ends are extremely valuable, but the means to achieve such an end may be incredibly horrific. To illustrate this idea, let us suppose a race of aliens comes and invades earth, and demands 1 billion individuals to serve as th

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To Treaty or Not to Treaty

The following is a follow-up on a previous blog entry, The Optimal Number of MDP's. After establishing that there is an optimal number of MDP's for each alliance at any given moment, we can now proceed to analyze as to what would make an MDP worthwhile. Costs: First, to recap, there are several costs that are associated with MDP's. The first and foremost is that a single alliance typically has more than one other treaty. For instance, the NPO has over 20 MDP's (or MDP variants). If one all

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A middle ground for punishment?

This is not a wall of text, but an idea I'd like to pitch to the people who read my blog. As it stands, there are three very common forms of punishment to players - ZI, PZI, and EZI. Personally, I've never even been ZI'd, so my views on this matter might be a little bit skewed. ZI, as it's been described to me, is not the worst thing in the world. It's not permanent, and you don't necessarily lose everything, so you can still build up to your former glory. PZI, if the IC person is a &#3

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Happy Belated Maroon Day

Dear all of you Marooners and CNers who might be interested: Last Saturday, commonly known in that alternate reality "RL" as "Valentine's Day" marked the third passing of Maroon Day. Some of us were going to post a bit of a lolzy thread wishing everyone a happy "Maroon Day", but as I was out of town to celebrate the RL version, the plan sorta fell apart. But whatever. It's CN, and it takes second place to RL stuff, so I can't say I'm too upset about it, and I do consider it a tribute that we

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A Critique on Voxism

For those of you who read my article, "A Critique on Francoism," you would know that the following is not simply pro-NPO propaganda, but more of an investigation into this newer philosophy. Voxism, born from the rebellion group, "Vox Populi," is the only other philosophy that has been published that holds any kind of weight. It is very different from Francoism both in the underlying framework, and in the end purpose, giving a breath of fresh air to those who enjoy reading walls of text on the

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Spectrum

Spectrum Theory By anonymous, commentary and edits by Ferrous Introduction From time to time, people claim that there is an "ideal" government setup. I believe there is no such thing as an ideal government setup, otherwise there would only be one alliance in the game. Every alliance has its own government structure, one that everyone can agree on. Assuming that it works, each government structure therefore serves something of a "niche" in the market of alliances, making no single structure

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Legality in the Cyberverse

Every once in a while, some individual will propose some solution to the problems of the Cyberverse with enforcing laws, codes, rules on an international scale, and every single time they are shot down with the same line of reasoning: to enforce rules on a truly international scale requires a sovereign body that has power over all other alliances that agree to this idea, and enforced on a scale that can maintain this level of power. Obviously, such a sovereign body cannot exist - no single all

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The MDP Mask

Many people complain that the MDP (Mutual Defense Pact) web is choking out the fun of Cybernations. However, we can only see the state of affairs of every alliance from an external viewpoint, and not from an internal viewpoint, and underlying movements in the political atmosphere may go unseen to the public, only to erupt in a large war a couple of months down the line. An acquaintance of mine once told me (paraphrased) that he'd rather see fewer wars of a larger magnitude rather than many sma

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Quality versus Quantity in the Cyberverse

For some time in the Cyberverse, there was a debate on whether alliances should focus on the members they have, or focus on gaining new members; focus on increasing the quality of an alliance for organizational purposes, and making sure that everyone stays committed, or the quantity of members in an alliance, in an attempt to quickly increase nation strength, and bring in fresh faces to the alliance. This debate was seemingly settled after GWIII - the alliance known as the Legion entered the wa

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A Critique on Francoism

Of all of the political philosophies that exist in Cybernations, there is one that stands out, and rightfully so. Francoism is the most developed, most practical political philosophy, and it's more or less practiced by the most powerful alliance in Cybernations - the NPO - thereby adding to its clout as having empirical evidence to back itself up. Yet, there are several flaws in its analysis that lead to conclusions which are therefore also inherently flawed. First, we must understand what a

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Finals

RL entry: And the grades are in! History of Economic Thought: A- Human Behavior, Health and Society: A Wind Ensemble: A Independent Conducting study: A Plus, I just graduated from college with a bachelor's in economics. /me is having a good day. Also, I'll be relatively inactive the next two weeks or so, since I'm going on a trip with the GF. For all of you who like reading my blogs, this just gives me more of an opportunity to dream up some more BS for next time.

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Alliance Analogies

"An alliance is like.... " is a phrase that you may have heard when discussing different organizations in the Cyberverse. If you haven't heard the phrase, then perhaps you thought of it in your head. There are several analogies that often come up. Some are useful and some are not. Lately, these are a few that have been going through my head: An Alliance is like a country: This is of course, probably the most common analogy. Alliances are typically structured to have a government, selected

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