Bring your minds. I offer you a screw.

Where you can discuss Echo Chamber, the latest happenings of Mr. Administrator and Radio Void Rebel, and anything else that might happen to come up.

Re: Bring your minds. I offer you a screw.

Postby The Wild West Pyro on Tue Jan 29, 2013 10:37 pm

Endless Sea wrote:
The Wild West Pyro wrote:
YES.

And in his wood panelled office, surrounded by his paintings, bookcases and suit of armour, and with a typewriter, pen and paper and a computer on his desk. SIPPING COFFEE.


...who what huh?


Of course, Mr. Administrator.

I felt after reading Pixel's Mind Screw, it made sense, so we should call him Mr. Author.
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Re: Bring your minds. I offer you a screw.

Postby Rick Healey on Tue Jan 29, 2013 10:45 pm

H22 wrote:
Qara-Xuan Zenith wrote:I think, after my fourth readthrough of efp, I became immune to Rick's trolling. I think.


I suggest that the best way for Rick to troll now would be not trolling.


You say that like I haven't already started.

Look, sometimes the best way to relay information to someone is to let them come to it themselves after some leading. You know, mentoring.

Trickster Mentor is a perfectly valid subtrope to attempt to invoke.
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Re: Bring your minds. I offer you a screw.

Postby H22 on Wed Jan 30, 2013 9:57 am

Rick Healey wrote:
H22 wrote:
Qara-Xuan Zenith wrote:I think, after my fourth readthrough of efp, I became immune to Rick's trolling. I think.


I suggest that the best way for Rick to troll now would be not trolling.


You say that like I haven't already started.

Look, sometimes the best way to relay information to someone is to let them come to it themselves after some leading. You know, mentoring.

Trickster Mentor is a perfectly valid subtrope to attempt to invoke.



Me? Suggest you always trolled? Never!

Rick Healey wrote:...

It's like you still don't realize just what tropes are.

Oh, this is fun.


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Re: Bring your minds. I offer you a screw.

Postby Scarab on Fri Feb 01, 2013 6:10 pm

Random inserted barely relevant thought time: Pixel and I have been chatting about this, and I still think it's safe to say I udnerstand pretty much nothing... but Rick said earlier that maybe we don't realise what tropes are... well, as Pixel said to me, tropes are patterns, right? They're patterns in narrative, and fiction and real life, and whether they're patterns we created, or patterns that already existed isn't really that important. And something has to make those patterns, even if that something is just some natural imperative or biological trigger or something sciency I don't understand.

But maybe tropes are important patterns, and if thats the case, then maybe so is Mister A. I always figured stories were humans way of making sense of the world around us and explaining what we can't udnerstand... but I never fgigured that maybe the unierse PLANNED it that way.

(Hey, I just draw the pretty pictures, man. I don't get this stuff.)
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Re: Bring your minds. I offer you a screw.

Postby narrativedilettante on Fri Feb 01, 2013 6:28 pm

Maybe Mr. Administrator created tropes.

Just throwing that out there.
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Re: Bring your minds. I offer you a screw.

Postby Victin on Fri Feb 01, 2013 6:30 pm

narrativedilettante wrote:Maybe Mr. Administrator created tropes.

Just throwing that out there.

Nonono

Fast Eddie created the tropes.
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Re: Bring your minds. I offer you a screw.

Postby Adell on Fri Feb 01, 2013 6:39 pm

Victin wrote:
narrativedilettante wrote:Maybe Mr. Administrator created tropes.

Just throwing that out there.

Nonono

Fast Eddie created the tropes.


Last I checked WE create the tropes (Heck Scarab actually was a trope starter for a few of them). Fast Eddie is just an admin.
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Re: Bring your minds. I offer you a screw.

Postby Victin on Fri Feb 01, 2013 6:44 pm

Adell wrote:
Victin wrote:
narrativedilettante wrote:Maybe Mr. Administrator created tropes.

Just throwing that out there.

Nonono

Fast Eddie created the tropes.


Last I checked WE create the tropes (Heck Scarab actually was a trope starter for a few of them). Fast Eddie is just an admin.

ImageFast Eddie is Mr. AdiministratorImage
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Re: Bring your minds. I offer you a screw.

Postby Rick Healey on Sun Feb 03, 2013 12:00 pm

Okay, less "cryptic" mindscrew, more "how does that even make sense" mindscrew.

First, Scarab did catch what I was hinting at, in a way. Tropes are patterns, ones with assigned meanings. Of course, it's worth noting that not all of those meanings are based on the patterns inherent in nature, but are instead culturally dependent. This is why 4 is seen as a very good number in traditional European works (representing stability in the natural world) but a terrible one in Chinese and Japanese works (thus the trope Four Is Death).

Even in cases where there's general agreement in the trope behind the pattern (such as various Mentor tropes), there's technically no guarantee that said pattern actually exists. Many mammals have the ability to try to put patterns into place regardless of whether it's true. It can be easily observed in dogs and cats, who can acquire all sorts of odd behaviors if they think that to do so will result in a positive result (mankind eventually figured that out and thus started training them).

Of course, humans are even more prone to pattern recognition than any other animal. It's actually a survival trait - it let our ancestors figure things out to promote survival, which eventually led to the development of civilization.

The flip side, though, is that we're perhaps *too* good at it, and there's even a term for humanity's habit of reading patterns where there are none - apophenia. This should be familiar to folks from me if nothing else; I've mentioned it at least twice. It's one thing to notice a pattern, but the correct response to seeing what may be a pattern is to figure out first if it is a pattern.

Coincidence exists. Probabilities will warp and are really only guidelines rather than rules. All patterns are created... but sometimes, it's the observer who creates them.
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Re: Bring your minds. I offer you a screw.

Postby eli_gone_crazy on Sun Feb 03, 2013 12:04 pm

does this make the patterns any less valid if we create them? I mean, I understand if its in something science-based, science requires proof after all, not just observations. But tropes are a way of defining the way we see the world through the lens of story telling, so are some patterns less valid because they only exist in stories?
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Re: Bring your minds. I offer you a screw.

Postby Qara-Xuan Zenith on Sun Feb 03, 2013 12:09 pm

Depends on a lot of things. I mean, the "humans see patterns where there are none" is a complaint I've been making for years. If you subscribe to Death of the Author, then there's no problem, and you can ascribe whatever patterns you want to see to a work. If, on the other hand, you think the point is to discover initial intention, then all these patterns you're seeing are going to trip you up.

And then there's the middle ground... like the meaning we interpreted from the symbols on Adell's app, which certainly hadn't, on a meta level, been intended, but which were subsequently made canon with a Sure, Why Not? 8-)
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Re: Bring your minds. I offer you a screw.

Postby Rick Healey on Sun Feb 03, 2013 12:19 pm

eli_gone_crazy wrote:does this make the patterns any less valid if we create them? I mean, I understand if its in something science-based, science requires proof after all, not just observations. But tropes are a way of defining the way we see the world through the lens of story telling, so are some patterns less valid because they only exist in stories?


Validity isn't the question; veracity is. The problem arises when there is a valid pattern that doesn't have the origin or possibly even necessarily the elements that the observer thinks exist.

A consciously-created pattern is completely valid - that's how language develops, after all. But you have to keep in mind the limitations of such patterns even as you attempt to figure them out.
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Re: Bring your minds. I offer you a screw.

Postby eli_gone_crazy on Sun Feb 03, 2013 12:37 pm

If tropes are so subjective, then what acts as a guideline? What is justifiable in one setting is completely out of line in another, like the rule of four that you just mentioned. Sure, there are laws in stories, there is a definite ending and beginning, a rising and falling action, the climax and the denouement, but outside of those, is there anything that acts as a basis for the tropes to follow?

Patterns are only recognizable if there is a key, after all. What use are riddles without answers? Are tropes like the chicken and the egg question? Stories that create tropes which create stories?
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Re: Bring your minds. I offer you a screw.

Postby Scarab on Mon Feb 04, 2013 8:30 am

eli_gone_crazy wrote:If tropes are so subjective, then what acts as a guideline? What is justifiable in one setting is completely out of line in another, like the rule of four that you just mentioned. Sure, there are laws in stories, there is a definite ending and beginning, a rising and falling action, the climax and the denouement, but outside of those, is there anything that acts as a basis for the tropes to follow?

Patterns are only recognizable if there is a key, after all. What use are riddles without answers? Are tropes like the chicken and the egg question? Stories that create tropes which create stories?


I think I'm generalising a bit here, but I don't think it's too odd if the laws change depending on which kind of story you're tlaking about. Each individual living species on earth has it's own set of natural rules - some can't breathe air outside of water, some reproduce asexually, etc, so if WE don't all ascribe to the same rules, why should all the tropes and types of story? Anyway if something is based on concepts and ideas rather than any physical reality, that makes it exempt from the usual laws of physics, right?

Still I agree there must be SOME guideline... Maybe: 'whether the pattern existed previously or not it much be recognized first as such in the mind of a human, and voiced as an idea.'
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Re: Bring your minds. I offer you a screw.

Postby H22 on Mon Feb 04, 2013 3:28 pm

Thought number one: apophenia is what makes conspiracy theories. A few farms look a bit similar? Crop circles!
Therefore: Tropes are conspiracy theories of literature. (YMMV tropes can be confirmation bias.)

eli_gone_crazy wrote:If tropes are so subjective, then what acts as a guideline? What is justifiable in one setting is completely out of line in another, like the rule of four that you just mentioned. Sure, there are laws in stories, there is a definite ending and beginning, a rising and falling action, the climax and the denouement, but outside of those, is there anything that acts as a basis for the tropes to follow?

Patterns are only recognizable if there is a key, after all. What use are riddles without answers? Are tropes like the chicken and the egg question? Stories that create tropes which create stories?


2: Insolube riddles [url=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gödel%27s_incompleteness_theorems]are absolutely vital and unavoidable.[/url] In fact, tropes are exactly like this. Tropes are axioms; some things will be true but unprovable. Tropes can never be proved as such, but they can be compared against others. If we have enough data, we can relatively prove or disprove them. They are always inconsistent, and they will never be complete. Does that mean they should never be pursued? Hundreds of thousands of pounds and people working in mathematics shows it's not really like that.

Probably reading too much Douglas Hofstatder.
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Re: Bring your minds. I offer you a screw.

Postby Pixelmage on Wed Feb 13, 2013 11:20 pm

Updating on one thing I've been thinking all this time. Regarding Mr. A's role and nature. And about tropes.
Looking back at the metaverse, my initial conclusion is wrong, or at least it isn't the only possible one. So, thanks Rick for pointing the way.

I did discuss some patterns with Scarab and was kind of avoiding posting here again for a while... But, I guess that since no one mentioned something similar, I might as well share my thoughts.

The metaverse is infinitely deep. As seen from our layer, one can plot as many sub layers as he wishes. And we disregard the existence of a higher layer because we are unable to interact with it. In that sense, the characters from a sub layer certainly see it in the same manner, otherwise the model wouldn't be regular. To the fictional, he is as real as we are right now.

So, in the end, every layer of the metaverse is a top-layer to it's fiction. Why does this matter?

Because we, being in a top layer, are unable to directly affect the fictional layer. We can only interact with it through a medium. It's impossible, or so far undocumented, that an author could in fact walk in his realm of fiction, because we cannot cross layers, even towards a lower layer. Not even as authors we have that power.

We do however have mechanisms. We call patterns, tropes, to move the work in the direction we want it to move. Interacting by proxy, through whatever medium we are creating the fiction.

If you think that way, and applying the same model of the metaverse putting us in a fictional layer, then it makes little sense for Mr. A, a being that interacts with us in this layer, to actually be someone from the above layer.

Thought he still fits a role that would imply it, the way I'm thinking currently actually makes him a trope (I mean his role and nature, I don't mean it like as a character he doesn't invoke others, thought I'd clear this up). A narrative device. Specifically an Author Avatar. Which would still fit his playmaker presence, but not conflict with him existing in a way that's capable of interacting with us.

I might be thinking too much, or still missing the point or elephants... But, I suppose the idea alone wouldn't hurt, so regardless, it's here.
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Re: Bring your minds. I offer you a screw.

Postby narrativedilettante on Wed Feb 13, 2013 11:49 pm

So, if I understand you correctly (or maybe I'm just expanding a little):

There is, somewhere in a higher layer, an author, known as Mr. Administrator. This is not the Mr. Administrator we know and interact with, because he's in a separate layer and that would be impossible. However, in creating this world, he also created a character, called Mr. Administrator, who can interact with us according to the author's wishes.

Of course, the author needn't be very much like the character, but I like the idea that there's a "real" Mr. Administrator out there somewhere who created all of this, and who is writing from experience rather than just because he thinks suits and monochrome are cool.
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Re: Bring your minds. I offer you a screw.

Postby Qara-Xuan Zenith on Wed Feb 13, 2013 11:57 pm

narrativedilettante wrote:So, if I understand you correctly (or maybe I'm just expanding a little):

There is, somewhere in a higher layer, an author, known as Mr. Administrator. This is not the Mr. Administrator we know and interact with, because he's in a separate layer and that would be impossible. However, in creating this world, he also created a character, called Mr. Administrator, who can interact with us according to the author's wishes.

Of course, the author needn't be very much like the character, but I like the idea that there's a "real" Mr. Administrator out there somewhere who created all of this, and who is writing from experience rather than just because he thinks suits and monochrome are cool.


...So it logically follows that Tom is Mr. Administrator.

[/mindscrew]
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Re: Bring your minds. I offer you a screw.

Postby narrativedilettante on Thu Feb 14, 2013 12:37 am

Qara-Xuan Zenith wrote:
narrativedilettante wrote:So, if I understand you correctly (or maybe I'm just expanding a little):

There is, somewhere in a higher layer, an author, known as Mr. Administrator. This is not the Mr. Administrator we know and interact with, because he's in a separate layer and that would be impossible. However, in creating this world, he also created a character, called Mr. Administrator, who can interact with us according to the author's wishes.

Of course, the author needn't be very much like the character, but I like the idea that there's a "real" Mr. Administrator out there somewhere who created all of this, and who is writing from experience rather than just because he thinks suits and monochrome are cool.


...So it logically follows that Tom is Mr. Administrator.

[/mindscrew]


But, but... we've interacted directly with Tom. I mean, I MET him. I'm pretty sure Tom is on our level. Unless he's ALSO an Author Avatar...

So our author turns exactly like Tom, but wishes he were an infinite mysterious individual living in a white void?
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Re: Bring your minds. I offer you a screw.

Postby eli_gone_crazy on Thu Feb 14, 2013 12:39 am

narrativedilettante wrote:
Qara-Xuan Zenith wrote:
narrativedilettante wrote:So, if I understand you correctly (or maybe I'm just expanding a little):

There is, somewhere in a higher layer, an author, known as Mr. Administrator. This is not the Mr. Administrator we know and interact with, because he's in a separate layer and that would be impossible. However, in creating this world, he also created a character, called Mr. Administrator, who can interact with us according to the author's wishes.

Of course, the author needn't be very much like the character, but I like the idea that there's a "real" Mr. Administrator out there somewhere who created all of this, and who is writing from experience rather than just because he thinks suits and monochrome are cool.


...So it logically follows that Tom is Mr. Administrator.

[/mindscrew]


But, but... we've interacted directly with Tom. I mean, I MET him. I'm pretty sure Tom is on our level. Unless he's ALSO an Author Avatar...

So our author turns exactly like Tom, but wishes he were an infinite mysterious individual living in a white void?


No, rather that Mr. A is an avatar of us. He is essentially a trope, or a narrative device, that we created.
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Re: Bring your minds. I offer you a screw.

Postby Pixelmage on Thu Feb 14, 2013 12:45 am

Actually, in one interpretation of the meta, Qara is accurate.
Tom is the top layer author. Considering that the universe where TWWF took place isn't the same one where we are typing on our keyboards right now. To the Game universe, Pixelmage is a denizen, Mr. A an Avatar and Tom the top Layer author. To this scenario the 'real' us behind the keyboards are all authors from the top layer. This is fairly simple if you map out the meta.

Of course, if you make TWWF as blended in our behind-keyboards world, then whoever wrote Tom that wrote Mr. A is the one actually outside the layer being the Author to our reality. That's a fine mindscrew, I suppose.
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Re: Bring your minds. I offer you a screw.

Postby narrativedilettante on Thu Feb 14, 2013 1:20 am

Then I guess the world of TWWF is populated almost entirely by author avatars.
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Re: Bring your minds. I offer you a screw.

Postby Scarab on Thu Feb 14, 2013 2:06 pm

Pixelmage wrote:Actually, in one interpretation of the meta, Qara is accurate.
Tom is the top layer author. Considering that the universe where TWWF took place isn't the same one where we are typing on our keyboards right now. To the Game universe, Pixelmage is a denizen, Mr. A an Avatar and Tom the top Layer author. To this scenario the 'real' us behind the keyboards are all authors from the top layer. This is fairly simple if you map out the meta.

Of course, if you make TWWF as blended in our behind-keyboards world, then whoever wrote Tom that wrote Mr. A is the one actually outside the layer being the Author to our reality. That's a fine mindscrew, I suppose.


Yeah I’m... not really helping answer the question of what Mister A IS here, but I do think I have some idea of what he might have been doing, what his experiments were about.

You say we cannot naturally influence the layer below us, which makes sense. In spite of the fact that (assuming it works in that direction) we created the worlds below us. But tropes provide a way in which we can utilise, right? At least I think that’s what you meant, I’m not exactly the kind of brain you want on something like this, but so far as I understand it...


Could it be that via tropes. Mister A was in some way... trying to control fiction? Trying to leave the void and manipulate all of these millions of worlds which (if the idea that we are not the uppermost of all possible layers is true) are all as real as any other?
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Re: Bring your minds. I offer you a screw.

Postby H22 on Tue Feb 19, 2013 8:10 am

What about mise en abyme? That is, where do stories-within-stories go in this model?
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Re: Bring your minds. I offer you a screw.

Postby Pixelmage on Tue Feb 19, 2013 9:53 am

Show Within A Show is accounted for in the Metaverse model, actually.

Assume us as the top layer. We write a fiction. At this point we have:
Author Layer > Fiction.

Inside that fictional layer, one of the characters is a writer himself, and he writes a short story of his own. That would spin a second fictional layer, to which the "Fiction" layer is author. Visually:
Author Layer > Fiction > Character's Fiction.

This process can repeat indefinitely, much like the mirror example you used to illustrate your question.

To illustrate this logic in TWWF, Real Life us spun the TWWF-Verse. Inside the TWWF-Verse, our avatars decided to play an RP. If you keep it separated from the real world and look at it strictly as a work of fiction, then we have:
Real World > TWWF > First RP.

Of course, that's just a simplification because, by nature, ARGs mess with the line between the real world and the story world, and in practice we know the RP we had running during the game was standalone, making it parallel to TWWF instead of nested. So that's just for the sake of illustration rather than accuracy.
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