Session 5 10

The Nephilim have finally stated their wish, at least somewhat, and apparently await Abraham's reply.
[OOC] Abraham: And they're gonna continue to wait while I read the logs so I can remember what I'm replying to.
Abraham massages his forehead. Oh hey, there's that Zinda vein, throbbing away as usual. "Okay, obviously we're looking at a translation artifact here, since they clearly already have science, so please ask for a clarification."
Spyboy: "How is that clear?"
Spyboy: "They have technology. They could have acquired that elsewhere, or been given it."
Abraham: "Possible, but I consider it unlikely. If they were given it or stole it, it would be in much worse shape than it is since they wouldn't know how to repair or maintain it."
Spyboy: "But that doesn't require science, per se."
Spyboy: "That only requires ritual."
Spyboy: "Science is a dedicated problem solving technique - with a sufficiently ossified society, that technique can be lost…"
Abraham finds himself quirking his mouth at Spyboy's statements. Is he not the Abraham, after all? "All true, but it ignores the /way/ they said science. They did not say 'science', they instead said 'SCIENCE!'. That implies… well, it really implies a 20th century earth meme, which they have no business knowing about, but it also implies that they most likely mean something different than we…
Abraham …do when we're not screaming 'science' at each other, which apparently they did in the 20th century. "
[OOC] Abraham: Behold the awe and majesty of a 2 Archeology skill.
[OOC] WC GM: You have reason to believe that may have been a translation artifact. Especially since it was in Kilrathi, which was unknown on 20th century Earth.
Ingenue: "Equivocation. Perhaps it would be best to have them define the term they are using?"
Abraham: "That would be what I was asking for, yes."
Ingenue: "[#Please clarify meaning of term 'science'. And 'SCIENCE!', if it differs from 'science'.#]"
Nephilim: "[#Discovery. Invention. Ways to solve the problems we are presented with by the universe. That which promises cures for diseases, new power and new ways to use power, and mastery of all things we can conceive.#]"
Nephilim: "[#'SCIENCE!' implies added mastery and effect.#]"
[OOC] Ingenue: Ah. 'SCIENCE!' means 'magic'. It meant 'science', for a bit, until they got to the last clause.
[OOC] Zinda Tegram: xD
Ingenue: "Admiral, do you have mastery of all things you can conceive?"
Abraham: "I barely have mastery of some of the things I conceive."
[OOC] Spyboy: Of course he does. He's an admiral.
Abraham: "Also, no, I don't."
Ingenue: "Oh. Then they will be disappointed that we do not have SCI… I am not shouting this term. 'science'."
Abraham: "I believe we have just witnessed the handiwork of Nephilim marketers."
Ingenue: "Yes. Shall I inform them of this?"
Ingenue: "Or is this classified material?"
Abraham: "Tell them that we can certainly give them science, but it may not be everything they apparently believe it to be."
[OOC] Ingenue: Wait…. so you want the android to tell the religious zealots that the foundation of their religion is a pack of disappointment and misplaced hopes?
[OOC] Abraham: Well, yeah. For what else is a Google for?
[OOC] Ingenue: Okay!
Spyboy: "I really hope this doesn't piss them off and make them try to kill us."
Ingenue formulates reply, then pauses.
Ingenue: "Why would they try to kill you? We will transmit truth and accurate data."
Abraham: "Spyboy fears that they will lash out in disappointment, which is a valid concern, but I think less likely than if we didn't bother to tell them and they figured it out on their own."
Ingenue: "Is this scenario likely?"
Spyboy: "Meh, fifty fifty, but the other side is they figure it out on their own when we are least prepared."
Ingenue: "Then proceed with transmission detailing the process of science?"
Abraham: "Please do."
Ingenue: "[#Prepare to receive data detailing the strategic knowledge-gathering and knowledge-organizing system called 'science'. It should be noted that this data outlines a process, not a universal solution. Formulation of appropriate solutions to solve specific problems is possible by adequate and continued application of the included process. Are you prepared to receive data transmission?#]"
Nephilim: "[#We stand ready.#]"
Ingenue: "[#Initiating data stream.#]"
[OOC] Ingenue: And now they have 'science.pdf; science.ppt; science.txt'.
[OOC] Ingenue: Should I have included ''? They don't strike me as amazon customers.
There is no immediate reply; they seem to be evaluating the response.
Ingenue: "They are processing the data stream. I will report when there is a reply."
Spyboy watches flow of data. Man, it would be nice if he could figure out their language.
[OOC] WC GM: You can make a check to attempt to at least recognize it.
[OOC] WC GM: Culture/Tech, or another skill w/a good explanation.
Spyboy watches the flow of communications, looking for repetitions (they want us to what!?) or iterations (then we can do THIS).
Spyboy rolled up 4dF: 0 - - + (Base: 5 Total: 4) (Communications)
It takes a few moments, but Spyboy eventually recognizes that this is Kilrathi language going over neu-comm. He would have to learn the language to decipher it, though apparently others in the party already speak it.
Spyboy: "That's kinda….odd."
[OOC] Ingenue: Are there any markers or irregularities that might hint at the core Nephilim language?
Then the Nephilim reply comes back. "[#This is a start, but there is more. This much we know; with this much we have failed. We seek the rest.#]"
Spyboy: "They actually speak Kilrathi…among THEMSELVES."
[OOC] WC GM: Communications or Culture/Tech check for anyone else.
Ingenue rolled up 4dF: - - + + (Base: 3 Total: 3) ((Cult/Tech))
Abraham rolled up 4dF: - 0 0 0 (Base: 2 Total: 1) (Culture/Tech)
[OOC] WC GM: Archaeology would work too.
[OOC] Abraham: Oh hey, Sovereign's back.
[OOC] Ingenue: Arch would work? Swap that in (total +5) or reroll?
[OOC] WC GM: You got a good enough roll; results PMed.
Abraham: "It looks like they set up Kilrathi as a… common tongue almost. Is it possible that the different castes, or what we thought were castes, of the Nephilim speak different languages? That implies that they are different species, or at least different cultures."
Spyboy: "Huh."
Spyboy: "I dunno about that. It makes sense, just not here and now."
Spyboy: "They're ALL Nephilim here, not Nephilim-and-other-castes."
Ingenue: "It is possible they are doing so to be polite; technically they are speaking with Admiral Abraham, who is not fluent in the native Nephilim tongue. Or, perhaps they lack the mental flexibility to rapidly shift between languages, and default to the most recent language used."
Spyboy: "I can totally buy that."
Ingenue: "It is a noted limitation in observed organic minds, though LaGOS has demonstrated the same limitation. Unfortunately, the sample population of inorganic minds is dreadfully small. So this is correlation."
Spyboy: "….Heh. Or it could be that their language doesn't have room for new concepts. Like….like Newspeak…from that old depressing story."
Nephilim: "[#More, please. How do you overcome the impossible barriers? How do you break through when generations upon generations fail?#]"
Ingenue: "They wish to know how to persevere despite disappointment."
Ingenue: "I do not understand this question."
[OOC] Ingenue: I know the answer to this question, but no one wants Metis to come up with it….
Spyboy: "I….have no response."
Spyboy: "Especially given what they've done in the past."
Ingenue: "The error seems conceptual; if you conceive of an impossibility, as opposed to an improbability, you have precluded the option of a solution."
Abraham: "Okay, especially after 'generations upon generations fail' stop. Just stop and think. Take a hard look at whatever it is you are trying to accomplish, look at it from other points of view, hell, ask others for help. Often enough, what you are /trying/ to accomplish, and what you /want/ to accomplish are two different things."
Zinda Tegram: "What? I mean, sometimes just knowing the problem in theory isn't what enables you to engineer the problem."
Zinda Tegram: "Sometimes you've just got to go and…do something stupid, on the chance that your theory is wrong."
Zinda Tegram: "Try, uh, sending them some theory on engineering maybe?"
Abraham: "Actually, what it really sounds like they want isn't engineering or even science per se, but The Scientific Method."
Zinda Tegram: "You just gave them that."
Zinda Tegram: "I mean, it sounds like they just need to manage their expectations mainly, but if they're not going to…"
Zinda Tegram: "Well, I mean, throw stuff and see what sticks."
Zinda Tegram: "I mean, what exactly is their failure mode?"
[OOC] Abraham: And if my net were better right now, I would be throwing up link to the Extra Credits episode 'Fail Faster'.
[OOC] Zinda Tegram: Basically Zinda's thought yeah.
Nephilim: "[#From the silence, perhaps our request was unclear. Some examples might illustrate.#]"
Nephilim: "[#For ages, we have labored to create artificial yet truly sentient minds, that we could transfer our consciousnesses into. At best, we found out how to remake our bodies in limited ways.#]"
Nephilim: "[#We attempted to find out how to move things from here to there. We made giant wormholes, but could go no further.#]"
[OOC] Zinda Tegram: What's the difference exactly?
Nephilim: "[#We wished to tease the fundamental energy out of the universe, and travel to others that we might outlast the heat death of this one, but have gotten nowhere.#]"
[OOC] Spyboy: They want smaller wormholes, like the ones on the science!kilrathi world.
[OOC] WC GM: Further than that, but in that direction.
Abraham: "They want zero point energy extraction. I get it now."
[OOC] Ingenue: There are two really, really good answers here, and they won't like either of them……
Nephilim: "[#We seek to travel back and forth in time. We have only ever marched forward, even accelerating our planet for a time to skip the necessary growth of the seed we planted.#]"
Nephilim: "[#We wish peace, and have seen much war for it.#]"
Ingenue: "[#Are you requesting solutions to these specific problems, or a meta-solution that would be used to solve all problems?#]"
Spyboy laughs quietly to himself as he parses Ingenue's understanding of their words.
Nephilim: "[#Both. These are but examples of what we have faced.#]"
Spyboy: "You know the old saying, if you have two problems, you have one solution?"
Spyboy: "I just figured out a destination for Elles."
Zinda Tegram: "No way in hell."
Zinda Tegram: "Listen, their problem is that they're looking for a magic bullet. At the end of the day, Science will tell you the properties of the universe you live in, but that's the extent of it."
Zinda Tegram: "If there's no solution internal to the universe you live in, science can't help you."
Spyboy: "And yet."
Zinda Tegram: "And yet what?"
Spyboy: "The only way to know what is possible is to go beyond, into the boundary of the impossible."
Spyboy: "Clarke's First Law."
Zinda Tegram: "Ugh, that doesn't even mean anything! You have to try something new, sure, but don't dress it up!"
Spyboy: "Hey, the guy invented space travel."
[OOC] Spyboy: Actually it was communications satellites, but =p
Ingenue: "If there is no solution internal to the universe you live in…. then the universe is limited? True, by definition. If the universe is limited, are the things in the universe limited? Am I….limited?"
Spyboy: "Well, that's basically the point. We don't know. It is impossible to know what the limits of possibility are, contradiction in my statement notwithstanding."
Abraham rubs his forehead again. This looks like a question for Metis's mommy.
Zinda Tegram: "Metis, just…tell them that science can only help them find things that actually exist."
[OOC] Spyboy: Don't go there. Her stepmom has….issues.
Spyboy: "But we don't know that what they're looking for doesn't."
Abraham: "Well, that's technically true, but a lot of things exist that we don't think exist. Not so long ago 'manned flight' was on that list. So was star travel."
Spyboy: "One of those answers WE HAVE RIGHT IN FRONT OF US."
Zinda Tegram: "Yeah but it's a good first step to constraining expectations."
Ingenue: "[#Science can only uncover that which is, or could be, not that which is not or could not be.#]"
Spyboy: "Though…I do have a question for them."
[OOC] Spyboy: Ironically enough from a book I know WC hasn't read =D
Nephilim: "[#Indeed. We know these things can be. But we have been unable to attain them.#]"
Spyboy: "How long do they live?"
[OOC] Zinda Tegram: Next obvious question: How do you know?
[OOC] Ingenue: More than likely, math. Math gets everyone's hopes up.
[OOC] Spyboy: Well, one of them is doing translations."
[OOC] Abraham: Nanoseconds. The speaker changed a billion times while speaking each sentence.
Ingenue: "[#What is the estimated average age-duration for your species?#]"
Nephilim: "[#Not long enough. This one saw the planting of the Kilrathi seed, and would not see their end without aid.#]"
Spyboy: "….So….not forever, but very close…."
Abraham: "I think every species would say that. Well… probably not the Kilrathi seed bit."
Spyboy: "Yeah. That puts his age at what, millenia?"
Nephilim: "[#Though the relativity distorted that.#]"
Nephilim: "[#Calculating from what we know, this one has had a time span roughly four as long as the time since the Kilrathi home world exploded.#]"
Spyboy: "Subjective?"
Spyboy: "Withdrawing my last statement, then."
Spyboy: "Well…mostly."
Nephilim: "[#Time dilation is not easy, but it is known to be within your ability. Records of the Terran Pilgrims, among others, indicate they encountered it to some degree.#]"
[OOC] Abraham: Okay, we're getting close to logend. We need some decent logend questions we can leave hanging until next session.
[OOC] WC GM: I have a few you've been dancing around. ;)
[OOC] Ingenue: There's a really big one that we should avoid, too!
Abraham: "Assuming you manage to get the answers you are looking for, peace, zero point energy extraction, immortal bodies, etc. What will you do then?"
Ingenue: "[#If you accomplish one or more of the following tasks (list to follow), what will your purpose be? List contains: 'zero point energy extraction'; 'immortal bodies' 'instant relocation of matter'; 'relocation to a different universe'.#]"
Nephilim: "[#That is not a question the Nephilim may answer. That is a question for the Abrahim that guide the Nephilim. We seek the aid of the Kilrathi Abrahim to achieve that state.#]"
Abraham: "Oh sure, lay that on me as well."
Abraham: "Don't relay that."
Nephilim: "[#Abrahim. Kilrathi Abrahim. Do you hesitate because you believe yourself unable?#]"
Ingenue: "Analysis of religious studies indicates that it is the duty of an incarnate deity to solve the hard problems."
Abraham: "Your analysis of religion is very different than mine then, Metis. From what I've read, it is the duty of an incarnate deity to hand out hard problems."
Abraham: "Metis, tell them I hesitate because I do not wish to lead them astray."
Spyboy: "….If there's one thing that my learnings have taught me, it's that when someone asks if you are a god, you say yes."
[OOC] Spyboy: Bill Murray may not be the best role model, but eh.
[OOC] Abraham: He let the woodchuck drive. Good enough for me.
Ingenue: "[#Pauses in communication result from a desire not to lead the Nephilim astray.#]"
Nephilim: "[#This is precedented. Our duty in this case is clear.#]"
[OOC] Ingenue: That sounds like an 'oops' moment.
[OOC] Abraham: Well, I predict an ominous logend.
Nephilim: "[#We must prove to you that you are akin to what lesser cultures would deem gods.#]"

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