What questions would you use the Bracer to predict?

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What questions would you use the Bracer to predict?

Postby HailGreen28 » Sat Oct 03, 2009 6:19 pm

Now we know that the Bracer can be used to predict the future.

If you were Parson, what questions would you start asking?
I'm assuming the answers must be in a percentage form.

For example:


What are the odds that Stanley will be attacked while harvesting Dwagons next turn?

What are the odds that Wanda's force or Gobwin Knob will be attacked next turn?

What are the odds the Bracer will run out of power if asked too many questions?

What are the current odds that Wanda will turn on Stanley in X turns?

What are the current odds that Stanley will croak in X turns?

What are the odds that Erfworld is just a delusion on Parson's part?


What would you ask?
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Re: What questions would you use the Bracer to predict?

Postby raphfrk » Sat Oct 03, 2009 6:59 pm

HailGreen28 wrote:What are the odds that Stanley will be attacked while harvesting Dwagons next turn?


That will give an odds. Ideally, you want the answer to be zero or 100% to each question.

Also, you have recursion to that question. It needs to be

"What are the odds that Stanley will be attacked while harvesting Dwagons next turn, assuming that he doesn't decide not to go out because I told him there was a chance that he would be attacked?"

What are the odds the Bracer will run out of power if asked too many questions?


Good question. I would also ask

"What are the odds the Bracer will become unusable if asked too many questions?"

and/or

"What are the odds the Bracer will become unusable while it still exists?"

There is no need to be to specific with the questions.

You also need to ask about his calculator watch.

"What are the odds that the calculator watch will still function in X turns?"

"What are the odds that the bracer and calculator watch will still operate together?"

"What is the expected lifetime of the watch/bracer combo if 10 calculations are performed each turn?"

What are the current odds that Wanda will turn on Stanley in X turns?


Good plan.

What are the odds that Erfworld is just a delusion on Parson's part?


This is also a self reference, as asking the bracer a question automatically assumes that it exists. Ofc, if he gets a non-zero answer, then that means there is a problem :).

What would you ask?


Assuming there is zero chance of him damaging the bracer by asking to many question, then it can be used for lookamancy by asking about the odds that there are enemy units in a hex.

It actually seems overpowered. He could ask questions like "what are the odds of Stanley taking over the world?" or "what are the odds of Stanley obtaining all the arkentools?".

Also, he could ask, "what are the odds that there are 8 arkentools?".

He could also determine optimal strategy directly.

"What are the odds of Stanley taking over the world, if
... he attacks Faq first
... he attacks Jetstone first
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Re: What questions would you use the Bracer to predict?

Postby moose o death » Sat Oct 03, 2009 8:54 pm

i'm pretty sure you don't ask the bracer questions

you feed it numbers

if you can't express a question numerically then your SOOL
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Re: What questions would you use the Bracer to predict?

Postby HailGreen28 » Sat Oct 03, 2009 9:06 pm

raphfrk wrote:
HailGreen28 wrote:What are the odds that Stanley will be attacked while harvesting Dwagons next turn?


That will give an odds. Ideally, you want the answer to be zero or 100% to each question.

Also, you have recursion to that question. It needs to be

"What are the odds that Stanley will be attacked while harvesting Dwagons next turn, assuming that he doesn't decide not to go out because I told him there was a chance that he would be attacked?"

True. And the more I think about it, even if the Bracer doesn't play semantics, genie-style, re-phrasing the question would be handy for verification. Assuming you have infinite questions with the Bracer. If Stanley encounters an ambush on GW's turn, technically it may be considered an attack by Stanley.

Of course, you still have a finite amount of time for each side's turn, so you want to make each question count and not double-think each question but not rely on it totally either. And subtract time to say for example, send a Thinkagram to Wanda that there's a 75% chance that she's going to be attacked on TV's next turn. And subtract time as well for Parsons "inspection" routine, and other things, though he might be able to multitask some stuff.

There's no excuse for Parson not asking a TON of questions; if he determines that the Bracer has infinite uses.

raphfrk wrote:You also need to ask about his calculator watch.

"What are the odds that the calculator watch will still function in X turns?"

"What are the odds that the bracer and calculator watch will still operate together?"

"What is the expected lifetime of the watch/bracer combo if 10 calculations are performed each turn?"
Good point about the watch. Good questions!

raphfrk wrote:
HailGreen28 wrote:What are the odds that Erfworld is just a delusion on Parson's part?


This is also a self reference, as asking the bracer a question automatically assumes that it exists. Ofc, if he gets a non-zero answer, then that means there is a problem :).
Yeah, I'm thinking of sometimes I dream and KNOW it's a dream to varying degrees. Wouldn't hurt to ask, in case it's a non-zero answer like you said.

HailGreen28 wrote:What would you ask?


raphfrk wrote:Assuming there is zero chance of him damaging the bracer by asking to many question, then it can be used for lookamancy by asking about the odds that there are enemy units in a hex.

It actually seems overpowered. He could ask questions like "what are the odds of Stanley taking over the world?" or "what are the odds of Stanley obtaining all the arkentools?".

Also, he could ask, "what are the odds that there are 8 arkentools?".

He could also determine optimal strategy directly.

"What are the odds of Stanley taking over the world, if
... he attacks Faq first
... he attacks Jetstone first
Yeah, to me that adds to the Arkentools coolness. They are insanely powerful. Of course, when this story started, out of two known Attuned Arkentool Wielders: One was keeping a low profile. And the other was getting his arse handed to him battle after battle.

I like the idea of finding out how many Arkentools there are, and as I think another poster said in another thread: FINDING and CAPTURING the remaining Arkentools with the Bracer should be one of the top priorities. Oh hey! Stanley's quest!
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Re: What questions would you use the Bracer to predict?

Postby HailGreen28 » Sat Oct 03, 2009 9:20 pm

moose o death wrote:i'm pretty sure you don't ask the bracer questions

you feed it numbers

if you can't express a question numerically then your SOOL
I don't think so.

Can the question "Tell me the odds that learning what happened to my Archons right now will be worth giving up those calculations in the future." be expressed mathematically; in a manner that my questions can't be expressed?
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Re: What questions would you use the Bracer to predict?

Postby moose o death » Sat Oct 03, 2009 9:44 pm

you don't know he just asked his wrist that question though.
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Re: What questions would you use the Bracer to predict?

Postby DevilDan » Sat Oct 03, 2009 9:47 pm

We know that there is both button-pressing and subvocalizing of commands. Just remember that Charlie asked a very specific question, although some of the concepts are indeed complex.
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Re: What questions would you use the Bracer to predict?

Postby HailGreen28 » Sat Oct 03, 2009 10:00 pm

moose o death wrote:you don't know he just asked his wrist that question though.
In that case, Parson can ask other questions as well.

Or maybe he has to ask for a value of "A" for his question, in which case "A" can still be whatever Parson wants "A" to represent.
Last edited by HailGreen28 on Sat Oct 03, 2009 10:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: What questions would you use the Bracer to predict?

Postby moose o death » Sat Oct 03, 2009 10:01 pm

like i said in the reactions thread it's likely mathamncy has a prediction branch of mathamatics that would be implausible in our world. measuring things like duty and loyalty would be impossible here but each erf unit has a hidden value of these two things.

just because you or I cannot explain the maths involved in predicting the schmuker value of knowledge compared to mathamancy predictions divided by the chance of knowledge becoming commonly known, doesn't mean parson hasn't been gifted with a little additional calculations boost based on his earth stats level.
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Re: What questions would you use the Bracer to predict?

Postby Geekdumb » Sun Oct 04, 2009 1:13 am

I'm surprised no one came up with the obvious comic ending question...

What are the odds that this is...
a) a dream
b) really happening
3) a webcomic for people's entertainment
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Re: What questions would you use the Bracer to predict?

Postby raphfrk » Sun Oct 04, 2009 7:39 am

moose o death wrote:i'm pretty sure you don't ask the bracer questions

you feed it numbers

if you can't express a question numerically then your SOOL


I think the answer needs to be a number, but the question can be verbal. How did he ask Charlie's question?
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Re: What questions would you use the Bracer to predict?

Postby raphfrk » Sun Oct 04, 2009 7:44 am

Geekdumb wrote:I'm surprised no one came up with the obvious comic ending question...

What are the odds that this is...
a) a dream
b) really happening
3) a webcomic for people's entertainment


So, what does Parson do when he gets results of 0-0-100% :)?
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Re: What questions would you use the Bracer to predict?

Postby moose o death » Sun Oct 04, 2009 9:54 am

raphfrk wrote:
moose o death wrote:i'm pretty sure you don't ask the bracer questions

you feed it numbers

if you can't express a question numerically then your SOOL


I think the answer needs to be a number, but the question can be verbal. How did he ask Charlie's question?

by comparing the ratio of value between "the calculations" and the "information" then factoring the time depreciation on the "knowledge" as it increases the chances of the knowledge becoming common and losing all value.

it could have also included a percentage chance for wanda to be sitting two hexes outside of chalescomm battlespace awaiting confirmation on attack and capture of the arkendish.

however parson would have known the second number without the bracer. and if charlescomm asked questions like that he'd be signing his own death certificate.
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Re: What questions would you use the Bracer to predict?

Postby raphfrk » Sun Oct 04, 2009 11:19 am

moose o death wrote:by comparing the ratio of value between "the calculations" and the "information" then factoring the time depreciation on the "knowledge" as it increases the chances of the knowledge becoming common and losing all value.


Actually, the question was "Tell me the odds that learning what happened to my Archons right now will be worth giving up those calculations in the future."

This is not "tell me the ratio of the value of knowing what happened to the Archons and the value of the calculations." Also, even then "tell me the value of the calculations" is still a verbal question.

The question is how do you enter the question into the bracer. I don't think he can just enter required calculations. Parson doesn't know the equations. I think the "perfect information aggregation device" is the most reasonable explanation for how the bracer works, if it isn't capable of directly extracting the relevant info directly from the erfworld program.

However, even then, it does have knowledge that Parson doesn't have.

it could have also included a percentage chance for wanda to be sitting two hexes outside of chalescomm battlespace awaiting confirmation on attack and capture of the arkendish.

however parson would have known the second number without the bracer. and if charlescomm asked questions like that he'd be signing his own death certificate.


What do you mean?

Also, how many questions has Charlie left? (Incidentally, it says "battle evaluations"... I wonder if Parson could restrict his answers to only those questions).

He started with 14.

1) Can 14 Archons take the garrison before turn start?
2) How many additional Archons would be required?
3) What are the odds of not losing the city?
4) Today's question

Have I missed any? He still has 10 left.
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Re: What questions would you use the Bracer to predict?

Postby valce » Sun Oct 04, 2009 12:17 pm

12. Charlie started with 12 calculations from Parson.
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Re: What questions would you use the Bracer to predict?

Postby raphfrk » Sun Oct 04, 2009 12:45 pm

valce wrote:12. Charlie started with 12 calculations from Parson.


Opps. When I glanced at the page, I looked at the wrong panel. It was 14 Archons :).

So, he started with 12 and has 8 left (unless I missed some).
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Re: What questions would you use the Bracer to predict?

Postby HailGreen28 » Sun Oct 04, 2009 7:49 pm

moose o death wrote:like i said in the reactions thread it's likely mathamncy has a prediction branch of mathamatics that would be implausible in our world. measuring things like duty and loyalty would be impossible here but each erf unit has a hidden value of these two things.

just because you or I cannot explain the maths involved in predicting the schmuker value of knowledge compared to mathamancy predictions divided by the chance of knowledge becoming commonly known, doesn't mean parson hasn't been gifted with a little additional calculations boost based on his earth stats level.
It's not Parson. It's the Bracer/watch combo that's actually sorting that out. Least Charlie thinks so when talking about what he'd get from sacking GW.

moose o death wrote:by comparing the ratio of value between "the calculations" and the "information" then factoring the time depreciation on the "knowledge" as it increases the chances of the knowledge becoming common and losing all value.

it could have also included a percentage chance for wanda to be sitting two hexes outside of chalescomm battlespace awaiting confirmation on attack and capture of the arkendish.

however parson would have known the second number without the bracer. and if charlescomm asked questions like that he'd be signing his own death certificate.
If Parson tries to sort all that out himself, he'll have to spend a couple turns for each question, or else miss conditions like "what if a new Coalition flattens GW and kills Parson before Charlie gets all his calcs?

The logical explanation is that the Bracer takes all probability factors into account. Still need to ask good questions (GIGO), but based on Charlie's question alone, the Bracer seems to handle some pretty complicated scenarios on it's own.

And hey! Considering that dawn/turnstart will clean/restore everything still alive and intact (including Parson and Parson's original clothing which are not even from Erfworld): As long as Parson doesn't break the darn thing, he should have INFINITE use of the Bracer! Yay!
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Re: What questions would you use the Bracer to predict?

Postby Anton Gaist » Sun Oct 04, 2009 9:10 pm

I think one of the first things he'll ask is "What are the odds I'll return to my own world one day."

Please remember that if the bracer works with earth-like statistics, it will never give a 0 or 100% answer. There will always be a margin for the unexpected.
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Re: What questions would you use the Bracer to predict?

Postby moose o death » Sun Oct 04, 2009 9:26 pm

he doesn't want to return. to all intents and purposes neither would i. this place sucks.

take all the day to day trivialities you can't stand doing and throw them away because the world does it for you now.

the only real tradeoff is you might get killed painfully
at a slightly higher chance to what happens here anyway.
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Re: What questions would you use the Bracer to predict?

Postby raphfrk » Mon Oct 05, 2009 4:41 am

moose o death wrote:the only real tradeoff is you might get killed painfully
at a slightly higher chance to what happens here anyway.


OTOH, it is possible that Erf units don't actually age. He could potentially have a much longer lifetime in Erf. I wonder if Jillian will start to appear older as she assumes the role of Queen.

Ofc, given the signamancy description, in Erf, you might literally only be as old as you feel.
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