Furthering the initial map idea I had here I played with them a bit and came up with the following.
With the world basic facts established it’s time to start creating the map of the world. I’ve had a couple ideas but most were too boxey or too Earth like, until I ended up with this:
In doing this I had to figure out how the latitudes at which something becomes the arctic, and the tropics and so on.
I’ll put this up on the earlier page with the info. But basically it is all decided based upon the axis tilt of the planet. For the arctic the axis tilt plus the latitude must equal 90° – aka it is the degree of the tilt from the top/bottom of the map. The tropics are the same, but it’s the distance from the equator instead. And so the lines on that map are decided from that.
I have the length of the year, how many days are in it and how the day is counted all set up. After that comes the months, though they’re not yet named and will not be for a bit yet I did want to know how many there are. And how many days are in each.
I wanted it to look like it fit in with the rest of it all, the way the hours are kept if not exactly the same and so I started off with 14 months because that goes with the seven thing. And went from there, liking to keep 28 where I could and as it turned out that was a great month length. And so I came up with this:
With the day as long as it is, there has to be a way for them to keep time and it can’t be the same as ours because that’d bee a – too convenient and b – not a good fit.
12 doesn’t go into 28 an exact number of times after all, and nor does 6 which is the number our clocks are based around. But 7 does, handily enough.
The Alien Clock
28 hours in one day
1 day is split into four quarters each 7 hours long
1 day can also be split into seven periods each 4 hours long
1 hour equals 70 minutes
1 minute equals 70 seconds
Simple eh? But how does this all relate to our clock?
The first task was to figure out how many seconds were in an alien day both according to their own seconds and to ours so that we can move on from there, and thus:
28(70×70) = 137,200 seconds/day
28(60×60) = 100,800 seconds/day
1 alien second = 0.735 earth seconds
1 earth second = 1.36 alien seconds
1 earth minutes = 81.67 alien seconds
1 alien minute = 51.43 earth seconds
1 alien hour = 1 earth hour
The hours being the same length makes sense when you think about it, given I worked that out from having 28 hours in a day, and that was 28 hours earth time. I could have gone with something very very different but it actually makes sense in terms of day length, if the day was I dunno, 30.5 hours long, I would have tried to do something very very different. But this makes sense.
I got to the idea of using seven for a few reasons, partly because it is part way between base five and base ten (I’ll talk about that more later) and partly because it mimics the number of cultures on earth who decided it was a grand idea to split the day into sixes once they started to formalise time keeping.
The various cultures in the world, whatever they end up being (and I’ve already ideas on that) probably had a few different ways of keeping time that worked for them but started to fall short once life became a bit more regulated and this system which plugs all the gaps came into affect spreading from the same group who used base ten.
On seconds and Questions on Time
My first problem was in trying to split things down in a neat and consistent manner whilst keeping earth seconds and ended up with odd things like 24 hours in an alien day but seventy minutes being in an hour and sixty seconds in that minute – earth seconds. Whilst this looked odd and was too similar to our own clocks it did make me wonder where our definition of a second came from.
A second, initially, came from a fixed proportion of the Earth’s turn and a few other factors that we realised, once our technology levels increased, were not in actual fact fixed. The technical definition now goes like this:
“The duration of 9,192,631,770 periods of the radiation corresponding to the transition between the two hyperfine levels of the ground state of the caesium 133 atom.”
Which basically means a specific caesium atom, of a certain number of neutrons, at rest, at absolute zero and compensating for gravitational-time dilation at zero magnetic field… and then a certain number of periods. I assume they were chosen because it corresponded closest with what we already saw as a second.
But the point is that it’s something extremely unlikely for an alien species to also chose and so I abandoned the idea of keeping even the second the same and went with the seven thing all the way down. And smiled when an hour ended up being the same anyway. I’m not sure what their official and technical definition of a second is but it too will probably be based on the radiation given off by atoms – as that seems like a handy, scientific, fixed and measurable thing to use. Which element and how many periods they chose I do not know.
I was going to put some of the stuff I came up with about how time used to be kept in a couple different regions and their base math but that seems like it’d go into a separate post. And so it shall.
Here’s the info on the size of the planet, the star, the planet’s orbit and the things that result like the number of days in a year and so on. It’s the flat data, nothing to expand much on that, which I’ll come back to later. I was going to put time keeping into this post also, but there’s a lot I want to say about that including math and what base some of the cultures use which I only figured out once I was doing the time and… but here’s the data.
DAY LENGTH 28 hours
MASS 2 relative Earths
DENSITY 5.9 g/cm³
DIAMETER 15,730 km
SURFACE AREA 777.1 million km2
ROCHE LIMIT 2000 km
GRAVITY AT SURFACE 1.32 Gs
AXIAL TILT 18.5678°
ARCTIC LATITUDE 18.5678°
ANTARCTIC LATITUDE 161.4322°
UPPER TROPIC 71.4322°
LOWER TROPIC 108.5678°
(In these cases, we are assuming that Polar North is 0° and the equator is 90° where as on earth it’d be the other way around. Meaning that the South Pole is 180°. May change this at a later date.)
SUN, ORBIT AND YEAR LENGTH
SUN TEMPERATURE 5900 K (Our’s is about 5800K)
APHELION 1.36 AU aka 205,000,000 km
PERIHELION 1.31 AU aka 196,500,000 km
ORBIT CIRCUMFERENCE 1,258,428,456 km
SPEED OF PLANET ALONG ORBIT 31.029 km/s aka 1,861.74 km/m aka 111,704.4 km/h
ONE SHIR YEAR 402.34 alien days OR 469.4 earth days
402 1.33 ____ = _______
Where the alien planet is in green and earth in red, this shows the relationship between the length of year between the two of them. This is counted in terms of alien days but doing the same in earth days gives similar results. The slight differences is due to rounding of decibel points.
When I ask myself what I need to know to develop a people, their culture and the world they live in, their language, as has been mentioned on numerous blogs there are questions that need to be asked. And so here are the ones I came up with, they’re not all questions in actual fact. More like key questions and points in world building.
1 What is the gravity, day length, year length and how do they compare to Earth’s? How do they keep the time there?
2 What is their world like?
3 What do these people look like? What are their bodies and mouths like?
4 How would this likely affect language?
5 The sounds used in their language – formalise them.
6 What are the regions people live in?
7 How many groups are they split into? How do these work and break down?
8 What are these groups like?
9 How old are their societies? Or rather, at what state are they at and when are historical landmarks?
10 How do they view things like life, death, science and the supernatural?
11 How did these groups come together?
12 Build grammar, alphabet and some words.
13 Build some pop culture and phrases
14 Build major organisations
15 Build the characters
And in the following posts I’ll try to answer these questions. No doubt I’ll run across things I haven’t thought of before.