date and position ...

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date and position ...

Postby Mutabilis » Tue Feb 08, 2011 10:36 am

got a question about position:

where have our heros been on january 14, 1926 and january 3, 1927 ?

and who would like to make a guess why i'm asking about those dates?
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Re: date and position ...

Postby Kona » Tue Feb 08, 2011 4:20 pm

No guessing necessary, thanks to Google...both were dates of solar eclipses. Only the latter one occurred in the Pacific, according to Wikipedia, and that one did not achieve full potential near the FC's operating area. But it could have been an interesting contribution to the plot, hey Paul?
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Re: date and position ...

Postby Mutabilis » Tue Feb 08, 2011 4:55 pm

you're right, i picked out the wrong date from a map of eclipses of the decade.

Image

Image

PS: that's cheating!
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Re: date and position ...

Postby Mutabilis » Tue Feb 08, 2011 5:06 pm

actually no, i just missed a date.

Image

all three of them at least scratch queensland.

btw, there's also a bunch of lunar eclipses that year, though none of them total.
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Re: date and position ...

Postby Kona » Wed Feb 09, 2011 7:13 pm

Legends abound concerning how "civilized" explorers awed primitives by predicting eclipses. Or as AC Clarke famously opined, "Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic".
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Re: date and position ...

Postby PaulGazis » Thu Feb 10, 2011 12:58 am

Interesting! 1927 is still several months away, but I'll have to keep this in mind!

My favorite civilized-vs-aboriginal story involves the explorer who was captured
by cannibals and seemed doomed to fulfill multiple roles as guest and entree that
evening. All seemed lost, and he was about to despair when he recalled that this
was the day of a solar eclipse.

"Let me go," he told the superstitious natives, "for I am a mighty wizard, and if
you don't free me, I shall make the sun disappear!"

"Cool!" said the natives. "Will you do this before or after the eclipse?"
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Re: date and position ...

Postby Mutabilis » Thu Feb 10, 2011 7:48 am

well, what date are we at?

the last firm date was was the log entry about the "imaginative use of indigenous fruit" in episode 96, september 27.

1926 Dec 19 06:20:07 happened a penumbral eclipse of the moon. though again, queensland barely outside the visible area, the eclipse ending just at moonrise. it might still be worth a mention that, yet once again, the crew missed an opportunity.
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Re: date and position ...

Postby PaulGazis » Thu Feb 10, 2011 3:42 pm

Mutabilis wrote:well, what date are we at?


There are always clues in the world of the Flying Cloud! We know the last log entry
was 27-Sep-1926, we know the ship spent some time getting an overhaul, we can guess
that the rainy season is about to start, and we know that the moon is 'slightly past full'.
But I do plan to include a log entry soon to confirm your suspicions :)
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Re: date and position ...

Postby Mutabilis » Tue Feb 15, 2011 3:38 am

PaulGazis wrote:There are always clues in the world of the Flying Cloud! :)


ok, i'm game.

we now know that it was "the night of the 29th" in episode 101. (though how there could be "just enough moonlight to see a parachute" during heavy rain at night is beyond me.)

we also know that less than a month has gone since, as otherwise the day of month would have been augmented with the month (probably).
and that we are a couple days past full moon.

i guess we can reasonably assume that it wasn't the night of september 29th, as that would be only two nights after the indeginous fruit incident, or rather the log entry mentioning it.
that would eliminate the full moon of october 21. the next full moon would be november 19, followed by the full moon with penumbiral eclipse (not to be seen on the australian continent) on december 19.

my bet would be on november.

edit:

the flying cloud set course to agnes waters "two days after someone saw a man descending by parachute" on the day it was "two days past full (moon)"
<someone> has his phase tables mixed up
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Re: date and position ...

Postby PaulGazis » Tue Feb 15, 2011 5:14 am

Oops... Typo Alert. That was supposed to be a '19', not a '29'. These things can be surprisingly
hard to catch during proofreading, darn it! I'm posting the correction now, and thanks for
spotting it!

As to what the visibility was like on that fateful night... we shall see...
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