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RobA
09-14-2007, 04:00 PM
Throwing my hat at the contest - and taking a different approach:

Hagil Hornbeam's studies of the desert's energy preserving cycles have lead him to the conclusion that there is an imbalance in the desert. The only way to prove there was an imbalance was to first know what is the reason for the anomaly knaown as the Glass Ocean.

Far from being a eccentric "sandrat", Hornbeam is a genius who, after years of observation determined that there is a pattern behind the seeming chaos of the desert. Hornbeam has calculated that the energy pattern of the desert is based on two principal gyres of charged energy that orbit about each other in a seemingly chaotic pattern. The lighting strikes occur along the paths of these gyres when ever they built up significantly. It is because of these rotating energy fields that conventional compasses seem to point with no obvious direction.

Additionally, the mysterious Shale-Table Cay is a direct result of these two energy vortices. There is a balance point between these charges area that drives the finely ground sand away, exposing an underlaying rocky substrate. It appears and disappears as the storms wax and wane but remains as elusive to locate as the glass deposits that so many seek.

Horbeam has mapped these patterns and created a device, an instrument, to track the locations of the energy gyres, and when exposed, the current sand clear location, or Shale-Table Cay. The device was constructed out of carefully selected and harvested rose coloured glass slabs from the Glass Ocean itself, one of the few material able to withstand the wind-born sand for long periods. By rotating the calibrated disks within disks to track the appropriate date, Hornbeam can compensate for the distortion on compasses and determine his true headings.

It was only because of recent failures of his device that he has come to realize that the calculations he had based it on have changed, confirming that the imbalance he has been trying to convince other of is real.

Attached is the device (or at least a diagram of the device, drawn in Inkscape) Once in it "home" state and once adjusted to a particular date. The two Fibonacci spirals depict the location of the energy gyres and the third point of the equilateral triangle, the possible location of the Cay.

The device is used by aligning one mark with Copperhead Rock, and a second mark due east from there, on an appropriately scaled map.

I plan to draw that map/diagram (on suitable parchment) used to design this device, showing the general outer region of the area and the ocean, and place the device on it in the appropriate spot, made to look like thick slabs of semi-distorting rose glass, with the markings engraved in it.

The outer area of the map will be covered with some of Hornbeam's initial diagrams, calculations, and notes in his own coded shorthand...

-Rob (wow my fingers hurt from typing) A>

Ishmayl
09-14-2007, 04:49 PM
Wow... This forums continues to astound me with its creativity. This is an amazing explanation for the "unexplainable" occurrences in the 'Ocean.

ravells
09-15-2007, 06:45 AM
That is so utterly cool!

RobA
09-17-2007, 05:19 PM
Here is a quick test-shot against a weathered parchment BG.

Still just playing with transparency/etching styles at this point... I didn't bring all the engravings over into GIMP.

RobA
09-18-2007, 05:11 PM
I still need to add the rest of the map detail, but this gives a feel for what the final result will be.

Might have overdone the sand on top, but we'll see...

-Rob A>

ravells
09-19-2007, 06:23 AM
That's a really masterful use of masks, Rob!

Ravs

RPMiller
09-19-2007, 01:50 PM
Yes, it is a bit too much sand, but I agree with Ravs, you seem to have a great master of masks. Well done. It feels very real.

RobA
09-20-2007, 03:18 PM
I've tweaked the sand (less on top, and a bit more granular looking) and think I'll leave it...Now to finish the underlaying map...

-Rob A>

RobA
09-26-2007, 11:27 AM
Hopefully in time for the cutoff-

The finished map. This is Hornbeam's field map where he jotted many of his notes down as he was constructing the device. The critical mark is a survey line he placed from Copperhead, facing due east (4 o'clock on his map). This allows him to compensate for the erroneous compass reading seen in the Glass Ocean. The shoreline to the sea is roughly sketched on the east side of the map.

The alignment symbols around the device correspond to the astrological symbols used (and are actually based on a distorted Inuit font). The image depicts his map on the sands of the Glass ocean, lined up for a reading, with the wind blowing on the map, and drifting around Hornbeam's device.

-Rob A>

ravells
09-26-2007, 11:31 AM
Beautiful, imaginative and brilliantly executed - all the hallmarks of a RobA map!

pyrandon
09-26-2007, 02:28 PM
Amazingly creative! Wow--what a neat idea!!!! Great work, Rob.

RobA
09-26-2007, 02:32 PM
Thanks for the feedback! I felt a bit rushed, but wanted to have a (more or less) complete entry.

BTW - attached is a photo of the concept sketch I made in the beginning...

RPMiller
09-26-2007, 04:21 PM
Hehehe, 1+sqrt of pi divided by 2... yea I'm a geek.