[Runequest] Fact check

Peter Maranci pmaranci at gmail.com
Mon Apr 1 07:31:10 EST 2013


You know, Asher, I had a sneaking suspicion that something like that might
apply to the Ringworld. A sixteen-foot fall in gravity would be harder on a
larger creature - but I'm not sure that it would be on the Ringworld.

So he might survive, then. Probably would. He'd have to make a Jump roll,
and I'm not sure how much damage he'd face. Nor can I think how he might
get back up, unless he grabs some technology. But thanks to the
superconductor plague, he might have trouble doing that!
On Mar 26, 2013 10:11 PM, "Asher Royce Yaffee" <ashersensei at gmail.com>
wrote:

> Hi, All,
>    With your permission, I will become dull, plodding and pedantic.
>
>    First, the case of the fleas on the sling.  Imagine that 10,000 Greek
> mercenaries wandering through the Persian empire have some slingers with
> them.  One of these slingers is especially flea-bitten, so much so that
> there are even fleas on his sling.
>    As flea-bite swings his sling about, our first flea hangs onto the
> sling at six inches radius (distance outward from center).  Circumference
> (distance around edge) is 2 times pi times radius.  So, 1st flea travels 2
> x 3.14 (or so) x 6 = 37.68 inches with each rotation of the sling.  Every
> time flea-bite swings once around, 1st flea travels about a yard.
>    Our second flea hangs on at 12 inches radius.  So, 2nd flea travels 2 x
> 3.14 x 12 = a little over two yards.  No surprise, right?
>    But, in a single swing of the sling, that means 2nd flea travels twice
> as far as 1st flea.  And that means 2nd flea travels twice as fast.
>
>    Where am I going with all this?  The troll on the rim is like the 1st
> flea -- closer to the center.  Only this time, the center is a star instead
> of a slinger's hand.  The floor of the ring is like the 2nd flea.  The
> floor is farther out from the sun.  Therefore, the floor is spinning faster
> than the rim.
>
>    When the troll makes his jump, he has the rotational velocity (motion
> spin ward) of the rim.  When the troll reaches the ring floor, he will
> encounter a landscape with greater rotational velocity.  So, if he lands in
> a forest, the trees will come at him as if he drove a car into them.
>
>    How much faster is the floor than the rim?  I have to look up the
> formula and plug in the numbers.  First chance I get.  In the meantime, ...
>
>    Maybe the troll doesn't need a parachute for his drop.  His top speed
> of descent will be about 9.8 meter/second, or 32 feet/second -- the
> equivalent of me jumping from 16 feet.  (A 16-foot drop is very bad for me,
> but maybe the troll can make it.)  Maybe he needs the parachute instead to
> speed up, to help him "catch up" with the ground speed when he gets within
> a few hundred meters of the floor.  Deploy it sideways in order to match
> the local windspeed (which people on the floor would perceive as the still
> air and normal breezes of the day).
>    Does that make sense?
>    Sincerely,
> Asher
>
>
>
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