Tuesday, May 19, 2020

You all suck at cleanup

I thought you should know that you majorly screwed up the ruleset a few dynasties ago, but nobody noticed at the time and the problem has mostly fixed itself by now. There’s still a bit of damage to the ruleset, though, so someone might want to submit a proposal to fix it. (I can’t see a way to scam this, or I might have tried; the issue’s entirely within the dynastic rules, although not the dynastic rules of this Dynasty.)

Back in the first dynasty of The Duke of Waltham, a dynastic rule was enacted that changed the process for clearing the dynastic rules at the start of a new dynasty. Unfortunately, there was a typo in the rule that entirely changed its meaning. The intention was to get rid of the two new dynastic rules sections (visible in that dynasty’s final ruleset), leaving the original section in place (and retitling it correctly), then clearing it for the new dynasty. However, [Para] was written twice, and [Prime] not at all, so what actually happened instead was that the [Alpha] section was repealed, the [Para] section became the new Dynastic Rules section and then got simultaneously cleared of all dynastic rules and removed entirely, and the [Prime] section was left untouched. So all the Prime rules from The Duke of Waltham’s dynasty were actually still in place during Josh’s eleventh.

Luckily, the cleanup at the end of Josh’s dynasty wasn’t influenced by the “Cleanup” rule, which was originally in the [Para] section and thus ended up getting deleted twice. There was now only one dynastic rules section in the ruleset, titled “Dynastic Rules [Prime]”, so that’s the section that got cleared when that dynasty ended, neatly deleting all the dynastic rules from two dynasties at once.

So the ruleset is mostly back to normal now, except that the dynastic rules section is still named “Dynastic Rules [Prime]”. Someone who’s less idle than me might want to fix that :-)

(On a side note, does the blog have a “preview” feature? I can’t find it any more, so apologies in advance for any formatting mistakes.)


Josh: HE/HIM

05-19-2020 11:21:05 UTC

Hi ais, welcome back :) How far back did you read during all this?

I don’t think I agree with your end-state conclusion - because of ordering. I agree that what happened is that first Dynastic Rules [Para] became Dynastic Rules, Alpha was blanked, and Prime remained, but I don’t think that the main Dynastic rules section was removed, as it wasn’t called Dynastic Rules [Para] by the time we got to that end of the sequence.

So at the end of the Cleanup clause, we had Dynastic Rules and Dynastic Rules [Prime], and then the AA process for blanking rules kicks in. That process says that an AA can list “a number of dynastic rules to keep […]]any dynastic rules which were not listed to be kept are repealed.” So Dynastic Rules and [Prime] are both fully blanked, as Prime is still a collection of dynastic rules. I don’t think that [Prime] still contained any rules during my 11th, but I do think that the [Prime] section probably still exists, albeit empty.

Josh: HE/HIM

05-19-2020 11:30:16 UTC

(In fact, the [Prime] section may not exist at all, as per 1.1: “[The ruleset] comprises four Sections: 1) the “core rules” of BlogNomic, covering the essential elements of gameplay; 2) the rules of the current Dynasty; 3) rules which apply in special cases; and 4) the appendix, which complements and clarifies the Ruleset”, and without a Dynastic rule establishing [Prime] as a separate section to take priority over 1.1 it may have simply ceased to exist.)


05-19-2020 11:42:22 UTC

I guess one problem here is that “dynastic rule” isn’t actually defined in the ruleset. I assumed it would be the contents of the “dynastic rules” section, but maybe not?

I mostly just read the final rulesets of random dynasties, and (if available) information on how they were won (although in many cases this is missing from the wiki). There was some debate at Agora about how good BlogNomic’s record-keeping was compared to Agora’s, so I decided to idly check what BlogNomic’s records were like at the moment, and it’s hard to be entirely out of scam-spotting mode.

Josh: HE/HIM

05-19-2020 11:59:43 UTC

Oh, I always love it when Agora starts paying attention to BlogNomic again, that’s never stressful and historically always goes well

On “dynastic rules” I think that this may be a cultural difference - BN is more comfortable with common English usage than Agora, and so “dynastic rules” seems like a clear enough expression of ‘the rules of the current Dynasty’ to me. The title of that section isn’t defined because it doesn’t need to be; it’s fine for it to be called Dynastic Rules or Dynastic Rules [Para] or The Amnesiac Named Josh Has Achieved Victory, so long as it’s widely and clearly understood to be the section that contains the rules of the current Dynasty. (The last example there might actually not get through a proposal.)

Tantusar: HE/THEY

05-19-2020 12:15:09 UTC

“The names of rules are not themselves rule text and have no effect other than being rule names.”

Josh: HE/HIM

05-19-2020 12:17:37 UTC

Does that cover section names as well?


05-19-2020 12:19:41 UTC

The names of rule sections do have an effect, though (or at least, did at the time that there was a rule explicitly reacting to them).

“Oh, I always love it when Agora starts paying attention to BlogNomic again, that’s never stressful and historically always goes well” — I don’t see how “let’s look at how another nomic’s recordkeeping works to see if we can make our own recordkeeping better” can possibly go wrong. That doesn’t mean it won’t go disastrously wrong, of course, just that the exact mechanism is likely to come as a surprise.

Tantusar: HE/THEY

05-19-2020 12:20:15 UTC

...Ooo. Still, you’d have a hard time getting that to actually work.

Tantusar: HE/THEY

05-19-2020 12:35:51 UTC

Re: Preview feature: No, but we’re moving to WordPress soon and at that point, probably.

[A voice, or perhaps, many voices, can be heard over the horizon, softly chanting “Drafts, drafts, drafts, drafts…”]

Josh: HE/HIM

05-19-2020 12:37:12 UTC

we’re moving to WordPress soon

The word “soon” is doing a lot of work there.

Tantusar: HE/THEY

05-19-2020 12:38:08 UTC

It has been a rather slow process, yes. I may have dropped a trademark sign.

Clucky: HE/HIM

05-19-2020 20:42:30 UTC

“let’s look at how another nomic’s recordkeeping works to see if we can make our own recordkeeping better” is a bit different than “let’s make a fuss about another nomic’s recordkeeping on their nomic”

I’m sure, with some high degree of confidence, that some mistake has been made somewhere in the decades long history of blognomic such that the entire ruleset is actually wrong because some rule got incorrectly passed and what not.

I also don’t care. If a mistake was made both several months and several dynasties ago, I don’t care. The rule is called “Dynastic Rules”. Claiming it is called anything else opens an incredibly large can of worms that we don’t want to go down.

Kevan: HE/HIM

05-20-2020 08:41:26 UTC

(Some context for new players; ais523 is a veteran BlogNomic player who hasn’t been around for a while, rather than an Agoran in the peanut gallery telling us that we suck.)

Actually looking at what happened here, I don’t think anything went wrong: the wording for collapsing the universes was </i>“Whenever an admin enacts an Ascension Address they must also”</i> - it didn’t replace the dynastic cleanup process, it added to it. If the following dynasty’s Ascension would have successfully taken out the Prime rules by saying “repeal all dynastic rules”, this Ascension did as well.

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