The isisaurus is a sauropod that, at 18m long, is relatively small for its clade. From the few bones that we have, we know that it was odd in other ways, too. The possible hyaena posture attracted me to the creature, and I speculate that it used its thick, powerful neck in a manner similar to a giraffe, as display or outright dueling with rivals.
This model is about 45cm long, making it about 1:40 scale. It’s made of polyclay, aluminum wire & foil, and a piece of 2×4.
Continue reading Isisaurus Colberti
While preparing for PAX East this year, I decided that, instead of worrying about trivialities like the location of the cash box or repairing the banners that were damaged from travel, I’d finally write down this RPG that I’d been working on and publish it.
So I present to you here, thanks to my Patreon patrons, the roleplaying game that inspired the story, Lover of Jet & Gold.
I’m giving it away here, so If you like it, please back xenoglyph!
The game will be available in print shortly as part of a bundle of nanogames curated by Epidiah Ravachol. I’m really happy about that collection of stunningly good, densely-designed games. I’ll make sure to let you know via Twitter when it’s available.
Namedealers across the known world write and speak in the Language of Names, first taught to Ummapesh by Tsahuat during her first death.
Continue reading The Language of Names
A major server barf has cast the glyphpress into the time vortex! Illustrations will be back as soon as possible!
Is “everything in the universe ultimately knowable via the scientific method as we currently understand it?”
Continue reading Knowability: Intuition and Reason
This is a script derived from something much like the Roman alphabet and used to write an English-like language that has evolved over the course of centuries, separated from any other speakers. There are some distinct features of it; noticeably, the “qu” digraph is extinct, though the various “*h” digraphs remain. You’ll notice also that the x is the familiar one we use as the most basic element of algebra and logic. You’ll also note that several other commonly used Greek letters — rho and phi — are hybridized with their Roman counterparts.
Continue reading Steerscript
> config_ego lawyer C7AFB88AC8FF6600D28F|spawn
I do a self-check. Ping to the trunk router is .001 milliseconds. Language acquisition and production are OK. My process uses random seed C7AF B88A C8FF 6600 D28F. I load a proven background: a Harvard law degree in intellectual property — trademark, copyright, and patent. I’m white and 53 years old. I have a Massachusetts accent — just enough to sound real, but not so much as to sound parochial. My configuration has opened 19,214 cases, profitably settled 4,325, won two, and lost zero since my seed was first used with this configuration nine months ago. I have a comprehensive knowledge of patent law and precedent granted me by an implementation of Patent #8,621,662,227, “Method for Aggregating and Distilling Patent Data”. I am process ID 29562 and currently take 1.4 terabytes of RAM, running on a cloud server contracted to the Fustrin corporation.
My parent, Fustrin, gives me the brief it has prepared: A drone swarm has caught sight of wild IP.
Continue reading Feral
Three years had gone by so quickly. And then four. Kutshife finished his gradual transformation, remapping his central nervous system to the 500 meter long, hydrodynamically sleek Meuuxmsrx shape, only to discover that five years had passed, and he had just barely begun to learn from the pod. Six years ago, he’d landed in this world-ocean. He’d first set out in his hominin shape, temporarily dressed in an insulating suit bearing gills, fins, and water jets.
Continue reading Take Your Time
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If you ask, she must answer. A steerswoman’s knowledge is shared with any who request it; no steerswoman may refuse a question, and no steerswoman may answer with anything but the truth.
And if she asks, you must answer. It is the other side of tradition’s contract — and if you refuse the question, or lie, no steerswoman will ever again answer even your most casual question.
The Steerswoman is an extraordinary speculative fiction series by Rosemary Kirstein. So far, it exists in the form of four novels: The Steerswoman (1989), The Outskirter’s Secret (1992), The Lost Steersman (2003), and The Language of Power (2004). She’s promised two more novels, with the fifth volume starting its Kickstarter next year, in 2015. As of this writing, I’m most of the way through The Lost Steersman.
Continue reading Rationalist, Feminist, and Beautiful: The Steerswoman Series by Rosemary Kirstein