Forum:Global and regional issues/Updating the East Uletha Concept

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Hello everyone,

as regional admin for East Uletha, I have been updating the East Uletha Concept (EUC) throughout the last couple of weeks to reflect the current state of the map. Most sectors of East Uletha are still aligned with the general spirit of the concept, but some sectors might need some adjustments to create a more believable world on a larger scale. More concretly, some sectors don't yet have a clear cultural/linguistic "theme". That can be sectors that are empty, sectors with a wild mix of different language themes or sectors with language themes that seem misplaced on a larger scale. Improving this is a very long-term process, think years. Most importantly, I want to define the intended language themes for some sectors more clearly so that new mappers joining the community can see more easily where their intended mapping project would fit best, and also to be able to offer established mappers to migrate their work to other sectors or continents if they wish to do so.

This post is intended to collect some input from the wider community on this future development of East Uletha. Mappers from affected sectors are especially encouraged to voice their thoughts, but everyone on OGF is invited to chip in as well. Please make sure to actually read through the EUC before commenting. To keep the discussions manageable, please try to structure your comments along the sector numbers. The discussion will be open for about two weeks. After that I'll try to organise the input and work with the admin team and mappers from the affected sectors on working out the revised sector descriptions. The sectors in question are:

Sector 21 (Temperate East Uletha I)

  • Challenges: unexplainable mix of Germanic, Finnish and Romance languages
  • Advantages: some consistent large-scale mapping, nice coastline and natural feature mapping
  • Proposals and projects:
    • UL21c – should be cleaned up. Move or recreate "Vatican" equivalent elsewhere, most likely in west Uletha (current status of discussion on world-religion?)
    • UL21d/e – would User jak consider moving to a romance/Italian speaking area? Remaining Germanic theme would fit well with other territories around the Darcodian sea.

Sector 25 (Whale Sea states)

  • Challenges: Incoherent mix of Scandinavian, French and English
  • Advantages: Interesting cold oceanic theme
  • Proposals and projects:
    • General – Establish new long-term goal for more coherent linguistic theme

Sector 26 (Ulethan Mideast)

  • Challenges: besides Midistland no active territories
  • Advantages: Reserve sector for many possible future themes
  • Proposals and projects:
    • General – The remaining territories in the sector are to be kept as a reserve for new ideas coming up in the future.

Sector 27 (Kaspen Sea countries)

  • Challenges: one English speaking territory, one (plus micro state) German(ic) speaking territory
  • Advantages: Reserve sector for many possible future themes
  • Proposals and projects:
    • General – The remaining territories in the sector are to be kept as a reserve for new ideas coming up in the future.

Sector 29 (Lantian Peninsula)

  • Challenges: Presence of the English language so far unexplained
  • Advantages: Mostly uniform English-speaking, attractive temperate and coastal territories
  • Proposals and projects:
    • General – Could be canonized as a region with very old Ingerish colonial presence or similar influence (pre 1500), leading to an old-world mapping style.

Sector 30 (Axian Peninsula)

  • Challenges: Wild mix of French, Japanese, English and Indonesian. Low activity. No compelling peninsular wide geography.
  • Advantages: Low interdependence with neighbouring sectors.
  • Proposals and projects:
    • General – Could in the future follow an East/South-East Asia theme. Would work well with Chinese language in North Archanta and Asian-language-inspired conlang/hybrid territories in sector 31. Could host the Japanese homeland.

Sector 32 (Monsoon East Uletha)

  • Challenges: No compelling "cultural narrative" yet.
  • Advantages: Potential for either a dedicated cultural pole or a transition zone.
  • Proposals and projects:
    • General – Could either be reworked with a new, original theme, or defines as a transition sector between English influence (north) and east-Asian influence (south).


Looking forward to your input,
Leowezy (talk) 19:24, 16 June 2022 (UTC).

Comments

For Sector 30, a Japanese homeland in what is currently Pasundan is still being considered. oneofbeatlefan said he will try to convince the current mapper to move to Krajanesia in the near future.

With this move, there's several potential benefits to the overall geography and culture of the region as has been pointed out before

  1. East Asian cultural continuity from North Archanta ("old world" Chinese) to East Uletha ("new world" Japanese/Korean/conlangs)
  2. Indonesian cultural continuity in southern North Archanta
  3. Creation of Japanese homeland to anchor any potential new Japanese/conlang territories (because many people seemed to be inclined to do this, also potentially attracting Japanese mappers since currently there is no Japanese territory at all)

There are of course many challenges to this:

  1. As far as I know, the only other user who has a high level understanding of Japanese is Izaland. While he is interested in joining a potential collab like this, it's still a challenge to use the language
  2. A lot of mappers show interest in joining this collab but is unsure about how active they may want to participate in it (language barriers and their own territory commitments)
  3. Territories surrounding the peninsula has weird culture (which should be fixed according to the plan)
  4. A potential situation like Huaxia where new Japanese mappers dislike how the Japanese homeland turned out and create their own homeland

People has also been talking about making the peninsula an island (perhaps dense island chains at the part where it connects to the mainland right now), although this is not necessary if unable.

Overall I do believe that if oneofbeatlefan is sucessful in convincing the mapping move, that a Japanese collab territory in sector 30 is a good idea.

- Kengoman (talk) 21:08, 16 June 2022 (UTC)

I am also very interested in participating, in the future, in the Japanese homeland project, however I just follow what Kengoman just said.

Speaking about what is happening around Izaland now, we have Pyeokchin, a Korean language country which is turning out quite nicely, respecting the Asian theme. UL31a could have an Altaic language, to connect it better with Korean. Blönland, Remsfalen and Saikyel, have a Germanic like setting, and the difference with Izaland and Pyeokchin may be explaned by the massive mountains dividing the countries, and the cultures.

The most recent newcomer here is Westway, based on English. As for UL29c/32a, this country should be the conjunction with the Asian theme, so I may as well think that the Yenkaido Region was formerly part of the Anglo-Saxon cultural sphere, and later annexed by Izaland.

Wiwaxia with French language in that region is a little strange and out of place, unless it was a former colony. But I would like it to be an Asian inspired nation with the next owner.

--Izaland Terramorphing Committee (talk) 15:48, 17 June 2022 (UTC)

If the Peninsula ends up being separated into an Island then the issue is less but otherwise that territory need to have some sort of East Asian influence

- Kengoman (talk) 21:25, 17 June 2022 (UTC)

Regarding the Japanese homeland: It would be perfectly fine to "just" designate it a territory even if no active collab will take on mapping it right away. There might be interested mappers in the future, but establishing its mere presence will allow other languages and cultures to use it in their respective histories. Also, a Japanese homeland wouldn't have to be comparable in size to RW Japan; a Tengappei-sized island territory would suffice as origin of the language as well. Leowezy (talk) 17:23, 19 June 2022 (UTC)
Just going to chip in my thoughts on some of the sectors mentioned here:
  • 21: I agree that it would be a good idea to move Peritan City to somewhere in West Uletha and delete the rest. Pretany makes sense as a location and would resolve the issue of having multiple religious centers that was brought up in old diary posts about religion, but I think that moving it to Franqueterre might be a better idea, as Pretany is not active and in a limbo, whereas Franqueterre is both in a suitable location and is a future collab, so is well suited to host a religious center (although perhaps it should not be an independent country, as it strikes me as needlessly copying a complex real-world situation).
  • 25: This is an interesting region but I can't think of anything aside from creating a collab to boost interest and give something to build off of.
  • 26: This could perhaps be a good place to put in South Asian languages and culture? There isn't much space for that on the other side of the bay. Midistland seems to be doing alright and has some ideas already I think.
  • 29: Seems very far for Ingerish colonization - but I can't think of anything better and it does fit nicely with the peninsular geography. Also, the northernmost island has been doubled in size (and if this is with permission then the maritime borders should be fixed)?
  • 30: I like the plans for a Japanese theme.
Also, what's the future for Niulutan-Riu? Something worth considering. --Lithium-Ion (talk) 02:38, 18 June 2022 (UTC)
@Lithium. I was briefly part of the Niulutu-Riu project and proposed to Histor (then leading the project) to probably adapt the conlang closer to Sinhalese (Sri Lankan). I wonder if there are plans to add more South Indian and establish a Sri Lankan homeland in the area.--Zhenkang (talk) 09:01, 18 June 2022 (UTC)
@Lithium: Filo Island's reconfiguration was discussed during the territory application process and approved. It did in fact not quite double in size ;) But as a mapper experienced with maritime boundaries you are free to contact sjk23 to point out the issue with the maritime boundary and offer help of course. Leowezy (talk) 17:27, 19 June 2022 (UTC)
My honest opinion is that the use of European languages in East Uletha, particularly western European ones, should be limited as much as possible. Though I understand that the popularity of alternatives are limited, and that many of these existing projects are successful. -Fluffr Nuttr (talk) 03:50, 19 June 2022 (UTC)
General: While i think this discussion is centered on certain sectors within East Uletha and it seems it's not really affecting sector 22 in which my country of Neberly is located, i like to add my thoughts on this. And i kinda have two different thoughts on the general subject of 'building the opengeofiction world':
  • i understand the desire to come to a plan that makes it better understandable of how this world came to be and to have parts of it better adapted to each other so it's more in line to each other.
  • but i when i started on this site (many years ago) there was no comprehensive plan about the world, let alone different continents or sectors...and we are not starting from scratch here and have to take in account the members part of it and having mapped all kinds of stuff already.
With this i'd be reluctant to strive for ultimate goals like reaching for an all comprehensive world that somehow has all the countries, languages, people 'translated' to it on one way or the other. Reading all of the above i get the idea that some want East Uletha to be almost a replica of Asia, as West Uletha seems to be an Europa and the Federal States of Archanta an United States of America. And while i'm not totally against real-life concepts finding it's way in the Geofiction world, i am opposed in a goal to get an almost copy of the real world here.
To me i like to see opengeofiction to be comprehensive in a geographical way where neighboring countries respect each other way of mapping to get a more fluid style over larger areas. But also not to be too strict on cultures and languages, or at least not in the way to become a copy of the real world. It seems to me that most members here on this site are from 'western' countries, while only a small part of the real world is 'western'. But why would the opengeofiction-world only have to have a small 'western' part as there are so many members here that are more familiar with that? Yes, we can ask members to try to map areas in a style that is more coherent to a sector, but i feel it will be hard to do that to the point of culture and languages.
So my idea would be to accept that there are more 'western' or 'old-world' members here that want to map in that style and to have areas for them to map. And to me East Uletha can be a continent for that as well as West Uletha or other continents.
Antoon (talk) 09:19, 19 June 2022 (UTC)
@Antoon and @ Fluffr Nuttr. Removing western European languages from East Uletha is pretty much impossible due to their sheer presence, and I would also argue not desireable. As Antoon points out, OGF always has to keep "supply and demand" of mapping languages in mind, and since the vast majority of our community speaks and wants to map in a European language we need to adjust for that. @Antoon: I hope I can take you your concerns by saying very clearly that noone (at least I can say that about myself as a conlang-mapper) wants to turn OGF into a 1:1 equivalent of the real world. I think original concepts, be it conlangs or combinations of cultures/climates/histories that can't be found in the real world is something that should be encouraged! Especially when it comes to new mappers applying for territories, I'd like to be able however to point them towards a defined area where they will fit in with their idea, to create "neighbourhoods" of languages (because they are the most obvious layer of our mapping) and where they also fit in geographically. I hope my suggestions for sectory 29 and 32 demonstrate that I am very willing to accept even dubious historic reasoning to justify a geographic spread of languages that would seem unreasonable in the real world; but I wouldn't want English speaking territories to be found all over the continent, but instead forming their own little "neighbourhood". Leowezy (talk) 17:23, 19 June 2022 (UTC)
@Leowezy, thank you for your response. I'm glad to hear that there is space for other then Asian languages/cultures in East Uletha, so yes that takes away some concerns. I can also agree on "neighbourhoods" of territories with same-like languages to get a bit more coherent world, which may also be a challenge in itself as there was no great plan at the start of the opengeofiction world. One last concern i have is on the need of creativity, what was a discussion some time ago and more general over the whole of the opengeofiction world. Then there seemed to be a movement to have no real world references to names/places at all. And though i very much agree to not copying real world data to 'our' world, to me it would be too far reached to have no real English names in my country of Neberly. I'm afraid i'm not that creative to come up with hundreds of names to towns/villages/street names, etc. I admire you, Leowezy that can come up with a conlang, but that is not for me. I'm just here for the mapping part and so i have used real names for the (smaller) towns and villages. Antoon (talk) 07:55, 20 June 2022 (UTC)

@Antoon - my understanding of the no-real-world names rule has always been that it's mainly just focusing on well-known names (London, Tesla, New York, etc), not every single street name or tiny english village, so for instance naming a town "Jacksonville" would be against the rule, since it's a city with almost a million people in Florida, but naming a town "Jackton" would be fine, since that's a tiny village in Scotland. Personally, what I like to do is combine one name of a village with another - but that probably is just the name of another village, so in the end it doesn't matter really. And besides, I looked at Neberly and couldn't recognize a single name, so I think you're doing just fine :) --Lithium-Ion (talk) 20:03, 20 June 2022 (UTC)

Also I think the location just so happened to have a few East Asian themed territories pop up, resulting in the aforementioned "Neighbourhood" of East Asian languages. I don't think the intent here is to copy the real world in any way, just the location just so happened to be "similar" to the real world. Having language "Neighbourhoods" also can help new mappers join the project without being scared about potential collaboration problems.
As for Japanese Homeland project, I don't know how you will create a small island for its purposes, maybe divide the whole peninsula up? It would have to be near the area for a more cohesive regional culture in my opinion. Also, oneofbeatlefan was kind enough to create an entire geographical plan for the Pasundan Peninsula, which is what subsequent plans were based on. The peninsula itself is also about 70k square KM smaller than irl Japan (land area) so it should be about the right size.
- Kengoman (talk) 07:29, 20 June 2022 (UTC)

I thought I would leave my thoughts here:

25: Since this region is almost entirely made up of island territories, the usage of conlangs would be optimal here. If there's not enough demand for conlangs in the region, we could view it as an extension of the existing Germanic/Celtic hybrid that already makes up the surrounding region.


26: I think the course of Midistland's future (particularly its linguistic and cultural future) needs to be decided at this point, along with UL20c. The idea of maintaining UL20 as a slavic-speaking area means we should include more examples of the Cyrillic script on the map in all of UL20 and the northern regions of Midistland. Similar to how Bulgaria originated the Cyrillic script, we could have the "Cyrillic birthplace" be somewhere in northern Midistland or in UL20c. The amount of variation within the Cyrillic script rivals that of the Latin script, meaning prospective mappers in the region of UL20 and UL26 could come up with a wide array of alphabetic standards for their Slavic language if they so choose. The expansive Slavic-inspired region in Uletha is currently only bounded by Plevia, Antigo, Pretany, Egalia, Mardoumakhstan, and the Turkic region dominated by the Demirhan Empire. Midistland and the UL20 region would help complete the Slavic region quite nicely.

  • If the Suvuma project ever gets going again while maintaining its previous cultural vision, UL26c, UL26d, and UL26e could be reserved for Austronesian, or Austronesian-inspired cultures and languages in order to cement the lingustic spread of related languages from Western Archanta across the Asperic Ocean to Suvuma, Niulutan-Riu, Khaiwoon, Gobrassanya, Alora, and Manaea. This could later be expanded to UL06g and it could become a hybrid Austronesian-Persian type of culture.
  • Southern Midistland, as well as UL26b and Ul26f, becomes a blank slate of sorts. @Zhenkang's idea of a South Asian "language neighborhood" is a great example of a way to fill the space. The existing Indian-esque mapping in UL06d could be moved to one of the large territories in Sector 26 as a starting point.
  • Another idea is designating the area as a Turkic-inspired region. In an ideal world, UL20 would consist of Turkic cultures given the area's geographic similarity to the real-world culture's land, but a wider Slavic sphere makes much more sense given the linguistic knowledge of our current user base. However, this provides a unique opportunity to modify the way in which a potentially-expansive Turquese language family spreads, with emphasis placed on maritime connections across the Iviran Sea as opposed to through Southern Uletha by land.
  • This could also be split in a way, mimicking the real-world philosophy that cultural boundaries rarely follow administrative boundaries to perfection. Southern Midistland and Northern UL26b and UL26f could take on a Turkic theme, while the southern halves of the latter two countries follow the Austronesian-inspired cultures of the three smaller territories in the section.


27: I think the Germanic cultures of Sector 28 are quite cohesive, and given the proposed geography for the area, I believe it would make sense to specify UL27b and UL27d as countries that would host Germanic cultures as well – depending on the future of Midistland, these two countries could define a theoretical "western border" for the domain of Germanic-speaking countries, and allow the remaining countries in the sector to develop its own identity.

  • If Midistland evolves into a predominantly Slavic-speaking country, then the remaining territories in Sector 27 could take on a Slavic sphere of influence, at the very least in terms of usage of the Cyrillic script.
  • If Midistland takes on Turkic as a secondary culture, then the remaining territories in Sector 27 should be explicitly defined as territories inspired by Central Asian Turkic, whether that be using the languages and cultures of the Central Asian Turkic countries or creating a conlang and conculture inspired by the region, thus expanding the "Turquese Belt" eastward.
  • I think the borders of UL27a, UL27e, and UL27f should be altered so that they are not straight lines.


30: The Axian Peninsula used to be a cohesive region, now it is in dire need of revival.

  • If the large territories in UL26 are split between Turkic and Austronesian cultures, and Ataraxia were to be relocated, then the western portions could become a South Asian homeland that Zhenkang proposed earlier in this discussion – South Asia is an extremely diverse place, both linguistically and culturally, which means there are a lot of ideas to explore.
  • As others have mentioned above, UL30c is a prime contender for a Japanese homeland – though in my view there is a better candidate, which is mentioned below.


31: The only remaining available territory in this region is UL31a, which just so happens to make up Semanya's longest border. The western portions could potentially take on a Turkic theme if UL26 and UL27 follow suit.


32: If UL32c ends up being withdrawn, I think it could be a promising candidate for a potential Japanese linguistic homeland, or at least the southern part of it. We can already see elements of a potential linguistic history if this ends up being the case – UL32d appears to draw heavily from Japanese linguistic influences, Izaland uses a conlang based partly on Japanese, and Kojo appears to have a slight Japanese flavor. Depending on where one stands on the Altaic language family debate, Pyeokchin (UL31c) could be included in this linear land spread of the Japanese language, gradually straying further from the metaphorical "source material" the further west you go. To explain the introduction of a writing system based on Sinitic logographs, the extreme southeast of UL32c appears to be the closest region to the dense cluster of Northeast Archantan countries that use the writing system. Assuming the Bai Empire originated the script, explorers from the country could have landed on the southeastern shores of UL32c and introduced the script.

  • A portion of southern or eastern UL32c could be partitioned for the current mapper of Tengappei if the Japanese homeland were to be located there, since Tengappei appears to adhere to its source material rather strictly.
  • If the Japanese homeland were to be located in UL30c, then UL32c could be used for a new linguistic homeland, maybe Tibetan or a Sinitic-inspired culture.


General: I think conlang usage needs to be encouraged more in the region, and I thoroughly agree with the notion of creating linguistic "neighborhoods" to organize East Uletha. There are also plenty of real-world cultures I feel deserve greater representation on the map, most notably Dravidian, Indo-Iranian, Himalayan, Amharic, and Central Asian.


And, even though the sector isn't explicitly included in the list, I thought I would mention it anyways:

UL28a: A Germanic-Semanish collaborative territory would be interesting to see (and would help fill in a lot of plot holes in Semanya's history). I personally think it would help tie the region together and anchor the inland portion of the continent.


Some final notes:

  • If oneofbeatlefan wants to post his plan for the Pasundan Peninsula in this thread, that would be helpful.

I know I threw a lot of ideas out there, but hopefully there are some that I mentioned that others find intriguing and helpful. I may come back and edit this to help make everything a bit more cohesive.

--Geoboi (talk) 23:52, 20 June 2022 (UTC)

oneofbeatlefan came up with the idea when I proposed the Japanese homeland project in February when the first withdrawal deadline was supposed to hit. The plan only included topography and nature I also added administrative divisions on his plan which you can see in this link

https://media.discordapp.net/attachments/478269474802237440/940366524575780934/pasundan-japan-01.png

This is assuming the entire peninsula is one country, and it is still attached to the mainland and not separated into an island. Hopefully you find this useful. Kengoman (talk) 20:54, 23 June 2022 (UTC)


Finnish/Estonian/etc.

Though it wasn't the main reason for this post, I felt these languages should be discussed. Finnish/Estonian related languages can be seen in many places around the map with unknown connections.

  • UL23b: My country Eelanti uses Finnish (Eelandese)
  • UL25f: Kaarti/Kartis seems to use Finnish as well
  • UL21f: Karolia uses a related conlang
  • UL24k: Viljanni seems to use some related language (Suurisana?)
  • Suurisana is marked to be Finnish but I couldn't find which country it belongs to other than a possible connection to Viljanni. But Viljanni doesn't seem to use Finnish.

Even if those are the only ones using these languages, the countries aren't very close on the map. It would be interesting to figure out how these related languages developed and spread to different parts of East Uletha. The sea would be a possible link between some of them of course. --Eevee (talk) 18:13, 26 June 2022 (UTC)

Interesting observation, I must admit I never identified the linguistic similarities between these four territories. I guess UL24k could be explained as a colony/trading post/military base, and all other three are at least clearly in the northern part of the continent. Maybe instead of tryong to retrofit a history, we could try and talk with some owners about moving a territory or two? Kartis is relatively sparesly mapped yet for example.Leowezy (talk) 16:17, 27 June 2022 (UTC)

Visualization

Geoboi's East Uletha Culture Proposal
Please refer to the file page for the legend!

Hi again, I've circled back to show everyone my attempt at mapping out my ideas for East Uletha. Hopefully this clears up what I mentioned earlier. I colored in Western Uletha as well since it appeared relevant to our discussion in this forum. The darker shades contextualize related cultures that already exist on the map, whereas lighter shades are where I feel those cultures can expand to in our region. Thoughts? –Geoboi (talk) 03:01, 27 June 2022 (UTC)

That is a great visualisation. I might try to do something similar when destillating the comments later on.Leowezy (talk) 16:11, 27 June 2022 (UTC)