Citizens of the Imperium

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Sifu Blackirish July 21st, 2015 07:24 PM

On The Road
 
During research for my third novel, I have been looking at a lot of information about the Interstate Highway System. In essence, I imagine a 'highway culture' on some alien planet.

I have my own ideas for how this came to be, already in development IMTU. However, the planetary scale just came to me moments ago, and i was so fascinated by the concept that I wanted to share.

IMTU Terra gradually abandons internal combustion engines during the 21st Century, with the exception being the Los Angeles Automotive Reclamation Area. Pollution and special use taxes make it too expensive for average citizens to have them. LAARA is funded by old-school NASCAR and NHRA fanboys, who maintain the highways. Long straight sections along with 'interchange mazes' (intersections of major interstates) are there for the enjoyment of rich dilettantes.

What would the planetary characteristics be of such a place, where vehicles predominate?

What comes to mind for me is almost continual cloud cover and extreme winds aloft. Maybe the original colonists hit the 'sweet spot' of the ecocycle and there was actually sunshine that year. How about a sunny year 1 of 10?

Now i leave the rest to you fellow CotI members. As an inducement to those who think an 'interstate planet' would be a boring place, I provide this:

http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/interstate/roadmovies.cfm

flykiller July 21st, 2015 08:29 PM

Quote:

for the enjoyment of rich dilettantes
long stretches of straight highway, huh? boring. put the driver bot on, fall asleep.

1) mountains. lots of twisty curves to test one's skills, lots of fog to test one's nerves, lots of tunnels to hear the roar of one's engines, and lots of scenic views over vast valleys.

2) forests and lakes. scenery.

3) jurassic highway. race the predators. insurance on sale ....

4) car wars. death race 2000. road warrior. iron autobahn blitzkrieg nazis with 88's.

Quint July 21st, 2015 08:32 PM

Alternately you could go the route of the Daniel Keys Moran did in his Continuing Time novels - see "The Long Run" and "Emerald Eyes"

Short version, all traffic is computer controlled unless you have a license to drive yourself - in a world full of VTOL's (easily changed to grav). The licenses to "drive freely" are very hard to get and there are clubs devoted to doing so - including the concept of 'the long run" which is either an around the world trip or some other very long bit of travel (I can't remember at the moment).

D.

kilemall July 22nd, 2015 03:03 AM

I'm reading that there would still be quite a need for cheap ground transportation even at the higher TLs- 600K Cr for an air/raft still makes it a working vehicle or rich plaything, and even if you say buy a TL9 air/raft at TL14 and incur the 50% TL 'exchange rate', that still works out to 300K vs. much more affordable wheels.

Or you could go hover which would allow for much cheaper grading and fixing of travel surface without the expense of maintaining a road to full safe/drainage levels.

BlackBat242 July 22nd, 2015 04:11 AM

Sorry - this topic, and the mention of hovercars, just forces me to post this (not that I really need an excuse to listen to it again):

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PjjNvjURS-s

aramis July 22nd, 2015 05:10 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by kilemall (Post 512146)
I'm reading that there would still be quite a need for cheap ground transportation even at the higher TLs- 600K Cr for an air/raft still makes it a working vehicle or rich plaything, and even if you say buy a TL9 air/raft at TL14 and incur the 50% TL 'exchange rate', that still works out to 300K vs. much more affordable wheels.

Or you could go hover which would allow for much cheaper grading and fixing of travel surface without the expense of maintaining a road to full safe/drainage levels.

Busses, trams, slidewalks... as is being discovered in a number of european cities, most people don't need their own vehicles, and can rent vans (and drivers) when needed for moves, etc.

That everyone needs a personal or family vehicle is not a given.

kilemall July 22nd, 2015 06:01 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by aramis (Post 512151)
Busses, trams, slidewalks... as is being discovered in a number of european cities, most people don't need their own vehicles, and can rent vans (and drivers) when needed for moves, etc.

That everyone needs a personal or family vehicle is not a given.

Of course, but for worlds/nations of a certain density and distance, personal ground vehicles will be desirable.

Condottiere July 22nd, 2015 06:17 AM

Depends on the integration of public transport.

Some countries have them coordinated and networked on a national level, with an attempt to keep delays less than four minutes, but ninety percent run on time.

At some point, we'll have on call drone taxis, one target demographic being the elderly.

Jame July 22nd, 2015 12:30 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by kilemall (Post 512146)
I'm reading that there would still be quite a need for cheap ground transportation even at the higher TLs- 600K Cr for an air/raft still makes it a working vehicle or rich plaything, and even if you say buy a TL9 air/raft at TL14 and incur the 50% TL 'exchange rate', that still works out to 300K vs. much more affordable wheels.

Or you could go hover which would allow for much cheaper grading and fixing of travel surface without the expense of maintaining a road to full safe/drainage levels.

I believe that there was a 10% discount for TLs over that, so a TL 9 air/raft would cost 60000 Cr and a TL 10 one cost 6000.

Unless you wanted to alter that and have a TL 9 one cost 300000 CR, a TL 10 one cost 100000 Cr and so forth. Makes getting higher TL ones a better idea, and gives in-game justification for a lot of worlds trying to up their TLs.

flykiller July 22nd, 2015 01:44 PM

Quote:

as is being discovered in a number of european cities, most people don't need their own vehicles
sure it works in european cities. but in texas or california ....

the big attraction of public transit is that it allows city/social planners to dictate where everyone may and may not and must and must not go. great for high law level worlds.


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