Friday, August 31, 2012

Of Meier’s Deceleration

It comes from Sid Meier’s Civilization games. It’s the change in how time passes by in the game. When your civilization is just starting, each turn in the game jumps some thousands of years, then hundreds, then by tens. And then, yearly turns, and then each turn is a change in months. It’s one of the characteristics of the game that always puzzled me, and I always wondered what that meant.

The notion or perception that time is to be measured in decelerated ways has remained with me, and maybe it’s the answer to that question. I’d go through years with some events now and there. But as I’m realizing how valuable time is, it becomes optimized. That seems to make everything happen with more agility. It is the increase in performance that makes time be more wel-spent.

It seems to be in contradiction with the feeling that each year seems to rush by faster and faster. Months are feeling like weeks already. Perhaps the adjusting point is that the very feeling of losing the grasp of time makes us try to do everything more and more desperately. It makes sense with the notion of turns in the Civ game, which seem to be in terms of productivity.

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