Witchspace, possible to exit?

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Gareth3377
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Post by Gareth3377 »

Would want to keep it as witchspace - it's a term that belongs to Elite so keep it I say. I always thought (according to TDW) that witchspace was another dimension and not in our universe.

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Post by TGHC »

It looks like my original comments about witchspace have been misinterpreted, I don't wish to change the name, just a clearer definition/understanding of where and what it is. There seem to be differing views about it, is it the rings during hyperspace, or is that a wormhole, is it interstellar space, or is it another dimension?

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Post by Killer Wolf »

Don't think it's the rings, as far as i'm aware they are the visual effect of you travelling. Witchspace is when you drop out if something goes wrong w/ that journey. as to *where* that is, i dunno. i would guess it's interstellar space, potential light years from where you wanted to be, as opposed to another dimension. all that stuff and the ghost stories have probably been talked up by pilots in bars ;-)
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Post by Dr. Nil »

TGHC wrote:There seem to be differing views about it, is it the rings during hyperspace, or is that a wormhole, is it interstellar space, or is it another dimension?
It seems to make most sense that witchspace is the actual wormhole travel (illustrated by the rings) since that is the part of your journey when the witchspace engine fuel is used. You don't have to use witchspace fuel to fly in the interstellar space where you end up, if misjumping.

When you misjump your position on the galactic and local maps is displayed as being between the systems you where you made the jump - a position which also seem to fit with the jump distances to those systems from your interstellar position (which is also your interplanetary position in the basic game as each stellar body only has one planet).
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Post by davcefai »

I get the feeling that the people discussing this have not read the "classic" SF books by Asimov, Smith and others.

So, Hyperspace:

Think of it as the space within which "normal" space lies. The bast analogy is a 2-D world - a sheet of paper inhabited by 2-D creatures. They cannot and do not see the third dimension.

The sheet need not lie flat, it can twist around. So you can imagine that one of these creatures could travel from one point to another through the third dimension without having to walk there. It has travelled through "hyperspace"

In the same way humans can travel through hyperspace (often called n-space) to go from A to C without passing through the intermediate points in normal space. From within normal space the space ship disappears at its departure point and reappears at its destination.

As far as I can tell "witch space" is hyperspace in Oolite. The rings indicate that we are travelling in it. From what happens after a mis-jump it seems that we are not in witch space but have exited it abnormally (like Word exits abnormally just as we have finished typing up a complex document :x )

In hyperspace different natural laws apply. Fortunately we can write our own and the main one is that FasterThanLight travel is possible.

One can but hope that it will one day be possible to use hyperspace.
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Post by Star Gazer »

Excellent!! ...particularly like the comparison of Word to witchspace...so, does that make Microsoft programmers Thargoids... ...lurking in the spaces in between... :lol: :lol: :lol:
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Post by davcefai »

I don't know, there are some nice Thargoids :D
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Post by LittleBear »

I like the above idea (Golan Trevize explanation to Proffessor Pelorat :wink: )

Space is like a "rubber sheet". Masses warp the rubber sheet, but the witchdrive punches a hole in the rubber sheet, allowing travel between two points seperated by a vast distance walking over the rubber sheet, but of no distance if you can punch a hole through the sheet.

Witchspace is when you are travelling between the two points and so is somthing outside the normal dimensions.

But when you are attacked by Thargoids, you have appeared in intersellar space. You meant to appear at point A near a planet, but the Bugs pulled you out of witchspace into the middle of nowhere.
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Post by davcefai »

During one of the "Cosmos" programmes Carl Sagan actually showed a "rubber sheet model".

The sheet was at least 5 x 3m and behaved just like the book descriptions. It may have been the only time that somebody actually built such a model.

I'd love to see a clip of this again so if anybody knows where to find one I promise not to shoot him up in the space lanes :)
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Post by drew »

davcefai wrote:I get the feeling that the people discussing this have not read the "classic" SF books by Asimov, Smith and others.

As far as I can tell "witch space" is hyperspace in Oolite. The rings indicate that we are travelling in it. From what happens after a mis-jump it seems that we are not in witch space but have exited it abnormally (like Word exits abnormally just as we have finished typing up a complex document :x )
Agreed.

I've always assumed witchspace was hyperspace by another name. It seems very similar to Asimov's hyperspace (and star wars for that matter). A 'manufactured tube/wormhole' through a fourth spacial dimension which connects two distant points in three dimensional space by a much shorter route, through which you fly at normal space speeds, yet appear to cover light years in just a few minutes/seconds. Thus no relativity problems.

I figured that the 'tube' was always a straight line, thus you never required navigational control when you were in it. The trick was setting up the tube in the first place so that the far end exited where you wanted it to. This was the function of the hyperspace/witchspace computation which was a lot more complex than 'rocket science'.

In a 'mis-jump' I assumed that you fell out of the tube prematurely, coming back into normal space 'somewhere' along the route to your destination, but not necessarily predictably, due to the curved geometry of three dimensional space... (gasp!)

This allowed the mis-jump to drop you out somewhere, and yet for your 'wormhole' to lead to your intended destination.

The place were you meet the thargoids / behemoth etc isn't 'witchspace', it's just normal space somewhere where you weren't supposed to be.

This would also explain why you loose all your fuel even when you don't travel the distance. The fuel is used in setting up the wormhole, not the act of actually travelling through it, which is down to your normal sublight engines.

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Post by JensAyton »

Commander Drew’s somewhat amateurish layman attempt to describe the nature of witchspace communications is essentially correct, at least in its gross outline.

A witchspace connection consists of a fifth-dimensional pseudocylindrical passage, or intertube, connecting a blue hole created by a witchspace drive to an invisible virtual white hole in the destination system. Fuel expenditure is proportional to the realspace length of the intertube.

The term witchspace refers specifically to the strange, magical and somewhat unlikely visual artefacts encountered while travelling the virtual length of the intertube. This virtual length is at once constant and proportional to the square of the realspace length, which makes perfect sense in five-dimensional bogometrics.

A witchspace malfunction occurs when the metric of the intertube is not perfectly balanced, which can happen due to hardware failure (slightly bent wire, build-ups of dust, or uneven load due to centrifugal force) in the witchspace drive’s field generator coils. This causes an “unravelling” of the field which dumps the traveller somewhere along the realspace path of the intertube; it is more likely to do so in the presence of large quantities of radioactive isotopes, incidentally of the very type used by the thargoids in their unrelated and badly-understood interstellar drives. Unfortunately, the only way to detect an unravelling condition is to enter the blue hole and see whether you end up where you expected to. This explains the importance of regular maitenance.

Witchdrive fuel is used to create the entire intertube immedately before entering it, rather than for actual travel; for this reason, none is recovered in the case of “falling out” of the intertube.

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Post by drew »

I'll get my coat. :lol:

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Post by reills »

Do I see a Wiki entry above??? You could say a malfunction is when Witchspace becomes Whichspace... :oops:
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Post by Uncle Reno »

On a vaguely related subject, is there instantaneous communication in the Oolite universe or is it subject to the laws of physics (as we know them at the moment of course! :) )?
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Post by LittleBear »

Good question. I'd sort of figured the iNEWS, Galaxy 7 News etc have a series of relays in each system. A tiny worm-hole is opened (requiring little fuel as it only needs to fit the signel rather than anything with mass) and the signel is transmitted through the worm-hole to be picked up by the next system. So communiation is almost instant between systems. Maybe the witchpoint beacons and tele-screens we see on entering a system peform the relay function?
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