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Author Topic: Self Configuring Modular Robot.  (Read 32194 times)

glitterboy2098

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Re: Self Configuring Modular Robot.
« Reply #420 on: 24 June 2022, 14:38:13 »
and this time they have no captive Ngo to advise them as to why the Elbar declaration is such a big deal.

Daryk

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Re: Self Configuring Modular Robot.
« Reply #421 on: 24 June 2022, 16:11:00 »
I think it's going to take more than a cease fire, really.  If they're that close to the ropes, Melissa would be a fool to call off the dogs until they were actually on them.

Euphonium

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Re: Self Configuring Modular Robot.
« Reply #422 on: 24 June 2022, 16:25:42 »
[att. 1; "THe Way of the Clans"]
[att. 2; "Remembrance of Clan Wolf" circa 2905 CE"]
[Att. 3: "General order 172 issued 4 August, 2776 by Aleksandr Kerensky, aka "The Elbar Declaration"]

"The Way of the Clans" - this is Nicky K's writings from when he founded the Clans?

"The Elbar Declaration" - I'm aware of this in a very general sense from reading various Ngo-verse fics, but I can't remember the details. Can anyone point me at a previous story that talks about it in more detail, or give me a bullet point summary of the highlights please?
>>>>[You're only jealous because the voices don't talk to you]<<<<

Daryk

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Re: Self Configuring Modular Robot.
« Reply #423 on: 24 June 2022, 16:51:52 »
I'd only make a hash of it trying to do so from memory... much better if Cannonshop does that himself...  :)

DOC_Agren

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Re: Self Configuring Modular Robot.
« Reply #424 on: 24 June 2022, 19:06:46 »
Advanced Navigational Systems;D :D ;D :D :)) ;D :)) :D :))

Hand calculated Jump Points by Navigators without the Computers set to lock these jumps out...
"For the Angel of Death spread his wings on the blast, And breathed in the face of the foe as he passed:And the eyes of the sleepers waxed deadly and chill, And their hearts but once heaved, and for ever grew still!"

Daryk

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Re: Self Configuring Modular Robot.
« Reply #425 on: 24 June 2022, 19:49:46 »
I even have a thread for that in my sig block!  8)

Deathrider6

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Re: Self Configuring Modular Robot.
« Reply #426 on: 24 June 2022, 22:02:16 »
Methinks the Clanners are going to get hosed.
"You're either with me, or you hate freedom and kittens. " - consequences on VSD and a draw result of the Great Refusal.

DOC_Agren

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Re: Self Configuring Modular Robot.
« Reply #427 on: 24 June 2022, 23:30:14 »
no no I'm sure the Clanner are going to do well, playing with a Star League Manual for Naval Operations.  :o 8) :o
"For the Angel of Death spread his wings on the blast, And breathed in the face of the foe as he passed:And the eyes of the sleepers waxed deadly and chill, And their hearts but once heaved, and for ever grew still!"

Cannonshop

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Re: Self Configuring Modular Robot.
« Reply #428 on: 25 June 2022, 01:28:08 »
Samantha Daimh...

...was a convicted terrorist, once.  She'd been caught stealing a Monolith class jumpship from the yards, for Free Skye.

the whole jumpship.  She'd have gotten away with it, too-if her team didn't include two Lohengrin deep-cover agents and a third deep-cover from MIIO.  This isn't to say she'd come up with the plan, way-back-when.  That was Lohengrin Deep Cover agent number two, Michael Broadhouse, who was also the second in command of her father's cell.

She found this out after being pardoned.  She was sixteen when she was sent to Blackgate Prison, a juvenile sentenced as an adult for a Capital crime, her sentence reduced by the mercy of the court to life.

and then, the Navy came looking for talented navigators, and 'uncle Mike' put her name in the hat.

The same man who planned the heist, to catch a cell of Free Skye, put her name on the LCN's list of possible candidates.

Now in her twenties, Sam Daimh doesn't hold much of a grudge-learning how to be a Naval Officer has taught her what she didn't know when her father let a mole talk him into high treason.

She's been in command of the LCG Marjorie Jennings for a little over a year now, and her crew is tighter than her father's Free Skye cell ever was, tighter than family, even. 

You either grow close, or you self-destruct on month thirteen of a deep-space cruise.

"We're going to need to hook up with a Tender soon." she noted.  The evidence? the third Head was emptied out, marking two more months before they would be bingo on food and fuel.

'bingo' means you either head straight home as fast as the core will charge, or you starve to death.

"Word from the Squadron command memo says we're to rendezvous with the Tenders next week, mein Kapitan."  Wilhelm Krause was a good sort of XO for Sam-he tracked details almost as well as she did, the poor man's only real defect, in her view, is that he needs to use the presets and can't plot a nav point without help...

but he's good with the crew, and the Marines aboard, handling people with a 'gift' she had to work her ass off to match.

"Yeah.  We're a year out from Spider Moon." she pointed out, "The enemy is getting clever.  what about the drop-sats?? anything in the probables?"

"eleven systems seeded by ours, and seven more per boat, they're going to have to use brown dwarfs to avoid being spotted, Mum." Wilhelm told her.

"we've got maybe enough ammo for two more convoys." she mused, "assuming we don't burn it up on one..."

"It's always possible, mum.  They are, as you noted, getting smarter about guarding their convoys." he agreed.

"What's our med status looking like?" she inquired.  "I mean, we're three months overdue for a gravity break, how are the crew handling it?"

"Nobody's shorting their bone-meds, but we're going to need a fresh-air break in one gee fairly soon, especially for the Planetborns." Wilhelm noted, "Bone meds are bad for kidneys and livers."

"I know." she nodded, "Have the med officer start doing enhanced physicals, focus on our planetborn personnel in particular, I don't want anyone shorting their exercise periods or medication.  Also start working up rotations for when we do get the chance for the crew to leg-stretch on a planet or in a dome."

Deep sorties like theirs are almost stereotypical- a frenzy of activity laying 'trip sensors' linked to black boxes in a spherical pattern in likely systems, followed by waiting and monitoring communications.  long periods of boredom, followed by frantic action, followed by long periods of boredom.  "In the meantime, morale activities?"

"Cooking contest is on this week, Mum, and the board for the squadron fiction contest is convening to judge entries."
"If you have to ask permission, then it's no longer a Right, it has been turned into a Privilege-something that can be and will be taken from you when convenient."

Cannonshop

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Re: Self Configuring Modular Robot.
« Reply #429 on: 25 June 2022, 01:46:55 »
This type of war wasn't even common during the AGE of war...

...when all the Great Houses and the Terran Hegemony were waging hard warfare on one another with massed fleets.  The reason then, and the reason now, is that deep space interception is a right nightmare to achieve, and by 'nightmare' we mean, extreme difficulty level tasks.

The LCN's convoy raider doctrine added a piece of technology, and it's a hell of a lot easier now.  Detection sats aren't new technology.  Like space mines, everyone has built one, and in the heyday of the Star League, star systems had several at major points.

What makes these different, is the addition of FTL communication.  Simple FTL commo, relying on a fighter-sized fusion plant, nonreflective coatings that are also tuned to serve as receptive antennas, and a large number of passive sensors crammed into what amounts to body the size of a light capital missile.  power-duration and endurance is measured in months, the devices are kept stationary using simple, low-output ion thrusters.  When a pulse hits the reception array, it sends a squeal on the black-box.

The result, is that anything set up to recieve will catch that squeal, and the sats will send an encoded copy of what the sensors are picking up.

effectively, anything jumping into a system within a few thousand kilometers of a known point, will set off one that has been laid there, summoning the entire 'patrol', or even squadron, whom are waiting  in off-axis locations to listen for that squawk.

Interception becomes a lot easier, when you know where to point your telescopes, and the devices are low-powered and passive, making them hard to detect for warship sensors optimized to look for emissions in the Electromagnetic Spectrum.

Space is big, if you don't know what to look for, you might never see it.
"If you have to ask permission, then it's no longer a Right, it has been turned into a Privilege-something that can be and will be taken from you when convenient."

Daryk

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Re: Self Configuring Modular Robot.
« Reply #430 on: 25 June 2022, 02:09:39 »
Anything that lengthens that already ridiculously long supply line is good news for the Commonwealth!  8)

Cannonshop

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Re: Self Configuring Modular Robot.
« Reply #431 on: 25 June 2022, 10:12:57 »
3055...

"Your dad's going to be glad to see you, Joshua, trust me."  Yvonne reassured the young Marik boy.  "your treatments are going well."

"What about your friend?" he asked, "Your dying friend, is she getting better?" Joshua Marik wasn't exactly 'dim'.

"Lizzy's problem is...complicated.  BUT!" she smiled, taking his hand, "the research we've been doing on her, has let us help you!"

he looked sad.  "I'm sorry she's not getting better, then."

"We've got time." Yvonne assured him.  He stopped on the path, and looked at the flowering plants. 

"it's not fair." Joshua told her, "I'm fixed and your friend's still broken."

"Lizzie likes to remind me 'life isn't fair' and sometimes there aren't any easy answers." Yvonne confessed.  In the distance, she could see the dropships coming to rest at the private port reserved for VIP's.  "your dad's almost here."

"Yeah!" Joshua grinned at her, his hair was growing back, now that the treatments made the chemotherapy and radiation treatments a thing of the past.

"Want to race me back inside?"

"still kinda tired." he said, "will you walk with me back in?"

"Of course." she offered her arm, and he took it.

Yvonne's first true triumph walked with her back to the medical building.  I beat cancer, beating Cholmann's syndrome is the next goal.

It was a hell of a lot better than her father's 'backup plan'.  The boy recruited for that one, was now in one of the new 'gifted' classes at NAIS, learning to become a scientist in the engineering field, instead of a doppelganger.  gotta remember to check in on Bryan later. she reminded herself.  In the distance the official motorcade bearing the Captain General of the Free Worlds League was just leaving the spaceport.
"If you have to ask permission, then it's no longer a Right, it has been turned into a Privilege-something that can be and will be taken from you when convenient."

Cannonshop

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Re: Self Configuring Modular Robot.
« Reply #432 on: 25 June 2022, 10:23:09 »
"Your homework for this quarter is in the syllabus...

...I do not expect you to need to be reminded when it is due."  Sierra finished passing out the colorful study books, and stood in front of the whiteboard.  "This is not an easy school." she added, "If you thought you would get an easy school, then your parents and guardians lied to you.  I am a demanding  instructor, but I will be fair.  Your grades will depend on many things, many expectations, my first, is that you ask questions.  Those of you who will not question what you are told, will not pass this course."

Sierra is eighteen years old, and already holds doctorate degrees.  The children in the classroom, are between eight, and ten years old, this is part of 'paying it back' for Sierra-four hours every two days, classroom time, 'office hours' as well, and of course, the labs.  Not as a student, but as a 'student instructor' with the Commonwealth Junior Academy for Gifted Students-a subdivision of New Avalon Institute of Science.

"We will begin with the basis of scientific understanding, and that is, we begin with observing everything, and questioning.  The first statement of a true Scientist, is 'I don't know'." she intoned, "Imprint that on your minds.  'I don't know', because it leads to the true motivation for all scientific advances-'let's Find Out'...this is where you start writing in your books guys.  Everything you are here to learn, is rooted in seeking knowledge, and that begins with admitting you don't have the answers but you're willing to look for them!"

"If you have to ask permission, then it's no longer a Right, it has been turned into a Privilege-something that can be and will be taken from you when convenient."

HABeas2

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Re: Self Configuring Modular Robot.
« Reply #433 on: 25 June 2022, 10:23:37 »
Couple minor setting inquiries for you, CS:

1) What's the status of the Federated Commonwealth alliance here? I sensed that the Fourth War still happened as canon's did. But Melissa's communication with Ulric made no mention of the FedCom and limited all its references to LyrCom only.

2) Is Hanse still around at this stage? Or has he died as per canon?

3) Um, whatever else I was thinking of slipped out of my head...

- Herb

Cannonshop

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Re: Self Configuring Modular Robot.
« Reply #434 on: 25 June 2022, 10:37:23 »
Couple minor setting inquiries for you, CS:

1) What's the status of the Federated Commonwealth alliance here? I sensed that the Fourth War still happened as canon's did. But Melissa's communication with Ulric made no mention of the FedCom and limited all its references to LyrCom only.

2) Is Hanse still around at this stage? Or has he died as per canon?

3) Um, whatever else I was thinking of slipped out of my head...

- Herb

in reverse order..

3) Uh, Oops?

2) Hanse is still around, thus the realms are still technically separate, as Victor has not yet ascended.

1)Officially the Federated Commonwealth is taking longer to fully unify, since both Hanse and Melissa are still alive and each other's first line inheritor.  This does NOT mean the Fedcom Corps hasn't happened, it has. What it DOES mean, is that for official diplomatic contact with an enemy, Mel's keeping that other knife under the table until it truly looks like she can't keep it hidden anymore.  (that, and the "LCG" units are Lyran only at this point. the FedSuns side is building a similar corps of jumpships and crews, but administratively they're separated by a few steps, mostly to prevent corruption of the sort that tends to plague oversized agencies and to maintain a backup to the backups.)

at this point in 3055 a few other ripples have happened;

a) because of the Brat Pack and over-all investment into sciences, Joshua did not die of Leukemia.  Yvonne Steiner-Davion, the member of the Brats who got deep into medicine and biology, figured out how to beat it, and did so quickly enough to save the boy's life.  She's also got the dirty secret that he's not really a Marik, but she's not about to leak it, because that might call her brilliance into question and would be poor form among her peers to let something like that out without discussing it with the rest of the Brats at minimum.

b)so Guerrero loses a cassus belli.  (insert weeping, unhappy Katherine face here). It probably helps that the Brat Pack's 'treatment' for the Machine plague works/is working?  the Leaguers, at least, are using licensed versions to deal with Screamer infestations when they detect one.  The tech exchange is doing wonders for international relations on that score.

c)I'm still struggling with what Sun Tzu's little copy-project is going to turn out regarding 'big science', but the Capellan Navy is getting a long overdue facelift with possible implications to the international scene later on.

I just don't know what,yet.

Probably something horrifying, or something outright brilliantly clever.

"If you have to ask permission, then it's no longer a Right, it has been turned into a Privilege-something that can be and will be taken from you when convenient."

ThePW

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Re: Self Configuring Modular Robot.
« Reply #435 on: 25 June 2022, 11:18:33 »
Cannon, you forgot the Shoes... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-jfqZwHuc6c
Even my Page posting rate is better than my KPD rate IG...

2Feb2023: The day my main toon on DDO/Cannith, an Artificer typically in the back, TANKED in a LH VoD.

Daryk

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Re: Self Configuring Modular Robot.
« Reply #436 on: 25 June 2022, 11:49:47 »
Personally, I'm hoping Sun Tzu gets the earth-shattering kaboom Liz was hoping to avoid...   8)

And what Cannonshop is actually forgetting is a summary of (or link to) the Elbar Declaration another poster requested...  :)

And wow!  Yvonne cracking leukemia is AMAZING!  She'd probably get a Nobel for that, if only she could publish her work without revealing the little problem with Joshua's parentage...  ^-^

Cannonshop

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Re: Self Configuring Modular Robot.
« Reply #437 on: 25 June 2022, 11:54:14 »
"AAAAAAHHHHHHGGGGHHHHH!!!!....

...pain.  Elizabeth Ngo is eighteen years old.  She's strapped to a table.  The sounds she's making, would be more appropriate to a fourteenth century torturer's abattoir than one of the most advanced medical centers in the Inner Sphere.  What's happening to her, can only be described in terms that suggest it's slightly less uncomfortable than her likely final fate.

You can't really 'rush' this kind of thing, and painkillers would be counterproductive-the effect would prevent the body from recovering, which is what happens when you're replacing nervous system parts on a living human being.

it hurts.

It hurts a lot.  It doesn't, however, hurt as much as what she's likely to go through during her next seizure.  So it's slightly less uncomfortable than what she went through this morning while trying to brush her teeth.

but at least her muscles aren't spasming in super-contractions like the one that dislocated her left knee and right hip this morning.

but it's an experimental treatment, and it hurts.

Arthur could barely stand to be in the viewing room, while his childhood crush lay, anchored for her own safety, in an ergonomic support frame, as the SCMR-derived nanomachines worked on rebuilding her decaying central nervous system.

Terry and Dr. Banzai, at least, were better at hiding their own flinch reactions behind a sort of carefully affected professional demeanour.

This isn't a cure, it's a treatment to delay the as-yet inevitable, even more agonizing death Elizabeth was facing.

but her screams would echo in his nightmares after this, even though she consented knowing what was coming.  She had, after all, helped design it.

eventually, the cycle finished, and she flopped in the restraints.

Arthur hurried down.

"Liz?" he asked, touching her tear-streaked cheek, "you're still with us?"

"I feel terrible." she mumbled, "but did it work?"

"I...I don't know." he said.

"Let's find out." she said, "bring on the scary scanner thing...******..."
"If you have to ask permission, then it's no longer a Right, it has been turned into a Privilege-something that can be and will be taken from you when convenient."

Daryk

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Re: Self Configuring Modular Robot.
« Reply #438 on: 25 June 2022, 11:59:35 »
If he can go to her side after that, she's not just a childhood crush...  8)

Sir Chaos

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Re: Self Configuring Modular Robot.
« Reply #439 on: 25 June 2022, 14:52:43 »
Personally, I'm hoping Sun Tzu gets the earth-shattering kaboom Liz was hoping to avoid...   8)

And what Cannonshop is actually forgetting is a summary of (or link to) the Elbar Declaration another poster requested...  :)

And wow!  Yvonne cracking leukemia is AMAZING!  She'd probably get a Nobel for that, if only she could publish her work without revealing the little problem with Joshua's parentage...  ^-^

She could publish it quite easily, if she pretends (and NAIS backs her up) that she did all the experimental work on someone else and Joshua was merely reaping the fruit of that success.

That way, even if she were to release DNA info on her test subject, False Thomas is hardly going to declare that the Definitely-Not-A-Marik patient is in fact his biological son.

Heck, she could just use her work to cure some random other leukemia patient whose family agrees to pretend their kid was in fact the original test subject.
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Daryk

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Re: Self Configuring Modular Robot.
« Reply #440 on: 25 June 2022, 14:56:45 »
The second option there is MUCH safer for all involved...  ^-^

Nikas_Zekeval

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Re: Self Configuring Modular Robot.
« Reply #441 on: 25 June 2022, 16:06:39 »
I think the ultimate irony?  Sun Tzu's think tank is the one that cracks Cholmans.  Not only would it give Sunny something to hold over Hanse, while "dealing with internal matters" aka, kicking mad mom off the throne?  It is a glory to sell to his people, along with the probable related treatments for other degenerative nerve diseases.

Rather interesting, is Yvonne a full Doctor, or more a research biologist?  It'd be an interesting twist if the two young Steiner-Davions went into their mandatory service for non-combat branches, Medicine for Yvonne, and likely engineering for Arthur.

Daryk

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Re: Self Configuring Modular Robot.
« Reply #442 on: 25 June 2022, 16:16:20 »
That's not irony... that would be cruel fate right there...  :-\

glitterboy2098

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Re: Self Configuring Modular Robot.
« Reply #443 on: 25 June 2022, 16:47:17 »
I think the ultimate irony?  Sun Tzu's think tank is the one that cracks Cholmans.  Not only would it give Sunny something to hold over Hanse, while "dealing with internal matters" aka, kicking mad mom off the throne?  It is a glory to sell to his people, along with the probable related treatments for other degenerative nerve diseases.

Rather interesting, is Yvonne a full Doctor, or more a research biologist?  It'd be an interesting twist if the two young Steiner-Davions went into their mandatory service for non-combat branches, Medicine for Yvonne, and likely engineering for Arthur.
would the CapCon's thinktank even be looking at Cholman's though? the lyran one has a reason to do so, Sun Tzu has his focused on the physics stuff as far as major projects, and while i have no doubt that his eggheads are working on medical stuff (he's smart enough to know to recruit a wide range of talents) i suspect that Cholman's isn't on their radar.. yet. with the joshua situation, i have no doubt that he'd see the wisdom in potentially obtainign that bit of leverage. i also suspect thqat the capcon would be the only group able to develop the cure. not because of any particular medical skill, but because the capcon wouldn't be hindered by those pesky concepts of 'medical ethics', "survivable experiments", and 'volunteers required". (there is a reason that in other timelines, it took not only clan scientists but ones from The Scociety to find a viable treatment.)

Daryk

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Re: Self Configuring Modular Robot.
« Reply #444 on: 25 June 2022, 16:53:30 »
Agreed... I don't think it would be a priority for Sun Tzu.

glitterboy2098

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Re: Self Configuring Modular Robot.
« Reply #445 on: 25 June 2022, 16:59:10 »
Agreed... I don't think it would be a priority for Sun Tzu.
after they learn about Joshua and see how that improves the relationshiop between the fedcom and the FWL i can see him directing his people to look into cholman's, but he'll be playing catch up.

Daryk

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Re: Self Configuring Modular Robot.
« Reply #446 on: 25 June 2022, 17:02:50 »
It depends on how deeply he's looking into the physics... that's an EXPENSIVE problem...

croaker

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Re: Self Configuring Modular Robot.
« Reply #447 on: 25 June 2022, 20:43:17 »
"The Way of the Clans" - this is Nicky K's writings from when he founded the Clans?

"The Elbar Declaration" - I'm aware of this in a very general sense from reading various Ngo-verse fics, but I can't remember the details. Can anyone point me at a previous story that talks about it in more detail, or give me a bullet point summary of the highlights please?

Way of the Clans - Yep.

Elber Declaration, TLDR version: "Genocide is bad, mmkay? Don't do it. Signed, Alexander Kerensky."

glitterboy2098

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Re: Self Configuring Modular Robot.
« Reply #448 on: 25 June 2022, 21:07:16 »
Way of the Clans - Yep.

Elber Declaration, TLDR version: "Genocide is bad, mmkay? Don't do it. Signed, Alexander Kerensky."
slightly longer summary.. on the world of Elbar, after storming a brian castle on their own, the 171st volunteer infantry division found Amaris forces had been using the facility to commit warcrimes. specifically genocidal pogroms* of the unfriendly planetary populace, who they had been rounding up into cattle cars and then shipping into the Castle Brian, where the healthy ones would be separated from the sickly ones. the sickly ones would be killed, the healthy ones would be sent to surgery wards where they would be dissected alive and without anesthesia to create stocks of replacement transplant organs and tissues used heal injured Amaris troops and collaborators.
needless to say that the 171st took this very badly, and committed their own warcrimes in turn by performing summary executions of the soldiers, doctors, and officers involved.. by way of impaling their captive on spikes (the original of the "elbar toothpick") and using them as living bayonet dummies,, often in the training of those Elbar survivors who were willing to join up.
this so appalled the SLDF proper that kerensky issued a Declaration outlining not only the SLDF's and all allied forces stance on warcrimes, put rules in place to prevent further warcrimes on the part of the SLDF and allied commands, and generally made a promise to the inner sphere as a whole that the SLDF would never condone warcrimes of any kind.
so you can understand how the Kowloonese found the clan's behavior so insulting and hypocritical on the issue. of course Kowloon was basically the only world to even remember the declaration existed, why it existed, and still have copies of it.



*literal pograms in fact, given the world had a large jewish population and they formed much of the dissident population under the Amaris Regime. since Kowloon was partly settled by jewish dissidents that left earth, and their vietnamese population left earth due oppression, you can imagine how they took the situation on Elbar.

Cannonshop

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Re: Self Configuring Modular Robot.
« Reply #449 on: 25 June 2022, 21:32:06 »
"Visiting Hours are Fifteen hundred to seventeen hundred, Monday through...

...Friday and Noon to eighteen hundred on Saturday, ma'am."  The desk nurse said it crisply and harshly.

"I. Don't. Care."  The visitor in question is wearing an LCN Admiral's uniform with the nametag 'Li', this nametag matches to an almost-ageless looking face framed by short-cut black hair, the features marred only slightly under light makeup by the scarring from violent decompression sometime in the past.  "I'm here to see my Baroness, and you're going to let me see her."  Alicia Li's tone didn't waver from the cool, conversational tone trained into officers who spend a lot of time on intercoms working with crew.

"I will not!!" the nurse scowled, "Leave or I will summon Security."

"Lady, I am Security." Alicia's tone didn't waver, "So, either unlock the door, or I will have it unlocked, give me the room number, or I will take it from you."

The defiant guardian of the recovery unit wound up watching in frustrated helplessness, as the Admiral's rank, and medals, along with a set of codewords, opened the security door, and the Officer of the Day escorted her through twenty minutes later.

****

"I will rip them to shreds!!!"  Elizabeth Ngo howled, coming off the recovery bed trailing IV needles and her catheter tube in a storm of invective flowing through four languages and no less than a dozen subcultures.

"I don't think that will be necessary or appropriate, Milady." Alicia Li was still ice-calm, "A simple memorandum and authorization is sufficient, Legal can have the charges in front of a magistrate in-"

"NO, it's not!!" Liz stormed verbally, but the discomfort of the tubes and her embarrassment at her hospital-gown bareness slowed her down.  "Does Patrick know?"

"He...they kept it from him."

"I will hang their heads on the ****** wall.  how bad is the damage?"

"Estimate is fifteen billlion in warranty work and lost production time." Li said unhappily.

"And the customers?" Lizzie scowled, "Are we going to ****** lose IOTO over this??"

"Ms. Whyte believes she can negotiate to keep the IOTO and Lockheed contracts but..."

"But." Lizzie's scowl deepened, "in the meantime, the Firm's reputation takes a beating, there is NO guarantee we'll keep those contracts, and there are a dozen or more mulbillion kroner ships on long range deployment with unreliable life support systems that somehow managed to be bribed past inspection with YOUR department, made by my family's company."

"I have already prepared a statement taking full responsibility for-"

"Oh, the ****** you will!" Elizabeth's temper was back, "You. did. your. job. or we wouldn't be speaking.  It's those arseholes in Department of Supply and Requisitions who...Took the kickback.  I want the names of the embezzlers, Li, each and every one of them, I want..." she fumed, scowled, "I want them made into an example. One that will have business school graduates and civil servants pissing themselves every night for the next two hundred years in terror."

"i'm afraid you don't have that kind of power." Li reminded her.

"Yeah, but it happens that I know someone who does."
"If you have to ask permission, then it's no longer a Right, it has been turned into a Privilege-something that can be and will be taken from you when convenient."