NGOs for a somewhat "Traveller"-like setting



*you would always book one way


A reader has made the excellent suggestion that there ought to be an NGO that opposes the research, development, and use of immortality treatments and life extension, on the grounds that all wealth and power would accumulate in the hands of a few very old, making life miserable for everyone else whether immortal or not. I have only to name this outfit and my final draft will be done.

Is “The Œuvre of the King of Prussia” too whimsical a name for such a group? It is an indirect reference to Frederick II of Prussia having once urged his guards into a desperate action by saying “Kerels, wollt ihr den euwig leben?” (“Rascals! Would you live forever?”)


Easier to pronounce than Gurbdlurts. . . .


Spaceways could offer a big discount for return trips, to encourage warriors to leave the war and go back home. Of course knowing how easily they could do that might make people more likely to sign up in the first place, too.


I think my next project might be a pamphlet about interstellar NGOs, with maybe a page each about a dozen non-profits and half a dozen interstellar corporations doing interesting things. That might even be of interest to people running other SF settings than Flat Black.


It would. Pop it on DriveThru as pay what you want and make some pocket money?


Yeah, that’s as good a way of getting it about as any. It might even pay for some pro or semi-pro illustrations.


Or sample logos. Do u have a Mac?


Yes. A recent mac mini.


I was going to recommend Art Text 3, but the new version is $30, and that’s just too much, I paid far less for version 2.


how about this, too corporate?




Well, I plan to avoid text logos — not completely, perhaps, but to minimise their use — because I don’t want to present too strong a challenge to the conceit that the characters are not speaking English. Perhaps GreenWar ought to be spelled ɡɹiːnwɔː, perhaps even more profound changes ought to be supposed. I don’t want to say, because it will only get me in trouble with the linguists.

Another thing that I struggle to avoid is TLAs and other initialisms. They are such an ingrained habit nowadays that many of us find them hard to resist. But I don’t like to imply that this contemporary habit will outlive its century.


But then, I don’t have much artistic imagination, so I haven’t come up with many decent logos. In fact, I have only one that I don’t think a decent symbologist could improve on by falling off a log into a bin of Letraset:

The Humanity League uses a hand-print in red on a white background (roundel). It is the print of a right hand, and in formal contexts designed with a ring finger of intermediate or ambiguous length. In informal contexts you can dip any hand into blood or red poster paint and use that as a stamp. That symbol is used in Flat Black like the red cross/crescent/symbol on Earth today, and attracts criticism for erasing non-humans….


For Greenwar, how about a leaf with the rifle’s barrel as the spine?

(There are two good arguments for using an AK-47 or similar rather than a more futuristic weapon: (a) the flag of Mozambique, i.e. symbolic significance, and (b) modern players will immediately recognise it.)


Or a nuclear explosion producing a tree instead of a mushroom cloud?

A green bear with a laser rifle?


I like that.
How did you do it?


There’s a little facility in the Mac OS that lets you select Unicode characters for any text input window. It’s the same as I use for superscripted digits and for Greek characters.

But those I think I might have copied and pasted from the pronunciation guides in Wiktionary.