[LMB] Sergyar was Re: Spirit Ring Discussion

Damien Sullivan phoenix at ugcs.caltech.edu
Sun Jan 30 16:01:08 GMT 2011

On Sun, Jan 30, 2011 at 10:32:27AM -0500, Gretchen Wright wrote:

> Past: I think I need to go back and reread because I'm confused about the 
> sequence of events in _Shards_. We know that Cordelia's team believed 
> they were alone on the planet until they were surprise-attacked -- so who 
> was actually there first, were the Barrayarans there but just concealed 
> somehow so that they were overlooked by the Betans' initial survey [and 
> wouldn???t that be difficult?] or did they arrive afterwards? And how, at 
> the close of the events, did Barrayar end up in undisputed possession of 
> the planet? Is there a Nexus policy about who gets to settle newly 
> discovered unpopulated planets?

Barrayar was there first; I think they already knew that the system led
to Escobar as well as from Komarr, though I might be wrong and the
Betans informed them of that.  I think I've seen Lois say that Beta
quietly ceded the planet to the first finders, though it's not in a
saved e-mail.

And yeah, not getting noticed by the Betan survey ship seems hard.
Radar!  Heat sources!

> are the major industries/activities of the population? And if there is 
> still undeveloped land on the south continent of Barrayar, what would 
> induce a Barrayaran to colonize a totally new planet instead of moving 
> within their own planet?

Less toxic ecosystem, soil you can farm without terraforming it?
Otherwise, very good question.

> missing something -- if they don't need land, why is it so important to 
> them?

The system is awesomely important: look at Tel's Nexus map:
Sergyar provides a big shortcut between Komarr and Escobar, cutting out
two major hubs and many many jumps.  (Look at all the red dots between Hegen
and JW, and JW and Escobar -- I assume backed by textev, Tel?)  It's a
major restructuring of this part of the Nexus; I wouldn't be surprised
if Hegen and JW still grumble about it.

Sergyar might have value in serving the trade, attracting colonists for
that, though since it's a two-wormhole system on a fairly short route
between Escobar and Komarr, that doesn't seem too attractive to me.
You'd need a third useful wormhole for a trade junction and
urban-analogous development.

In the very long term, Sergyar would be a third planet and source of tax
revenues.  It's possibly the Sergyar system has resources Barrayar
system doesn't doesn't, though apart from biology/ecology my hard ScF
side doesn't really believe that.

Short-term, the biggest use for colonists there might be to help cement
the claim to the system, so that Escobar doesn't try to grab it for
buffer/revenge a la Barrayar and Komarr, which would suggest the colony
is massively subsidized, kind of like Sibera for USSR/Russia.  The other
use might be to funnel off dissidents.  If you don't like Counts, you
can go to South Continent, but that's still in radio/internet contact;
noisy people might be "encouraged" to go further away.

-xx- Damien X-) 

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