More observations on Minkata
In my previous post, I outlined some theories about Minkata. It turns out I was mostly right. Read on if you want to see my progress. Warning: spoilers.
Well, I pulled up visio and made line segments with the specified length and direction, and discovered that if you follow the compass roses from left to right, connecting the endpoints (orienting to rose 2 and walking its distance when you arrive at the end of rose 1) you get line drawings that represent the 5 constellations in the sky. Each level gets harder and harder. There are not holes at every endpoint, so we may not know how successful we are until we have finished the entire set of instructions.
It seems that there should be a simple ki function that tells me how many degrees I am turned from some arbitrary North. Until then, I will have to use the stars exclusively. I still think this will take a lot of trial and error. Perhaps a group would be better, so each person can stand at the proper place, as human waypoints. then another member could be “trapped” in the cage, ready to swtich between night and day for better orienteering.
Still, there must be something obvious that makes orienting oneself easier. I haven’t observed the shadows, so perhaps that holds a solution. Also, the “craters” strewn around may have an orientation, just as lore has it that moss grows on the south side of a tree. Otherwise, how can anyone be expected to walk 2000 units without making a mistake? Even a small degree of error at the outset would mean a large degree of error at the end.
What we really need is a compass and a pedometer. Maybe the Ki already has this functionality, just waiting to be enabled.