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The Path of Plight: A decision-making meme

May 6, 2021 at 12 P.M. Eastern Time

Choosing a path in life isn't easy, so it's helpful to have a conceptual framework of understanding of some of the easiest choices one has to make.

If you're a fan of Star Trek and/or The Legend of Zelda, you might enjoy this post. In 1982, Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan was shipped to theaters in North America and elsewhere. In 1986, Nintendo released The Legend of Zelda on diskette in Japan. You may have noticed the 'tri-force' item shown in Zelda used as signage iconography earlier in Star Trek II.

We had a V.H.S. tape player in the early 1980s, and I watched Star Trek II intently as a child, trying to understand the plot and any of the character's expressions the best I could. (Note: My video presentation linked in this post may give away the ending of this movie. This motion picture does require parental guidance.)

In the modern era, I've spent a few years doing a deep analysis of a curious old videotape of the rare 1990s Nintendo satellite system version of Zelda that someone uploaded to YouTube in 2014. In the user's playthrough, there was a game design mystery which had baffled me. Near the conclusion of the broadcast, there was a puzzle chime that sounded on the game's F.M. audio program. It was not indicative of the user's progress, however the user reacted and persisted as if the software had indicated a solved puzzle. (My autism sense started tingling is not what I'd say.)

For reference, the Nintendo Satellaview setup had a data channel, as well as an F.M. audio channel. The SNES (Super Famicom) game machine overlapped the F.M. audio with the mostly-silent game program. The player's progress could not affect the F.M. audio channel, and the software was synchronized to keep pace with the F.M. audio channel using a known start time and successive timestamp cues.

When faced with the power of creation, would you choose war or peace?
Here's a three-year-old work in progress: The Path of Plight.

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