Constructs as Cat-Toys

Instructor: RainTurtle
Date: September 9, 2003 (Tuesday)

* Andy_Hock waves to Palamedes.

<RainTurtle> For the record, Catless Lurkers are welcome in the discussion….no need to be silent

* Aphanas has a cat, but she is currently more interested in his tuna than the subject of the evening…

<RainTurtle> Tonight’s seminar topic is “Constructs as Cat-Toys”, or “the Cat as Construct Quality-Control Officer”

<Andy_Hock> Thanks, Rain.

<RainTurtle> If you are not here to discuss construct cat-toys, you might want to be elsewhere…

<RainTurtle> Presumably all of you have some experience with basic constructs, yes?

<Aphanas> Yep.

<Andy_Hock> Yes, Rain.

<RainTurtle> Most cats are Sensitive to psionic effects, and notice constructs.

<RainTurtle> Being cats, they won’t always pay attention when you want them to, of course

<RainTurtle> Making a basic little psiball and rolling it on the floor past a bored cat will generally elicit one of two responses“

<RainTurtle> 1) a pounce

<RainTurtle> 2) a look in your direction that could be easily interpreted as “And what exactly do you expect me to do with this?!”

<Aphanas> Heh…

<RainTurtle> If the same gesture accompanies the toss of an imagined psiball, the “look” is rather different

<RainTurtle> My cat is a mouser. Therefore, on account of that bias, Mice figure heavily in my cat-toy ideas

<RainTurtle> (Kitty also likes fluffbunny-chewtoys… ;D )

<HackerX> lol

<RainTurtle> (there was a bin of them at the petstore…how could I resist?)

<.Raven> hehehe

<RainTurtle> Obviously first animated construct idea is the construct-mouse.

<RainTurtle> This is basically a small puppy-wind in the shape of –yes, you guessed it– a mouse

<RainTurtle> Movement should be semi-random, and a bit jerky…bouncing around the floor a bit aimlessly

<RainTurtle> You can either look closely at some mouse photos, or do a cartoonish mouse shape based on a tear-drop with a tail out the wide end…

<RainTurtle> A good size to start with is about twice the size of the cat’s paw

<RainTurtle> Questions, so far?

<TuRbO> iv tried some stuff with my cat.. psiballs… it doesnt seem to affect him.. or anything

<TuRbO> doesnt even look at it

<RainTurtle> The question here would be “is he ignoring it, or is he inSensitive, or did the construct not work?”

<RainTurtle> What was he doing at the time?

<TuRbO> ok.. the ignoring i can understand… the other 2 might be a possibility… cause.. i have a reallly hard time with the whole.. ”“did i put enough energy into the thing”

<TuRbO> umm.

<TuRbO> he was laying down on me

<RainTurtle> Try it when he’s in the mood for a game, sometime

* Aphanas raises his hand, because he just thought of a question….

<RainTurtle> Aphanas?

<Aphanas> You said that the toss of an imagined psiball is different…

<Aphanas> Did you mean imagined, but didn’t really create the psiball?

<RainTurtle> Such has been my experience with my cats, at least.

<Aphanas> And so the cat has a different reaction?

<RainTurtle> Yes, imagined, but not really there.

<Aphanas> I was wondering how the reaction was different.

<RainTurtle> *nods* Usually, they look around for a tossed object that they missed, a puzzled turning of the head in several directions, followed by either a “dirty look” for the practical joke, or a lifted tail and stately retreat

<Aphanas> OK, makes sense. That would be a good confirmation on correct construct creation then… that could be very useful. Thanks.

<RainTurtle> 🙂

<RainTurtle> For the less rodent-inclined kitties, puppy-winds in the shapes of small flying critters are an option…bear in mind, though, that a cat leaping around the room in pursuit can cause a mess….and be sure that any open windows are close to the ground to avoid “flying cat” injuries

<RainTurtle> (Fascinated cats sometimes forget how high up they are when they jump)

<TuRbO> serious? they will jump at constructs? can see actually see it?

<HackerX> reminds me of the time our poor cat got pushed out of our second storey window by accident

<RainTurtle> Yes. At any rate, many can, Turbo

<TuRbO> heh. now i need to try it

<RainTurtle> The flying-critter puppy-winds can be birds flying about, or insects (some cats like to chase june-bugs for some reason), bats, and so on

<RainTurtle> The birds don’t need to be especially realistic, but the rough shape, and flapping wings are needed

<RainTurtle> If there is nothing breakable at risk, and the windows are closed, you can provide lots of kitty-amusement by making a dozen or so randomly fluttering birds in a room

<RainTurtle> Do not expect the duration of cat-play to necessarily reflect the longevity of your bird-constructs. Cats get bored

<RainTurtle> On the other hand, sometimes the “I do not appreciate practical jokes” look can indicate that the construct dissolves as soon as it leaves your field

<@Andy_Hock> lol

<RainTurtle> People who can maintain psiballs only as long as they are feeding psi into them, in their hand, will encounter this problem

<TuRbO> poo

<RainTurtle> Adding a bit of programming to keep it formed and moving for a certain amount of time can help…although getting such programming to work is easier for some people than others, it seems

<RainTurtle> Picturing a clock set at a certain time (at which the construct will dissolve) works for some folk.

<RainTurtle> Picturing an egg-timer, or similar device set for a certain amount of time can also be effective

<RainTurtle> Of course, holding the intent of the duration while making such picture-shows for your sub-conscious is the important part

<TuRbO> *nod_nod*

<RainTurtle> Visualisation is just a communication aid…

<RainTurtle> For those who get a kick out of odd constructs, you can also make a construct that is an “automatic cat-scritching device”…The details of such a device I leave to your imagination

<RainTurtle> Now opening the floor to discussion. Comments? Ideas?

<TuRbO> hmm.

* Aphanas raises his hand.

<RainTurtle> Aphanas?

<Aphanas> As far as you are aware, do cats use psi-sensitivity for any cat-purposes? It seems an odd thing to be aware of if you don’t use it.

* TuRbO raises hand after Aphanas

<RainTurtle> They appear to use a bit of precog…some of mine have resorted to Thinking at people, although Kitty prefers pantomime. I do not know the extent of their psi-use

<RainTurtle> Turbo?

<TuRbO> Is there a way.. to attach the bird construct via link to the cat.. and have it feed off the cats energy?

<RainTurtle> Yes, but I am not about to condone cat-abuse

<RainTurtle> If you are going to make constructs, you might as well learn to do it right.

<TuRbO> heh

<RainTurtle> There is no need to make a small construct “Feed” off of anything

<TuRbO> but it fades away into nothingness

<RainTurtle> You need to work on the basics of construct-making, then

* Aphanas has another slightly off-topic question.

<RainTurtle> Go ahead

* TuRbO has been working on that since day one “guess im not a natural”

<Aphanas> Is there a difference between shelling a construct and telling it to stay with a timer, or are those simply different images for the exact same process. They feel a bit different to me when I’ve tried them.

<RainTurtle> Not the same thing…although they can have the same purpose: hold the thing together

<RainTurtle> The timer-thing can be used to determine the duration of the shell

<RainTurtle> If you use the very basic “water” visualisation, “freezing” the water into a gel or ice, either just at the shell or all the way through, can help

<Aphanas> Heh… OK. The shelling process feels much more permanent, like I’m creating a real thing, rather than defining the boundaries of a fog if I use the “timer” method. I’ll try the freezing thing.

<RainTurtle> *pictures a bunch of psi-mice looking as though they are made from the gel found in freezer-packs*

<Aphanas> 🙂

<RainTurtle> How permanent it feels varies with the thickness of the shell, I find…

* Aphanas has one more…

<RainTurtle> go for it

<Aphanas> Can the thickness of the shell be a type of density instead (i.e. – very thin, but same amount of energy and quite dense)?

<RainTurtle> yes

<Aphanas> OK, cool. Thanks for sitting through my horde of questions…

<RainTurtle> And, by extension, you can make it especially strong by making it both thick and dense….kind of like a fluffbunny’s skull

<RainTurtle> No problem. Intelligent questions are good things

<@Andy_Hock> I learned a lot from them, too, Aphanas

<RainTurtle> 🙂

* Aphanas is quite relieved that his questions are falling into the “intelligent” category…

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