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** Plus, the papal balcony isn't ''that'' far off the ground. It's not like he'd need a skyscraper or anything massively resource-intensive to reach it; just some wooden scaffolding that's the precise height and roughly the size of a balcony.

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** Plus, the papal balcony isn't ''that'' far off the ground. It's not like he'd need a skyscraper or anything massively resource-intensive to reach it; just some wooden scaffolding that's the precise height and roughly the size of a balcony.balcony (which is also itself not that big).
** And, of course, the people in any settlement in Rome +1 might have sympathised with the motives of the man who tried to assassinate the pope. They presumably upped sticks and moved to a completely different universe rather than stay in the one where their city was the home of a major world religious leader for a reason, after all.


** Plus, the papal balcony isn't ''that'' far off the ground. It's not like he'd need a skyscraper or anything to reach it; just a scaffold a couple of floors tall that's roughly the size of a balcony.

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** Plus, the papal balcony isn't ''that'' far off the ground. It's not like he'd need a skyscraper or anything massively resource-intensive to reach it; just a scaffold a couple of floors tall some wooden scaffolding that's the precise height and roughly the size of a balcony.


** Assuming there was a settlement in that exact spot (which is a probability but not necessarily a certainty; any Rome +1 settlement would start off significantly smaller than the original city, would probably centre around one of the metropolitan areas rather than the Vatican and might not have spread enough to reach the location of the Vatican at that point), he could have simply told them he was planning to build a church or some other place of worship there, given its religious significance as a location on the original Earth, and the tower he was building was just the first stage or where the spire was intended to go or something. The gantry could have been described to them as a pulpit, just as the Pope uses the papal balcony as a pulpit on special services and speeches. Bit of a big pulpit, granted, but since many of the other settlers in that area were also likely to be Catholics, they might have accepted the explanation that it was a slightly grandiose homage to the original building rather than immediately leap to the conclusion that he was planning an assassination attempt.

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** Assuming there was a settlement in that exact spot (which is a probability but not necessarily a certainty; any Rome +1 settlement would start off significantly smaller than the original city, would probably centre around one of the metropolitan areas rather than the Vatican and might not have spread enough to reach the location of the Vatican at that point), he could have simply told them he was planning to build a church or some other place of worship there, given its religious significance as a location on the original Earth, and the tower he was building was just the first stage or where the spire was intended to go or something. The gantry could have been described to them as a pulpit, just as the Pope uses the papal balcony as a pulpit on special services and speeches. Bit of a big pulpit, granted, but since many of the other settlers in that area were also likely to be Catholics, they might have accepted the explanation that it was a slightly grandiose homage to the original building rather than immediately leap to the conclusion that he was planning an assassination attempt.attempt.
** Plus, the papal balcony isn't ''that'' far off the ground. It's not like he'd need a skyscraper or anything to reach it; just a scaffold a couple of floors tall that's roughly the size of a balcony.


** He could have simply told them he was planning to build a church or some other place of worship there, given its religious significance as a location on the original Earth, and the tower he was building was just the first stage or where the spire was intended to go or something. The gantry could have been described to them as a pulpit, just as the Pope uses the papal balcony as a pulpit on special services and speeches. Bit of a big pulpit, granted, but since many of the other settlers in that area were also likely to be Catholics, they might have accepted the explanation that it was a slightly grandiose homage to the original building rather than immediately leap to the conclusion that he was planning an assassination attempt.

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** He Assuming there was a settlement in that exact spot (which is a probability but not necessarily a certainty; any Rome +1 settlement would start off significantly smaller than the original city, would probably centre around one of the metropolitan areas rather than the Vatican and might not have spread enough to reach the location of the Vatican at that point), he could have simply told them he was planning to build a church or some other place of worship there, given its religious significance as a location on the original Earth, and the tower he was building was just the first stage or where the spire was intended to go or something. The gantry could have been described to them as a pulpit, just as the Pope uses the papal balcony as a pulpit on special services and speeches. Bit of a big pulpit, granted, but since many of the other settlers in that area were also likely to be Catholics, they might have accepted the explanation that it was a slightly grandiose homage to the original building rather than immediately leap to the conclusion that he was planning an assassination attempt.


** He could have simply told them he was planning to build a church or some other place of worship there, given its religious significance as a location on the original Earth, and the tower he was building was just the first stage. The gantry could have been described to them as a pulpit, just as the Pope uses the papal balcony as a pulpit on special services and speeches. Bit of a big pulpit, granted, but since many of the other settlers in that area were also likely to be Catholics, they might have accepted the explanation that it was a slightly grandiose homage to the original building rather than immediately leap to the conclusion that he was planning an assassination attempt.

to:

** He could have simply told them he was planning to build a church or some other place of worship there, given its religious significance as a location on the original Earth, and the tower he was building was just the first stage.stage or where the spire was intended to go or something. The gantry could have been described to them as a pulpit, just as the Pope uses the papal balcony as a pulpit on special services and speeches. Bit of a big pulpit, granted, but since many of the other settlers in that area were also likely to be Catholics, they might have accepted the explanation that it was a slightly grandiose homage to the original building rather than immediately leap to the conclusion that he was planning an assassination attempt.


** He could have simply told them he was planning to build a church or some other place of worship there, given its religious significance as a location on the original Earth. Since many of the other settlers in that area were also likely to be Catholics, they might have accepted that explanation. The gantry could have been described to them as a pulpit, just as the Pope uses the papal balcony as a pulpit on special services and speeches.

to:

** He could have simply told them he was planning to build a church or some other place of worship there, given its religious significance as a location on the original Earth. Since many of Earth, and the other settlers in that area were also likely to be Catholics, they might have accepted that explanation.tower he was building was just the first stage. The gantry could have been described to them as a pulpit, just as the Pope uses the papal balcony as a pulpit on special services and speeches. Bit of a big pulpit, granted, but since many of the other settlers in that area were also likely to be Catholics, they might have accepted the explanation that it was a slightly grandiose homage to the original building rather than immediately leap to the conclusion that he was planning an assassination attempt.


** He could have simply told them he was planning to build a church or some other place of worship there, given its religious significance as a location on the original Earth. Since many of the other settlers in that area were also likely to be Catholics, they might have accepted that explanation.

to:

** He could have simply told them he was planning to build a church or some other place of worship there, given its religious significance as a location on the original Earth. Since many of the other settlers in that area were also likely to be Catholics, they might have accepted that explanation. The gantry could have been described to them as a pulpit, just as the Pope uses the papal balcony as a pulpit on special services and speeches.


** What of it? The big towns of Datum Earth are the first places to start extending sideways. There ''must'' be some settlement at Rome +1. Is it populated by complete idiots who didn't pay attention to someone making very, very detailed measurements to make sure his gantry is at some "exact" spot, which most inhabitants of Rome would at least connect with Vatican, if not the actual Papal balcony? And making some weird gantry to boot, which is technically expensive and serves no purpose in an outpost-like settlement?

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** What of it? The big towns of Datum Earth are the first places to start extending sideways. There ''must'' be some settlement at Rome +1. Is it populated by complete idiots who didn't pay attention to someone making very, very detailed measurements to make sure his gantry is at some "exact" spot, which most inhabitants of Rome would at least connect with Vatican, if not the actual Papal balcony? And making some weird gantry to boot, which is technically expensive and serves no purpose in an outpost-like settlement?settlement?
** He could have simply told them he was planning to build a church or some other place of worship there, given its religious significance as a location on the original Earth. Since many of the other settlers in that area were also likely to be Catholics, they might have accepted that explanation.


** The key word there is "exact".

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** The key word there is "exact"."exact".
** What of it? The big towns of Datum Earth are the first places to start extending sideways. There ''must'' be some settlement at Rome +1. Is it populated by complete idiots who didn't pay attention to someone making very, very detailed measurements to make sure his gantry is at some "exact" spot, which most inhabitants of Rome would at least connect with Vatican, if not the actual Papal balcony? And making some weird gantry to boot, which is technically expensive and serves no purpose in an outpost-like settlement?



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** It seems also that the evolution of an intelligent species is a quite rare event on the Long Earth as a whole: only a scant few of those are encountered between the Datum and the High Meggers, even including the various stepping species (which could admittedly merge with one another). So it's quite possible that all the minute differences between Datum Earth and its closest stepwise neighbours, combined over the millenias, are enough to ensure that no species ever evolved to homo sapience (or became able to step and left). And, in terms of Long Earth probabilities, they would equate an asteroid missing Earth by a few thousands kilometres or hitting it.


* ''Long Mars'' begins with, among other things, a description of an assassination attempt made on the pope, by a man who built a tower in the exact place of the papal balcony in the St Peter's basilica, and stepped over. Which means that, on the world one step away from Datum Earth, in the place of ''Rome'', Europe's fourth biggest city, there was no settlement in which such activity caused suspicion. While the book repeated over and over how copies of Datum towns mushroomed several earths deep.

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* ''Long Mars'' begins with, among other things, a description of an assassination attempt made on the pope, by a man who built a tower in the exact place of the papal balcony in the St Peter's basilica, and stepped over. Which means that, on the world one step away from Datum Earth, in the place of ''Rome'', Europe's fourth biggest city, there was no settlement in which such activity caused suspicion. While the book repeated over and over how copies of Datum towns mushroomed several earths deep.deep.
** The key word there is "exact".


* ''Long Mars'' begins with, among other things, a description of an assassination attempt of the pope, by a man who built a tower in the exact place of the papal balcony in the St Peter's basilica, and stepped over. Which means that, on the world one step away from Datum Earth, in the place of ''Rome'', Europe's fourth biggest city, there was no settlement in which such activity caused suspicion. While the book repeated over and over how copies of Datum towns mushroomed several earths deep.

to:

* ''Long Mars'' begins with, among other things, a description of an assassination attempt of made on the pope, by a man who built a tower in the exact place of the papal balcony in the St Peter's basilica, and stepped over. Which means that, on the world one step away from Datum Earth, in the place of ''Rome'', Europe's fourth biggest city, there was no settlement in which such activity caused suspicion. While the book repeated over and over how copies of Datum towns mushroomed several earths deep.


** This is partly addressed in ''The Long War''. It seems that early humanoids learned to step, then ''sapiens'' settled down on the Datum and lost the ability, while the others spread out across the Long Earth. So it's not that intelligent hominids only arose once; rather, only one subspecies of advanced hominids happened to forgo their stepping ability and develop technological means of living.

to:

** This is partly addressed in ''The Long War''. It seems that early humanoids learned to step, then ''sapiens'' settled down on the Datum and lost the ability, while the others spread out across the Long Earth. So it's not that intelligent hominids only arose once; rather, only one subspecies of advanced hominids happened to forgo their stepping ability and develop technological means of living.living.

* ''Long Mars'' begins with, among other things, a description of an assassination attempt of the pope, by a man who built a tower in the exact place of the papal balcony in the St Peter's basilica, and stepped over. Which means that, on the world one step away from Datum Earth, in the place of ''Rome'', Europe's fourth biggest city, there was no settlement in which such activity caused suspicion. While the book repeated over and over how copies of Datum towns mushroomed several earths deep.


* I don't think that the trolls are more afraid of humans than of elves. But they've learned how to deal with elves: just have lookouts and keep escape routes. Elves work in small bands and move randomly. Humans are a lot more complex, organized, and with technology, more powerful. Humans have the capacity to destroy whole worlds by accident. So the trolls have to adopt a more extreme method of avoiding the dangers humans present.

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* ** I don't think that the trolls are more afraid of humans than of elves. But they've learned how to deal with elves: just have lookouts and keep escape routes. Elves work in small bands and move randomly. Humans are a lot more complex, organized, and with technology, more powerful. Humans have the capacity to destroy whole worlds by accident. So the trolls have to adopt a more extreme method of avoiding the dangers humans present.



to:

* I don't think that the trolls are more afraid of humans than of elves. But they've learned how to deal with elves: just have lookouts and keep escape routes. Elves work in small bands and move randomly. Humans are a lot more complex, organized, and with technology, more powerful. Humans have the capacity to destroy whole worlds by accident. So the trolls have to adopt a more extreme method of avoiding the dangers humans present.



** It could be the reason there are no homo sapiens and similar species in nearby steps is because the sentient beings there learned to step early in their history, and left those worlds behind for the wider Long Earth. There could be an entire band of worlds where human ancestors achieved sentience, but upon learning to step, they blended into one another to become trolls and left their homeworlds bare.

to:

** It could be the reason there are no homo sapiens and similar species in nearby steps is because the sentient beings there learned to step early in their history, and left those worlds behind for the wider Long Earth. There could be an entire band of worlds where human ancestors achieved sentience, but upon learning to step, they blended into one another to become trolls and left their homeworlds bare.bare.
** This is partly addressed in ''The Long War''. It seems that early humanoids learned to step, then ''sapiens'' settled down on the Datum and lost the ability, while the others spread out across the Long Earth. So it's not that intelligent hominids only arose once; rather, only one subspecies of advanced hominids happened to forgo their stepping ability and develop technological means of living.

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