Karger

The SA hole that I cannot find a good solution for.

113 posts in this topic

1 hour ago, Calderis said:

Considering the consequences of overuse, which are obvious and include death, I really don't think that's the case. 

If they realy thought that this was a big problem they could just train more people to share the load between them.  I have a hard time believing that the Ardentia is so neutered that they would not object to their people being killed every time a highprince wants to expand their warcamp.

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3 hours ago, Karger said:

I do not think that they need an incredible number of gemstones.  Think about how much grain you could buy for just a few large emeralds.

They need to own at least as many as are discharged between highstorms to power your transformations. A dun gem is useless for soulcasting. Stormlight is free in terms of running cost, but it still has a cost in terms of capital. Secondly, your ardents eat even while you have no need for soulcasters. Worse, they eat in training. Lastly, for marble your quality requirements are much lower. If a block is bad, you throw it away. If some grain is poisonous, soldiers get sick or die.

Furthermore, you are doing stone into stone. That looks like an easy transformation.

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1 hour ago, Karger said:

If they realy thought that this was a big problem they could just train more people to share the load between them.  I have a hard time believing that the Ardentia is so neutered that they would not object to their people being killed every time a highprince wants to expand their warcamp.

The Kaza interlude says to me that many would see this as an acceptable loss/risk. A relative to the ruler is treated as a tool to soulcast things to smoke to the extent that it is a death sentence to her, and that isn't even the most valuable essence compared to food. 

 

edit: also I believe a scene was quoted earlier in this thread regarding Kadash and Adolin. The increased necessity resulted in the soulcasters being overworked, with the result readily apparent in the stone skinned ardent. 

Edited by Pathfinder
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1 hour ago, Karger said:

If they realy thought that this was a big problem they could just train more people to share the load between them.  I have a hard time believing that the Ardentia is so neutered that they would not object to their people being killed every time a highprince wants to expand their warcamp.

It takes years for that effect to go in, and in the very scene that they start talking about training more if them, they mention that the soulcasters themselves are upset and possessive of the devices and don't like sharing. 

We see the same from Kaza. The bond with the device may start weak but it definitely grows over time. On top of that, I find it hard to believe most ardents volunteer for that particular life seeing that the few we see are all in various stages of Savantism. 

In the end, they're all property, if respected property. And have to do what they're told. They don't seem happy about it though.

The soulcaster fabrials themselves technically belong to the ardentia as an organization. So who knows what level they have to refuse any of it. 

All I'm sure of is that the value of gems being tied to the Soulcasting output doesn't make sense to me. The output capabilities of a single gem rely on size during each use yes, but it also relies on stability, which is variable be every individual gem. Perfect gems show us that pretty well. The worse the quality of a gem(cut, inclusions, microfractures), the faster it will leak, and the more likely it is to fracture. After it does fracture, the gem can then be cut into smaller whole gems which, if large enough, could be used for further Soulcasting. When those fracture, the worst case scenario is to then sell the pieces off to be made into spheres. 

A gem could fracture from stress on the first Soulcasting or never.

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21 minutes ago, Calderis said:

On top of that, I find it hard to believe most ardents volunteer for that particular life seeing that the few we see are all in various stages of Savantism. 

Adolin mentions that soulcasters generally avoid others and vice versa.  Shallan manages to sketch some though so I think they are more common then you might realize(considering that they are used for basically everything in the warcamps I would say much more common).

23 minutes ago, Calderis said:

In the end, they're all property, if respected property. And have to do what they're told. They don't seem happy about it though.

They can leave the life at any time.  Shallan's WoKs suitor says as much and upsetting your intellectuals is a historically bad idea.

24 minutes ago, Calderis said:

The soulcaster fabrials themselves technically belong to the ardentia as an organization. So who knows what level they have to refuse any of it. 

Anything any ardent owns or carries is owned by their owners.  All soulcasters belong to the king according to Shallan's brother in the going over her father's dead body scene.

25 minutes ago, Calderis said:

All I'm sure of is that the value of gems being tied to the Soulcasting output doesn't make sense to me. The output capabilities of a single gem rely on size during each use yes, but it also relies on stability, which is variable be every individual gem. Perfect gems show us that pretty well. The worse the quality of a gem(cut, inclusions, microfractures), the faster it will leak, and the more likely it is to fracture. After it does fracture, the gem can then be cut into smaller whole gems which, if large enough, could be used for further Soulcasting. When those fracture, the worst case scenario is to then sell the pieces off to be made into spheres. 

A gem could fracture from stress on the first Soulcasting or never.

Even if you can't buy insurgence the cost probably averages out assuming you are careful.  It is realy the same with the stock market and yet banks still make reliable returns just by having a large portfolio.

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On 9/20/2019 at 3:41 PM, Karger said:

The SA hole that I cannot find a good solution for is Lin Davar's soulcasting scheme.  At first it made sense.  Lin has a soulcaster.  Soulcasters turn stuff into other stuff.  Lin has stuff he can turn into more valuable stuff.  He does so.  Sells that stuff and makes money.  Only one problem.  Soulcasters need gemstones to function.  On Roshar a gemstone's value is based on how much stuff it can soulcast before shattering.  So Lin can't realy make much money.  The fuel he needs(gemstones) is going to be about as expensive as the product he is making.  It would honestly be easier for the ghoostbloods to just give him money.  Can anyone figure out why this is?

I had the same question. Marbel is valuable in today world because of the rarity , beauty and difficultly in producing it. Soulcasting it should dramatically reduce the demand and price of the marbel.  However, lets say that mining marble is still a great investment, there still is a huge problem. They use the soul caster to add large deposits on the property. This is crazy! They will now need to use significant resources to mine and produce the marble. The should just soul cast the marble in a way they can sell it without as much production cost. 

Even more, an advantage of soulcasting is that you can product beautiful works of art out of easily malleable materials like wax and than soulcast it into marble or wood. Simply said, even if you could have the raw material, you wold still need experts devoting a significant amount of time and resources producing the final product. In short the ghost bloods devoted alot of resources into a program that would end up providing a significantly more expensive and less useful product. 

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3 hours ago, Hakedohn said:

I had the same question. Marbel is valuable in today world because of the rarity , beauty and difficultly in producing it. Soulcasting it should dramatically reduce the demand and price of the marbel.  However, lets say that mining marble is still a great investment, there still is a huge problem. They use the soul caster to add large deposits on the property. This is crazy! They will now need to use significant resources to mine and produce the marble. The should just soul cast the marble in a way they can sell it without as much production cost. 

Even more, an advantage of soulcasting is that you can product beautiful works of art out of easily malleable materials like wax and than soulcast it into marble or wood. Simply said, even if you could have the raw material, you wold still need experts devoting a significant amount of time and resources producing the final product. In short the ghost bloods devoted alot of resources into a program that would end up providing a significantly more expensive and less useful product. 

Lin Davar wasn't supposed to have a soulcaster. in case someone from the Veden government came to look at where he was getting his marble, he probably wanted something to show to them. Also, secretly soulcasting a statue would raise the question of where the marble came from, as well as who carved it. Remember, Roshar is formed by crem erosion and buildup over millennia, since the continent is a fractal. I doubt there is much in the way of natural marble. Maybe a little, but not much.

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16 hours ago, Hakedohn said:

I had the same question. Marbel is valuable in today world because of the rarity , beauty and difficultly in producing it. Soulcasting it should dramatically reduce the demand and price of the marbel.  However, lets say that mining marble is still a great investment, there still is a huge problem. They use the soul caster to add large deposits on the property. This is crazy! They will now need to use significant resources to mine and produce the marble. The should just soul cast the marble in a way they can sell it without as much production cost. 

Even more, an advantage of soulcasting is that you can product beautiful works of art out of easily malleable materials like wax and than soulcast it into marble or wood. Simply said, even if you could have the raw material, you wold still need experts devoting a significant amount of time and resources producing the final product. In short the ghost bloods devoted alot of resources into a program that would end up providing a significantly more expensive and less useful product. 

My thinking is just like how there is still a market for food despite soulcasting due to the taste, that the same would stand for other resources. Could you make a wonderful work of art out of a malleable material and then soulcast it? Sure! But you need a high ranking lighteyes that owns an ardent and a soulcaster to spend the money to commission you, and have the ardent transform the work of art. Add that whatever material you use is still reflected in the final product. So marble statues that were once wood show the grain of the wood. If you want a work of art without that, then you have to go the old fashioned way. Art can really go either way. Up in sleepy hallow there is a mansion where the furnishings look like rock and marble, but it was painted on because it was the height of class at the time to pay an artist to go through all the trouble of mimicking expensive materials rather than actually getting expensive materials. But regardless, at the end of the day, things hold the value we put on them. For a militaristic society that prizes being able to keep on the move without supply lines, then food is king. Regardless how quickly or not they wear out, emeralds will be of great importance so they are worth the most. The fact that although dangerous, it is possible to quarry materials, means it could potentially be cheaper than going to your local highlord and requesting permission to use his or her soulcaster. This exact situation came up in Way of Kings. Sadeas had the only harvest-able forest near the shattered plains. He raised the tax for using that wood through the roof, so the other highprince would be dependent on soulcast wood which is the roundabout way the king taxes the highprinces. So supply from soulcasters is not as prevalent as I think you think. Sure you can switch among people and potentially make it last longer, but the number of soulcasters the fabrial itself, seems to be rather limited. Add to that certain soulcasters only soulcast certain essences, and there rarity is even greater. So I do not see marble being churned out at a huge rate to the point of it destroying the economy. Lin is a very special case because he had to make a deal with a secret organization that has access to resources cosmere wide in order to get his hands on a soulcaster to do as he planned. By all rights Lin as a back woods noble should have never been able to get access to the soulcaster to begin with. At least that is how I read the situation. 

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46 minutes ago, Pathfinder said:

My thinking is just like how there is still a market for food despite soulcasting due to the taste, that the same would stand for other resources. Could you make a wonderful work of art out of a malleable material and then soulcast it? Sure! But you need a high ranking lighteyes that owns an ardent and a soulcaster to spend the money to commission you, and have the ardent transform the work of art. Add that whatever material you use is still reflected in the final product. So marble statues that were once wood show the grain of the wood. If you want a work of art without that, then you have to go the old fashioned way. Art can really go either way. Up in sleepy hallow there is a mansion where the furnishings look like rock and marble, but it was painted on because it was the height of class at the time to pay an artist to go through all the trouble of mimicking expensive materials rather than actually getting expensive materials. But regardless, at the end of the day, things hold the value we put on them. For a militaristic society that prizes being able to keep on the move without supply lines, then food is king. Regardless how quickly or not they wear out, emeralds will be of great importance so they are worth the most. The fact that although dangerous, it is possible to quarry materials, means it could potentially be cheaper than going to your local highlord and requesting permission to use his or her soulcaster. This exact situation came up in Way of Kings. Sadeas had the only harvest-able forest near the shattered plains. He raised the tax for using that wood through the roof, so the other highprince would be dependent on soulcast wood which is the roundabout way the king taxes the highprinces. So supply from soulcasters is not as prevalent as I think you think. Sure you can switch among people and potentially make it last longer, but the number of soulcasters the fabrial itself, seems to be rather limited. Add to that certain soulcasters only soulcast certain essences, and there rarity is even greater. So I do not see marble being churned out at a huge rate to the point of it destroying the economy. Lin is a very special case because he had to make a deal with a secret organization that has access to resources cosmere wide in order to get his hands on a soulcaster to do as he planned. By all rights Lin as a back woods noble should have never been able to get access to the soulcaster to begin with. At least that is how I read the situation. 

Agreed on all counts. 

And again, Roshar's geology should make natural marble exceedingly rare. 

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16 minutes ago, Calderis said:

And again, Roshar's geology should make natural marble exceedingly rare. 

I never really thought about that side of it.  Is that the lack of apparent volcanic activity?

Perhaps there is some realmic explanation for a large marble presence on roshar?  Even without traditional volcanic activity there is a lot of stress being put on the planet's crust, between the Storm(s) and potentially from whatever force is keeping the continent in the shape of a 4-D fractal, not to mention the various stages of reconfiguration (Adonalsium first then C&H).

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8 minutes ago, Quantus said:

I never really thought about that side of it.  Is that the lack of apparent volcanic activity?

Perhaps there is some realmic explanation for a large marble presence on roshar?  Even without traditional volcanic activity there is a lot of stress being put on the planet's crust, between the Storm(s) and potentially from whatever force is keeping the continent in the shape of a 4-D fractal, not to mention the various stages of reconfiguration (Adonalsium first then C&H).

Roshar not only has no volcanic activity. It has no plate tectonics. It's basically built up, and eroded crem. Rinse and repeat, quite literally. Any "natural" stone is what was created by Adonalsium apparently. 

Quote

Questioner

Does Roshar have plate tectonics?

Brandon Sanderson

Roshar does not have plate tectonics, good question.

Questioner

Well when I met you in Orem, I was asking about frequencies. And you said it was more the shape of the plate-- The frequency. We've got no plate tectonics, we've got people who like to sing.

Brandon Sanderson

Good question. Now the weird thing that we would have is with the crem, we have to do some weird geology gymnastics, because Roshar is moving...

Roshar, the continent of Roshar, it's moving, right? As it gets weathered and things like this. Making Roshar actually work requires some really interesting scientific gymnastics. But one of them is I just didn't think plate tectonics, or even volcanoes and things, is just not something that is going to work on Roshar the way that I built it. So I just stayed away from all of that.  It's a pangaea.

Questioners

Is the pangaea built up of crem?

Brandon Sanderson

 It's a pangaea built up of crem.

Rubix

Over a long time--

Brandon Sanderson

Well no, because it was created at first.

Bystander

And then crem was on top of it?

Brandon Sanderson

...The whole idea that this is a fractal-- The whole point of that is, somebody built this. Somebody built this using mathematics that you know. They said "Oh. Boom. Bing!" and grew themselves a continent.

Firefight release party (Jan. 5, 2015)

 

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1 hour ago, Pathfinder said:

Could you make a wonderful work of art out of a malleable material and then soulcast it? Sure! But you need a high ranking lighteyes that owns an ardent and a soulcaster to spend the money to commission you, and have the ardent transform the work of art

As stated above we have pretty clear indications that the King has a monopoly on all soulcasters. 

1 hour ago, Pathfinder said:

Add that whatever material you use is still reflected in the final product. So marble statues that were once wood show the grain of the wood

Make it out of clay then and sand of the finger prints and such.  Make it out of ice and do the same.  Find a odd Rosharan wood that does not have a grain(I suspect they have some) or sculpt out of alabaster(an easy to carve soft stone) and then soulcast that into marble.  All of these methods are easier then sculpting marble by hand(marble is actually a rather hard stone so you find yourself putting way to much force when chiselling). 

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8 minutes ago, Karger said:

As stated above we have pretty clear indications that the King has a monopoly on all soulcasters. 

Make it out of clay then and sand of the finger prints and such.  Make it out of ice and do the same.  Find a odd Rosharan wood that does not have a grain(I suspect they have some) or sculpt out of alabaster(an easy to carve soft stone) and then soulcast that into marble.  All of these methods are easier then sculpting marble by hand(marble is actually a rather hard stone so you find yourself putting way to much force when chiselling). 

Apparently this is not as easy as you say, considering Jasnah comments in the vision how she can see that the armor is soulcasted from clay due to the finger prints still showing on the metal. Regardless it does not change that the availability of the soulcasters being so low that it prevents an economic break down. 

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18 minutes ago, Calderis said:

Roshar not only has no volcanic activity. It has no plate tectonics. It's basically built up, and eroded crem. Rinse and repeat, quite literally. Any "natural" stone is what was created by Adonalsium apparently. 

 

Hmm, so it sounds like Roshar likely never saw much in the way of natural geologic processes.   If Adonalsium created the continent whole, it sounds like marble basically exists because Adonalsium included it in his conception of Continental rock makeup, that it was simply part of the template he blinked into existance.  If that is true, would Marble continue to exists and be created because the populations of Roshar (spren and/or mortal) think it should.  Roshar doesnt have tectonics, but it does have continuous continental movement, which Id think would include some amount of mountain-building that could produce the pressures it takes for metamorphic rock like marble (as opposed to igneous), and with the Spren-souls of things being generally more responsive to belief by virtue of the porous realms and investiture rain cycle the template gets reinforced into the Physical realm more directly.   That could translate to Stone-spren causing veins of Marble to spring into being because they think it should, or it could simply mean that the the non-tectonic movement of the continent finds ways to mimic our "natural" process in a more abstract "Nature Find a Way" sort of thing.   Or maybe Cultivation-As-Mother Nature is influencing things on a more bedrock level, skewing things toward her Yolen planetary standard?

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1 hour ago, Pathfinder said:

Apparently this is not as easy as you say, considering Jasnah comments in the vision how she can see that the armor is soulcasted from clay due to the finger prints still showing on the metal. Regardless it does not change that the availability of the soulcasters being so low that it prevents an economic break down. 

Prints on metal would not alter its functionality so I don't realy see why they would bother getting rid of them.  This does not prove that you can't do it.  In fact I see no reason to bother.  Availability of soulcasters is high enough that they use them to create street food.  Clearly they are not as limited as we might expect.

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23 minutes ago, Karger said:

Prints on metal would not alter its functionality so I don't realy see why they would bother getting rid of them.  This does not prove that you can't do it.  In fact I see no reason to bother. 

The point of me mentioning it, was that art is subject to the whims of the culture, the time period, and those with money. I gave the example of a mansion where the edifices looked like marble, but it was regular plaster painted by french artists, because at the time it was the height of fashion to spend tons of money on artists to go through the trouble of making something fake, rather than spending money that was cheaper to get actual marble that could be acquired locally. So to me just as easily could nobility see the grain of wood, and pay through the nose to get the real stuff so that not only is the grain or finger tips are not evident, but that they can genuinely say it is the legit bonafide marble. The noble in Kholinar in Oathbringer lamented the loss of a rug because the weaver was blind and it was one of his last works. So for me it could swing either way, and it probably has on multiple occasions. 

Quote

Availability of soulcasters is high enough that they use them to create street food.  Clearly they are not as limited as we might expect.

In the warcamps, during a 6 year war, rations made by soulcasters because there aren't any farming structure (Sebarial's is done is secret, while it is stated no other highprince has made such an effort), coupled with the entire contest being fueled to get large emeralds to continue to feed their army states why. The herdazians are taking standard issue rations, and adding seasoning and spices (which aren't available via soulcasting, as soulcast food is bland), elevates it to street food. So once again, when you have a military structure, that needs to exist without supply lines, food and thereby emeralds are king. 

edit: further you are comparing a King's access to feeding his armies to win the vengeance pact during wartime, vs a backwoods noble that is down on his luck gaining access to a soulcaster to regain personal solvency. I do not think there is any way short of making a deal with a secret organization for Lin Davar to get his hands on a soulcaster and do as he planned. 

Edited by Pathfinder
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8 minutes ago, Pathfinder said:

edit: further you are comparing a King's access to feeding his armies to win the vengeance pact during wartime, vs a backwoods noble that is down on his luck gaining access to a soulcaster to regain personal solvency. I do not think there is any way short of making a deal with a secret organization for Lin Davar to get his hands on a soulcaster and do as he planned. 

 My question is that Lin should not be able to generate much money with the soulcaster because he is burning up his profits in gemstone costs.  How is he making any money?  He is highly restricted in what he can make(marble deposits) and he can't make art or bunkers or whatever else they use topaz gemstones for. 

Topaz gemstones can make any mineral provided you have an appropriate soulcaster.

Therefore an average topaz gemstone G should be able to make a given mass x of any of the following before shattering.

  1. x Gold
  2. x Copper
  3. x Silver
  4. x Lead
  5. x Tin
  6. x Iron
  7. x Bronze
  8. x Marble
  9. x Granite
  10. x Alabaster
  11. x Geminite
  12. x Aluminum
  13. x Steel
  14. x Obsidian
  15. x Every other metal or mineral you can think of but I got tired of writing.

The point is all of these substances are possible to create and can be used for something.  They all also have prices that fluctuate widely based on availability and demand.  Every time you use a gemstone to create marble when some other substance that you can produce you are actually destroying value.  This is not even considering marble artwork or the convenience of reducing transport costs that soulcasting offers.  Given this I am going to say that basically every time you soulcast you are probably destroying value.

Your argument seems to be that soulcasters are so rare and costly to use that they can't use them but we see evidence of constant and even frivolous use of them throughout the series.  They are also common enough that during Gavilar's Alethi conquest sieges were generally thought to be impractical because everyone had a soulcaster that could create food(considering the number of places Gavilar had to conqueror if sieges were a thing that he had to deal with he would have mentioned it).

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11 minutes ago, Karger said:

 My question is that Lin should not be able to generate much money with the soulcaster because he is burning up his profits in gemstone costs.  How is he making any money?  He is highly restricted in what he can make(marble deposits) and he can't make art or bunkers or whatever else they use topaz gemstones for. 

Topaz gemstones can make any mineral provided you have an appropriate soulcaster.

Therefore an average topaz gemstone G should be able to make a given mass x of any of the following before shattering.

  1. x Gold
  2. x Copper
  3. x Silver
  4. x Lead
  5. x Tin
  6. x Iron
  7. x Bronze
  8. x Marble
  9. x Granite
  10. x Alabaster
  11. x Geminite
  12. x Aluminum
  13. x Steel
  14. x Obsidian
  15. x Every other metal or mineral you can think of but I got tired of writing.

The point is all of these substances are possible to create and can be used for something.  They all also have prices that fluctuate widely based on availability and demand.  Every time you use a gemstone to create marble when some other substance that you can produce you are actually destroying value.  This is not even considering marble artwork or the convenience of reducing transport costs that soulcasting offers.  Given this I am going to say that basically every time you soulcast you are probably destroying value.

Your argument seems to be that soulcasters are so rare and costly to use that they can't use them but we see evidence of constant and even frivolous use of them throughout the series.  They are also common enough that during Gavilar's Alethi conquest sieges were generally thought to be impractical because everyone had a soulcaster that could create food(considering the number of places Gavilar had to conqueror if sieges were a thing that he had to deal with he would have mentioned it).

To clarify my statements I will bullet point them:

1. value of type gemstones are based on what they can create. Food is the most valuable to the Alethi due to their warmachine that has been commented on in the books

2. As Calderis mentioned, we have no indication on the amount that can be soulcasted based on a gemstone per gemstone basis. Larger gemstones seem to be able to soulcast an unlimited supply, so that does not seem (to me) to be the limiting factor on soulcasting. 

3. Soulcaster the fabrial are rare, and tightly controlled via the Ardentia, and the nobility that owns them. That the king "allows" Jasnah to walk around with one is considered unique. The individual we see having a soulcaster with Szeth works for Taravangian and a secret organisation of the Diagram. Kaza was a relative to a ruler, and was for all intents and purposes imprisoned to be used as a tool with a death sentence. The war machine that is the Alethi moves on its stomach. The king controls the soulcasters they own to provide food and some resources, while taxing the highprinces for the privilege of using them. 

4. Lin Davar is a minor noble in a backwater location. He is not a king with such access. It does not mention anything on his estate having been soulcasted. Conversely, the king's home is soulcasted. 

5. Topaz is worth less than emeralds. We disagree on how much can be made from a gemstone. I state we do not know yet. You seem to state you do know. I disagree. 

 

So in conclusion, I do not think we can base soulcaster usage and prevalence based on a King of a militarily ruled kingdom that takes up a fifth to a quarter of the continent in comparison to a minor noble in a backwater location of Jah Keved. 

Edited by Pathfinder
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29 minutes ago, Pathfinder said:

Larger gemstones seem to be able to soulcast an unlimited supply

One of the highprinces in Oathbringer says that they Casmefiend gemhearts will eventually break.

30 minutes ago, Pathfinder said:

5. Topaz is worth less than emeralds. We disagree on how much can be made from a gemstone. I state we do not know yet. You seem to state you do know. I disagree. 

My point is that the amount is finite.  I don't have to know how much it is.  As long as it is finite any time you are making a substance less valuable then the most valuable substance you can make you are destroying value.  This is a basic part of economics actually.

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19 minutes ago, Karger said:

One of the highprinces in Oathbringer says that they Casmefiend gemhearts will eventually break.

My point is that the amount is finite.  I don't have to know how much it is.  As long as it is finite any time you are making a substance less valuable then the most valuable substance you can make you are destroying value.  This is a basic part of economics actually.

To me that only occurs if everyone is doing it. You don't know what the value of marble mined is on Roshar. You do not know the comparative worth a topaz is per however amount of mined marble there is. You don't know how much marble can be produced per gemstone before it shatters. So to me, I think it is a bit of a leap to assume a lot of the above. Based on what I have read in the novels, to me, as I have explained, Lin Davar is a unique circumstance. You started this thread trying to find a good solution to what you feel is a discrepancy. I offered one. You disagree. To each their own. 

Edited by Pathfinder
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9 minutes ago, Pathfinder said:

that only occurs if everyone is doing it

If their is an economic imperative then everyone will be doing it or they will be loosing value in opportunity costs.

22 minutes ago, Pathfinder said:

You do not know the comparative worth a topaz is per however amount of mined marble there is. You don't know how much marble can be produced per gemstone before it shatters and you do not know what carat of gemstone Lin's soulcaster can hold

Why do I need to?  A topaz is worth x.  The amount of marble I can create with a topaz x is on average y.  If x is for some reason worth more then y then doing Lin Davar's plan looses him value(that is just mathematics I will spare you the proof).  If y is greater then x to the point where considerable money can be made by turning x into y then everyone should do so immediately bringing the cost of the limited amount of x(remember eventually these gemstones shatter and it takes time to replace them) bringing the cost of  y down to x.

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7 minutes ago, Karger said:

If their is an economic imperative then everyone will be doing it or they will be loosing value in opportunity costs.

Because I already said why I do not think everyone is doing it. You disagree. Me repeating it will accomplish nothing. 

7 minutes ago, Karger said:

Why do I need to? 

Because your argument is based on it being equal to or less when you do not know that. 

7 minutes ago, Karger said:

A topaz is worth x.  The amount of marble I can create with a topaz x is on average y. 

In algebra you still need some values to base your calculations on. 

7 minutes ago, Karger said:

If x is for some reason worth more then y then doing Lin Davar's plan looses him value(that is just mathematics I will spare you the proof). 

That is great, but again you do not know that. We have no evidence in book to say that whatsoever.

7 minutes ago, Karger said:

If y is greater then x to the point where considerable money can be made by turning x into y then everyone should do so immediately bringing the cost of the limited amount of x(remember eventually these gemstones shatter and it takes time to replace them) bringing the cost of  y down to x.

Again we have nothing to base that on to even go on conjecture. 

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37 minutes ago, Pathfinder said:

To me that only occurs if everyone is doing it. You don't know what the value of marble mined is on Roshar. You do not know the comparative worth a topaz is per however amount of mined marble there is. You don't know how much marble can be produced per gemstone before it shatters. So to me, I think it is a bit of a leap to assume a lot of the above. Based on what I have read in the novels, to me, as I have explained, Lin Davar is a unique circumstance. You started this thread trying to find a good solution to what you feel is a discrepancy. I offered one. You disagree. To each their own. 

I think we can look at the overall context of the books and the economy of Roshar to say that it must be more expensive to operate a soulcaster than to obtain the object you want through normal means.  If soulcaster use is essentially free (only costs stormlight that is refilled for free at each highstorm and gems essentially never break), then it would make sense for them to be used continuously.  Excluding the possible cost of replacing broken gems, it's much easier and cheaper to soulcast things than make them - there is no cost.  Yes, they are controlled by the government and there are a limited number, but there are enough out there to do significantly more than what is actually being done in the civilian economy.  During wartime, it makes sense that the government would take all or most soulcasters for the war effort.  During peacetime, they should be making absolutely everything with soulcasters and training up dozens or hundreds of operators to reduce the risk to each individual.

It seems like based on what we see of the economy in the books, there are two options:

1) Soulcasters cost more to operate than the cost of making their products under normal circumstances due to their cost in shattered gems.  Only wartime and other special situations make them practical to use.

2) Soulcasters are infinite and the government is keeping this a secret so that they can artificially control the economy and prop up certain industries that would be completely out competed by soulcasters.

 

The secret third option is that Sanderson didn't really nitpick this like we did or there is some other aspect in play that we don't know about (actually a good chance this is the true answer).

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6 minutes ago, agrabes said:

1) Soulcasters cost more to operate than the cost of making their products under normal circumstances due to their cost in shattered gems.  Only wartime and other special situations make them practical to use.

2) Soulcasters are infinite and the government is keeping this a secret so that they can artificially control the economy and prop up certain industries that would be completely out competed by soulcasters.

 

The secret third option is that Sanderson didn't really nitpick this like we did or there is some other aspect in play that we don't know about (actually a good chance this is the true answer).

Exactly thank you.

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25 minutes ago, agrabes said:

 

I think we can look at the overall context of the books and the economy of Roshar to say that it must be more expensive to operate a soulcaster than to obtain the object you want through normal means.  If soulcaster use is essentially free (only costs stormlight that is refilled for free at each highstorm and gems essentially never break), then it would make sense for them to be used continuously.  Excluding the possible cost of replacing broken gems, it's much easier and cheaper to soulcast things than make them - there is no cost.  Yes, they are controlled by the government and there are a limited number, but there are enough out there to do significantly more than what is actually being done in the civilian economy.  During wartime, it makes sense that the government would take all or most soulcasters for the war effort.  During peacetime, they should be making absolutely everything with soulcasters and training up dozens or hundreds of operators to reduce the risk to each individual.

It seems like based on what we see of the economy in the books, there are two options:

1) Soulcasters cost more to operate than the cost of making their products under normal circumstances due to their cost in shattered gems.  Only wartime and other special situations make them practical to use.

2) Soulcasters are infinite and the government is keeping this a secret so that they can artificially control the economy and prop up certain industries that would be completely out competed by soulcasters.

 

The secret third option is that Sanderson didn't really nitpick this like we did or there is some other aspect in play that we don't know about (actually a good chance this is the true answer).

Personally I do not think we have the kind of information to derive any of those conclusions. And you are forgetting that soulcasting is ultimately a death sentence. But beyond that, we have only seen soulcasters in the possession of high lords, kings, and secret societies with the means to gain access to such objects. Until we know how much can be made, how much the gemstones are worth, how many soulcasters exist, of those that exist what essences they can do (for instance we have seen two so far that only transform smoke), I do not think we can adequately make those kind of statements.  

 

for instance:

Way of Kings Page 91

It was true; jasnah really did have a functioning Soulcaster. And a powerful one too. Nine out of ten Soulcasters were capable of a few limited transformations: creating water, or grain from stone; forming bland, single roomed rock buildings out of air or cloth. A greater one, like Jasnah's could effectuate any transformation. Literally turn any substance into any other one. How it must grate on the ardents that such a powerful, holy relic was in the hands of someone outside the ardentia

Edited by Pathfinder
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