To Lt. Commander:
To Lieutenant JG:
There has been quite a bit going on at Outpost 10F in the last few weeks after months of literally nothing going on. Why you ask? Well CiC HAL has dropped the challenge of getting OTF moving again at the feet of AJ and Hobbie, and in just a few short weeks they’ve created a new since of urgency and fun. Lots will be changing here at Outpost10F, but all of it will be in the best interest of the patrons. I had the chance to sit down with AJ at talk about what’s going on now and what they’d like to see happening in the Outpost.
BR: Thanks for taking some time with us today AJ.
AJ: Not a problem! It's nice to be given the chance to speak to you!
BR: So tell us, how did the decision to change things up come about?
AJ: It had been something that had been toyed with for a while, to be honest. I'm sure you, and everyone else, will appreciate, we did have a bit of a lull where nothing much was happening and we were being dragged back towards stagnation once again. We felt that this was something that could best be avoided, so Hobbie and myself were given clearance to seize control and shake things up. We're starting off slow, focussing on Entertainment, but we hope to expand and broaden to encompass other projects and teams what fell under sister departments.
BR: Why do it?
AJ: Why? I suppose there are many reasons why. First of all to try and make sure we don't fall flat again and have people start to drift away; OTF is a place that offers more than just a place to chat. Then there's the fact we all like the place. Some folks enjoy it for just the chatroom, and some enjoy the chances to earn rewards and help out on a wider scale - by doing this we're making sure that those who want to progress and want to add to the wider community, have a chance to do so. This also ties in with the last reason, really. One of OTF's primary selling points was/is the chance for promotions and to earn something for yourself - even if it is "only on the internet". Just like people enjoy "leveling up" on WoW, MMOs and RPGs, some like to do so here - there's no difference in my eyes. So, as alluded to previously, we're trying to make sure that those who want to climb the ladder have every opportunity to do so.
BR: Exactly what are some of things being revamped?
AJ: At the moment we're focussing on the departments, and in particular, Entertainment. Once we have stabilised there, we shall broaden and, with approval from the VC and CinC, we will take on those projects that other departments used to handle. Hopefully, we can keep everything under the one umbrella to prevent ourselves being spread to thin. If it transpires that at some stage down the line we're able to set up and run several concurrent departments, than any projects/teams we "revived" will be re-transferred to their parent.
BR: In what ways are these areas being reorganized?
AJ: As it stands we're only looking at one department at the moment, but already we've made some rather big changes. We've scrapped entirely the former command structure of Senior and Assistant Managers, and instead replaced 4 positions with 2 - Director and Deputy Director. This allows us to streamline our efforts a lot more effectively. At the same time it also allows us to hand the Team Leaders greater responsibility by involving them a lot more in the top-level command structure, as opposed to just the Assistant Managers. Hopefully this will help us better "train" potential department leaders than the former AM and AMiT positions.
We have also re-organised on the personnel front, too. We've shuffled around the Team Leaders and their Assistants in order to inject new life and freshen things up somewhat.
BR: Will any other departments begin making changes like those in Entertainment?
AJ: I touched on this earlier somewhat. Our initial plan (still fluid and open to change) is to, once we're stabled in ENT, expand and take on the projects from the defunct departments such as Communications and Guilds. We don't feel we have the resources or manpower to staff three departments (as well as ISA) concurrently, so wish to bring everything together. If things do improve and pick up, we may then explore the ideas of setting up any defunct departments and handing their projects back over to them.
BR: How will this affect the day to day operations of Outpost10F?
AJ: You'll - hopefully - start to see a lot more activity from the department. Trivia nights becoming more regular; the Simming team taking off and taking on new challenges; and the Gaming team hosting and running various tournaments, competitions on simple browser based games. Hopefully these efforts will also draw more people into the chatrooms as we'll be able to offer more than just a place to sit and chat - but things to do when the chat is slow and quiet.
BR: Looking towards the future, what’s the long term goal?
AJ: It is not to re-created the "good old days", but, in true sci-fi mantra, to explore a bold new future for ourselves.
BR: How can people help?
AJ: They can either staff the various teams that we have (see Classifed ads for details!) or if they have any suggestions at all for the department they can email Ray and myself at this address.
BR: Anything else for the good of the order?
AJ: We've had a lot of new members signing up recently. Do your best to engage them and make them feel welcome and comfortable. Word of mouth (ie, they tell their associates) is the best form of advertisement we can rely on at the moment.
BR: Thanks for giving us some insights on what’s going on in OTF.
AJ: Any time!
Here's a Strellus Glossary .
Tacchus is a globular star cluster located two thirds of the way out from the center of the great spiral galaxy known as The Angel's Veil. Tacchus' most notable features are the abundance and close proximity of main sequence stars in its population (nearly every star is of type F, G or K) as well as the proliferation of habitable planets orbiting many of the stars throughout the cluster. A number of those planets are inhabited.
The development of the societies that emerged on those planets followed the natural path of cultural evolution. Small bands, usually of hunter-gatherers, grew into tribes. Chiefdoms came next, then states. Finally, in many cases, single, united planetary nations came into being. Every type of government system in the entire political spectrum was tried as well.
The advent of space travel brought many of the more advanced planetary societies within reach of one another. Diplomatic ties were established and economic agreements were negotiated. Entire commercial networks of interplanetary communities arose, trade flourished and worlds prospered. The socio-architects, beings of wisdom and foresight, created buffer systems to aid those worlds that might experience times of economic hardship. The established interplanetary economy was efficient, flexible and indiscriminate. All shared equitably. Any disputes that might arise were resolved fairly and impartially.
Socially, countless species and races emerged. Early discrimination by one species or race against another eventually gave way to mutual appreciation and respect; egocentricity had been supplanted by practicality. Wars too, for the most part, were a thing of the past.
Canaris is a white, G-type star lying well within the Tachus cluster. Seven planets orbit Canaris. Pleia, the second planet, is inhabited. The Pleian civilization was one of the earliest in the region and has been in existence for thousands of rayos. Pleia's governmental structure evolved from dictatorial roydom (kingdom), to totalitarian empire, to constitutional monarchy and, finally, to republic. Pleia was a member of the Consortium of Allied Planets. Being long established and being both politically and socially mature, Pleia was respected and had influence throughout the region. Pleians themselves were generally very happy and well adjusted.
War broke out in 4343 when Pleia was suddenly and brutally attacked by the Ha'Gu'Nei. A few hepters earlier, a survey party was exploring outside Tacchus. The surveyors watched as a band of marauders ransacked a settlement on a small asteroid, killing the males, abducting the females and children. The lead surveyor called for help on his comset. Within a few heras, starfighters dispatched from Pleia made short work of the marauding Ha'Gu'Nei and rescued the survivors. And so the Ha'Gu'Nei retaliated.
The war went badly for Pleia at first. Pleians simply were not warlike. Pleia's military was skilled, but inexperienced. Political leadership could have been better as well. Vergut Mirko, a prominent procater, announced his candidacy for the roylency. He vowed a swift end to the war and total victory, should he be elected. He had charisma, the backing of nearly all of the procate, and the popular vote. Many of the Pleiad Members were highly skeptical. Nevertheless, the Pleiad voted Mirko in by a margin one. The euphoria from Mirko's astounding win all but drowned out [Pleiad] Member Fen Jopah's prediction: "Mark my words," he said. "Vergut Mirko, now Roylent of Pleia, will dissolve first the Pleiad, then the Procate. He will, one dero, move from Roylent to absolute Roy. Mark my words."
Mirko kept his promise; the war ended victoriously for Pleia. The war lasted nearly five rayos, during which time, Member Fen Jopah's prediction came true. The Pleiad and the Procate were dissolved, "To better facilitate the war effort, but only for the duration of the war." Hah! The last election was in late '43. The SePo (Secret Police) were established to root out terrorists and saboteurs. NoffScan was established for people in the neighborhood to watch for and report any suspicious activity. The added offering of bonuses slowly turned NoffScan into a rat-on-your-neighbor-for-profit group. Pleians are the most tolerant of people. They've been living in constant fear for a good many rayos, but they've endured. Lately, though, people have been disappearing in greater numbers! It is no longer safe to speak of anything to anyone! Trust is nonexistent! The suicide rate is the highest it's ever been! More and more Pleians are getting fed up! Defections are on the rise! Indeed, throughout Pleia, the operative word is escape!
Dear Agony Aunt,
My boyfriend is in the military... and I think he's cheating on me... but it's weird because he'll do anything I tell him to,what should I do?
Dear Concerned Military GF,
Have him do pushups over skype until either he confesses or he give you a decent reason for the way he acts.