The Halo story

So Llyr and I were commenting on the storyline to the Halo video game series. It's a pretty interesting storyline. I've played both (Xbox) games and read all three books. The books delve into the development of the characters, but as I was reading the transcripts for the game dialog, I found it reveals a lot of the history, which I missed while playing the game.

We learn from the monitors that the halos were constructed by the Forerunners to eradicate all significant biomasses in the galaxy so the Flood would starve. But who were the Forerunners?

During one battle, 343 Guilty Spark makes a comment about how he's glad that, when the halos were activated, some Forerunners survived to reproduce. Also, the monitors recognize the humans (as "reclaimers"). And, looking at the final battle in H2, it would seem that the halos are somehow coded to work with humans (Tartarus has to force Cmdr. Keys to activate Installation 05, presumably because he can't do it himself). That would seem to suggest that the Forerunners were human.

Llyr wasn't convinced of this at first, but something he said led me to put things together and prove it.

At the end of Halo 2, 343 Guilty Spark explains that the halos can be remotely activated by the Ark. When asked where that is, we cut to the Prophet of Truth and the Forerunner ship exiting slipspace at Earth. I figured the Ark must've been the Forerunner ship, but Llyr said it was Earth itself. Why this makes sense, is the Prophet of Regret goes to Earth at the beginning of Halo 2. However, he does not know that it is the humans' homeworld, which is why he shows up unprepared. There must've been some other reason for him to go to Earth, the logical explanation being he was told something important was there, something having to do with the Forerunners. And, when Truth takes off on a ship, that's where he goes, too.

So, at that point, I was willing to consider Earth as the Ark.

Then it all made sense. I started telling the story in this manner:

A long time ago, the Forerunners activated the halos to wipe out all life in the galaxy, except for Noah and his family on the Ark.

After that sunk in, Llyr put the final piece on the puzzle.

The Ark saved the humans from the Flood.

Now, I know we weren't the first to make this connection. After coming up with this, I searched Halo.Bungie.Org and found that this theory has been suggested and debated for a long time. But what I can claim is that we did come up with this ourselves, having never heard or read it before. I don't know if that makes us especially clever (for figuring it out) or especially dim (for it taking over a year since Halo 2's release to do so).


Why can't they leave bad enough alone?

We just got a letter from our school district, explaining that they will be making some changes to the school schedules for next year. My son's school is not affected, so I only perused the letter out of curiosity. They said that the reason for the change is because Congress is changing Daylight Saving Time [yes, it is "Saving" and not "Savings"] to start two weeks earlier in the spring and end one week later in the fall.

What the freak?

I googled for information about DST. This page from the California Energy Commission seems to have a decent description of why DST is. Basically, it all boils down to energy conservation. Save more daylight in the evening, and people will use less energy after work.

Here's an idea. Instead of confusing the heck out of people by constantly adjusting clocks, why not simply move the standard work day back an hour? Same effect, but the clocks can stay the same. I doubt making people adjust to a 7-to-4 schedule would be any worse than making people remember "second Sunday in March, first Sunday in November".

Did the politicians even consider the impact this will have on all the clocks, watches, and COMPUTERS that have to deal with DST, that will have to be reprogrammed? Maybe it's some deranged plan to stimulate the computer economy. "Hey, that Y2k thing gave all those old programmers big jobs in '99; let's get businesses to dump more money at 'em!"

Maybe I can spend the rest of 2006 learning COBOL...