I admit that this whole system is a bitch to get across without being able to demonstrate in real life, in which I could use a blackboard. If anyone wants to get into contact with me by email, so that we might share chat information and speak directly over the internet, I am at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This is in answer to Carl, who was wondering about something I wrote in my post on Prices: “To this, I apply a travel modifier divided by 1% of the world’s total; Kronstadt’s comparative availability is 2.1% of the world’s total…”
Carl asks where does this 1% of the world’s total come from? He correctly judges that it is the total iron ore produced in one year. But he also wishes to know, why 1%?
Well, I confess that the 1% is a completely arbitrary number. It could as easily be 2% of the world’s total or 0.5% of the world’s total. Some number was needed by which it was possible to compare the relative availability of whatever product or service existed.
If you consider my post on Haulage, I drew a diagram and demonstrated the comparative availability of grain for Cities A, B and C. I did not (and this was a failiing on my part) explain how I used this to compare availability.
It is, simply, this: that one city will have more availability that another: and that if the price is set according to the total product of the world divided by its total worth, then that must in turn be adjusted according to the availability of that product depending on what city you are in.
In the example given, if City A has 4,500 tons of grain available, and City B has 6,750 tons of grain, you could say that the price of grain in City B is equal to the world price of grain that you have worked out according to the value of grain (so many references of grain compared with so many references of gold and so on), and that therefore the price of grain in City A is 6750/4500 times the price.
Or you could say that City A is equal to the world price of grain, and that the price of grain in 4500/6750 times the price.
Or you could set the world price of grain at whatever the total would be if 1% of the world’s production were available, and divide all the cities on your world against that standard. Which was what I chose to do.
Thus, yes, the travel modifier is taken from the haulage formula.