Tuesday, October 22, 2013

A Rant on Mapping

Readers may be aware that I am engaged in a project to replace Windows with some form of Linux, which I've been posting about lately. My stated goal with this project is to get two specific programs running under Linux, preferably with WINE. These are Profantasy's Fractal Terrains and Campaign Cartographer 3, world-generating and cartography software respectively. I have some money invested in them, but more importantly time and creative energy. My fantasy setting of Ytherra is mapped in these programs, representing many years of work, and the new sandbox setting for my fantasy roleplaying rules are as well. To abandon this software would require, minimally, conversion to some open-source package — Inkscape or GIMP, most probably, requiring considerable effort and placing a learning curve in front of me that I don't really have time to deal with. I have little enough time for creative work as it is.

It is with considerable distaste, therefore, that I find myself on the precipice of abandoning this crash-prone fuckholeware entirely. Because I do not need the aggravation of CC3 dumping and the file saved mere seconds ago becoming magically non-openable for seemingly the thousandth time.

I am not, fundamentally, a cartographer or interested in cartography as an end in itself. I'm just damn picky about maps. I am at the point where I feel like Profantasy's unreliable software is costing me more time and ungrayed hair than it's saving me. Maybe I should just be drawing paper maps and handing them to my friend Joseph Freistuhler, leaving this part of the work to the professional and freeing me to work on the stuff I really am engaged in.

I'll see how I feel about it tomorrow.