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Old December 28th, 2003, 08:42 PM   #1
Bijou88
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Question How long is a Yaren?

One of the endearing qualities of Battlestar Galactica was that it had its own language and vocabulary. While the writers were creating the show by the seat of their pants, (because the schedule was so tight,) they were able to use language to create Galactica's unique atmoshere and flavor. Time was measured in centons and yarens. It was never really spelled out how this system measured time but it was safe to assume that it was a rough equivalent for minutes and years. In one episode, Adama indicates that he is well over 100 yarens old. This begs the question, how long is a yaren? Is Adama really over 100 years old? Do the Colonials have this type of longevity? Perhaps Caprica orbits its sun more rapidly than the Earth revolves around Sol. As a result. the Caprican "year" is shorter than an Earth year. Adama may be over 100 yarens old but this would translate into an earthly 70 years. Are there any theories out there? How old is Adama and the other characters really?
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Old December 28th, 2003, 09:02 PM   #2
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Bijou,

For all kinds of information about BSG, check "The Kobol Files" at www.battlestargalactica.com

It's located in the "Features" section and was compiled by John Larocque. There's a vast amount of information there. I think what you're looking for is in Section E10.

(I could have just as easily told you "a year" but, I thought you might want to check out the Archives for yourself )

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Old December 28th, 2003, 09:18 PM   #3
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The Kobol files.

Go here:
http://www.kobol.com/archives/index.html

The FAQ E10, plus also "Time Units".

I highly recommend a visit to Sue Paxton's Battlestar Zone as well and her encyclopedia.

Trying to figure out the Colonial time units frustrated me to no end and I wished they had discarded them altogether and used "Earth" measurements, Colonialisms be fragged. Which gives you an idea of how much time I spent with them several yahrens ago.

I'm not bothered by the prospect of an Adama who is 120 years old. Good luck making sense of the mess.
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Old December 29th, 2003, 06:34 AM   #4
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Thanks for the infor. This makes it easier for me when I post in the rpgs I am in concerning BG.
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Old December 29th, 2003, 12:02 PM   #5
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I guess it is generally accepted that Colonial time units are equivelent to Earth units. I just find it a bit troubleing that Adama would be over 100 years old. It could be that he is really Lorne Green's actual 1978 age (63) and just feels like he is over 100 when he is speaking to a pretty young lady. I just thought that a yaren could actually be shorter than an Earth year. In this fashion, some type of mathematical equation could be formulated to make 63 years equal 100 yaren. I guess I have too much free time on my hands.
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Old December 29th, 2003, 12:07 PM   #6
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Or that humans from that part of the galaxy have a different lifespan due to genetics and/or environment.

Don't forget, the bible lists people as being hundreds of years old, in the days of genesis.
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Old December 29th, 2003, 12:22 PM   #7
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The biblical approach is interesting. It had not occured to me. It would make sense since Glen Larsen based a large part of Galactic's mythos on his Mormon background. O.K., Adama is over 100 years old!
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Old December 29th, 2003, 08:51 PM   #8
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You could always use the time period for yahren in Richard's books too--250 days would make a 200 yahren lifespan equal to 120 years which there is something in scripture (I seem to remember it being in Genesis after the flood story) about the number of a man's years being 120. No one got older than that (in the Bible) after the flood, if I remember right. That was just a quirk in Richard's books I thought was fun, but I could be whacked about my math.
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Old December 29th, 2003, 09:05 PM   #9
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I kind of like the 250 day year actually. My second favorite after 365 Earth days.

I've really evolved on this issue. In 1992 I was willing to dive into the tables and work something through. By 1995 I was fed up and wrote the following:

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Trying to create or utilize a Colonial time conversion table can be a distracting exercise. In constructing scripts and stories (outside of time-critical situtations), the best option is to assume that each of the terms uses their nearest Earth equivalents -- such as year for yahren, week for secton, hour for centar, minute for centon, and second for micron, or even use the Terran time terms. In most of the episodes, this is exactly what the writers did.
I have it on good authority that a certain Stat Trek scribe used to haunt the BSG pages at Kobol, and chose not to use centon, secton and yahren when writing his BSG story. Some people were aghast - privately I cheered.
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Old December 29th, 2003, 09:18 PM   #10
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I would be in the "aghast" crowd. I loved your time tables, when Kobol went down, it's what got me asking MF if he could use unskilled but willing to learn type help on Pegasus. Oh, the trouble that has gotten me into
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