54 votes
Accepted

If magic is programming, then what is mana supposed to be?

In this cosmology, envisioning mana as akin to the computational resources - CPU time, RAM, or other crucial system components - that a sentient program or a fragment of the universe's architect can ...
intro's user avatar
  • 846
25 votes

If magic is programming, then what is mana supposed to be?

Every computer should have an antivirus. Programs or systems looking for anomalies, anything that doesn't follow the the code (natural laws of nature), and deletes it. So mana in this case would not ...
Michael Mortensen's user avatar
23 votes

If magic is programming, then what is mana supposed to be?

API quotas Nothing in business is free. When you are playing Minecraft on your PC you can mod costs away, but when you hire cloud services on the internet such as Azure, Amazon AWS, MongoDB storage ...
The Square-Cube Law's user avatar
19 votes

If magic is programming, then what is mana supposed to be?

Focus Some souls, via lots of hard thinking and calculation, can start to notice this and can add some of their own code to make things interesting. I'm a programmer in the real world and I can tell ...
Martijn's user avatar
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13 votes

If magic is programming, then what is mana supposed to be?

Magic is an in-game System, not a Hack Mana makes a lot more since when you view magic as an in-game programming interface. The reason it feels like programming is because it works that way by design. ...
Nosajimiki's user avatar
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9 votes

If magic is programming, then what is mana supposed to be?

Similar to the other answers - but in most enterprise grade Cloud systems (Azure/AWS/GCP etc.) Every consumable resource (Read/Writes, CPU time, RAM, Data ingress/Egress etc. etc.) is charged for. Now ...
TheDemonLord's user avatar
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8 votes

If magic is programming, then what is mana supposed to be?

Unintended redirection of computation power The universe is a computer. Or rather, a lot of small computer-like units, grouping together to emulate different aspects of reality. You need more units ...
Matthieu's user avatar
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5 votes

If magic is programming, then what is mana supposed to be?

It is Gas Spells require computational processes, and the Universe has a limit on that resource. So in order to prevent users from abusing the system and expending all of the processing, the Universe ...
Ender Look's user avatar
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5 votes

Spiritual beings think and feel, but don't have a nervous system?

How is this the case? It is the case because the dualists are only half right. They did get the bit about there being a material and a spiritual world correctly. But they are wrong in seeing them as ...
ihaveideas's user avatar
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5 votes
Accepted

Spiritual beings think and feel, but don't have a nervous system?

Your brain is the user interface for your body. Your soul is you. It is where you think, where you feel, where YOU most truly and actually exist... but a soul can not control a physical body directly....
Nosajimiki's user avatar
  • 89.9k
5 votes

If magic is programming, then what is mana supposed to be?

Electricity Electricity is what makes the hard drives work. It's what makes the monitor light up with pretty colors. It's what makes your XBox controller shake and what makes sound. And if you don't ...
JBH's user avatar
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5 votes

If magic is programming, then what is mana supposed to be?

Computer Science Calls This “Fuel” Alan Turing famously proved that it is impossible, in principle, to prove that an arbitrary program halts, and Henry Gordon Rice extended this to prove that all non-...
Davislor's user avatar
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3 votes

If magic is programming, then what is mana supposed to be?

You're spending your own allocated system resources. An individual entity in Simulated Reality is permitted a certain amount of system resources to do what it's meant to do. A rock requires very ...
Ruadhan's user avatar
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3 votes

If magic is programming, then what is mana supposed to be?

Garbage collection. The universe is a simulation. Every program (i.e. person) is assigned resources when it starts. Magic is a workaround/hack/exploit - which means that it uses resources that were ...
Tom's user avatar
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3 votes

If magic is programming, then what is mana supposed to be?

Obviouly computrons. computron: /kom�pyoo�tron`/, n. [common] A notional unit of computing power combining instruction speed and storage capacity, dimensioned roughly in instructions-per-second ...
Jasen's user avatar
  • 1,024
3 votes

If magic is programming, then what is mana supposed to be?

Raw data? The type of spell is defined by the end outputs or results specified by the program (spell) in question, the type of data input and, to an extent the complexity of the programs impacted. ...
Mon's user avatar
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3 votes

If magic is programming, then what is mana supposed to be?

I was somewhat surprised that these words are not in others answers, but: Quantum fluctuations The thing that makes black holes not so black. It's a "local finite" thing, it's auto ...
André L F S Bacci's user avatar
2 votes

If magic is programming, then what is mana supposed to be?

Syntax and API knowledge, Time, Energy, clear mind, typing speed and logic. The more you have the more you cast good lines of code. But the universe is still universe cause programming is not code ...
Mohamed Amine NAJIMI's user avatar
2 votes

If magic is programming, then what is mana supposed to be?

Entropy. As things stand, any computation increases the entropy in the immediate vicinity of where it is carried out, which conventionally becomes heat which has to be removed. Certain locations are ...
Mark Morgan Lloyd's user avatar
2 votes

If magic is programming, then what is mana supposed to be?

Nanomachines Reality is permeated by them, and they recharge slowly on their own, but they use energy to build and shape reality to the whims of magicians (programmers!). Some spells are more "...
aslum's user avatar
  • 7,350
2 votes

If magic is programming, then what is mana supposed to be?

Awesome question, thanks. I’m working on a world that hinges on some of these questions. If your world-building demands for the magic to be based on a computational resource and for the magic users to ...
SubDisciplines's user avatar
1 vote

If magic is programming, then what is mana supposed to be?

CPU time specifically for the physics engine Some background on how physics engines work Most physics engines in games have the concept of active versus sleeping physics object. When an object is ...
mousetail's user avatar
  • 377
1 vote

If magic is programming, then what is mana supposed to be?

Frame Challenge The primary characteristic of mana is that it is a reservoir of resources that recovers in a trickle over time. In the entire world of computing, the only place you have reservoirs ...
Robert Rapplean's user avatar
1 vote

If magic is programming, then what is mana supposed to be?

RAM, you need it to cast spells,it limits how much/how complex your spell can be, Mana could be something that tells magic exactly what to do, the instruction you think is engraved into Mana which in ...
Or4ng3h4t's user avatar
  • 343
1 vote

Spiritual beings think and feel, but don't have a nervous system?

Hormones are signalling molecules in biological organisms. As these ghosts are clearly not biological, they don't need them. They are a product of completely different evolution (or construction, or ...
D'Monlord's user avatar
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