Ada King

If you’re here, you may well have just finished Ada King by E.M. Faulds and be looking for further information on the story. You’ve come to the right place! I’ll share some of the sneaky name codes, give you a handy reference sheet for the geography and tech in the book and

Code and names hints

Every character or chapter name, every code and designation in “Ada King” has a secret meaning. I’m going to put some here, to help you out. The rest you’ll have to guess the meaning. Feel free to speculate in the comments area, I’m happy to confirm or deny your guesses!

First Name Meaning
Ada King Noble, King
Agung The great
Andy Manly and strong
Arto Money
Beagan Little one
Bessu 🙂
Richard Means powerful leader. May have other connotations.
Ignatius Roman name meaning possibly fire, has connotations with being thrown to the beasts
Oswald denotes power also Oswald Ernald Mosley connotations
Dara Multiple, see wikipedia
Fabia “Bean farmer” in its literal meaning, but more a play on words for fabrication, making things up.
Figgy i.e. figment.
Home Mother Esmerelda Emerald, a nod to Granny Weatherwax in Terry Pratchett’s Witches books.
Home Sister Dolores Pain in Spanish
Ikatere Punga Ancestor of fish in Maori legend, son of Punga
Mrs Kiore Rat in maori
Obrolan “Gas”, “Windbag” etc, Indonesian
Omote Ura Public / private face, Japanese
Priya Beloved one. Sanskrit / Indian.
Putri Daughter, Princess, Indonesian
Sakti Powerful, see “shakti” in Wikipedia
Topan Hurricane in Indonesian
Tu-te-wehiwehi Punga God of lizards, son of Punga. Brother of Ikatere in Maori legend
Vam Trust – translation in Hmong (Sichuan)
Zika Xhosa name meaning to understand thoroughly, to investigate

Other references

Here are some other info to help out the confused reader. Or maybe make things worse, depending! I have left out the chapter headings and some other references as I wouldn’t want to steal all your fun!

Term Type Description
Middle Bloc State The superstate whose name implies middle kingdom, i.e. China, or alternatively the middle way of moderate politics. Corporate Staters hate them, have cultural prejudices against them much in line with anti-semitism of Nazis.
Corporation of Attorney States State AKA the Corporated States. Citizens give the state ultimate power of attorney over their lives, but not by choice. Using propaganda and coercion, they rule with an iron fist.
Affiliates of Solidarity State Moderate, socialist kind of state. Apparently ineffectual but probably up to something.
Attorney State of Western Citizens State A member state of the Corporation of Attorney states. Probably in western Europe as we’d call it today. Maybe even the United Kingdom’s future designation.
Hurricane Canute reference As all hurricanes use a corresponding letter, follows Boudicca. Canute tried to turn back the waves with his royal prerogative, but failed. He was trying to teach that man, no matter how powerful, will always be subject to nature…
Hurricane Boudicca reference Boudicca comes before Canute alphabetically. She was responsible for flattening London when rebelling from the Romans and fits in with the British ruler’s theme.
Medusa reference Also refers to a jellyfish of the same name.
inconstant lover reference Christian Milne poem
Dog as the wolf that eats the world reference Fenrir
“But you can’t stop the mindfields” reference You can’t stop the signal, Mal.
Mt Pupuni Place The dormant volcano on Ikatere’s island home. Means “forbid, deny” “plug” or “veil, curtain” in Samoan.
The Schlusser Building Place Schlusser is german for Jailer or keeper of the keys. Student Halls at Ada’s Uni.
Raft City Place A floating community out in the middle of an ocean, somewhere. The Rafters follow the currents around to trade with the super states from the safety of international waters, but this is not a perfect plan.
Ada’s home town Place Although it is not named, Ada’s home town with its white fort on a black rock is based on Edinburgh, with maybe a hint of Glasgow creeping in.
The island Place Ikatere’s home. Based on Samoa and other Pacific islands, but pretty much fictional. Although if you were to look closely, you might be able to find a rocky point shaped like the tail and hindquarters of a rat somewhere.
Crouching Man Person An attempt at making a mythological symbolism of Fred.
Hair spec object / technology Like hair dye, only it can also straighten and so on, really change hair’s appearance.
Scenings object / technology Like screenings, but with holoscenes.
Holoscenes object / technology Holographic images, 3d and interactive possible.
Biote, Nanobiote, nanobiota object / technology nano bots, tech that was banned – see nanotech treaty and nano plague.
obfuscato object / technology something that hides information in computing.
witricity, witric object / technology Wireless electricity. Uses electromagnetic resonance. See Nikola Tesla’s work for more background.
HUD object / technology Heads-Up Display – a visual overlay that allows people to access helpful information on areas that are transparent, like car windshields or helmet visors.
Rail gun object / technology Gun that accelerates projectile rounds to speeds so fast they set the air around it on fire, using only electromagnetic forces to slide projectiles along a track or “rail”. An old sci fi favourite, these bad boys actually do exist and have been developed by the U.S. navy.
Shock Guns object / technology Tasers, let’s face it.
Fully Turing compliant object / technology Artificial Intelligence that can pass the Turing test which would indicate it was equivalent to or indistinguishable from human intelligence
Experana Language A language, decendant of Esperanto.
Ling Language Spoken by many in the Middle Bloc.
The Totalists Group name A now-defunct totalitarian state, precursor to the Coroporated States.
Parabellum systems Group name Derived from the latin saying if you want peace, prepare for war.
Education home cultural reference Institutions in which children are raised with the state in loco parentis. Active in most members of the Corporated states.
Colleagues cultural reference A staff member of the Corporated States’ bureaucracy. An elite figure.
Fertility Board cultural reference Corporated States eugenics programme, controls reproductive rights among its population.
Nanotech treaty cultural reference An international agreement to suspend all use of nanotech as it had emissions that were producing runaway greenhouse effect on the climate (probably contributing to Agung’s problems) but more importantly, caused the nano plague.
Nano plague cultural reference Nanotech malfunctions that caused humans to boil from the inside out.
Great Divide cultural reference The disconnect between the three superstates’ internets and communication systems.

 

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