My new NetLogo model of world history (was created, tested and tweaked during few cold and rainy days).
That's how it looks at start. Here you can see the world in 3000 BC with four initial "polities" in Egypt, Mesopotamia, Indus valley, and China. "Polity" represent any political entity: chiefdom, early civilization, national state, or province (if conquered by someone else). Also, each "polity" was given the simple AI determining its behavior: how to communicate with neighbors, whom to attack, and so on:
Then we press "GO" button and world history begins. Here are the screens from one of test runs (see below).
Year 2286 BC. First contact (yellow line) was established between two local civilizations in China. These contacts are very important to spread the new ideas and technologies. Uncontacted civilizations are doomed to stay relatively backward. Besides, initial Chinese civilization has founded its first colony (red dot connected by red line):
Year 1816 BC. The first technological breakthrough: Manchurian civilization entered the Iron Age (Max.Tech = 2). You can see this on the map: this Manchurian civ is now represented by bigger circle. The more advanced, the bigger:
Year 1715 BC. Alas, the first Iron Age was very short and the new technology was lost. How could this happen? Most likely, Manchuria established contact with China, which was stronger and immediately tried to conquer the new neighbor. Attack failed but, unfortunately for all, war has lead to technological degradation before new knowlege has spread to someone else. Well, history is full of such tragedies:
Year 917 BC. Second Iron Age began in Mesopotamia. By that time, you can see two native civilizations of New World (hardcoded, they're always appear in 1000 BC) and few early empires in the Old World. The largest of them are Chinese and Ethiopian empires:
Year 50 AD. About 1000 years have passed since last screenshot. These years were full of wars and uprisings, empires have grown bigger, and Egypt is now the most advanced society in the world, they have already entered the Middle Ages (Max.Tech = 3):
Year 654 AD, the peak of the Middle Ages. The Old World is now dominated by four Middle Eastern empires whose power stretches from Scandinavia to Central Africa and from Spain to Siberia. Eastward of them, the two empires - Chinese and Central Asian - are great in size but relatively backward:
Year 1130 AD. The world map has changed again. Ethiopia is the most powerful empire in the world (controls almost all the Africa) while Northern Russia (Novgorod?) became the most advanced and reached Early Renaissance (Max.Tech = 4). Central America was conquered and colonized by Aztecs who independently reached the Iron Age:
Year 1465 AD. The world becoming truly globalized, for the first time all the main civilizations of Old World are connected by contacts. Alas, Northern Russia is not a part of this community, our people were conquered (once again) by strong and advanced Mesopotamian empire.
And besides, just look at South America! Do you see this tiny green dot? This is the first democratic society. Democracy can arise everywhere (but more likely in rich and advanced societies than in poor and backward) and spreads like wildfire (but only from more to less advanced neighbors). It was an evil joke of history that democracy has arisen in such a place (terribly backward and still uncontacted nation):
Year 1579 AD. First contacts established between Old and New worlds. Ethiopian Empire collapsed under its own weight. In Europe, Poland was first who entered the Industrial Age (Max.Tech = 6):
Year 1926 AD. You could expect the fast progress since beginning of the Industrial Age, but no, this didn't happen... today, in 1926 AD, we're still using roughly the same muskets and steam engines as our ancestors three centuries ago. World is still ruled by kings and emprerors, and democratic ideas are still unheard of for the vast majority of the world population:
The situation didn't much changed by 2017 AD. The same pile of warring empires stuck in early Industrial Age, Aztecs are still controlling the Central and (partly) North America, the most of Australia is still undiscovered... such is the world we live in, whe world without freedom and hope... yes, there are two tiny uncontacted democratic societies in South America (1,25% of world population) but their best hope is to stay uncontacted as lond as possible:
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Meanwhile, somewhere in the parallel universe... that's how mature civilization looks like. This is civilization with turbulent and violent past, but evolved into peaceful and democratic world community. And they're FOUR historical epochs ahead of our real world (i assumed that our current post-industrial society is Max.Tech = 8 while their Max.Tech = 12):
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If i'll have time and mood, i'll probably expand this model by adding cultures, world religions, socio-economic formations and some other stuff. The biggest problem is that this all may seriously slow down the running: 100-150 of complex communicating agents are too much for my poor computer...