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The Maxwell Group
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The Compass Rose logo
- The Maxwell Group's use of a compass rose as a logo implies they are involved in the shipping or transport industry, or make custom chart plotters like the one Sam Thomas repaired on the Christiane I
- The compass rose itself demonstrates the special knowledge owned by the Maxwell Group, namely its ability to navigate and/or control access to the Island, as a compass rose in general indicates how a compass reading must be adjusted to find one's true bearing
- This particular compass rose implies use on a map of a location with very unusual magnetic properties (due to the deviation in the 60 - 90 degree range)
- The outermost "chronograph" ring is unusual for a compass rose, but necessary here because either the deviation varies depending on the hour (or month) or else a deviation must be applied not only to the compass reading, but also to any clock reading - that is, there's a time deviation
- Additionally, the reversal of West and East indicates the cartographer is mapping from an unusual perspective (i.e., "through the looking glass") or else comes from a world that rotates in the opposite direction (where "east" is still defined as "towards the sunrise")
- Traveling east instead of west is a known problem in the Lost universe, as this is precisely what the ship Black Rock is recorded to have done after leaving Papua New Guinea with a load of gold to trade for slaves in Africa, which was to the west, but for some reason they went east.
- The name "Maxwell Group" may be a reference to "Maxwell's Demon," a thought experiment meant to consider questions about possible violations of the second law of thermodynamics. It involves a "demon" who sits at the gateway between two isolated bodies, and allows certain molecules to go through but blocks others.:
- Maxwell came up with a lot of things; amongst physicists he's most famous for the Maxwell Equations, which completely describe the behavior of electric and magnetic fields, and predict the existence of electromagnetic radiation, which is more relevant to lost.
- Indeed the new compass logo (as of Feb 2, 2008) would appear to depict at its center the (stylized and overlain) letters "E" and "l" which together with the compass may symbolize "Electromagnetism".