North is associated with the top edge of a map; most maps are meant to be read with the north-end up. Once you know which way is north, you can then easily determine which way all the other compass directions are as well.
A compass normally points north; the compass needle is magnetized so its needle points towards the Earth's magnetic north pole. The north end of the compass needle is often painted red. Compasses can be fooled: if another magnet is placed too close to a compass, the compass will point to the magnet instead. In the presence of strong magnetic fields, a compass needle will spin erratically and be effectively useless.
Some compass roses are drawn to emphasize the north direction. Sometimes the north triangle is drawn larger than any of the other triangles on the rose, or it might be in a distinctive red color.
The NORTH command
Typing NORTH means GO NORTH or WALK NORTH. That is, direct the player character northward from their current location. Assuming there's an exit in that direction and nothing is blocking or hindering the character, the PC will travel north to an adjacent location.
Because N is also the English abbreviation for NO (which is also a possible command), players usually have to type out NO in full to mean NO except in response to an explicit yes-no question.
North in other languages
Directions like NORTH tend to be implemented both as room properties and as objects in their own right. The NORTH command, however, tends to be parsed or reinterpreted as a GO command acting on the north object.
|Code Compare: North|
|ADRIFT 4:||Move North to Kitchen|
|Hugo:||The n_to property and n_obj object|
|Inform 6:||The n_to property and n_obj object|
|Inform 7:||The north direction|
|TADS 3:||The north link property, the northDirection object,|
and the defaultNorthWall object