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"Star Trek" and Real Science


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In reply to an earlier post on May 16, 2011 1:49:50 AM PDT
D. Kneeland says:
Photoscribe says:
"Well, considering how many stars and TYPES of stars that are supposed to be out there, anything's possible. However, I STILL don't see how this relates to the level of civilization of a star system.....

No matter how advanced any sentient race becomes, nature, especially on a cosmic scale, is ALWAYS going to overwhelm it."

Uhm, what? You lost me. Please explain.

In reply to an earlier post on May 16, 2011 2:13:22 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 16, 2011 2:14:52 AM PDT
M. Helsdon says:
"However, I STILL don't see how this relates to the level of civilization of a star system..... No matter how advanced any sentient race becomes, nature, especially on a cosmic scale, is ALWAYS going to overwhelm it."

It relates to the Kardashev scale - how advanced a civilisation is based on the amount of energy it has available.

At present, Earth is a Type 0 at about 0.72, approaching Type I, but a highly advanced alien civilisation approaching or at Type II, harnessing the output of an entire star, ought to be detectable by astronomical instruments. A Type II would have the capability to build megastructions such as Dyson spheres (swarms). A Type III might well be engaged in re-engineering its galaxy...

There have been SETI searches for a Type II, specifically with the characteristics of a Dyson Sphere but nothing has been found, as yet.

In reply to an earlier post on May 16, 2011 2:57:24 AM PDT
Ronald Craig says:
Bob, sorry if there was some confusion there, but by "orbital" I meant one of Banks' orbitals = a small ringworld in his Culture-verse.

I'd never heard the stuff about Gagarin's flight, though. Interesting... :)

In reply to an earlier post on May 16, 2011 2:57:53 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 16, 2011 3:00:47 AM PDT
Photoscribe says:
Msr. Helsdon:

Uh... you realize we're talking here of a completely fictional and also CONJECTURAL set of criteria, don't you? To affect a spectrograph reading of a far off sensor, a civilization would have to be 1) HUGE and 2) capable of harnessing goo-gobs of energy to BE detectable at any cosmic range and the Type III ain't never gonna happen. That is, unless the galaxy itself allows it TO be altered....! A race's love for the nature that produced it ALONE would keep it from going too far along those lines, or hasn't the last fifty years said anything to you, ecologically speaking....?

We'll probably be a long way along the timeline of Asimov's "The Last Question" before we ever harness the ENTIRE output of the sun...if that can even be DONE!

In reply to an earlier post on May 16, 2011 3:05:11 AM PDT
Ronald Craig says:
(Anyone know an emoticon for "ROTFLMAO + facepalm"?)

In reply to an earlier post on May 16, 2011 3:19:31 AM PDT
Photoscribe says:
Anybody know one for "Get thee behind me, Satan....?"

In reply to an earlier post on May 16, 2011 3:50:26 AM PDT
D. Kneeland says:
Photoscribe says:
Msr. Helsdon:

"Uh... you realize we're talking here of a completely fictional and also CONJECTURAL set of criteria, don't you? To affect a spectrograph reading of a far off sensor, a civilization would have to be 1) HUGE and 2) capable of harnessing goo-gobs of energy to BE detectable at any cosmic range and the Type III ain't never gonna happen. That is, unless the galaxy itself allows it TO be altered....! A race's love for the nature that produced it ALONE would keep it from going too far along those lines, or hasn't the last fifty years said anything to you, ecologically speaking....?"

Well you seem to be basing this assertion on the idea that the galaxy is like a conscious entity and if so, would even be aware of a civilization within it if it was. Also, if anything the last 50 years says nothing about a 'love of nature' to be honest, where does that idea come from?

In reply to an earlier post on May 16, 2011 6:20:56 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 16, 2011 6:30:51 AM PDT
M. Helsdon says:
Photoscribe,

"Msr. Helsdon"

I'm not French...

"Uh... you realize we're talking here of a completely fictional and also CONJECTURAL set of criteria, don't you? To affect a spectrograph reading of a far off sensor, a civilization would have to be 1) HUGE and 2) capable of harnessing goo-gobs of energy to BE detectable at any cosmic range and the Type III ain't never gonna happen."

You need to go and read up on the Kardashev scale, especially if you base your fiction upon science. It's was defined, quite seriously, by the astronomer Nikolai Kardashev back in the 60s; he's deputy director of the Russian Space Research Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences. It's not the only way of categorizing an advanced civilisation, but it's been widely discussed by serious astrobiologists, and utilised in science fiction for some time.

http://articles.adsabs.harvard.edu/cgi-bin/nph-iarticle_query?1985IAUS..112..497K

"That is, unless the galaxy itself allows it TO be altered....! A race's love for the nature that produced it ALONE would keep it from going too far along those lines, or hasn't the last fifty years said anything to you, ecologically speaking....?"

A galaxy isn't alive, and there's no "ecologically speaking" reason why gas, ice and rock can't be re-engineered, unless you believe, for instance, that the natural state of the Moon, Mars, asteroids etc. should be preserved, without any human exploration or exploitation of resources.

If you hold to that belief, then you are effectively saying that human activities should end at the edge of the exosphere, or perhaps exploiting terrestrial resources is morally wrong, so you won't use petroleum, coal, wind power, metals, plastics etc. in case it offends Gaia....

In reply to an earlier post on May 16, 2011 6:28:21 AM PDT
Photoscribe says:
Well you seem to be basing this assertion on the idea that the galaxy is like a conscious entity and if so, would even be aware of a civilization within it if it was. Also, if anything the last 50 years says nothing about a 'love of nature' to be honest, where does that idea come from?
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Yes I am, to some degree. Any entity that produces sentient life has to know what it's doing, eh wot?

And what's the matter, D.... haven't you noticed the world going distinctly GREEN over the last fifty years.... Rachel Carson, Greenpeace, recycling, non-petroleum automotive propulsion, Sierra Club, etc.etc., ad infinitum, ad nauseum, ad hoc committee....The world has gone so nature conscious over the course of the last half century, it's not even remotely funny.

Posted on May 16, 2011 8:04:17 AM PDT
Photoscribe,

Are you proposing a Gaia hypothesis, but for the galaxy instead of the Earth? Is there a name for that?

In reply to an earlier post on May 16, 2011 8:15:37 AM PDT
M. Helsdon says:
Bob,

"Are you proposing a Gaia hypothesis, but for the galaxy instead of the Earth? Is there a name for that?"

Seems to be a variation on the 'Selfish Biocosm' hypothesis, that the universe is intentionally anthropic, that is, life-friendly. Which tends to ignore that most of the universe is hideously non-friendly to life as we know it.

Posted on May 16, 2011 9:34:16 AM PDT
Speaking of Dyson Spheres ...

http://io9.com/5797597/are-we-surrounded-by-dyson-spheres

ARE WE SURROUNDED BY DYSON SPHERES? (Is the missing mass in the universe really advanced aliens who have built a huge number of cloaking-devices as Dyson Spheres?)

In reply to an earlier post on May 16, 2011 10:52:52 AM PDT
M. Helsdon says:
"ARE WE SURROUNDED BY DYSON SPHERES? (Is the missing mass in the universe really advanced aliens who have built a huge number of cloaking-devices as Dyson Spheres?) "

'No, and I'll give you three good reasons why not,' says the article.

In reply to an earlier post on May 16, 2011 11:04:39 AM PDT
Photoscribe says:
Gospodin Helsdon:

You need to go and read up on the Kardashev scale, especially if you base your fiction upon science. It's was defined, quite seriously, by the astronomer Nikolai Kardashev back in the 60s; he's deputy director of the Russian Space Research Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences. It's not the only way of categorizing an advanced civilisation, but it's been widely discussed by serious astrobiologists, and utilised in science fiction for some time.
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But it's such an UNRELIABLE way to gauge a civilizations' presence or growth, since the infrared radiation or luminescence could easily be a natural phenomenon!
=============================================================
A galaxy isn't alive, and there's no "ecologically speaking" reason why gas and rock can't be re-engineered, unless you believe, for instance, that the natural state of the Moon, Mars, asteroids etc. should be preserved, without any human exploration or exploitation of resources.
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How do you know this? A galaxy could very EASILY be a living thing! I mean, who's to say it isn't??!! It produces life, therefore, the spark of life has to reside within it as well.....

And yes, it MIGHT be a good idea to leave the moon, especially, alone, since it is so close and whose stability could easily be affected by mass displacement if mined and/or colonized. Only a fool wouldn't be mindful of this considering the possible repercussions.
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If you hold to that belief, then you are effectively saying that human activities should end at the edge of the exosphere, or perhaps exploiting terrestrial resources is morally wrong, so you won't use petroleum, coal, wind power etc. in case it offends Gaia....
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Har de har har.

Oh, and BTW, we're STILL paying for doing just that!!

You can exit smug mode now.....

In reply to an earlier post on May 16, 2011 11:21:41 AM PDT
M. Helsdon says:
"Gospodin Helsdon"

Nor am I Russian, though thank you for the term of respect.

"But it's such an UNRELIABLE way to gauge a civilizations' presence or growth, since the infrared radiation or luminescence could easily be a natural phenomenon!"

You are assuming that Dyson swarms are indicative of Kardashev II+ civilisations. This isn't necessarily so. Freeman Dyson was, if you read the previously quoted letter, offering one possible means of detecting advanced alien civilisations, with the note that it wasn't a conclusive method.

"How do you know this? A galaxy could very EASILY be a living thing! I mean, who's to say it isn't??!! It produces life, therefore, the spark of life has to reside within it as well....."

Perhaps you should post this in the Religious forums...

A galaxy is a collection of gas and dust, with some collected together into stars, planets and other concentrations of mass.

"And yes, it MIGHT be a good idea to leave the moon, especially, alone, since it is so close and whose stability could easily be affected by mass displacement if mined and/or colonized. Only a fool wouldn't be mindful of this considering the possible repercussions."

Given the total mass of the Moon, no conceivable human mining or colonisation could significantly alter its mass, unless you assume a Type II civilisation capable of dismantling it.

"Oh, and BTW, we're STILL paying for doing just that!!"

Using fossil fuels? Whilst our Industrial Age has had quite a number of drawbacks, it's better than living in a pre-industrial age, where life for almost everyone was short and unpleasant.

"You can exit smug mode now....."

Don't project your emotions and motives onto others.

Posted on May 16, 2011 11:47:53 AM PDT
Definitions of 'what is life' can be very tricky and we can argue it forever.

But, as far as I'm concerned, when the dust bunnies in my room start talking to me, then I'll start believing that the galaxy is a living thing. Either that, or I live in a shroom house (see my other post).

In reply to an earlier post on May 16, 2011 3:04:26 PM PDT
Photoscribe says:
That's right....mock me...LAUGH!

Just call me Solieri, folks, especially after I've been proven right.....(Remember, he outlived Mozart!)

In reply to an earlier post on May 16, 2011 5:04:52 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 16, 2011 5:06:18 PM PDT
Ronald Craig says:
"That's right....mock me...LAUGH!"

OK. LOL!!!

Well, at least now we know where you've been all this time: gone around the bend. Together with your execrably written books, I find this apparent further degradation of your mental faculties quite agreeable. (Edit: Sorry for forgetting to explain, Marilyn: I meant what you call "mental facilities" there.)

Looking forward to reading more of your work! :)

In reply to an earlier post on May 16, 2011 8:43:16 PM PDT
D. Kneeland says:
Photoscribe says:

"Yes I am, to some degree. Any entity that produces sentient life has to know what it's doing, eh wot?

And what's the matter, D.... haven't you noticed the world going distinctly GREEN over the last fifty years.... Rachel Carson, Greenpeace, recycling, non-petroleum automotive propulsion, Sierra Club, etc.etc., ad infinitum, ad nauseum, ad hoc committee....The world has gone so nature conscious over the course of the last half century, it's not even remotely funny."

Well there is nothing to suggest that a galaxy has any sort of intelligence.

As far as the 'green' movement goes, it's actually a movement that owes it's origins to the preservation movement that began at the turn of the twentieth century and ironically had a lot to do with the automobile. Despite this we have seen the growth of urban sprawl and extinction of a number of species. The reality is that the green movement is all sentiment and only seems to currently have any real effect today as a means to effect energy use in rather minute ways.

In reply to an earlier post on May 16, 2011 11:32:49 PM PDT
M. Helsdon says:
"Just call me Solieri, folks, especially after I've been proven right.....(Remember, he outlived Mozart!) "

Salieri. Almost forgotten today in comparison with Mozart, or his pupils Schubert, Beethoven and Liszt.

Posted on May 16, 2011 11:53:53 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 17, 2011 12:10:11 AM PDT
Ronald Craig says:
(Well, at least it's marginally more entertaining thaN the usual train wreck here.)

(Edit: corrected misspelling.)

In reply to an earlier post on May 16, 2011 11:55:35 PM PDT
Photoscribe says:
Get the hell out of this forum and don't come back, Craig.

Get out.

Now.

Litigation target.

In reply to an earlier post on May 17, 2011 12:07:29 AM PDT
Ronald Craig says:
You seem to be suffering from delusions of grandeur, in addition to those about your scientific savvy and writing abilities. Seriously, who the hell do you think you are to order people to leave this site?

As for the "litigation target" nonsense, do you need an address to have your lawyer send the paperwork to?

In reply to an earlier post on May 17, 2011 12:36:48 AM PDT
Photoscribe says:
"How do you know this? A galaxy could very EASILY be a living thing! I mean, who's to say it isn't??!! It produces life, therefore, the spark of life has to reside within it as well....."

Perhaps you should post this in the Religious forums...

A galaxy is a collection of gas and dust, with some collected together into stars, planets and other concentrations of mass.
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And that's all...nothing more. Poppycock. A good argument against that "dumb mass of gas" stand is per example: The Earth's perfect position to produce life, and intelligent life at that. If there were no inherent, active intelligence present in the galaxy, why, then, did we happen? You can't be silly enough to believe that Earth's intricate system of lifeforms and the solar system's maintenance of it happened accidentally can you?? The odds against this all happening by accident have to be so astronomical it would take half the supercomputers on Earth to calculate it.....
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"And yes, it MIGHT be a good idea to leave the moon, especially, alone, since it is so close and whose stability could easily be affected by mass displacement if mined and/or colonized. Only a fool wouldn't be mindful of this considering the possible repercussions."

Given the total mass of the Moon, no conceivable human mining or colonisation could significantly alter its mass, unless you assume a Type II civilisation capable of dismantling it.
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What have you been smoking, Helsdon? The moon is roughly the size of the US. I, for one, would not want to chance a significant colony on it disrupting its orbit , at LEAST affecting the weather and the tides! And don't get me started about La Grange Point!!

(And what civilization would be crazy enough to dismantle its moon? First of all, you can only 'dismantle' something MODULAR, and the last time I looked....most moons weren't...)
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"Oh, and BTW, we're STILL paying for doing just that!!"

Using fossil fuels? Whilst our Industrial Age has had quite a number of drawbacks, it's better than living in a pre-industrial age, where life for almost everyone was short and unpleasant.
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True, but lemme see....Lord knows how many animal species extinct....dead rivers, lakes, massive pollution from the turn of the century until just recently, clear-cutting of forests, the ozone layer problem, oil spills, etcetera...things COULD be better
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"You can exit smug mode now....."

Don't project your emotions and motives onto others.
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MOI?? I never, repeat....NEVER transfer/project, my firend....you, however, are, walking away, the most condescending and smug soul in the forum.

I'm sorry, old man, but you provoked that one.

(But at least you aren't the professional pain-in-the-neck Craig is....)

In reply to an earlier post on May 17, 2011 12:46:18 AM PDT
Ronald Craig says:
"The moon is roughly the size of the US. I, for one, would not want to chance a significant colony on it disrupting its orbit , at LEAST affecting the weather and the tides! And don't get me started about La Grange Point!!"

This is starting to sound really familiar... Oh, of course! The old joke I brought up last year (or the year before?) about all the people in China jumping up in the air at once and the force caused by the impact of them falling back to the ground knocking the Earth out of orbit. And you and MH went round and round over it causing massive seismic waves and tsunami etc etc etc. All because you seemed incapable of understanding the differences in the orders of magnitude in the forces that would be produced or required in such an event.

This is exactly the same thing. But you don't see that, do you?
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