Author Topic: Episode #686  (Read 5716 times)

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Online The Latinist

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Re: Episode #686
« Reply #135 on: September 19, 2018, 02:04:31 PM »
I have to say, Daniel, that your response to the concept of terraforming strikes me as very akin to a certain poster's response to the idea of self-driving vehicles.  In both cases, whatever the actual merits of the respective technologies, your responses seem to be much more emotional than reasoned.
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Offline DevoutCatalyst

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Re: Episode #686
« Reply #136 on: September 19, 2018, 03:16:52 PM »
For what it's worth, on the episode of the SGU from Wednesday, September 30, 2015 -- Steven Novella said,

"We have to convince ourselves to a reasonable degree that there aren't any living microbes on Mars,
and once we've decided, yeah, okay, there's probably nothing alive here -- it's ours. We'll just do
with it what we want. ...if there is life, I agree, we should leave it alone".



Offline arthwollipot

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Re: Episode #686
« Reply #137 on: September 19, 2018, 08:57:26 PM »
Arth: Yes, I advocate extinction, but by a voluntary, gradual process, not by killing anyone. Just by a cessation of reproduction.

Yes, I understand the distinction. I apologise if I gave you the impression that I thought you were advocating killing people.

I think that the main problem with settling and terraforming Mars is the gravity. Would the gravity of Mars be sufficient to keep an atmosphere? I think any atmosphere we create on Mars would be more than likely just to leak away. Venus would be easier if we could somehow reduce the runaway greenhouse effect, but I think extraterrestrial settlements are likely to always be in sealed environments, at least until we can somehow leave the Solar system.

Venus is still very problematic due to its long days. A Venusian day is 243 Earth days, which would be very hard for Earth-evolved life to adapt to. A Martian day is slightly less than 25 hours. Humans and other animals and plants from Earth could adapt to the length of a day and night on terraformed Mars, which would be very hard on Venus. Perhaps the plants and animals could also adapt to the Martian year, almost twice as long as that of Earth.

If Venus could be made to rotate faster, then it would help. But to me at least that sounds like something very hard to pull off.

The length of the day does not matter on Mars because you'd be living underground. The length of the day does not matter on Venus because you'd be floating in a balloon city deep within the cloud cover and circling the planet with the wind.

"Terraformed" anything is nonsense and even the people who think it could be possible speak in terms of hundreds of thousands of years in the future, by which time the residents of a colony would have evolved into something we would not even recognize as primates, much less as humans, so human-adapted day length is moot.

If you have to live in the underground of Mars, or in the clouds of Venus, then the planets are not terraformed. At least not as I understand the definition of it.

And as far as I know, "terraforming" is an established concept. Your opposition to it does not change that.

It's been established in science fiction. It hasn't yet been demonstrated that we can do anything other than make our own planet warmer.
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Online brilligtove

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Re: Episode #686
« Reply #138 on: September 20, 2018, 01:06:44 AM »
Arth: Yes, I advocate extinction, but by a voluntary, gradual process, not by killing anyone. Just by a cessation of reproduction.

Yes, I understand the distinction. I apologise if I gave you the impression that I thought you were advocating killing people.

I think that the main problem with settling and terraforming Mars is the gravity. Would the gravity of Mars be sufficient to keep an atmosphere? I think any atmosphere we create on Mars would be more than likely just to leak away. Venus would be easier if we could somehow reduce the runaway greenhouse effect, but I think extraterrestrial settlements are likely to always be in sealed environments, at least until we can somehow leave the Solar system.

Venus is still very problematic due to its long days. A Venusian day is 243 Earth days, which would be very hard for Earth-evolved life to adapt to. A Martian day is slightly less than 25 hours. Humans and other animals and plants from Earth could adapt to the length of a day and night on terraformed Mars, which would be very hard on Venus. Perhaps the plants and animals could also adapt to the Martian year, almost twice as long as that of Earth.

If Venus could be made to rotate faster, then it would help. But to me at least that sounds like something very hard to pull off.

The length of the day does not matter on Mars because you'd be living underground. The length of the day does not matter on Venus because you'd be floating in a balloon city deep within the cloud cover and circling the planet with the wind.

"Terraformed" anything is nonsense and even the people who think it could be possible speak in terms of hundreds of thousands of years in the future, by which time the residents of a colony would have evolved into something we would not even recognize as primates, much less as humans, so human-adapted day length is moot.

If you have to live in the underground of Mars, or in the clouds of Venus, then the planets are not terraformed. At least not as I understand the definition of it.

And as far as I know, "terraforming" is an established concept. Your opposition to it does not change that.

It's been established in science fiction. It hasn't yet been demonstrated that we can do anything other than make our own planet warmer.

A wide array of technologies, grand and mundane, were established in fiction (or science fiction) a loooooong time before they were realized. IIRC ST:TNG inspired the creation of MP3s and MP3 players (that episode with Data playing 3 songs at once), but even if that's apocryphal, a lot of tech today was fiction yesterday.

Terraforming Mars or Venus is not at all politically, technologically, or economically feasible - today. There does not appear to be a hard limit (like lightspeed) that makes such a grand engineering feat impossible. Humanity has a long track record of turning "impractical today" into "reality tomorrow". The history of the Panama Canal is absolutely astounding from that point of view.
evidence trumps experience | performance over perfection | responsibility – authority = scapegoat | emotions motivate; data doesn't

Offline arthwollipot

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Re: Episode #686
« Reply #139 on: September 20, 2018, 02:11:44 AM »
Arth: Yes, I advocate extinction, but by a voluntary, gradual process, not by killing anyone. Just by a cessation of reproduction.

Yes, I understand the distinction. I apologise if I gave you the impression that I thought you were advocating killing people.

I think that the main problem with settling and terraforming Mars is the gravity. Would the gravity of Mars be sufficient to keep an atmosphere? I think any atmosphere we create on Mars would be more than likely just to leak away. Venus would be easier if we could somehow reduce the runaway greenhouse effect, but I think extraterrestrial settlements are likely to always be in sealed environments, at least until we can somehow leave the Solar system.

Venus is still very problematic due to its long days. A Venusian day is 243 Earth days, which would be very hard for Earth-evolved life to adapt to. A Martian day is slightly less than 25 hours. Humans and other animals and plants from Earth could adapt to the length of a day and night on terraformed Mars, which would be very hard on Venus. Perhaps the plants and animals could also adapt to the Martian year, almost twice as long as that of Earth.

If Venus could be made to rotate faster, then it would help. But to me at least that sounds like something very hard to pull off.

The length of the day does not matter on Mars because you'd be living underground. The length of the day does not matter on Venus because you'd be floating in a balloon city deep within the cloud cover and circling the planet with the wind.

"Terraformed" anything is nonsense and even the people who think it could be possible speak in terms of hundreds of thousands of years in the future, by which time the residents of a colony would have evolved into something we would not even recognize as primates, much less as humans, so human-adapted day length is moot.

If you have to live in the underground of Mars, or in the clouds of Venus, then the planets are not terraformed. At least not as I understand the definition of it.

And as far as I know, "terraforming" is an established concept. Your opposition to it does not change that.

It's been established in science fiction. It hasn't yet been demonstrated that we can do anything other than make our own planet warmer.

A wide array of technologies, grand and mundane, were established in fiction (or science fiction) a loooooong time before they were realized. IIRC ST:TNG inspired the creation of MP3s and MP3 players (that episode with Data playing 3 songs at once), but even if that's apocryphal, a lot of tech today was fiction yesterday.

Terraforming Mars or Venus is not at all politically, technologically, or economically feasible - today. There does not appear to be a hard limit (like lightspeed) that makes such a grand engineering feat impossible. Humanity has a long track record of turning "impractical today" into "reality tomorrow". The history of the Panama Canal is absolutely astounding from that point of view.

Heck, the Pyramids.
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Offline DevoutCatalyst

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Re: Episode #686
« Reply #140 on: September 23, 2018, 09:35:58 AM »
Instead of terraforming Mars we could blow it up. Get a trillion monetized views on YouTube for the effort. Shithole dead planet die! Knock cat videos into a distant 2nd place for a week.

Offline 2397

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Re: Episode #686
« Reply #141 on: September 23, 2018, 10:40:36 AM »
I'd like to crash Mercury into Venus, since neither is very useful on its own. Just have to avoid disturbing Earth's orbit in the process.

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Re: Episode #686
« Reply #142 on: September 23, 2018, 10:44:37 AM »
I think it would be way cooler, and even possible, to crash a comet onto Mars. One big enough to move it to a slightly warmer orbit with enough ice to make oceans and an atmosphere.


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Re: Episode #686
« Reply #143 on: September 23, 2018, 11:34:39 AM »
If I recall the scale of comets compared to the scale of Mars it would be a LOT of comets.
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Offline 2397

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Re: Episode #686
« Reply #144 on: September 23, 2018, 11:51:50 AM »
I think if you want to move planets, gravitational tugs rather than impacts are the way to do it, since the impact energy goes towards heating up the planet.

Online The Latinist

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Re: Episode #686
« Reply #145 on: September 23, 2018, 11:54:59 AM »
I think if you want to move planets, gravitational tugs rather than impacts are the way to do it, since the impact energy goes towards heating up the planet.

But if your goal is to warm the planet and add water...
I would like to propose...that...it is undesirable to believe in a proposition when there is no ground whatever for supposing it true. — Bertrand Russell

Offline 2397

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Re: Episode #686
« Reply #146 on: September 23, 2018, 12:37:58 PM »
Sure, just take that one factor out. Don't have to make as many trips to the Oort Cloud.

Offline Quetzalcoatl

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Re: Episode #686
« Reply #147 on: September 23, 2018, 04:48:26 PM »
Arth: Yes, I advocate extinction, but by a voluntary, gradual process, not by killing anyone. Just by a cessation of reproduction.

Yes, I understand the distinction. I apologise if I gave you the impression that I thought you were advocating killing people.

I think that the main problem with settling and terraforming Mars is the gravity. Would the gravity of Mars be sufficient to keep an atmosphere? I think any atmosphere we create on Mars would be more than likely just to leak away. Venus would be easier if we could somehow reduce the runaway greenhouse effect, but I think extraterrestrial settlements are likely to always be in sealed environments, at least until we can somehow leave the Solar system.

Venus is still very problematic due to its long days. A Venusian day is 243 Earth days, which would be very hard for Earth-evolved life to adapt to. A Martian day is slightly less than 25 hours. Humans and other animals and plants from Earth could adapt to the length of a day and night on terraformed Mars, which would be very hard on Venus. Perhaps the plants and animals could also adapt to the Martian year, almost twice as long as that of Earth.

If Venus could be made to rotate faster, then it would help. But to me at least that sounds like something very hard to pull off.

The length of the day does not matter on Mars because you'd be living underground. The length of the day does not matter on Venus because you'd be floating in a balloon city deep within the cloud cover and circling the planet with the wind.

"Terraformed" anything is nonsense and even the people who think it could be possible speak in terms of hundreds of thousands of years in the future, by which time the residents of a colony would have evolved into something we would not even recognize as primates, much less as humans, so human-adapted day length is moot.

If you have to live in the underground of Mars, or in the clouds of Venus, then the planets are not terraformed. At least not as I understand the definition of it.

And as far as I know, "terraforming" is an established concept. Your opposition to it does not change that.

It's been established in science fiction. It hasn't yet been demonstrated that we can do anything other than make our own planet warmer.

Even though we have not yet terraformed Mars or any other planet, I'm not aware of anything that would make is impossible in principle for us to do so.