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Old 1st December 2018, 06:42 AM   #201
Myriad
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Originally Posted by kellyb View Post
Is the actual destruction of the planet actually reasonably likely in the next 1k years? By "destruction" I mean something along the lines of "no animal life forms will survive"...?

No, it isn't.

Nuclear war won't do it. "Runaway" climate change won't either. (Sorry, Guy McPherson. You're a crackpot.)

Make no mistake: they could **** things up on the planet pretty good, and (mostly) the former would bring about at least a few centuries' hiatus in large-scale globally-interconnected human civilization. Either would also deepen the already ongoing mass extinction event. But plenty of animal life forms would survive. Humans would be the least likely (at least, among land vertebrates) to go.

That applies to the favorite natural disaster suspects as well, asteroid strike and large-scale (i.e. Yellowstone) volcanic eruption.
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Old 1st December 2018, 06:43 AM   #202
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Originally Posted by This is The End View Post
Your philosophy is nonsensical.

It boils down to this:

"Don't ever begin to attempt something until you have every single step done already."

Umm.... if every single step is already done, then so would be the "something".



Me: "I want to drive to Chicago."

theprestige: "Are you crazy?? Have you researched which state Chicago is in? Do you know exactly how many miles it is? Do you know the price of gasoline next Tuesday?? And most importantly, have you driven to Chicago yet???"

Me: "Um, thanks for pointing out all of the obvious things I will have to do."


No one is under the impression that going to Mars is easy. You pointing it out repeatedly is nonsensical.
"I want to drive to Chicago."


"I don't see the point, but okay, sure. What's your plan?"

"Shut up."

"I mean, you don't have a car. You'll need one of those."

"Shut up!"

"You don't even know how to drive. You should probably get some driving lessons before you start thinking about a road trip."

"Why do you hate goals so much?"
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Old 1st December 2018, 10:37 AM   #203
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
"I want to drive to Chicago."


"I don't see the point, but okay, sure. What's your plan?"

"Shut up."

"I mean, you don't have a car. You'll need one of those."

"Shut up!"

"You don't even know how to drive. You should probably get some driving lessons before you start thinking about a road trip."

"Why do you hate goals so much?"
"I want to drive to Chicago."

"Well, see, that's your problem right there."
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Old 1st December 2018, 01:59 PM   #204
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Seems to me that once you've got someone on either Mars or Venus, your problems have only just begun.
Depends on the nature of your problem. If you don't care whether they survive...

Originally Posted by William Parcher
Maybe the only people who would go would be found to have some form of mental illness.
Yes! We just need to convince the crazies that going to Mars is a good idea...

Originally Posted by theprestige
at our current level of technology, and our current resource availability, it is a waste of effort to try to colonize Mars.
Depends on what you mean by 'colonize'.
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Old 1st December 2018, 02:13 PM   #205
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Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
They are reasonable, hell inevitable, things which will end life on Earth sooner or later.
Yep. And if we screw up this planet trying to colonize another one...

I predict that going to Mars will soon be the last thing on our minds, as we struggle to undo the damage we have done back home. The biggest threat to our existence on any planet is - us.
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Old 1st December 2018, 06:39 PM   #206
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Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
I never claimed to have "A PLAN" I just have a goal.

If the buildings burning down around you do you make everystop and explain their evacuation plan, submit it to committee, do a full risk-factor/reward study on it?

But I guess the species can just die at any moment because you don't think "it's worth it."
If we are worried about short term risk factors (centuries - millennia?), I would suggest that investing in prevention or mitigation strategies on earth would be much more cost effective than attempting to set up a self-sufficient colony on Mars. Those sorts of strategies have the added benefit of preserving some (or all) of terrestrial civilization. Prevention includes things like developing the means to divert an asteroid or comet on a collision course for earth and a better network of observational telescopes cataloging such bodies in our solar system to give more advanced warning. Mitigation includes building shelters and storehouses that could survive the sorts of cataclysms being discussed here.

If we're talking about the sun turning into a red giant, I think we can wait a while before trying to deal with that one.

One of the issues here worth pointing out is exactly what self-sufficient means in this context. We are worried that humanity goes extinct on the earth, so this Mars colony has to be at the point of not just being able to survive for a while without help from earth, but indefinitely. That means all the infrastructure to produce not just the daily needs of people on Mars, but also to repair that infrastructure as it ages and to construct replacements for things that can no longer be repaired. We don't want a Martian civilization that lasts 100 years or even 1000, but which can actually survive completely independent of earth, and that's a much higher order. What we really want is a Mars colony that could recolonize the earth or some other celestial bodies, and that's potentially an even more daunting task.
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Old 1st December 2018, 07:34 PM   #207
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I would add to that that if the goal is indefinite survival, we even need redundancy for everything on Mars. You'll need at least two chip foundries, two of every machine parts factory, two of every mine, etc. Which drives the price and minimum colony size up quite a bit.

Because if a meteorite puts a hole through one of those, you don't want to go "well, now we're screwed."

And that's not even counting more PEBCAK kind of hazards, like one dude going schizophrenic and hearing the Great Cosmic Ass telling him that he has to blow up the reactor coolant pump for His glory. We had people drive an airplane into the ground or into a building here on Earth, not to mention an inordinate amount of shooting sprees and whatnot.

And given the level of stress those guys will be under, I would expect people to go nuts even more often than on Earth. If nothing else, there's the factor that in a small colony you can't choose your coworkers, nor quit and find another job easily. Especially not IF Earth is actually gone. You're stuck working with the idiot who's only in that job because there weren't any other applicants for it. If someone is severely dissatisfied with their job, co-workers, services and everything, ultimately suicide or going postal may literally be their only way out.
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Old 3rd December 2018, 08:37 AM   #208
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Originally Posted by HansMustermann View Post
I mean, at least if it were yours, I like you, but that other guy? I don't even know him
A wise perspective.
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Old 3rd December 2018, 08:38 AM   #209
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Mars is already a worse post-apocalyptic wasteland than most post-apocalyptic Earth scenarios. The point is not that if we could survive on Mars we could survive on Earth. The point is that we can survive on Earth for a fraction of the effort it would take to survive on Mars.
You're missing the point. The point isn't the situation, but the timetable. With Mars we have all the time in the world to plan a colony. With an apocalypse on earth we don't.
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Old 3rd December 2018, 08:40 AM   #210
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
You're the one who said we could start now and be done in a few centuries. Where does that claim come from, if not a plan? If you're making the claim, but don't have the plan, then it's definitely your fantasy.
Now you're playing a game. Either engage in this discussion honestly or don't participate at all.

The discussion is not about the nuts and bolts and grams and ounces and litres. It's about whether we should do it and why. The general plan is simple enough, but you're clearly asking for an impossible standard of planning on my part. Deliberately, I surmise, in order to be able to dismiss any proposal out of hand. That's not an honest approach to discussion.
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Old 3rd December 2018, 08:43 AM   #211
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Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
I really trying my best not be snarky here but I don't know how else to explain this.

If you backup your computer you don't immediately back up the back up and back up the backup's back up into infinity.

Having a second established population of humanity off Earth just increases the odds of single event not ending the species.

I wasn't aware this would be such a controversial statement that would requires some fully realized plan.
It's pretty incredible that you had to type all this at all. I mean, we're talking to adults, right?

Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
Even if we colonise other galaxies, our existence is doomed in the long term.
In the extremely, billion-years longterm, it might be inevitable. Do we just give up? Stop eating like the colonists of Miranda?
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Old 3rd December 2018, 08:48 AM   #212
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
Now you're playing a game. Either engage in this discussion honestly or don't participate at all.

The discussion is not about the nuts and bolts and grams and ounces and litres. It's about whether we should do it and why. The general plan is simple enough, but you're clearly asking for an impossible standard of planning on my part. Deliberately, I surmise, in order to be able to dismiss any proposal out of hand. That's not an honest approach to discussion.
I'm asking for whatever planning you have done or plan to do. I'm asking you for the extent of the practical thought you've given to the problem, and the results of your thinking so far.

This is the only standard I'm asking you to for: Give me whatever you've got.

I don't think that's impossible at all.
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Old 3rd December 2018, 08:57 AM   #213
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
I'm asking for whatever planning you have done or plan to do.
First of all, again, since we're tralking about the general idea, I don't think a precise plan is necessary at this point. The OP asks the question, why are people 'obsessed' with Mars, and I think the answer is that despite the difficulties, it's still the best choice outside of Earth. We've already discussed why, to people for whom the survival of humanity and its culture is important, we should spread out to avoid extinction and, possibly, stagnation. So should we and why are covered.

Second, it's up to the people enacting the idea and putting it into real terms to make a 'plan'. I don't think JFK had to explain the exact launch procedure and LEO docking of the Apollo capsule and LM when making his famous speech about landing a man on the moon. He pitched the idea, asked that it be made to happen, and someone else went ahead with the planning. Same here: there are advocates for this mission and it's not their job to come out with the technical details of the operation, nor are they qualified to do so.

Third, the way I see it, you make a spaceship and load it with people, supplies and equipment, and send it on its merry way. Then you land part of it with said people, supplies and equipment so the crew can begin setting up a temporary camp and lay the foundations of the colony. When they're done they go back to Earth, with maybe some remaining on Mars. Rinse and repeat until the whole project is done and your actual colonists are on site, presumably close to a source of water and other ressources. Earth supplies the colony during the generations where its growth is dependant on the homeworld, until such a time as the colony becomes self-sufficient, and then there's the obligatory revolution and secession, reconciliation, trade and treaties, etc. Again, rinse and repeate for further colonies in the solar system and, old gods willing, further in the stars.
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Old 3rd December 2018, 08:59 AM   #214
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
You're missing the point. The point isn't the situation, but the timetable. With Mars we have all the time in the world to plan a colony. With an apocalypse on earth we don't.
No, we don't have all the time in the world with Mars. The finite amount of time before "apocalypse" on Earth is the hard time limit for both getting a Mars colony up and running self-sufficiently and for apocalypse-proofing Earth or something on Earth. It's the same doomsday point in time either way.
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Old 3rd December 2018, 09:05 AM   #215
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Originally Posted by kellyb View Post
No, we don't have all the time in the world with Mars. The finite amount of time before "apocalypse" on Earth is the hard time limit for both getting a Mars colony up and running self-sufficiently and for apocalypse-proofing Earth or something on Earth. It's the same doomsday point in time either way.
Except that no one's going to work on apocalypse shelters on Earth. At least with a mission to Mars we could work towards it in the short term. There's theory and there's practice.
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Old 3rd December 2018, 09:13 AM   #216
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
Except that no one's going to work on apocalypse shelters on Earth. At least with a mission to Mars we could work towards it in the short term. There's theory and there's practice.
But if the Mars colony is a form of apocalypse shelter why do you say "no one's going to work on apocalypse shelters on Earth" ? Why not make relatively easy survival plans down here first?

OK, a truly planet-busting impact would render the Earth shelter useless, but that's much less likely than a Chicxulub-type event that's eminently survivable. Hell, our distant mammalian ancestors survived Chicxulub because they lived in burrows. I'm sure we can make some excellent burrows, or modify existing tunnels for survival with ease.
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Old 3rd December 2018, 09:14 AM   #217
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
First of all, again, since we're tralking about the general idea, I don't think a precise plan is necessary at this point. The OP asks the question, why are people 'obsessed' with Mars, and I think the answer is that despite the difficulties, it's still the best choice outside of Earth. We've already discussed why, to people for whom the survival of humanity and its culture is important, we should spread out to avoid extinction and, possibly, stagnation. So should we and why are covered.
The thing is, Mars is not necessarily the best choice "outside of Earth". A moon colony, or self-sufficient bio-domes floating in the seas would probably have a better shot than anything on Mars. Spreading out really probably is the worst way to try to avoid extinction.


Quote:
Second, it's up to the people enacting the idea and putting it into real terms to make a 'plan'. I don't think JFK had to explain the exact launch procedure and LEO docking of the Apollo capsule and LM when making his famous speech about landing a man on the moon. He pitched the idea, asked that it be made to happen, and someone else went ahead with the planning. Same here: there are advocates for this mission and it's not their job to come out with the technical details of the operation, nor are they qualified to do so.
The difference is that JFK had been informed by the scientific community that making it to the moon was probably feasible within the near future. He wasn't asking for a technological leap 2k years into the future to be condensed into a decade.

I don't think you're understanding exactly how sci-fi "out there" the idea of making a self-sufficient Mars colony is. It really might not be possible at all without some borderline-miraculous scientific breakthroughs. We're so far away from those breakthroughs we don't even know which ones we might need, yet!
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Old 3rd December 2018, 09:18 AM   #218
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
Except that no one's going to work on apocalypse shelters on Earth. At least with a mission to Mars we could work towards it in the short term. There's theory and there's practice.
Who's going to work on the project of "Mars as an apocalypse shelter"? Musk and NATO? Are you arguing that a Mars colony is more "politically feasible"?
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Old 3rd December 2018, 09:18 AM   #219
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Originally Posted by GlennB View Post
But if the Mars colony is a form of apocalypse shelter why do you say "no one's going to work on apocalypse shelters on Earth" ? Why not make relatively easy survival plans down here first?
Human nature, unfortunately.

Quote:
OK, a truly planet-busting impact would render the Earth shelter useless, but that's much less likely than a Chicxulub-type event that's eminently survivable.
True, but either way the Mars colony survives.

Originally Posted by kellyb View Post
The thing is, Mars is not necessarily the best choice "outside of Earth". A moon colony, or self-sufficient bio-domes floating in the seas would probably have a better shot than anything on Mars.
I'm no expert, but the moon's a bit smallish and lacking in ores, no?

Quote:
Spreading out really probably is the worst way to try to avoid extinction.
What??? Ever heard of the eggs and basket expression? Something about a single basket.

Quote:
The difference is that JFK had been informed by the scientific community that making it to the moon was probably feasible within the near future.
Hence the short timetable. But we know a Mars mission is also feasible. It's just a matter of time and money.

Quote:
I don't think you're understanding exactly how sci-fi "out there" the idea of making a self-sufficient Mars colony is.
Educate me. Let's see how much you know about this.
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Old 3rd December 2018, 09:25 AM   #220
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Quote:
Quote:
OK, a truly planet-busting impact would render the Earth shelter useless, but that's much less likely than a Chicxulub-type event that's eminently survivable.
True, but either way the Mars colony survives.
But it's too unlikely to worry about.

Quote:
I'm no expert, but the moon's a bit smallish and lacking in ores, no?
It is, but we could scavenge earth for materials.

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What??? Ever heard of the eggs and basket expression? Something about a single basket.
Mars is a volcano, not a basket.

Quote:
But we know a Mars mission is also feasible.
Mission, or self-sufficient colony? Those are two VERY different things.
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Old 3rd December 2018, 09:26 AM   #221
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Educate me. Let's see how much you know about this.
Pretty sure we'd have to genetically engineer a decedent descendant species to withstand the low gravity, for starters.
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Old 3rd December 2018, 09:30 AM   #222
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
Human nature, unfortunately.
Human nature also includes the case where (say) a US Democrat Congress agrees with China, the EU and others to get the Mars show on the road. Then, several years later, the Republicans regain control and abandon this fabulously expensive project in favour of tax cuts.

Mars requires a rock-solid agreement that covers centuries and costs absolute fortunes. We can't even get together to tackle climate change. And this is without even considering the technical challenges of the Mars project.
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Old 3rd December 2018, 09:33 AM   #223
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Originally Posted by kellyb View Post
Pretty sure we'd have to genetically engineer a decedent species to withstand the low gravity, for starters.
I'm wondering whether this is a typo for "decent", "descendent" or "decadent". I presume you don't mean a dead one; there wouldn't be much point sending dodos to Mars.

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Old 3rd December 2018, 09:35 AM   #224
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Originally Posted by Dave Rogers View Post
I'm wondering whether this is a typo for "decent", "descendent" or "decadent". I presume you don't mean a dead one; there wouldn't be much point sending dodos to Mars.

Dave
Descendant! Sorry!
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Old 3rd December 2018, 09:37 AM   #225
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
First of all, again, since we're tralking about the general idea, I don't think a precise plan is necessary at this point.
You're talking about the general idea. I'm saying we should move forward to something more concrete and practical. A precise plan will be necessary at some point. You seem to be in favor of the idea. At what point do you think a precise plan will be necessary?

Would you at least agree that those who think the thing should be done as soon as possible, must necessarily come up with a plan as soon as possible?

Quote:
The OP asks the question, why are people 'obsessed' with Mars, and I think the answer is that despite the difficulties, it's still the best choice outside of Earth. We've already discussed why, to people for whom the survival of humanity and its culture is important, we should spread out to avoid extinction and, possibly, stagnation. So should we and why are covered.
Agreed. Should and why are covered. So let's move on to when and how.

Quote:
Second, it's up to the people enacting the idea and putting it into real terms to make a 'plan'. I don't think JFK had to explain the exact launch procedure and LEO docking of the Apollo capsule and LM when making his famous speech about landing a man on the moon. He pitched the idea, asked that it be made to happen, and someone else went ahead with the planning. Same here: there are advocates for this mission and it's not their job to come out with the technical details of the operation, nor are they qualified to do so.
JFK didn't have to explain it, but by the time he made that speech, he already had a plan in hand from NASA. Not the precisely detailed plan that would evolve over the course of the project, but he definitely had something. If someone had asked how he planned to do it, he could have produced documentation showing that NASA thought it could be done in ten years, and why, and what kind of problems they would have to solve along the way, and what kind of investment it would require. Broad strokes, compared to the detailed flight plan, but still something substantial.

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Third, the way I see it, you make a spaceship and load it with people, supplies and equipment, and send it on its merry way. Then you land part of it with said people, supplies and equipment so the crew can begin setting up a temporary camp and lay the foundations of the colony. When they're done they go back to Earth, with maybe some remaining on Mars. Rinse and repeat until the whole project is done and your actual colonists are on site, presumably close to a source of water and other ressources. Earth supplies the colony during the generations where its growth is dependant on the homeworld, until such a time as the colony becomes self-sufficient, and then there's the obligatory revolution and secession, reconciliation, trade and treaties, etc. Again, rinse and repeate for further colonies in the solar system and, old gods willing, further in the stars.
Makes sense.

So one of the first things you'll need to get started is some kind of launch facility on Mars, capable of sending humans to at least Mars orbit. What then? Do you envision the crew module coming straight to Earth from there? Or do they rendezvous with additional supplies and boosters in Mars orbit, before returning home?
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Old 3rd December 2018, 09:47 AM   #226
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
Except that no one's going to work on apocalypse shelters on Earth. At least with a mission to Mars we could work towards it in the short term. There's theory and there's practice.
I'm not sure I follow the logic here. People aren't interested in building apocalypse shelters on Earth, but they'll be interested in doing the same thing on Mars at 10,000x the cost?

I'm also not sure I buy the basic assumption that people won't build apocalypse shelters on Earth. I think if an apocalypse were imminent or in progress, people would quite happily divert huge amounts of resources to survival on Earth.

Take the three-year warning period for Chixculub II, hypothesized upthread. Three years is not nearly enough time to build a self-sufficient colony on Mars. But it's a *lot* of time to complete a crash program in asteroid diversion and/or shelters and storehouses on Earth.

Even the complete effects of a Yellowstone Event wouldn't happen immediately. There would be several years of deteriorating conditions - time which humanity would assuredly use to adapt and survive and prepare to rebuild.

A self-sufficient Mars colony becomes very relevant if there's a sudden acute total destruction event on Earth. And that could happen at any moment, without warning. If that's what you're safeguarding against, you may already be too late. Even if you started right now, you might be hundreds of years overdue. If that's your goal, then it's past time you got started. To not have a plan; to not even know who's working on a plan, and how far they've gotten, and what you can do to help - how do you justify that?
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Old 3rd December 2018, 09:55 AM   #227
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Actually, Arth brought up an interesting point. Why not a colony on the moon? The meteor that's going to wipe out all the life on Earth is going to take out the moon too? What are the chances?
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Old 3rd December 2018, 10:00 AM   #228
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Originally Posted by kellyb View Post
But it's too unlikely to worry about.
Don't be so sure.

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It is, but we could scavenge earth for materials.
That doesn't sound very self-sufficient.

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Mars is a volcano, not a basket.
I'm sorry, what?

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Mission, or self-sufficient colony? Those are two VERY different things.
Both.
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Old 3rd December 2018, 10:03 AM   #229
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
You're talking about the general idea. I'm saying we should move forward to something more concrete and practical. A precise plan will be necessary at some point. You seem to be in favor of the idea. At what point do you think a precise plan will be necessary?
Certainly not here in this thread.

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Would you at least agree that those who think the thing should be done as soon as possible, must necessarily come up with a plan as soon as possible?
No, I wouldn't. The plan I just came up with is very basic. Would you really expect me to calculate the orbits and payloads and to give you a list of personnel?

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JFK didn't have to explain it, but by the time he made that speech, he already had a plan in hand from NASA. Not the precisely detailed plan that would evolve over the course of the project, but he definitely had something.
I think you just made my point.

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So one of the first things you'll need to get started is some kind of launch facility on Mars, capable of sending humans to at least Mars orbit. What then? Do you envision the crew module coming straight to Earth from there? Or do they rendezvous with additional supplies and boosters in Mars orbit, before returning home?
Why is that important to the discussion? This is nuts and bolts stuff.
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Old 3rd December 2018, 10:05 AM   #230
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Originally Posted by Elagabalus View Post
Actually, Arth brought up an interesting point. Why not a colony on the moon? The meteor that's going to wipe out all the life on Earth is going to take out the moon too? What are the chances?
You might get quite a bit of debris from the impact, though. Mars is much more isolated, which is one of the difficulties.

Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
I'm not sure I follow the logic here. People aren't interested in building apocalypse shelters on Earth, but they'll be interested in doing the same thing on Mars at 10,000x the cost?
Again, it's just human nature. You can sell Mars on several points, one of which is survival of the species, which people won't care about, and the other is exploration, challenge, thrill, etc. You can only sell earth shelters on survival. Since I've already established that people don't care about that, guess which one has greater odds of being made?

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I'm also not sure I buy the basic assumption that people won't build apocalypse shelters on Earth. I think if an apocalypse were imminent or in progress, people would quite happily divert huge amounts of resources to survival on Earth.
And it'd be too late.
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Old 3rd December 2018, 10:10 AM   #231
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
Don't be so sure.
So you disagree with Myriad here?
http://www.internationalskeptics.com...&postcount=201

Based on what?
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Old 3rd December 2018, 10:11 AM   #232
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
Again, it's just human nature. You can sell Mars on several points, one of which is survival of the species, which people won't care about, and the other is exploration, challenge, thrill, etc. You can only sell earth shelters on survival. Since I've already established that people don't care about that, guess which one has greater odds of being made?
WHO is going to pay for it?
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Old 3rd December 2018, 10:14 AM   #233
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Originally Posted by Elagabalus View Post
Actually, Arth brought up an interesting point. Why not a colony on the moon? The meteor that's going to wipe out all the life on Earth is going to take out the moon too? What are the chances?
You wouldn't even need a full colony. Just enough of a storehouse to keep the necessary remnant alive long enough to start rebuilding on Earth.

Maybe that's the right idea for Mars, too. Not a self-sustaining colony, but rather a long-lived base camp for rebuilding on Earth.

Maybe the right approach is to think of the Earth not as a one-and-done habitat, but as a reusable, refurbishable, recoverable primary habitat - the first, best, and enduring home of humanity come what may. Other settlements throughout the solar system being used primarily as contingency habitats while recovering the Earth from whatever disasters may come its way.
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Old 3rd December 2018, 10:15 AM   #234
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That doesn't sound very self-sufficient.
So? We're talking about the survival of the species being the yardstick to measure success.
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Old 3rd December 2018, 10:16 AM   #235
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Originally Posted by kellyb View Post
So you disagree with Myriad here?
http://www.internationalskeptics.com...&postcount=201

Based on what?
Based on the possibility that a single volcanic eruption (Toba) reduced humanity to near-extinction just a few thousand years ago. I don't see a similar event to be eminently more survivable.

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WHO is going to pay for it?
Why are you asking me? It seems like you're demanding a level of precision and detail that is irrelevant to the discussion. I assume taxpayers and corporations would pay for it, were it done.

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So? We're talking about the survival of the species being the yardstick to measure success.
We were also talking about a self-sufficient colony. You made that point just a few minutes ago!
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Old 3rd December 2018, 10:22 AM   #236
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
You wouldn't even need a full colony. Just enough of a storehouse to keep the necessary remnant alive long enough to start rebuilding on Earth.

Maybe that's the right idea for Mars, too. Not a self-sustaining colony, but rather a long-lived base camp for rebuilding on Earth.

Maybe the right approach is to think of the Earth not as a one-and-done habitat, but as a reusable, refurbishable, recoverable primary habitat - the first, best, and enduring home of humanity come what may. Other settlements throughout the solar system being used primarily as contingency habitats while recovering the Earth from whatever disasters may come its way.
Agreed, and it kinda seems like von Braun wheel spaceships would be our best bet. Or bio-domes scattered across the Earth on land and sea. The "all life is adapted to earth's gravity" issue seems like the biggest technological challenge.
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Old 3rd December 2018, 10:24 AM   #237
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
You wouldn't even need a full colony. Just enough of a storehouse to keep the necessary remnant alive long enough to start rebuilding on Earth.

Maybe that's the right idea for Mars, too. Not a self-sustaining colony, but rather a long-lived base camp for rebuilding on Earth.
That's a very intriguing idea, at least as far as the survival-of-the-species requirement goes. Did you come up with it?


But still, what about your sense of adventure?
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Old 3rd December 2018, 10:28 AM   #238
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
Certainly not here in this thread.
I disagree. I think this thread is a perfectly cromulent place to talk about what it would take to colonize Mars. Putting a full stop after Should and Why is an entirely artificial constraint that you have placed on the conversation.

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No, I wouldn't. The plan I just came up with is very basic. Would you really expect me to calculate the orbits and payloads and to give you a list of personnel?
Transfer and parking orbits for Earth and Mars are already well understood. You won't need to calculate those right now.

Right now, I would expect you to at least be able to explain what prevents you from estimating payloads and personnel, and what steps you think would need to be taken to remove that obstacle from your planning.

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I think you just made my point.
Not at all. Kennedy only included the moon mission in his Rice speech because NASA had already presented him with a convincing, detailed plan that it could be done. He had waaay more of a plan at that point than you do now.

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Why is that important to the discussion? This is nuts and bolts stuff.
You seem to have adopted a rather binary view: Either no plan at all, or a complete and detailed mission plan. And because you don't have the latter, you insist that discussion be confined to the former.

I'm saying, it's a sliding scale. You start with an unplanned goal at one end, and finish with the successful execution of a complete and detailed plan at the other end. In between, you come up with a plan in broad strokes, and refine it by degrees. First you identify some general assumptions, then you examine them in greater detail, then you come up with a series of incrementally more specific lists of tasks that must be accomplished to meet increasingly specific project milestones.

I'm not asking you to slide all the way to a complete and detailed plan. I'm asking you why you're so opposed to making any movement away from having no plan at all. Hell, at this point I've got more of a plan than you do, and I don't even believe in Romantic Survivalism.
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Old 3rd December 2018, 10:31 AM   #239
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
Based on the possibility that a single volcanic eruption (Toba) reduced humanity to near-extinction just a few thousand years ago. I don't see a similar event to be eminently more survivable.
Maybe, but probably not:
https://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-22355515
And what are the actual chances of another Toba in the next 1k years?


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Why are you asking me? It seems like you're demanding a level of precision and detail that is irrelevant to the discussion. I assume taxpayers and corporations would pay for it, were it done.
Because your argument is predicated upon a Mars colony being more "politically" feasible than apocalypse-proofing Earth. It's your argument. So, you think the US government will pay for it via taxation?


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We were also talking about a self-sufficient colony. You made that point just a few minutes ago!
You'd need self-sufficiency for a Mars colony. If it's not self-sufficient, it's not a colony, but a "station" of sorts, and isn't the "spreading out" you envision.
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Old 3rd December 2018, 10:36 AM   #240
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
I disagree. I think this thread is a perfectly cromulent place to talk about what it would take to colonize Mars. Putting a full stop after Should and Why is an entirely artificial constraint that you have placed on the conversation.
No, that's incorrect. In fact, it's a lie since you know it's incorrect. I'm more than willing to discuss beyond should and why, but again if you're asking me for exact figures and calculations you're a) talking to the wrong person and b) being unfair to the people you're having a discussion with. You can support an idea without knowing exactly how many litres of water the first crew would have to tag along with them to the red planet.

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Transfer and parking orbits for Earth and Mars are already well understood. You won't need to calculate those right now.
Thank god. I might send these people to their doom.

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Right now, I would expect you to at least be able to explain what prevents you from estimating payloads and personnel, and what steps you think would need to be taken to remove that obstacle from your planning.
Theprestige, you're a smart person, and you're obviously able to have productive conversations, so why do you make ridiculous demands like this? Do you ask for the same level of detail in every discussion? Like, if someone says they want to make an omelette, do you request of them exact quantities and, upon being told that they don't have the recipe with them at the time, announce that they have, in fact, no plan for dinner?

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You seem to have adopted a rather binary view: Either no plan at all, or a complete and detailed mission plan.
No, that's YOU. I'm perfectly willing to discuss basic and general plans and proposals. You're the one pretending that if I can't give you exact figures, then I don't have a plan. This is gaslighting of the worst kind, and it's beneath you.

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I'm not asking you to slide all the way to a complete and detailed plan.
Then why do you ask me, above, "what prevents me from estimating payload and personnel"? It's ridiculous.
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