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Old 5th December 2018, 02:41 AM   #321
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Originally Posted by HansMustermann View Post
Considering the cost of sending a rocket there AND back, I doubt that any kind of trade between Earth and Mars could possibly be profitable at the current tech level.
I agree with that in general, though as I said sending people there and back as tourists could, at least potentially, be profitable. It depends on how many people want to go, how many of them have the money to spend (I am an optimist and I think that there will be vastly more billionaires in the near future), and how cheap the trip can become (there are limits, but we are no where near them yet).

It's also why you might note that the other industries I mentioned don't require shipping anything back from Mars, except information (for instance the product of scientific work is just ones and zeroes, and while it's not free to get that back from Mars, it's monumentally cheaper than anything else).

So, anyway, no suggestions? What did you think of the suggestions that I made? A scientific megaproject or just tourist town? Not viable? Not viable today but possibly in the near future?
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Old 5th December 2018, 02:47 AM   #322
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Originally Posted by smartcooky View Post
It makes much more sense to me to build a small, self sustaining science station; maybe 10-15 people. Far less resources are required to keep a small number of people viable, and if that works, the size and extent of the science station can be developed over time as humans learn to live an work there.
Can you clarify what self sustaining means to you in this context? If you mean that they produce both food and energy locally, recycle water and other daily use items (clothing?) locally, and perhaps even harvest local water and air* to replace any that is lost, I can see that as potentially feasible. If, on the other hand, "Self-sustaining" requires that they be able to repair or replace broken parts, that's an entirely different issue. There are still things that will have to be supplied from earth, at least until some technologies far in advance of what we are currently capable of are developed.

*Or, produce breathable air from local resources.
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Old 5th December 2018, 02:55 AM   #323
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
That almost sounds like a step in a plan to colonize Mars: "First, search for an ecosystem."

But would you really deny the survival of the human race, for whatever paltry biochemical process might turn out to be present on Mars?
No and I don't understand what makes you think I would.

Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
For instance?
Didn't you say you read all of my posts in this thread?
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Old 5th December 2018, 03:02 AM   #324
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Originally Posted by smartcooky View Post
If you're thinking that the science will come as an inevitable result of colonisation, I think you have it the wrong way round.

The PRIME reason for going to Mars has always been the science, and it still is now. IMO, colonisation may or may not happen as a result of sending missions to Mars, and while I believe that the colonisation of Mars will eventually happen, and that we should be making the first (baby) steps towards that as soon as we can, I believe Musk's idea of sending hundreds of people, while not entirely bat-crap crazy, is not the best way of going about it.

It makes much more sense to me to build a small, self sustaining science station; maybe 10-15 people. Far less resources are required to keep a small number of people viable, and if that works, the size and extent of the science station can be developed over time as humans learn to live an work there.

Sure, there are going to be problems that will need to be overcome, such as power sources and both GCR and solar radiation. I am confident that these kinds of problem can be overcome. RTGs supplemented with solar seems to be the best place to start for power, and we don't have to entirely shield against GCR and solar radiation, just reduce it to acceptable levels. There is no "one-size-fits-all" approach to this, it will require a multi-faceted approach; shielding both the indoor environment and the astronauts themselves. IMO, active shielding will play a big part in the solution to this problem.
I presume by self sufficient you are only talking about energy, food, oxygen and water?
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Old 5th December 2018, 03:03 AM   #325
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Originally Posted by Darat View Post
I presume by self sufficient you are only talking about energy, food, oxygen and water?
Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
Can you clarify what self sustaining means to you in this context? If you mean that they produce both food and energy locally, recycle water and other daily use items (clothing?) locally, and perhaps even harvest local water and air* to replace any that is lost, I can see that as potentially feasible. If, on the other hand, "Self-sustaining" requires that they be able to repair or replace broken parts, that's an entirely different issue. There are still things that will have to be supplied from earth, at least until some technologies far in advance of what we are currently capable of are developed.

*Or, produce breathable air from local resources.
Yes.

Although with 3D printing improving drastically (for example, Rocketlab's "Rutherford" rocket motors for their Electron rockets are entirely 3D printed) I see no reason why simply supplying the core materials is all that would be required. Could those core materials be processed and manufactured on Mars from local raw materials? I don't know enough about 3D printing to answer this question.
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Old 5th December 2018, 03:05 AM   #326
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Is a Mars colony as realistic or far fetched,(chose the glass that is half full or half empty as you wish) as say an asteroid colony?
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Old 5th December 2018, 03:08 AM   #327
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
Didn't you say you read all of my posts in this thread?
Yes.

But okay, from memory you said "adventure", I think. I don't remember what else. But, and I thought this was obvious, when I said "for instance?" I was hoping you could flesh out at least one of those ideas, because I don't think anything you mentioned will motivate people to spend trillions of dollars any more than the survival of the species will. In fact I think they will be less effective at doing so. But maybe I'm wrong, and we can have that discussion if you are willing.

So if you want to make a case that one of those other motivations will in fact be a strong motivator to action, please do so.
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Old 5th December 2018, 03:24 AM   #328
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Originally Posted by Darat View Post
Is a Mars colony as realistic or far fetched,(chose the glass that is half full or half empty as you wish) as say an asteroid colony?
I see some disadvantages of an Asteroid colony as...

1. Further from Earth so a longer trip
2. Further from Earth so less sunlight for solar power
3. No gravity

I see some advantages as...

1. No re-entry required, just rendezvous
2. Insignificant gravity well so when it time to leave, you just leave.

Say, here's an idea; how about a colony on an NEO. Launch to land on it when its closest to the Earth, and wait until it comes back before recovering the crew.


There's plenty to choose from

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Old 5th December 2018, 03:47 AM   #329
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Originally Posted by smartcooky View Post
Yes.

Although with 3D printing improving drastically (for example, Rocketlab's "Rutherford" rocket motors for their Electron rockets are entirely 3D printed) I see no reason why simply supplying the core materials is all that would be required. Could those core materials be processed and manufactured on Mars from local raw materials? I don't know enough about 3D printing to answer this question.
Some of the elements involved in a c-Si solar panel :

Monocrystalline silicon (processed in stages to its final state)
Cadmium telluride.
Copper indium gallium selenide.

"The principal source of tellurium is from anode sludges from the electrolytic refining of blister copper."

" ... cadmium is produced mainly as a byproduct of mining, smelting, and refining sulfidic ores of zinc, and, to a lesser degree, lead and copper."

Taking such a panel as simply an example of the kind of tech this research outpost might need to replace, then I'd suggest they'd be hard pressed to locate, mine, transport and refine the minerals to produce such materials. Well, when I say "hard pressed" what I really mean is "find it utterly impossible (to the extent that it's such a daft idea that they wouldn't even consider it)".
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Old 5th December 2018, 07:01 AM   #330
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Originally Posted by Darat View Post
Is a Mars colony as realistic or far fetched,(chose the glass that is half full or half empty as you wish) as say an asteroid colony?
No only the eventual end of the human race is acceptably "realistic."
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Old 5th December 2018, 07:57 AM   #331
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Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
Yes.

But okay, from memory you said "adventure", I think. I don't remember what else. But, and I thought this was obvious, when I said "for instance?" I was hoping you could flesh out at least one of those ideas, because I don't think anything you mentioned will motivate people to spend trillions of dollars any more than the survival of the species will.
Well, the space race was sold as both adventure and beating the russkies. Survival of the in-group might be motivating, but not if the group is too large to be seen as anything but an abstract concept. That's my point. Adventure, yes, commercial opportunity, absolutely. And a Mars mission has all of this, while shelters on Earth only appear to survivalists.
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Old 5th December 2018, 08:12 AM   #332
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Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
I agree with that in general, though as I said sending people there and back as tourists could, at least potentially, be profitable. It depends on how many people want to go, how many of them have the money to spend (I am an optimist and I think that there will be vastly more billionaires in the near future), and how cheap the trip can become (there are limits, but we are no where near them yet).

It's also why you might note that the other industries I mentioned don't require shipping anything back from Mars, except information (for instance the product of scientific work is just ones and zeroes, and while it's not free to get that back from Mars, it's monumentally cheaper than anything else).

So, anyway, no suggestions? What did you think of the suggestions that I made? A scientific megaproject or just tourist town? Not viable? Not viable today but possibly in the near future?
The thing about scientific research though is that it benefits the most from having a large pool of qualified candidates, to choose the best from. If you had a colony of, say, 160 people, and they breed to sustain that general level, having a pool of whatever two guys graduated last year to choose your scientist from isn't going to yield all that much.

Science was also always a matter of communication. Including going to conferences, holding lectures in various places, taking part in debates, etc. None of that is helped by putting a few people on Mars.

And there's also the zero pilot problem, so to speak. The Japanese had super-good pilots at the start, but there was pretty much no effort made to use the aces from one batch to train the next batch of pilots.

The same applies to that Mars academia. A lot of theoretical research on Earth happens in universities, and those people double as the ones who teach the next generation, including teach them how to do more research. If you move a couple of genius scientists to Mars, where they might get to teach like 1-2 guys per year, and only that after a 20 year hiatus or so, I put forward the idea that you're not getting the best use out of them.

Basically there's this "Ascension" type BS idea that if you take a couple dozen of your best and brightest from a dozen fields and put them in an ivory tower with nothing else to do, the'll do so much science, everyone will line up to buy it from them. Actually, I put forward the idea that not only they wouldn't even make a dent in the amount of science produced by the TENS OF THOUSANDS of equally qualified scientists outside the tower, but they won't even be as productive as the same number of people that aren't hampered by communication problems (or in "Ascension" case, lack of communication.)
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Old 5th December 2018, 08:26 AM   #333
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Some would-be Mars tourists might choose to forgo the trip if they can instead view hi-def, three-dimensional, virtual reality presentations of Mars travelogues and also for being on the spaceship to Mars. But if you deprive the public of that then you might sell more tickets to tourists.
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Old 5th December 2018, 08:28 AM   #334
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Or we could just implant the memories of a trip to Mars. I think I say a movie about that once. Some guy went in to get memories of a trip to Mars implanted in his head. I stopped watching at the point so I assume everything went according to plan with no complications.
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Old 5th December 2018, 08:29 AM   #335
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Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
Or we could just implant the memories of a trip to Mars. I think I say a movie about that once. Some guy went in to get memories of a trip to Mars implanted in his head. I stopped watching at the point so I assume everything went according to plan with no complications.
Get your ass to Mars.
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Old 5th December 2018, 08:44 AM   #336
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I can't wait to see film of robots cleaning up the canals!

Ok - I'll get my coat...
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Old 5th December 2018, 08:44 AM   #337
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Regarding the gravity and health issue. It occurs to me that we only have knowledge of short- and medium-term physiological effects for two gravitational conditions: 1g, and microgravity. (As far as I know, short term physiological effects of lunar gravity were not very carefully investigated during the manned moon missions.)

A spinning space station module in earth orbit would be a reasonably economical way to investigate this key unknown, for Mars gravity. If long-term effects prove to be minimal, then the culminating test will require a volunteer to bring a baby to term in simulated Mars gravity. Either humans can maintain a complete life cycle in Mars gravity or they can't, which is a rather important consideration in any plan to use a Mars colony as a survival outpost.
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Old 5th December 2018, 08:47 AM   #338
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Originally Posted by Red Baron Farms View Post
Brilliantly done. I do see what you did there. Your plan has a flaw though.

Only 60 Years of Farming Left If Soil Degradation Continues

It's a temporary bubble. Not sustainable in its current form. So unless you want it to crash and burn just like a stock market bubble, best work on that and other sustainability flaws in your plan.

We just have to hope an apocalypse happens within the next 60 years, then.

Oh, wait. That's not right. Is it?
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Old 5th December 2018, 09:10 AM   #339
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Originally Posted by Myriad View Post
Regarding the gravity and health issue. It occurs to me that we only have knowledge of short- and medium-term physiological effects for two gravitational conditions: 1g, and microgravity. (As far as I know, short term physiological effects of lunar gravity were not very carefully investigated during the manned moon missions.)

A spinning space station module in earth orbit would be a reasonably economical way to investigate this key unknown, for Mars gravity. If long-term effects prove to be minimal, then the culminating test will require a volunteer to bring a baby to term in simulated Mars gravity. Either humans can maintain a complete life cycle in Mars gravity or they can't, which is a rather important consideration in any plan to use a Mars colony as a survival outpost.
Agreed.

If it doesn't work, space habitats would be the next logical choice.
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Old 5th December 2018, 09:27 AM   #340
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
Agreed.

If it doesn't work, space habitats would be the next logical choice.
I think the next logical choice would be to modify human biology and morphology to be optimal for the anticipated environment. The better adapted to the raw Martian environment people are, the less effort needs to be spent on reproducing an ideal Earth environment on Mars.
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Old 5th December 2018, 09:57 AM   #341
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
I think the next logical choice would be to modify human biology and morphology to be optimal for the anticipated environment.
Would we even be human then?
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Old 5th December 2018, 10:02 AM   #342
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I think that any long term off-planet inhabitation will eventually include some degree of bodily modification. With so many variables on the table it's hard to go "This or that will happen" but at the very least things like bone loss will have to be dealt with in most any off-world situation.
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Old 5th December 2018, 11:22 AM   #343
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Originally Posted by Myriad View Post
We just have to hope an apocalypse happens within the next 60 years, then.

Oh, wait. That's not right. Is it?
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Old 5th December 2018, 11:25 AM   #344
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Originally Posted by Belz... View Post
Would we even be human then?
It depends?

I mean, if you don't think that's human, then you're not just advocating for the survival of human thought, but for the survival of a specific, Earth-optimized human physiology.

And that raises a lot of (perhaps) interesting questions. Like, what exactly are you really trying to preserve, anyway?

And, do we really want to insist that humans persist indefinitely among the stars, but only if they remain physically optimized for bipedal stances on flat plains under 1g with a protective magnetic field between them and cosmic radiation sources?

I think probably the best human morphology for living in microgravity environments would be something like this:
- A barrel-like enclosure for all the organs, featuring shock-absorbent linings and fillers and one or more layers of radiation shielding in the outer carapace
- the outer carapace also being a sealed pressure vessel.
- Multiple sensor clusters around the surface for 360-degree views in a broad RF spectrum (including but not limited to 'visible' light).
- A pair of multi-jointed prosthetic arms at either end for brachiating, jumping, and tool manipulation
- ports for nutrient intake and waste elimination

If our cosmonauts had such bodies, then we could realize significant efficiency gains in spacecraft design:
- No need to build large pressurized enclosures for the crew. They could operate on scaffolding open to space.
- Reduced requirements for radiation shielding as an integral part of the spacecraft itself.
- Zero need to provide nutrition for useless legs: People don't need to support their full 1g weight in a bipedal stance, when they're floating in microgravity.
- Zero need to provide a spinning structure to simulate gravity.

But would such spacefarers still be human in their thought? Good question. I bet they'd diverge pretty drastically, over time. On the other hand, would our thinking today be recognizably human to the first generation of homo sapiens? We're products of our environment, Our environment might seem utterly alien to those early humans - and so might we.

So perhaps the problem of species survival is moot, because the "humanity" you intend to save was obsoleted thousands of years ago. Or the "humanity" you're setting out to save today will be replaced with something else in a few thousand years anyway.

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Old 5th December 2018, 11:55 AM   #345
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
It depends?

I mean, if you don't think that's human, then you're not just advocating for the survival of human thought, but for the survival of a specific, Earth-optimized human physiology.

And that raises a lot of (perhaps) interesting questions. Like, what exactly are you really trying to preserve, anyway?
Yes, it was more of a philosophical question than a pragmatic one. It just popped in my head and I posted it.

I don't know what the answer is. Am I interested in preserving human culture and history? If that's only it, then we don't need to preserve humans, just their records and some monuments on a bunch of moons, somewhere. Do I want to save the species itself? If so, is everything else secondary? Can we alter the species to a degree? At what point do we lose it? Or is my goal a combination of all that?

Food for thought, and I'm not done digesting yet.

Quote:
- A barrel-like enclosure for all the organs, featuring shock-absorbent linings and fillers and one or more layers of radiation shielding in the outer carapace
- the outer carapace also being a sealed pressure vessel.
- Multiple sensor clusters around the surface for 360-degree views in a broad RF spectrum (including but not limited to 'visible' light).
- A pair of multi-jointed prosthetic arms at either end for brachiating, jumping, and tool manipulation
- ports for nutrient intake and waste elimination
I think that passes the threshold of 'not human anymore'. AT this point we might as well alter ourselves to survive the earth apocalypse.

Quote:
So perhaps the problem of species survival is moot, because the "humanity" you intend to save was obsoleted thousands of years ago.
Indeed. Now we're talking.
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Old 5th December 2018, 12:03 PM   #346
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
I think probably the best human morphology for living in microgravity environments would be something like this:
- A barrel-like enclosure for all the organs, featuring shock-absorbent linings and fillers and one or more layers of radiation shielding in the outer carapace
- the outer carapace also being a sealed pressure vessel.
- Multiple sensor clusters around the surface for 360-degree views in a broad RF spectrum (including but not limited to 'visible' light).
- A pair of multi-jointed prosthetic arms at either end for brachiating, jumping, and tool manipulation
- ports for nutrient intake and waste elimination

Don't forget the loudspeaker for chanting "Ex-ter-mi-nate!"

(Why fight the alien monsters from space, when you can be the alien monsters from space?)

But you're talking about more than morphological changes (like Bjold's Quaddies and similar SF concepts of genetically engineered space-adapted humans). If you're altering basic cellular respiration (and replacing it with, what?) and basic protein chemistry (radiation shielding made of what?), you're basically rewriting the genome from scratch. Not only a different species, not even a different superkingdom, but a different tree of life, a complete evolutionary reboot.

I think we're more likely to someday develop Star Trek artificial gravity than accomplish that. (And by more likely, I mean extremely unlikely to a slightly lesser degree.)
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Old 5th December 2018, 01:46 PM   #347
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I don't think gravity is a hard limit per se, and definitely not something that needs designing a new species for. More like something that adds to the already insane costs, really.

I mean, if you can make a centrifuge in space, you can make one in a Mars bunker just as well. It will just have to have the floor a bit slanted, so when you add the vector to the existing Mars gravity vector, you end up with it perpendicular to the floor.

It adds to the cost and complexity, but it can be done.

Hell, unlike the belter thing from The Expanse, you could also do it to a hollowed asteroid. Just dig your habitat along a cylinder, then give the asteroid a good spin.
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Old 5th December 2018, 02:48 PM   #348
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Originally Posted by Myriad View Post
Don't forget the loudspeaker for chanting "Ex-ter-mi-nate!"

(Why fight the alien monsters from space, when you can be the alien monsters from space?)

But you're talking about more than morphological changes (like Bjold's Quaddies and similar SF concepts of genetically engineered space-adapted humans). If you're altering basic cellular respiration (and replacing it with, what?) and basic protein chemistry (radiation shielding made of what?), you're basically rewriting the genome from scratch. Not only a different species, not even a different superkingdom, but a different tree of life, a complete evolutionary reboot.

I think we're more likely to someday develop Star Trek artificial gravity than accomplish that. (And by more likely, I mean extremely unlikely to a slightly lesser degree.)
Well, my vision invests heavily in prosthetics, so I don't know about the genome stuff. The carapace would be 3D printed, with the organs installed at the same auto-creche where the organs are incubated and the brain receives its first educational imprints.

ETA: Also, Daleks are the wrong metaphor (and also a comparatively crap design). Think a surprisingly flexible robotic pony, with no head, that swings from scaffolding like an ape from jungle branches.

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Old 5th December 2018, 07:36 PM   #349
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Originally Posted by HansMustermann View Post
The thing about scientific research though is that it benefits the most from having a large pool of qualified candidates, to choose the best from. If you had a colony of, say, 160 people, and they breed to sustain that general level, having a pool of whatever two guys graduated last year to choose your scientist from isn't going to yield all that much.
I wasn't really trying to propose scientistists as colonists, rather I was trying to propose scientific projects as the motivation for funding building infrastructure both to get to Mars and to develop it's surface. For instance, a large enough project would require mass production of transit vehicles which on a cost/trip basis would be much cheaper than anything at a smaller scale. It would require sending workers there which would mean building housing and other infrastructure for them on the surface, perhaps including local energy, food, water, and air production.

None of this would be done with colonisation as a goal, but all of it would make colonization at least marginally easier.

I can't see us deciding to colonize mars either for the sake of the survival of the species or because some people think it would be cool (Belz suggests "adventure", I don't think that will do it, but I'll try to respond to his post separately later). But if there are some other things that can at least get the ball rolling that might make the idea of colonization more feasible.

Does that sound reasonable to you?
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Old 5th December 2018, 08:21 PM   #350
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Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
I wasn't really trying to propose scientistists as colonists, rather I was trying to propose scientific projects as the motivation for funding building infrastructure both to get to Mars and to develop it's surface. For instance, a large enough project would require mass production of transit vehicles which on a cost/trip basis would be much cheaper than anything at a smaller scale. It would require sending workers there which would mean building housing and other infrastructure for them on the surface, perhaps including local energy, food, water, and air production.

None of this would be done with colonisation as a goal, but all of it would make colonization at least marginally easier.

I can't see us deciding to colonize mars either for the sake of the survival of the species or because some people think it would be cool (Belz suggests "adventure", I don't think that will do it, but I'll try to respond to his post separately later). But if there are some other things that can at least get the ball rolling that might make the idea of colonization more feasible.

Does that sound reasonable to you?
It sounds reasonable to me.

I think an orbital shipyard, assembling science missions larger than anything that could be launched from the Earth's surface, would help get us closer to the goal, and do an amazing amount of science along the way.

It's time we started thinking about something more ambitious, and more productive, than the ISS.
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Old 6th December 2018, 01:36 AM   #351
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"Adventure" never cut it. It's not something we lost along the way.

E.g., the reason Columbus had so much trouble getting some ships for his sailing west was that everyone actually asked for a PLAN, and his didn't add up. His plan required a smaller Earth, or those ships would have run out of supplies and ability to be repaired before reaching India.

Oh, right, India. Turns out nobody was really motivated by just adventure spirit back then either. Usually they wanted to make money or get some resource or even some strategic position from which to be a pain in the ass for other people who colonized there. In Columbus's case, the motivation was to reduce the expenses on the lucrative trade with India, not just to plant a colony ANYWHERE.

E.g., a big motivation for spreading all over the place in the 19'th century was coaling stations for the newfangled steam ships. And before coal, it was resupply and repair places. Even having lots of wood to repair the ships was a valuable resource.

But, anyway, even when someone was given some ships to go see what's over there, people generally expected to see some return on their investment. Maybe not on the same trip, but, you know, find out if there's money to be made or a coaling station to be planted somewhere. They might do that on a different trip, or it might turn out it's not worth it after all, but the thought was there.

In fact we have more adventure spirit than ever. All the expensive probes all over the solar system and the robots on Mars are something that wouldn't have had any equivalent in, say, "the age of exploration." Because actually nobody was even remotely interested in exploring a place they can't make a profit out of back then.
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Old 6th December 2018, 01:42 AM   #352
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Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
I wasn't really trying to propose scientistists as colonists, rather I was trying to propose scientific projects as the motivation for funding building infrastructure both to get to Mars and to develop it's surface. For instance, a large enough project would require mass production of transit vehicles which on a cost/trip basis would be much cheaper than anything at a smaller scale. It would require sending workers there which would mean building housing and other infrastructure for them on the surface, perhaps including local energy, food, water, and air production.

None of this would be done with colonisation as a goal, but all of it would make colonization at least marginally easier.
If you can think of any scientific projects that need to be on Mars, and totally wouldn't work on Earth, or Earth orbit, or for that matter the Moon, I'm all for it. I can't think of any, personally, but you have my vote if you have more imagination than me there.

And if not, well, it doesn't matter whether it sounds good to ME, because you'll have to defend it against the conservatives screaming about financial irresponsibility when the next recession hits. And it will. America hasn't gone for more than 10 years without one. And, as I was saying, I wouldn't even blame them too much.
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Old 6th December 2018, 02:57 AM   #353
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Originally Posted by HansMustermann View Post
E.g., the reason Columbus had so much trouble getting some ships for his sailing west was that everyone actually asked for a PLAN, and his didn't add up. His plan required a smaller Earth, or those ships would have run out of supplies and ability to be repaired before reaching India.
I think you need to consult a map? India is EAST of Spain, not West.
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Old 6th December 2018, 02:59 AM   #354
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Originally Posted by HansMustermann View Post
If you can think of any scientific projects that need to be on Mars, and totally wouldn't work on Earth, or Earth orbit, or for that matter the Moon, I'm all for it.
How about "looking for evidence of life, past or present....... on Mars"

CLUE: you won't find it looking on the Earth, or the Moon.
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Old 6th December 2018, 03:03 AM   #355
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
ETA: Also, Daleks are the wrong metaphor (and also a comparatively crap design).
One of the first things you have said in this thread that I agree with....

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Old 6th December 2018, 03:06 AM   #356
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Originally Posted by smartcooky View Post
I think you need to consult a map? India is EAST of Spain, not West.
You do know what Columbus was trying to do when he sailed west, believing the earth was quite a bit smaller than it actually is, and entirely unaware that there was a huge double continent and another ocean between him and the places he was trying to find another route to?
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Old 6th December 2018, 03:20 AM   #357
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Originally Posted by smartcooky View Post
I think you need to consult a map? India is EAST of Spain, not West.
He was looking for a shorter western passage. Bumped into the Americas instead, which was fine as there was plenty good money to be made there too in the end.

eta: ninja'd by Pixel42
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Old 6th December 2018, 03:26 AM   #358
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Originally Posted by HansMustermann View Post
In fact we have more adventure spirit than ever. All the expensive probes all over the solar system and the robots on Mars are something that wouldn't have had any equivalent in, say, "the age of exploration." Because actually nobody was even remotely interested in exploring a place they can't make a profit out of back then.
I don't think that's entirely true - naturalists like Darwin were interested in exploration for the sake of it. But of course they needed to hitch rides on ships whose main purpose was commercial. I'm not aware of any such expedition whose purpose was entirely scientific.
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Old 6th December 2018, 03:32 AM   #359
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Originally Posted by smartcooky View Post
I think you need to consult a map? India is EAST of Spain, not West.
I think you need to consult a history book? Yes, the whole plan was based on the idea that the world is a SPHERE, and if you go far enough to the WEST you can get to a point that's to the EAST of you. And if the Earth had been as small as Columbus thought, and there wasn't another continent in the way (which they thought wouldn't be), then sailing to India in a straight line to the west would have been actually a shorter route than going around Africa.
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Old 6th December 2018, 03:34 AM   #360
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Originally Posted by smartcooky View Post
How about "looking for evidence of life, past or present....... on Mars"

CLUE: you won't find it looking on the Earth, or the Moon.
Ok, that's a start. Now explain why would it need people (or really any life from Earth) to contaminate the place we're trying to find life in.
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