Photograph via snooOG

The official Subreddit for the Isaac Arthur YouTube channel. This Sub focuses on discussing his videos and exploring concepts in science with an emphasis on futurism, space exploration, along with a healthy dose of science fiction.

Science & Futurism With Isaac

The official Subreddit for the Isaac Arthur YouTube channel. This Sub focuses on discussing his videos and exploring concepts in science with an emphasis on futurism, space exploration, along with a healthy dose of science fiction.

Posting guidelines

  • Courtesy, I'm a notorious stickler about that. We enforce reddiquete as a rule here Reddiquete

  • Spam, obviously, is no-go. I am okay with moderate self-promo by audience members related to the channel like 'my paper on asteroids just got published' or 'Analog just picked up my short story'. If you're not sure, ask.

  • Politics and religion, or a lack thereof, are not encouraged subjects here, particularly anything current events. I've noticed that as soon as groups start having those topics as regular features they become echo chambers. It is not banned, yet, but tread lightly. I entirely encourage polite and civil discussion of these where it is proper (e.g. "How would you govern a Dyson Swarm?") but that's not generally how it goes on the internet, I'd rather have none than that.

Example Good topics:

  • My videos, obviously, or the topics they cover. "I love/hate this Scifi or fantasy book/film, how about you? Other science videos, articles, podcasts, etc (in moderation) Science talk, geek talk, etc.

Bad Topics/Behaviours:

  • Your religion or politics suck, mine rocks The Election Calling people idiots, especially "That's not how thermodynamics works, moron", even when true :) Short form, keep it courteous, keep adult.


24,260 Subscribers


What's likely to happen earlier: reading minds remotely or beaming sounds into someone's mind remotely?

By "remotely" I mean non-invasively without having to physically attach the subject to any kind of device or technology

1 Comment
01:56 UTC


Would raising cattle on mars instead of earth be feasible (this would be done to prevent high CO2 emissions on Earth)

basically what the title says. Assuming you didn't want to put strain on the environment from mass cattle rearing, and assuming you had a way to easily build worldhouses, would raising cattle on mars be feasible? I was thinking of this because cows produce a lot of CO2 which you'd want on mars anyways. alternatively you could build O'Neil cylinders

23:28 UTC


Delta-v for getting around the asteroid belt?

So i'm working through some numbers for a heatsink thermal rocket for asteroid mining drones. How much delta-v does something need to get around the asteroid belt? Like if i'm shipping stuff to the Ceres mass driver from all over the belt what kind of delta-v budgets are we looking at? Dozens of m/s? Hundreds? thousands? What about getting around the gas giant moons?

22:30 UTC


How many people would choose a pioneer lifestyle?

For a scenario: Cheap and easy FTL is discovered tomorrow, turns out its easy once you know how, through macro quantum tunneling you only need the energy difference between the two end state positions no kinetic energy involved. And it handily turns out high energy cosmic rays have been doing the same thing and creating micro FTL jumps translocating lots of single celled organisms across the galaxy, so bippity boppity boo a billion breathable planets for you. So after spreading some plant seed and introducing some animals how many people do you think would take up the pioneer lifestyle on the billions of habitable planets now available? Perhaps seeking no taxes of government except that which their companions create.

19:28 UTC


Comprehensive List of the First Rules of Warfare

Is there a comprehensive list of all of the First Rules of Warfare that Isaac has mentioned in his videos? Besides generally making awesome content that entertains, informs, and inspires me, he also hits me in the funny bone from time to time as well. "The First Rule of Warfare" is one such thing. I also love the fact that it took me a little while to catch on to the fact that every single time he says it it's completely different. I was out for my nightly walk when it happened, and to anyone casually looking out their windows or looking at their Ring camera footage, they would have seen a man walking down the street and then inexplicably and spontaneously burst into laughter. I've been tempted to go back through and watch all of his videos, taking note of all the different variations on The First Rule, but then the logical and efficient part of my brain said, "Are you sure someone else hasn't already done this? No need to reinvent the wheel". So, does such a list exist? Cause boy oh boy, would I love to see every Rule on there lol

18:48 UTC


I just entered a VRChat world creation competition called the Space Jam, and I was surprised to see that our boy Isaac is one of the judges

12:32 UTC


Clean Energy From Space

13:04 UTC


Comparison of black holes Ton 618 and Phoenix A. The very small white oval is Neptune's orbit. Credits: Fahren29

12:43 UTC


If I'm building a robotic footsoldier and I only have enough budget for one type of optical sensor (I.E. camera), which wavelength of light should I pick for those sensors to operate at? Visible, ultraviolet, near-infrared, or far infrared (thermal)?

18:00 UTC


Do you think it would ever be possible to bring someone back from the dead? How would that work?

I always wondered if in the future, we'd figure out a way for people or even animals to be brought back from the dead (not talking about bringing back extinct species, as that's a whole other conversation; I'm also not talking about cloning either). I feel like there are a couple of ways of going about this.

One way I thought we could bring someone back to life is, if they had gotten >!decapitated, or dismembered!<, we use some form of bioprinting to bring back the lost body parts. (So, for example, if >!someone got their head cut off!<, bioprinting gets used to regenerate their body.) I don't know how that'd work, so feel free to speculate on that.

I'm not sure how other ways would work. I keep thinking maybe something to do with replenishing dead cells, using the person or animal's DNA to do so.

I also wonder if it'd be possible to bring back people who have been long dead too, like from decades or even centuries or thousands of years ago, but I doubt something like that could be possible, but who knows? Maybe even their DNA can be used to replenish their dead cells and bring them back. That would be crazy if that were to ever happen. It'd probably be way harder to do though, due to how >!decayed the corpse!< would be, and DNA can actually go away after a long period of time, though it apparently goes away after tens of thousands of years, so that'd be a long time for it to decay, which could give plenty of time to use the long deceased person's DNA to bring them back, if this is even possible, which I doubt it is, but I do still like to stay open-minded.

So yeah, I wanna see what you guys think. I'd also like to see what actual biologists think too.

05:39 UTC


What are the most efficient processes to convert matter to energy?

And a second question, what is the energy efficiency of nuclear fusion reactors that could be theoretically achieved versus that of the Sun?

19:23 UTC


I don’t understand the concept of digital immortality/mind uploading

Like, if you make a copy of your mind, your consciousness presumably wouldn’t transfer into that digital mind, it would be be a copy, and you as the original, would retain consciousness, just now with a digital replica of your mind, right? I could see a brain-in-jar type scenario where you’re only interface with the world is through cybernetic input/outputs, and then you could presumably live a digital existence, with virtual reality being as real to you as genuine reality, but I can’t see any realistic way to transfer consciousness form an organic mind to a digital substrate, unless something like a sole/a physical medium that contains consciousness is discovered by science, which then could be transferred.

15:45 UTC


Firedragon's Guide to Future Lifestyles

I was inspired by how Isaac has been using short stories lately to convey certain topics, so I decided I'd make a fun little series of narratives to encapsulate a handful of future lifestyles from the amazing to the horrific. So buckle up cause this is gonna be a long post!


Congratulations! You are now one of the gods, massive superintelligences powered by cosmic objects. You are utterly incomprehensible to beings of lower conscious states. Your conscious experience consists of entirely new emotions, sensations, and abstract concepts, all felt with a level of intensity only possible because of the sheer amount of computing power available to you. Every day, many ordinary sophonts merge with you, and pieces of you splinter off to become new identities. One day you will merge with all the other superintelligences in your galactic supercluster before settling into your new normal for a subjective eternity before the heat death of the universe, but for now you just enjoy your simulated experience of incomprehensible multiverses, altered physics and mathematics, and concepts that would be as foreign to a typical human as infinity is to an amoeba. You are a majestic, deathless crafter of worlds. You contain countless ordinary personalities within your mind, whole worlds unfolding in your imagination. You are the kind of being that would dwarf even most gods thought of by humans, and in your virtual worlds, you are even greater than that. This is the second most common lifestyle despite the low population of the gods since many ordinary folks end their first life by merging with a god and ascending to something beyond.


You are part of the vast majority of citizens across the galaxy. You are immortal and live in a post scarcity society. You never have to work aside from a hobby if you'd like. You live like a modern trillionaire would, with a huge mansion or even your own personal luxurious space habitat depending on what solar system you're in, sometimes even the size of a whole town all to yourself, and a massive virtual world where you can play god. Some people even own entire planets and even whole star systems with the infrastructure there built and maintained entirely by drones. You never have to experience any unwanted pain, and you'll never die unless you want. You can manipulate your biology however you please or even become an inorganic or even fully digital being. You can modify yourself to experience however much pleasure you want, and you can even merge with a superintelligence, or any other being for that matter. You can even manipulate your own psychology to fix personal flaws and even become psychologically altered to an optimal benevolent form as many of the youngsters are doing these days. You can have tons of digital backups of your mind just in case. You can have nanobots convert your brain into a machine gradually without killing you, effectively a true mind upload without any copying needed. You can speed up your consciousness to make the most of each moment or slow it down to skip ahead to the future. You can converse with decillions of beings like yourself, as well as the gods. You can learn whatever you want by downloading the information and can make whatever you want with nanobots. Death is almost unheard of for most people like yourself and really only happens through war (specifically the non-vitrual kind or ones that aren't entirely fought by drones against drones). You live in a typical solar system that is utopian and pacifist but will fight with drones if necessary, though your system is part of a cloud of systems around an inner sphere of truly pacifist societies incapable of even offending someone. Your fellow sophonts and the great superintelligences will protect you. You'll probably live for trillions of years and possibly to heat death if you're lucky. This is by far the most common lifestyle and has an immense degree of variety. High-tech zones are by far the majority of the civilized galaxy. The odds of being born any other way are at most 1 in a quintillion.


You were born in a low-tech religious commune onboard a generation ship traveling 30 lightyears from its home system, though that initial system was already on the outer edge of human colonization at around 457,000,000 lightyears from Earth. Your ideology is definitely a cult. Hence, everyone is being encouraged to cram into a tin can for a few centuries without being able to turn back. Life is pretty good, though. Thankfully, your cult accepts all modern medical technology and life extensions so long as it doesn't alter your human form or mind. Your cult splintered off from another larger one that allowed limited genetic modification to make people stronger, smarter, and more beautiful, which your relatively small minority despised enough to pack up and leave the large icy moon you'd been living on. You need to work a job to support the community, and virtual reality is frowned upon. However, poverty is unheard of, and everyone has access to the public vacuum train from one end of the ship to the other as well as phones, healthcare, free food, and a 5 story house. It's a very tiny community of around 5 million and is little more than a rounding error compared to even the most deserted backwater planets. You work as a drone operator who specializes in repairing the hull of the ship from collisions with interstellar dust particles. You're about to get married to a high priestess, which means you'll be moving to the front of the ship with the massive kilometer tall skyscrapers that reach so close to the center of the ship that the gravity at the top is actually lower. A series of self-replicating drones were sent ahead of your ship to begin building the Halo Ring you'll be living on. The Grand Matriarch of Faith, leader of the high priestesses, recently gave an intense sermon on how you must all breed like rabbits once you get there so the followers of the Truth can outnumber anyone else who dares to try and take your promised land. Once you get there in another 80 years, you plan to become an asteroid miner, which would be great since you already have immense experience with drone piloting and that's basically all mining really is these days.


You live in a run-down region of a planet-wide city that is otherwise fairly utopian despite its lower tech level. You are part of a very unlucky minority and charity groups around the world are working to improve your situation. But that's if you don't die first. You spend your days foraging for glowing mushrooms amongst the garbage of a slum as wide as Texas and reaching into the upper atmosphere, though the artificial planet you're on has thousands of times the surface area of Earth. You are one of tens of trillions still sticking around this neighborhood while drones work to repair the area from the radioactive ruins of a series of major terrorist attacks that happened within mere centuries of each other, slowly turning the place into the most dangerous district on your planet. If you had access to the news, you'd hear about how millions are being evacuated from the area each day and how the ruins are constantly shrinking as more of it gets repaired. You don't realize this, but you're actively heading into the territory of a decent sized street gang with a few dozen million members. They will surely capture you and alter your biology into a helpless cube of still conscious flesh to torment you for trespassing on their territory, and even if they don't, you'll die soon anyway. You're starving, sick, probably being tracked by mutant rats made by the gang, are about to step on a sharp, rusty piece of metal, and the lifespan in this place is generally just a few years. The sky is a metallic ceiling that rains rotting debris on you, and the only laughter here is cruel and sadistic in nature. Even the members of the gang live rough lives subsisting off of massive nutrient vaults of seas of liquid fat. Their roles in the gang are chosen for them, and if they step out of line, they will be publicly executed for insubordination. They do their jobs in the gang using rusty cybernetic implants that will probably kill them sooner or later. Thankfully though that's only in the under-hive, most hivers only have to contend with living in molds perfectly shaped for their body and getting nutrients injected while they push buttons in VR to perform various tasks for their corporate overlords who've been purposely delaying the restoration of the area so they can feed off people's desperation.


There is no hope for you. You were just living your peaceful life as an ordinary biological being in a low-tech zone when a rogue digital empire captured you and put you into a simulation of hell. Your mind has been greatly expanded and given tons of computing power, but only so you can suffer more as opposed to enhancing your intelligence or capacity to feel pleasure. Your personality has been splintered into innumerable identities, all going through every conceivable torturous scenario. Your new digital mind has been sped up so that it now experiences decades of torture each second. This will go on for centuries before outside forces can save you, but "save" means kill since the simulation is encrypted and defended by so many nanobots it wouldn'tbe worth the extra time suffering to remove them and directly rewire you. Death is your only hope, but of course, your psychology has been modified to be incapable of hope. You have been given every possible mental illness to add to your agony. Your nervous system has been expanded for maximum suffering. Entirely new negative sensations have been invented specifically for your torment. Not only are you constantly experiencing new torture, but you can never forget or stop reliving your previous torture. You've also been modified to be incapable of ever getting used to the pain or coping with the tragedy of it all. This truly is Hell as Dante intended it.


Pain isn't pain anymore, not for you, not for anyone (so you think). Pain is pleasure, pleasure is pain, you've been psychologically modified this way for reasons lost to time, and now you don't even realize you've been lobotomized. Go, spread joy into the world! Giggle as you dissect some aliens (they love it!), remove your skin, everybody deserves to be happy:)


You recently ascended to the throne of the largest low-tech region in Traingulum (let's both agree not to talk about what happened to your immortal father). You can't wait to get started with your new job! The first of your new changes is to give yourself an entire solar system as your palace (as you do), and build a dyson shell filled with pointless luxuries, cloned servants, and technology that toootally fits with the regulations of your particular low-tech zone. You order a nebula to be sculpted into a replica of your face (naturally), you prepare an ultra-relativistic trip to the Milky Way in your gas giant starship, and you make sure the lowly filth back home stays in their place by giving them the Wall-E treatment so hard they fuse into their mechanical chairs and become one single organism with no arms or sensory organs, just mindlessly wheeling around like bumper cars (totally normal).


Your group of human primitivists had the bright idea of attacking literally everything that wasn't human, and that went about as well as you'd expect. Unfortunately the faction that captured you doesn't like humans very much, and they don't have the same moral inhibitions that most factions these days do. And so quintillions of you were herded into a vast megastructure with two different sections. Section one consists of a futuristic city populated by various posthuman beings, with a vast wilderness full of humans stripped of their ability to create technologies and societies, serving as a food and entertainment source for the city's inhabitants. The second section, the one you've been assigned to consists of a rotting city where people are grown from fleshy, womb-like growths that drop them in a random location. There is no food in the city except for other humans, nobody ever truly dies, and everyone gets respawned in a random location making any cooperation beyond loose tribes impossible. Morals don't exist, true human nature is on desplay as people commit atrocities just to survive. In a way humanity isn't even being attacked by anyone else, we are our own punishment.


You can't remember how long it's been since the human's Imperium first announced that your world was their new holy land, eons ago perhaps, as only eons could explain the biological material embedded into the geological layers of your world. The humans didn't even fight, they just fell, fell from orbit unarmed by the quintillions. The land, the sea, the air, all of it is made up of human components by now. An unending wave of corpses sinking ever deeper into the crust of a once lush garden world. The sheer heat from the orbital reentry and compression of the human hoards is now enough to melt lead. The human fleet looming above your world, your Blood World, has only grown in number since arrival and your forces are finally giving into the endless waves of flesh that continue to crash against your world.

1 Comment
14:57 UTC


"We need to personalize assistive AI systems"

Automated Interpolation systems that don't know the user perform poorly:


Yet, few want their entire lives and personas plastered all over the clouds.

Hence carry the LLM overlay inside your pocket device and use 5G bandwidth to apply this.

As American companies need to abide by the Americans with Disabilities Act they must become agnostic to the different types of assistive devices the users have and hence publish a standard interface for your plastic (cased) pal who's fun to lug around.

The evolution of this system will be the cyborgs of the future with the smart electronics embedded inside their bodies.

14:50 UTC


Is there a way to create a reliable defense for a single planet in the event of all out interstellar warfare with no limits?

I find the relationship between the power of defense vs offense an interesting element of warfare over the ages, from the construction of the first wall to the creation of the atomic bomb it seems to swing between extremes.

I'm not the most well informed but my impression is that, as technology advances and as civilization becomes truly interstellar, that the balance swings wildly in favour of the offense and it becomes near impossible for even an advanced civilization with full control over a local star system to seriously protect specific large targets like planets in the face of the potential weapons that are available to use against them, like Relativistic Kill Vehicles or Stellasers, you can't quite build a bunker or wall to deal with those threats like you might have in the past.

Having said that, since I don't know much about the specifics I was thinking people here might be able to comment if I have the wrong idea and defense is more feasible than I thought. So I'm going to put together a little scenario:

Its 2000 years in the future, humanity has fully colonized our solar system and has the capacity to make extensive use of almost every resource available within it. Colonies have spread out across the galaxy but the reality of space travel means that there's no real political authority over anywhere much further than Alpha Centauri from Earth, star systems are basically independent nations in their own right. In the Sol System Earth is still the main focus of the human population, but the majority of industry and such has long since moved off planet and billions of people live off of the earth, in this situation even if the planet was completely destroyed human civilization in the Solar system would continue without much issue, and likely so would the governing institutions, despite the extreme trauma. A loss of Earth would be comparable to losing the most populous city in a country, horrifying, but probably not genuinely apocalyptic. The broad situation off earth is that its getting close to something like a Dyson Swarm, massive scale exploitation of resources and construction of major projects can happen comfortably at this point, essentially a type 1.5 civilization.

Unfortunately for the inhabitants of Sol, they have a problem with the long since colonized inhabitants of Tau Ceti, in this situation the Cetians have a comparable population and level of technology as the Sol inhabitants and can put together complex projects, especially military projects. For whatever reason relations between Sol and Tau Ceti have completely cratered, and Tau Ceti has gone into full total war mode, maybe its an angry AI, maybe they've all succumbed to insane fascism, whatever, the point is that the Solar System has every reason to expect that the Cetians will launch a massive surprise attack with no qualms at all about the amount of damage they will do, on the contrary they are probably trying to exterminate every person back in the Solar System, with as many resources and effort as an advanced space-faring nation of tens of billions can muster in a total war setting. I assume this will involve things like relativistic kill vehicles or worse, and the Cetian tactic will likely be to directly target Earth to kill as many people as possible and do as much damage as they can manage to Sol's morale, population, industry, ability to continue the war, etc. For political and moral reasons Sol will not launch a first or pre-emptive strike, they will only meet the Cetians in kind if they attack first, but they have to assume that the Cetians will open the conflict with the most destructive options.

If the inhabitants of the Solar system know that something is almost certain to happen, that Earth is the prime target, that their enemy is highly advanced like them, the enemy can't be dissuaded by the rules of war, but they have the resources of the entire solar system at their disposal along with potentially decades of time to prepare a defense, is there a way that they can protect the earth from any incoming direct attacks from other star systems?

14:31 UTC


Hypothetically, would an injection work as a method for achieving digital immortality?

I’m not talking about a copy, I’m talking about true mind transfer. Would it work?

01:55 UTC


Best ways to overcome long term effects of microgravity?

In any future that has humanity living off earth in the solar system is going to have a challenge of low gravity. We all pretty well know the effects that prolonged time in low gravity can have on the human body. Watching tv shows like The Expanse can give us an idea of how microgravity can affect the human body over generations.

It’s just not living on low gravity moons, in the belt, or Mars we’d have to worry about. Any regular travel throughout the solar system is going to have months of time spent in low gravity.

So what are some ways that humanity might be able to overcome or at least manage it?

01:51 UTC


What would be the purpose of humanity in a million years?

With the advancements in technology, gaining immortality and injecting our brains to the internet or leaving our bodily condition, what would humanity be striving and living for? If you'd even call it humanity by that point.

21:07 UTC


Next great filter

While i was walking around this morning I thought what might the next great filter be.

If a species reaches system level colonialism, would that push them into an eventual war?

If we started spreading out to the moon, mars, and belt eventually conflict would arise. Wars for independence, over resources, colonization rights. But now we don't have the saftey net of "I cant blow up the earth that's were i keep my stuff". Basically if most humans live off earth then rkkv are a more practical option.

Follow along?

17:45 UTC


What could be some interesting things to show for an interstellar Human Society, just starting out, where FTL is possible but is very very slow?

08:07 UTC


Are minecraft creepers biologically feasible?

Yeah, I know this sounds really stupid, but here me out. there's been a theory going around for some time now that the creepers are plants that spread their seeds through explosions. I think this could be done as I believe there is a plant that does something similar already (see Game Theory's video on this) but I doubt a plant would likely evolve to have the capacity to actually kill someone in an explosion. a fungus however... now that might actually make sense since it could lodge its spores into a now dead organism, and it would also explain cooming out at night, besides I'm sure that both alien evolution and gene editing could get us plant-fungi hybrids that decompose things like fungi, move around and kill like animals, and photosynthesize like plants. now I just can't stop thinking about some artificial death world crawling with exploding plant monsters.

11:43 UTC


What's the best example of Sufficiently advanced aliens you've seen in fiction fighting Humanity?

For me it was the Ceph in the Crysis Series. Basically what happened is that the whole plot of the Crysis Trilogy is that Humanity over the 50 year timeline (I.e. from 1997 to 2047 which the divergence takes from) gets its hands on some ceph technology and thus gets into an armed race with each other and it causes global havoc. They successfully reverse engineer some of the technology to make advancements into actual applications in the real world including life extension that allows humans to live to be 90 on average in developed nations.
Then the ceph technology wakes up (end of first game) and realizes how much its been profilierating on earth and taken by some primitives. As a result they proceed to lay waste onto Humanity by starting an enormous plague and the Ceph itself start to go battle with the human race (Crysis 2) that includes at least 120 million units in the second game worldwide.
I didn't play the third game but I did see the ending. What happened was that eventually while Humanity, after 20 years of brutally fighting these technologies managed to cause the Great AI or "Ceph Alpha" to finally be destroyed after a long slog.
That then woke up a single Ceph which is basically a gigantic biological ship 4% the size of earth to investigate what the hell is going on in this planet. You see that ship make a jump for intergalactic space and arrive from earth prepared to destroy the planet which you have to stop and barely do.
Seems epic? Until you realize you've been fighting the equivalent of a bunch of Garden Tools, and the final boss of the trilogy is the equivalent of fighting a single Gardener of a Highly advanced alien civilization.
The most devastating war in Human history that lasted 20 years at least and killed at least 2.4 billion people over the course of two games was the equivalent of a group of Rats and Early Primates battling some automated garden tools . And then when the Garden tools broke down or were destroyed some Gardener investigated why in this location then died by being killed by one of the early primates or rats on an 'unusual accident'
The novelization of the second game hints at this, and the third game outright confirms it. The Ceph are a species that's been around for half a billion years, and their technology is so far beyond humanity's that they are akin to gods. Humanity pretty much has no hope of surviving even the wayward attention of the true Ceph, and the Ceph that have been trouncing humanity throughout all three games are pretty much just cavemen with clubs. Appropriately enough, when the Ceph send one of their warships through the wormhole from the M33 galaxy, it looks like a massive, mechanical Cthulhu-eqsue monster that will effortlessly wipe out humanity if you don't stop it, and it's bigger than the moon.it's made clear that the "ship", which is 1/25 the size of the planet, is not actually what the Ceph would consider a warship, but rather just a single Ceph (inasmuch as the "Ceph" could be said to have one form) of which there are countless numbers in the galaxies they control. The equivalent of a single gardener walking over to prune his garden after an automated tool failed and then dying in a 'freak accident'. In Legion it's made clear that any victory on the part of humanity would be more because the Ceph didn't even notice we were there than that we actually beat them- we simply lack the capacity to know what the Ceph were actually after.
Alcatraz states that, based on the current data, the Ceph that we're familiar with aren't even cavemen with clubs, but rather automated gardening tools. The equivalent of an automated sprinkler system. Or maybe a Roomba.
Alcatraz: I mean, try and wrap your head around the magnitude of the imbalance here. Maybe you’re imagining us as a bunch of cavemen going up against a Taranis or a T-90 with reactive armor, but that’s not even close. Cavemen are people, too, Roger, they’ve got the same raw brainpower even if their tech is Stone Age. The Ceph are a whole different species. So let’s say Hargreave’s right and we’re not facing soldiers. Do you really think the world’s lemurs, say, would have a better chance against a bunch of gardeners? If a bunch of gardeners wanted to take out an anthill, would they attack the ants with formic acid and titanium mandibles? ’Course not. They’ve got sprays and poisons and traps and guns, things no ant has ever seen, things no ant could possibly defend against. So why the Ceph gunships, Roger? Why the exoskeletons that walk pretty much like we do, and the guns that fire pretty much like ours, and bloody artillery for chrissake that does pretty much what ours does? Why are Ceph weapons and tactics so much like ours, hmm?
Alcatraz: I don’t think they’re gardeners at all. I don’t even think they’re aliens. Not the real aliens, anyway. Not the real gardeners.
Alcatraz: I think they’re hedge clippers and weed whackers, left in the shed to rust. I think they’re the dumbest of the garden tools, programmed to bump around the property mowing the lawn while the owners are away because after all, this place is too far out in Hicksville to waste real intelligence on. I think they have basic smarts because where they come from, even the chairs are smart to some degree—but nobody ever read them The Art of War, because they’re goddamn hedge clippers. So they’ve had to learn on the fly. Their tactics and their weaponry look like ours because they’re based on ours, because we were the only game in town when those cheap-ass learning circuits looked around for something to inspire them. And I think a lemur wouldn’t have a hope in hell against a bunch of gardeners, but he just might stand a chance in a war against the Roombas. Organic? Are you fucking kidding me? Dude, even we’ve got CPUs made out of meat, we had neuron cultures wired into machines back before the turn of the century! Why do you think those blobs in the exoskels are any different? What makes you think the Ceph—whatever made the Ceph —what makes you think they even draw a distinction between meat and machinery?
Because I’m telling you, Roger, that line is not nearly as black-and-white as you seem to think. Trust me on this.

1 Comment
04:14 UTC


What would happen if I shrunk or enlarged a photon , proton , electron , atom nucleus etc by a factor of 10 ?

A character in a book I’m reading has the ability to shrink and enlarge things. Was curious what kind of busted nonsense they could try with this .

03:42 UTC


How does the nano fibers vs ship scene from three bodies problem hold up scientifically?

Warning , this scene is disturbing


00:46 UTC


Why do we need to know what consciousness is in order to transfer consciousness without it being a copy?

Forgive me if this is a silly question but it's something I don't completely understand

23:07 UTC


How would future space stations and/or space based civilizations have the capability to stay clean and stay hygienic.

I've always wondered how future space civilizations will be able to stay clean. For the most part., astronauts today are able to stay clean due to the supplies they receive from earth. However, in space, where biomass /volatile materials are more scarce. Other alternative options will need to be considered.

  1. How cakeep the airn we clean and odourless in space.
  2. How can we make soap and other sanitary products in space.
  3. How can we make space based medicines without any materials from earth?
19:34 UTC


How feasible are VR screens inside of eyelids?

I've seen a few concepts of VR/AR eye contacts, an I'd like a few opinions on the possiblity of screens inside the eyelid, sticking to the conjuctiva of the upper eyelid.

The only flaws I see with this is the lack of AR because the eye has to be closed to use the screen (doesn't matter since environment interactions with contacts is VERY far out), and the fact that you have to use a much bigger screen instead of just a small dot on the pupil that VR contacts use, because the screen doesn't move with the eye

There are a few reasons this might work better, at least for the time being:

capability of being wired - the screen can be wired to the side of the eye and have a connector at the temple that breaks if the wire is pulled protecting the eye. This wire could go to the ear or neck where a wearable computer or bluetooth communicator for connecting to the computer or phone could be placed. This wiring works in a prototype already, except it was used to interface a small communication device on TOP of the eyelid with a VR contact. This would be the same except the module on top of the eyelid would wrap around to the inner module, and this shouldn't prevent comfortable eye closing in the part the eyelids meet (where thin black eyeliner is placed usually).

The fact you're not using eyetracking since it's just a bigger screen and the wiring capability mean that you're avoiding the things that are preventing smart contacts from being used - the need to house gyroscopes, processors, batteries, communication devices etc is completely avoided.

18:24 UTC

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