Worldbuilding Stack Exchange Community Digest

Top new questions this week:

Would rubber carriage wheels significantly improve the efficiency of horse-drawn carriage travel?

So, suppose a medieval society knows how to create vulcanized rubber. (As long as they have rubber sap, sulphur, and the recipe, it shouldn't be outside of their capabilities. The process is super ...

alternate-history engineering transportation  
asked by Globin347 27 votes
answered by Nosajimiki 27 votes

A subset of humanity is immortal, how do I stop them from financially dominating?

Modern earth, no magic. only difference is that a small percentage (~1%) of the population are biologically immortal, they can die by accidents/murder/etc but are immune to old age and disease (they ...

immortality finances  
asked by cypher 26 votes
answered by Nuclear Hoagie 31 votes

Why would civilizations have no major technological development even after ten thousand years?

Basic Introduction (story background for anyone interested) I have a character whose punishment for causing massive genocide was immortality for ten thousand years. To be more specific, after his ...

magic technology medieval technological-development civilization  
asked by Yellow 23 votes
answered by André LFS Bacci 19 votes

How do I stop annoyed wizards from killing people all the time?

How do I stop annoyed wizards from killing people all the time? In my fantasy world, wizards are quite powerful, and they can kill anyone they know the location of with a thought. The usual methods of ...

magic society combat balancing-magic-systems  
asked by Firedestroyer 18 votes
answered by Nepene Nep 28 votes

Nuclear weapons with 1850s technology

Let's say a group of people in the 1850's had access to all modern knowledge of nuclear physics, but nothing else from modern technology. They have at their disposal resources equivalent to those of ...

science-based alternate-history nuclear-weapons  
asked by Zags 15 votes
answered by o.m. 20 votes

Clone consciousness using fake childhoods. Is it plausible?

I am working on a sci-fi story and need a way to clone a person, body and mind. I also want it to be done without "far future technology" where anything goes. I want it to be simple and ...

science-based biology technology consciousness cloning  
asked by Ambjörn 13 votes
answered by fibonaccho 18 votes

Is a wood-core sword the best use of the metal?

I am currently reading the Steerswoman series by Rosemary Kirstein, and the second book introduces us to a unique weapon used by Outskirter tribes who have very little access to metal. Rather than ...

reality-check weapons materials  
asked by Logan R. Kearsley 12 votes
answered by Starfish Prime 24 votes

Greatest hits from previous weeks:

Any good way for an AI to prove that they are an AI?

Say I were an AI, how would I prove to the general internet that I am an AI in 2021? I was thinking I might just do some complex math or something that proves I have above average intelligence but ...

artificial-intelligence internet  
asked by CiurkitboyN 70 votes
answered by Benjamin Hollon 42 votes

The erosion problem on floating islands

Even the tallest mountains will be ground to dust with time. Given, of course, nothing sustains them (like tectonic activity which prevents mount Everest from eroding away too quickly, even making it ...

geography geology erosion  
asked by El Nitromante 32 votes
answered by Trioxidane 34 votes

Would a submarine make a great spaceship?

I know a submarine would NOT make the greatest spaceship in the universe, but could it allow people inside to live in space? A submarine can resist pressure, can hold oxygen inside, and there is a ...

reality-check space spaceships  
asked by Tyrabel 90 votes
answered by Sean Boddy 151 votes

How many people are required for a healthy re-population of the Earth (Post-Apocalypse)?

In my particular Earth, much has remained after the human-killing virus, and nature is thriving - even taking over the cities. It's beautiful. But I have separated the healthy populace in orbit ...

science-based apocalypse near-future post-apocalypse genetics  
asked by Mikey 40 votes
answered by Jim2B 27 votes

What single change would have given the best chance for the Axis to win World War 2?

A common topic in alternate history fiction works is what would have happened if a major war had been won by the other side. These usually focus on the events after the war, and the change itself is ...

science-based alternate-history  
asked by vsz 146 votes
answered by Raphael 54 votes

What would happen if there was no wind?

Assuming that during the middle ages on Earth, all wind stopped. Some magic spell has made it so that air will no longer move faster than a gentle breeze from thermodynamics (the speed air moves out ...

science-based magic environment  
asked by Tezra 6 votes
answered by Bellerophon 17 votes

How would the human body develop under a different gravity?

What would be the effects of high or low gravity on human body development? How would the human body develop under a different gravity? Many science fiction stories explore the idea that people from ...

science-based biology physics humans gravity  
asked by Mike Nichols 24 votes
answered by Cort Ammon 16 votes

Can you answer these questions?

Could a slow rotating planet be protected by another's body magnetosphere?

I'm working on a slow spinning planet whose rotation period lasts around 24 Earth-years (about 8766 days). It would be a rocky planet similar to the Earth in size and mass orbiting a K- or G-type star ...

science-based planets astronomy magnetism  
asked by MoholyNagy 6 votes
answered by M. A. Golding 0 votes

How might Zygodactyl feet change if they adapted for semi-aquatic life?

I'm creating a fairly whimsical kid's fantasy world, so I don't need 100% accuracy- however, one of the major themes is respect for the environment (and spec evolution is a big interest of mine) so I ...

science-based creature-design evolution  
asked by cozymouse 4 votes
answered by Willk 0 votes

Mechanical-electric firearm ignition

For some time I've been thinking upon the concept of a firearm that uses a mechanical system to generate an electrical current for use in a electrically ignited firearm without the hassle of batteries....

reality-check weapons engineering firearms  
asked by Seraphim 2 votes
answered by Adrian Colomitchi 0 votes
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