Questions tagged [humans]

For questions about humans as we know them or slightly changed, their physiology, psychology, politics, society and goals.

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154 votes
20 answers
108k views

What is the minimum human population necessary for a sustainable colony?

How many humans are needed in order to sustain and grow a steady population in a habitable area? Assume resources are adequate and the environment is favorable. To further refine this question, let'...
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37 votes
11 answers
10k views

Would humans be able to derive nutrition from foodstuffs found on alien planets?

Suppose humans have developed the technology to travel between star systems. This might be some science-fiction method like warp drive, jump drive, peanut butter drive, hyperspace drive or whatever, ...
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63 votes
15 answers
40k views

Would the human body support living on planets with a greater gravity than Earth?

I once read a novel about a prison-planet which was chosen to make the prisoners suffer. One of the different "tortures" was a gravity three times higher than that on Earth. Would the human body ...
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20 votes
5 answers
8k views

What would be the tallest possible height for humanlike creatures in earthlike conditions?

This is about "giants" inhabiting a fictional earth-like planet somewhere in the Universe (like those in the movie Prometheus, for example). Assuming that all the conditions (temperature, gravity, ...
25 votes
1 answer
5k views

How to make a flying human

We are in a future where genetics has advanced to a point where arbitrary modifications can be done to living beings. Now a geneticist wants to make a flying human. That is, he wants to modify a human ...
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48 votes
7 answers
34k views

If accelerated natural healing were to occur, what would happen to the human body?

The Details: The human body is capable of impressive acts of self-repair, but such processes take a lot of time, and can take a toll on the body. Infection or other complications can also develop, and ...
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58 votes
6 answers
38k views

If we put humans on planets with atmospheres different from Earth's atmosphere, but still containing oxygen, would humans be able to breathe?

From Wikipedia: By volume, dry air contains 78.09% nitrogen, 20.95% oxygen, 0.93% argon, 0.039% carbon dioxide, and small amounts of other gases. For example, would humans be able to survive in ...
118 votes
17 answers
15k views

How many humans can I abduct without getting noticed?

Humans as Pets is now a thing. But not for AI (as in the linked question) but for the aliens. This celebrity was seen with their human pet and now every alien kid is begging their parent to get one ...
31 votes
5 answers
9k views

What would be the consequences for Earth if the moon disappeared?

Scenario: The Moon disappears slowly -- within 3 days. It is a result of natural causes and we don't have any control over this disaster. What will be the Major Effects On Earth and life on Earth?
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8 votes
3 answers
17k views

What would humans wings need to be like to fly? [duplicate]

How would it work for a human to have wings and how would they be able to fly? What wings would make the most sense, feathered, webbed etc.? How would it make sense for it to connect to their own ...
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31 votes
6 answers
8k views

Does living without access to sunlight for extended periods have known physical or psychological effects on humans?

Humans (even programmers :-) ) are used to having some access to natural light, but in a colony in space, on the dark side of a tidally-locked planet, or underground (for example) this won't happen. ...
6 votes
3 answers
2k views

Effect of longer day/night cycle on human sleeping patterns

So in a setting I'm developing, a moon orbits a gas giant once every four days. It naturally is tidally locked to the parent body. Halfway through the day part of the cycle there is a two hour solar ...
8 votes
2 answers
670 views

Surviving the world of zombie mosquitoes

Some Details Suppose an Earth-like world with the following changes: Atmosphere: 67% nitrogen, 31% oxygen, 2% other Average surface temperature: 16.7° C (62° F) Day/night cycle: 20 hours Gravity: 0....
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24 votes
7 answers
41k views

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 ...
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20 votes
1 answer
6k views

Anatomically Correct: 4-legged sapient creatures (“centaurs” etc.)

This is a part of the Anatomically Correct series. If a magic-free fantasy/SF world were to have naturally evolved hexapods as humanoid as possible, living among bipedal humanoids, how would they ...
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78 votes
12 answers
11k views

How does the government cover up alien crash landings?

One night a spacecraft of extraterrestrial origin crash-landed in the densely populated city of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The force of the impact leveled the entire city within a radius of 1 ...
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50 votes
12 answers
7k views

How would a Martian colony be able to celebrate Christmas?

Accept that we had a reason to go to Mars, managed to build a colony there, and what we found on Mars is valuable enough to ship back to Earth. There is now a self sustainable colony living under the ...
65 votes
30 answers
10k views

How can humans coexist with an intelligent carnivorous species?

This is about a world which is quite similar to Earth in many respects. It has continents, oceans, mountains, fjords, humans, and every other property Slartibartfast might be more or less proud of in ...
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10 votes
18 answers
26k views

How can I kill every human on earth? [closed]

One day, "God" said to me: You need to eliminate the humans race! So, I was thinking at this problem: How can I kill every human on the planet (and then kill myself)? Some ideas: Nuclear Bomb - ...
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8 votes
1 answer
682 views

The limits of human biology: atmospheric tolerances (#1)

This is the first question in a series on the physical limits of the human body. The intent of this series is to, illustrate the upper and lower limits of human biology for the purpose of building ...
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11 votes
7 answers
7k views

Is it possible to dodge bullets? [closed]

It seems that a human can't dodge a bullet once it is shot. That has been made rather clear by the articles I read. But is it possible (in a story context of course, I'm not trying this IRL :p) to ...
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5 votes
4 answers
531 views

Early Army without foraging: How do we keep ourselves supplied in the field?

In a previous question we determined that to survive on an alien planet, we'd be heavily reliant on stuff we brought with us. Whatever plants we could convince to grow that we happened to have on hand,...
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5 votes
1 answer
353 views

Would Rubberizing Benefit People and If So, How?

This is an extension of What Weapons Would Benefit From the Rubberizing Enchantment? and covers people instead of items. Basically, when someone kills a Plop with an item, that item is Rubberized; ...
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52 votes
19 answers
19k views

How to conceal my immortality without hiding for a hundred years?

In my story, I have this character that cannot die and cannot grow old. She got this from a curse. When ordinary people see her, she probably looks like 20 or so. How can I make it so that nobody ...
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53 votes
21 answers
7k views

How would humans adapt if low-wage labor was done by robots?

Background: Nearly all low-wage labor is done by humanoid robots (retail, factories, transport, sanitation, construction, mining, and similar fields). These robots have all the physical capabilities ...
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52 votes
5 answers
9k views

How long would people live in the US if an immortality treatment was available?

Very narrow question: assuming an immortality treatment keeping people at a biological age of a fit 30's, free of infections and cancers & ruling out death by aging, how long would people live (in ...
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12 votes
2 answers
6k views

What would be the major body changes if we were obligate carnivores?

As you see my other question What would be the major changes to our body if we were herbivores?. Instead of being herbivores, what would happen if we were obligate carnivores?
15 votes
11 answers
4k views

How do you establish identity when people can change their appearance at will?

Building on the universe established in this question, what happens to identity verification when someone's physical appearance and genetic code are modifiable at any time? Review of universe rules: ...
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8 votes
10 answers
1k views

If humans were photosynthetic, would there be an impetus for technological development?

Picture this, humans (or human-like sentient beings) having the innate ability to photosynthesise their food in a similar manner to plants - thus providing all the nutrients required for sustained ...
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9 votes
4 answers
732 views

Little Green EARTH Men?

This question is based on the articles saying that the Mongoloid body plan was all due to an individual mutation from 35,000 years ago. In science fiction, humanoid aliens that aren't of the human ...
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6 votes
3 answers
923 views

How long would a modern human population need to be separated in order to suffer allopatric speciation?

A sizeable human population was separated from the rest of the Earth people for a long time, long enough for allopatric speciation to happen. They are no longer Homo sapiens and now have ZERO ...
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76 votes
9 answers
18k views

If the insects declared war, who would win?

It is the near future and insectoid aliens pass our planet. They are shocked and dismayed to find that disgusting fleshy creatures seem to be in charge. Using their alien technology they imbue all of ...
55 votes
11 answers
15k views

If an FTL spacecraft entered Earth orbit, how long would it take for humans to build a FTL spacecraft?

It’s just another average day in the life of modern day earth. Suddenly a transmission from orbit washes over the planet! Oh no! An alien race, calling themselves the “Thull”, has suddenly arrived in ...
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53 votes
11 answers
17k views

How long would it take to “domesticate” humans?

If aliens came down to Earth and enslaved humanity, how long would it take to selectively breed the humans to make them more docile and less resistant to their alien captors? For example, if they ...
15 votes
5 answers
4k views

Psychological impact of being immortal

Imagine a meta-human, one engineered to be immortal. A combination of cybernetic enhancements, genetic engineering, and other scientific modifications have made it so this human will not die from ...
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32 votes
17 answers
9k views

Teaching people not to ask gods for help

(For my own needs) I write stories that are primarily fantasy, but with very strong touch of modern technologies (modern technologies converted to magic world, for example magic bomb that behaves like ...
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35 votes
8 answers
24k views

How will our world change if all men suddenly die? [closed]

In a world... with today's technology and level of development there is a Mad Scientist. A woman, to be exact. One day she concludes that men are responsible for all evil in the world and starts to ...
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35 votes
8 answers
100k views

What would be the effects on the human body if the oxygen level increased by a lot?

How would the human body be affected if oxygen levels increased by a lot? Our air is 78% nitrogen and 21% oxygen. If it increased to 30% oxygen, what would the effects be and how long would it take ...
33 votes
7 answers
6k views

How does an AI keep its Human Pets Happy?

It is late in the day, and humanity has made the fateful step: digital transcendence for some. The last few weeks before the Singularity were singularly chaotic, with widespread violence by opponents ...
38 votes
10 answers
5k views

How will survivors of a global plague find each other?

I'm considering the following scenario: Over the course of a couple of weeks, a global plague wipes out 99.999% of humanity, leaving just 75,000 people alive. These people are spread out evenly; in ...
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23 votes
9 answers
4k views

Is extending human gestation realistic or I should stick with 9 months?

I'm developing a world in the near future where a start-up company develops an artificial womb. Now well-off people could grow their children from their eggs & sperm. My story is about couples ...
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21 votes
12 answers
8k views

Can I still form a new country?

Suppose I wanted to form a new sovereign state right now, can I still be able to do it? I can find people to run the government, make laws, build roads, erect commercial and residential buildings and ...
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36 votes
10 answers
6k views

No newborns on Earth. How much time to find a cure?

Pretty much what it says on the tin: It's the beginning of 2016. Due to a fast-spreading virus, humans have lost the ability to reproduce themselves. The virus makes current artifical fertilization ...
30 votes
6 answers
7k views

How inhuman can a human be?

As worldbuilders, we routinely tweak our unwitting human victims to new environments, new abilities, and new dangers. So far, we've accelerated the natural healing rate, opened new doorways, and given ...
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27 votes
8 answers
26k views

What would happen to a human body subjected to extreme water pressure?

First of all, I tried to look if this wasn't answered before. Found this and this but neither is exactly what I need. Some Context There's this race of humanoid fish people. They live in cities ...
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13 votes
7 answers
19k views

How would lack of sunlight affect a human population?

Other than photosynthesis being an issue, if the Earth's surface became inhospitable and humans were forced to live underground, what biological changes would they be expected to go through to adapt ...
19 votes
7 answers
2k views

Could a moon or planet exist with "puddles" of breathable air in deep craters?

Could a moon or planet with otherwise no atmosphere maintain gas pockets in sufficiently deep craters, and could it be habitable by humans without pressure or space suits? I found this similar ...
45 votes
4 answers
8k views

How many people would have to be killed to make the streets 'run red with blood'?

For example, a street this wide to have enough blood run down the length shown in this photo? Assume that the blood isn't going down storm-drains for whatever reason and assume the stretch of road is ...
16 votes
2 answers
6k views

Is a condition leading to a cold-blooded human possible?

Well, today I have a fairly simple question. Is it possible for a human to have some sort of birth defect, mutation, disease or something that causes the human body to be unable to produce body heat?
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16 votes
5 answers
5k views

Would a human individual adapt to a change in the day-night cycle?

I'm thinking on the colonizing of another planet by humans. The conditions of this planet are quite different from Earth, and particularly the day-night cycle is much larger. In my fictional planet, ...
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