Questions tagged [society]

For questions dealing with how sentient beings interact with each other in a community.

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156 votes
21 answers
109k 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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65 votes
29 answers
16k views

How would humanity enter a Dark Age?

Humans have grown fat, complacent and cock-sure of the certainty of future progress, arrogantly expecting to build minds in their own image. They even dream of building themselves a city, with a tower ...
37 votes
20 answers
9k views

How would people tell time if it was always day?

So, if I have a civilization that lives in a hollow planet, with a sun in the middle. How would they tell time? The sun always shines, and it is a Constant Spring/summertime weather. They have animals ...
79 votes
27 answers
12k views

Concealing my earth-changing invention

Imagine it. I've invented the single greatest thing since Fire. A machine that can turn matter into energy and energy into matter with almost absolute efficiency. Sure, it violates a couple of the ...
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16 votes
12 answers
6k views

Why would humans be the dominant species?

Humans, in most fantasy stories including in my own, are the dominant species. Why is that? Firstly, I guess I should give every race in my story strengths and weaknesses. Humans (same as us) have ...
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9 votes
7 answers
5k views

What is a reasonable amount of population growth for 900 years?

Starting with about 500 humans and allowing for 900 years to pass, about how many people would there be at the end? (Just asking for a rough estimate, maybe a range.) Assuming: People are generally ...
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147 votes
17 answers
14k views

A Most Subtle Magic

Rynn is not flashy at all. In fact, you would be forgiven to think she's a bit of an introvert. Sure, the people in the town are strangely reluctant to talk to you about her, but you are a newcomer, ...
28 votes
8 answers
11k views

How would societies be if created and populated only by young people?

I’m writing a post-apocalyptic RPG, but I have a problem when dealing with the reconstruction of the society. The apocalypse left alive only the young people up to 21 years of age. Even though the ...
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45 votes
18 answers
6k views

Papers, please: Can characters trapped in our reality acquire enough paperwork to be legal?

Being at Anime Expo last weekend got me thinking about all the "trapped in another world" anime I watched as a kid: Inu Yasha, Fushigi Yuugi, Escaflowne, etc. The general plot of these is that a high ...
  • 1,002
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 ...
93 votes
21 answers
23k views

How would society react if the existence of a god was scientifically proven? [closed]

Let's assume that : The scientifically proven god is omnipotent and omniscient The god stays as how it was acting even after the proof, meaning natural disasters still occur, the speed of light is ...
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13 votes
6 answers
2k views

Can magic BE or directly work as science?

So I have a couple of stories I'm writing (I find it helps brainstorming better) and am wondering if magic can function quite literally as science. In one of my stories, I have a character who ...
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133 votes
13 answers
18k views

Everyone believes everything Joe says. How can he get around it?

Joe is an average bloke, who has a passive superpower that he's lived with all his life. People believe everything he says. Implicitly, unquestioningly and absolutely. If he says that black is ...
  • 65.9k
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 ...
  • 46.3k
52 votes
16 answers
23k views

What should three men and three women do if everyone else is dead?

Recently, I asked what could kill all humans except for those in low orbit. Out of the answers that popped up (which included the Ragnarök), I picked a plague as being the most desirable for my ...
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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 ...
42 votes
22 answers
5k views

Is it realistic to believe an apocalyptical setting can last 500+ years?

Our world of fiction is filled with books, movies, and games suggesting a Mad-Max-style apocalypse can last hundreds of years. This, despite the fact that nuclear fallout would decay within a decade ...
  • 104k
25 votes
8 answers
7k views

How to promote nationalism for a multi-racial kingdom, against other such multi-racial kingdoms

So, I have an empire, many political notes about which can be found here, although I will put more relevant notes here as well. There are many fantasy races, all of them some form of animal person, ...
  • 6,207
15 votes
6 answers
5k views

Consequences of the shift to a post-scarcity society

I have a basic idea for a world that I am fleshing out. Basically a dystopian future based on minimal, if any, resource scarcity. This sort of society was addressed humorously in a Cracked After Hours ...
  • 1,978
4 votes
1 answer
412 views

Unconventional Rebirth: Is It Checked?

In my last question, Preventing Dead Monsters From Spawning Undead, I realized a rather concerning loophole; if someone were to intentionally allow a large monster, like a mutant 'rex, to eat them, ...
  • 13.3k
4 votes
3 answers
406 views

Men Protecting Themselves From Bewitchment

Alright, while trying to figure out the cultural impact of my (Dnd-style) class system, I realized that there was a problem with the Dancer Class: Bewitching Dance-This dance only works on a small ...
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319 votes
25 answers
29k views

Tomorrow is Groundhog Day... For everyone. How does society respond? [closed]

You wake up tomorrow, and it's Wednesday again. Everybody remembers it, but whatever was physically done today is undone. Your favorite mug, which the dog knocked over, is un-broken. The kid down ...
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66 votes
22 answers
11k views

How would government change if everyone died by the age of 25?

In the nation of Xenqu, a hereditary monarchy has ruled for centuries. The Xenquan society is in a medieval period, although the recent invention of paper and the increasing use of gunpowder may ...
  • 98k
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 ...
  • 1,008
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 ...
  • 671
45 votes
10 answers
4k views

How would societal development be impacted if humans were not an apex predator?

We are used to a world where humans are basically an apex predator; we don't really need to worry much about becoming some other animal's next meal. If that wasn't the case, and humans had to be wary ...
  • 28.8k
39 votes
17 answers
12k views

What society might survive the 3 generation rule

A not widely accepted psycho-social phenomenon but one our descendents might sometime face, the Three Generation Rule states: that the degree of social discipline needed for a space habitat to ...
  • 28.4k
32 votes
25 answers
8k views

How to keep mages from taking over the world?

In my world anyone can use magic with the proper training. There are two levels of magic users: The first level is apprentice (someone with 4 to 8 years of magic education). They can move people and ...
23 votes
7 answers
10k views

How could a sentient plant evolve and what conditions would be required for this evolution?

This is my entry for the fortnightly topic challenge In Day of the Triffids, many people go blind and the basic summary is this: virulent plague makes most of humanity blind giant, semi-intelligent ...
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21 votes
6 answers
2k views

Time no longer passes except near intelligent creatures, how does the world continue?

Time stops nearly everywhere, time only continues in a area around creatures of a certain intelligence. The worlds population is suddenly thrown into darkness as time ceases throughout the universe ...
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20 votes
15 answers
4k views

Why would magic and science be split?

As previously noted, magic would most likely be able to be studied by the scientific method. Indeed, science would likely at least try to understand magic, if not incorporate it. My question is, what ...
  • 12.4k
16 votes
8 answers
5k views

Smallest Self-Sufficient Colony

What is the fewest number of people one would need for a completely self-sufficient colony, assuming no lack of resources and modern or near future tech? While these people would be able to ...
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15 votes
2 answers
3k views

A post-apocalyptic industrial revolution

It's been a couple of thousand years since humanity bombed itself back to the stone age. Most places are now safe to travel through but there's barely any sign of the old cities, new ones have sprung ...
  • 115k
10 votes
6 answers
3k views

If true artificially intelligent robots could be built, would they be allowed human rights? [closed]

Let's imagine that by the year 2040, humanity has developed true, 100% artificial intelligence. That is, a robot that is physiologically identical to the average human. For X reason, humanity has ...
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7 votes
3 answers
2k views

My earth changing invention: How can I hire the people I need?

Ok then! I've got a machine that can transmute matter to energy, I've got a small-medium sized company that I can use to hide my activities, and I've got a terrible fear of anyone discovering my ...
  • 65.9k
3 votes
5 answers
1k views

Interstellar war tactics with no FTL capabilities?

I have tried to conceive the most realistic hard sci-fi human/alien conflict scenario without invoking FTL magic. By realistic, I mean “War is the wrong answer but we do it anyway”. Diplomacy has ...
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92 votes
16 answers
14k views

Effects of "know before you vote" political system

After the Brexit vote, one of repeating themes was: "If only knowledgeable people were allowed to vote and dumb people were not allowed to vote!" Let's have look at this political system closer: ...
63 votes
19 answers
8k views

Zero Privacy: Culture

In this future, technology advances in such a way that privacy becomes obsolete. In other words, no one has decided to give up privacy, it's just that trying to hold onto it is like trying to keep ...
54 votes
13 answers
8k views

In a society of flying beings, would the wheel ever be invented?

The knack lies in learning how to throw yourself at the ground and miss. -- Douglas Adams. Humans can't fly. Not themselves. Sure, we can climb aboard a plane, a hot air balloon, or a rocket ship. ...
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41 votes
14 answers
12k views

How many people are necessary to maintain modern civilisation?

Modern Earth; a series of connected events (natural disasters, mass migration, drug-resistant pandemic, collapse in biodiversity, armed conflict) have led to a significant reduction in human ...
  • 413
40 votes
11 answers
5k views

A world without natural time measures

An intelligent race evolves on a planet with no moon or axial tilt, which is tidally locked to its star, and has a very hazy atmosphere. So there are no seasons, no day/night cycle, and the stars are ...
39 votes
10 answers
8k views

Preventing post-apocalyptic society from becoming misogynistic

The apocalypse has happened, but humanity survives. People still remember the technology they had, but too many of the people who really understood how it worked and how to make it have died, leading ...
  • 19.8k
35 votes
13 answers
2k views

Is a world with no technological improvement possible?

A society grows with time, but does the technology needs to grow with them? Is it possible for a planet to have a very large population and much society but no more improvement in the ways of the ...
  • 3,134
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 ...
  • 501
35 votes
14 answers
6k views

What kind of society and morals would an alien species evolved from solitary carnivores have?

I am envisioning a space faring species, evolved from an obligate carnivore and apex predator. The obvious concept to me is a tiger like species with prehensile tails that became increasingly adapted ...
  • 1,040
30 votes
14 answers
9k views

Is it possible for a religion with >1 billion followers to die out?

The religion of Zensunnistianity has over a billion followers in the Alt-World that is otherwise identical to our Earth. Its precepts are similar to the major monotheistic religions from our world, ...
29 votes
20 answers
10k views

Alternative word for "human rights" but across multiple races (including demi-humans)

What would be best "human rights" word equivalent for all intelligent beings, including humans, demi-humans, and other intelligent life forms? Example of demi-humans are Lizard folk, Cat people, etc. ...
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28 votes
11 answers
5k views

What's the impact of a "cloning" teleporter?

Extending upon my prior question, could-a-viable-interstellar-civilization-form-with-this-technology. From what I've read there's two basic ideas which describe how teleportation might work: Destroy ...
  • 28.4k
26 votes
11 answers
5k views

How would relatively cheap and abundant (but not free or limitless) electrical energy at an up-front cost impact society?

A group of scientists has been slaving away largely in obscurity for two decades, with very few publishable results. Suddenly, one of them has an epiphany, which turns out to be instrumental to ...
  • 28.8k
25 votes
14 answers
4k views

What are the social implications of discovering a formula for immortality?

Here is a hypothetical, but not entirely plausible, scenario: An organization or company (likely pharmaceutical) discovers the formula to develop a drug that stops aging (the human body's cells are ...

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