Stack Exchange Network

Stack Exchange network consists of 174 Q&A communities including Stack Overflow, the largest, most trusted online community for developers to learn, share their knowledge, and build their careers.

Visit Stack Exchange
Join us in building a kind, collaborative learning community via our updated Code of Conduct.

For questions about the viability of life in certain conditions. For example, it could be used in questions asking about the possibility of life on a planet or other astronomical body.

2
votes
4answers
112 views

Designing long-term, non-magical zombies

Zombies are their own genre and have many tropes associated to them. There's plenty of questions on here that deal with surviving a zombie apocalypse, but they all assume that zombies are capable of ...
3
votes
4answers
251 views

How many years should survivors wait before exiting a nuclear bomb shelter?

I'm writing a tale about a post apocalyptic world. I'm studying the timeline about the world history, I've planned that, using "clean" thermonuclear bombs, radioactivity should be quite lower after ...
2
votes
3answers
131 views

How would I create a society in which the known world has collapsed due to a demon influx

In my story, I wanted to have a world in which humanity had nearly gone extinct from being eaten by demons but eventually the demons ran out of humans to eat and thus died off or went into a sort of ...
3
votes
3answers
175 views

How would an ecosystem survive pitch-black winters of about 3000 years [closed]

I won't describe in much detail the geology and astronomy of the world I'm creating here, whose unnatural shape and so far unexplained non-Einsteinian large-scale mechanics to maintain it may not be ...
0
votes
2answers
155 views

How deep would a pit have to be to make climbing out implausible

Assuming that there is a prison somewhat akin to the one in The Dark Knight Rises, except being nothing more than a cylindrical hole in the earth, how deep would it have to be to make escape attempts ...
0
votes
1answer
109 views

Surviving *almost* fatal gunshot wounds with minimal medical aid

Okay so I have a world set roughly 50 years in the future. Guns are more efficient by use of liquid ammunition that solidifies when exposed to air (more ammo in a magazine). Bullets are smaller than ...
5
votes
8answers
387 views

How long could a human being survive after being swallowed by a whale?

In the short story, a man is swallowed by a giant, fictional fish. In fact, he is swallowed whole along with his log cabin and a bunch of hand-crafted tools. In a "The Martian"-like narrative, he ...
6
votes
4answers
169 views

How long could an alien species survive at sea?

The species in question are Herbivores, bipedal in nature, around 50 to 80 pounds on average, and require around 2250 calories per day to stay healthy. The ships these populations would live on are ...
28
votes
5answers
4k views

What's the smallest patch of land a single person could be food-sufficient on indefinitely, in a temperate climate?

One person lives alone with access to a small patch of useful land. They have to grow all their own food and survive indefinitely. This small patch of fertile soil is the only useful land. No grazing,...
2
votes
6answers
212 views

What profession would best prepare someone for life in a post-apocalyptic setting? [closed]

I often enjoy using settings in which civilized society as we know it has recently collapsed. I find this to be a particularly interesting way to explore the limits of human survival, especially when ...
5
votes
4answers
405 views

Is it possible to survive in an endless desert?

I'm writing a sci-fi story in which a group of people are stuck in an endless desert. While I've mostly figured out the philosophical aspects of the story, there are still the practical ones. It's a ...
2
votes
6answers
259 views

Protection against h-bomb core explosion conditions thinkable?

Assume a human in direct vicinity (think 1-50 m [if you need more space for your intended device]) to the explosion center of a nuclear fusion bomb. Is survival via technology thinkable? The TNT ...
7
votes
5answers
236 views

What valuable survival tools could be scavenged from an average High School?

So, after a nuclear holocaust, the students at Gun Runner High school are all evacuated with all survival kits, and a large amount of chocolate milk. There is no food left, and no lighters from ...
9
votes
8answers
2k views

Could the average human survive if we were thrown back in the wilderness? [closed]

(Okay, first time on this site so forgive me if I'm not clear or too broad) Short question: Could the average human survive if we were thrown back in the wilderness? And would we be able to re-...
2
votes
2answers
168 views

Could a member of an aquatic species survive a direct shot of the swim bladder?

So, on the planet Aqautas, the Aquata species is the apex species. They have cities underwater, made of an alien coral, and submarines to get around the planet. Crime is also an issue however. The ...
-2
votes
2answers
111 views

How to not get killed while in an enemy country? [closed]

So, on a prototype deep sea submarine, a group of soldiers (sailors?) are on a mission to test out the new craft, when a nuclear war breaks out between two superpowers. They are out in the middle of ...
14
votes
8answers
3k views

What could post-apocalypse humans do about dangerous, genetically augmented dogs?

So, out in Colorado, in the city of Den (population 1600), there is a huge problem. Before the war, a geneticist lab was trying to create police dogs that were stronger and superior to normal dogs. ...
3
votes
3answers
170 views

What are the building materials, crops, and livestock my post-apocalyptic community needs to survive?

Near Twin Lakes, Colorado, there is a group of people who have formed a community called Five Families, named after the five extended families that settled the area (The Donners, Troys, McKyles, ...
4
votes
6answers
197 views

Children are abandoned on a planet, but why? [closed]

My story is set in the relatively far future of 3812 AD. Humanity has united under one country and spread out across the stars. While there are protests of government corruption and separatists ...
2
votes
3answers
185 views

Apart from common enemies and survival, what are the factors that make players collaborative? [closed]

Apart from common enemies and survival, what are the other factors that make players collaborative in an open world game? For example: In Rust(https://rust.facepunch.com), randomly spawned players ...
0
votes
6answers
239 views

Is it possible for a species to survive unassisted if each individual is so specialized to the point that they cannot survive without the colony

EDIT: Since many people think this question is unclear, let me rephrase it: Can a species with only specialists survive unassisted for a long period of time? Specific applications: A Robot group ...
7
votes
4answers
198 views

Safety equipment to survive decompression

In the future, space travel is common, so common, in fact, that commercial transport is available to most people, like air travel is to us. As a passenger on a vessel of Galactic Spacelines, half way ...
3
votes
2answers
393 views

Would there be any mass extinction should the polarity of Earth magnetic field flips at 1 GHz? [closed]

If the polarity of our Earth magnetic field were to flip (oscillate) at around 1 GHz or 1 billion cycles per second, would it spell disaster to fauna and flora that depends on it for navigation like ...
7
votes
6answers
2k views

Will a knight in shining armor survive this zombie filled task?

When all the fuels are consumed, the bullets are all exhausted, it all comes down to melee weapons in terms of surviving a zombie horde. My question is, will a human in a knights armor be the key to ...
11
votes
7answers
583 views

What would be the best dog breed companion for a zombie apocalypse?

First, let's settle the background. We're in a middle of a virus-induced zombie apocalypse. Infected people don't return from the dead, but have their brain capacities cut to a basic minimum and ...
8
votes
7answers
378 views

Can a person covered in mud survive an ordeal with fire breathing dragon?

In my upcoming novel, my protagonist decided to paint every part of his body in mud before engaging with the fire breathing dragon which dwells at the bottom of a dormant volcano. The flame from the ...
6
votes
6answers
1k views

Is life viable on a split Earth? [duplicate]

After tossing this question in my head for a while, I can't really come up with the best results. The situation is someone or something has split the earth in half, through the core and has moved the ...
0
votes
2answers
137 views

Humans surviving on surface without Sun

Is it possible for humans to survive on the surface of the Earth, assuming the Sun was, for some reason, not emitting any light/heat/other radiation? Would whether the Sun was actually present affect ...
-2
votes
2answers
84 views

What would a Special training school for Agents look like? [closed]

What would a Special training school for Agents look like? It's a School where Agents have to be trained to survive in every weather condition, where they also learn how to survive in the Wilderness ...
1
vote
3answers
251 views

Reality Check: Is This Habitable Long Term for Humans

Planet: Xibalba (Mayan Hell) Tidally locked planet around a red dwarf that is very active with solar flares being a daily danger. The habitable zone around the planet is made up almost entirely of ...
4
votes
6answers
451 views

In a post-apocalyptic world why would the survivors build bases instead of just using the abandoned buildings to live in? [closed]

I'm making a survival game and a question popped up on how would I "in-game-explain" to the player that they can't just board up an abandoned building and call it home, but instead they have to gather ...
4
votes
5answers
255 views

Is a 100% effective mass extinction possible without destroying the planet?

Say I want a 100% effective mass extinction to take place on a planet similar to Earth. It should kill everything, even bacteria. It doesn't need to happen overnight. I'm perfectly fine with some ...
3
votes
5answers
284 views

What effects would regular ash fall have on an ecosystem? [closed]

I have a desert world with high tectonic and volcanic activity. To the point where an ashfall is not an uncommon weather pattern. The ash itself would be very fine fertile ash. The ash also has a ...
22
votes
7answers
6k views

What would human survivors eat in a post apocalyptic Nuclear winter?

Let's assume that: the entire nuclear arsenal available on earth is launched and detonated, completely obliterating civilization but leaving a few humans and animals in very remote areas alive. this ...
3
votes
2answers
148 views

How Could An Antarctic Society Import Everything They Need For An Average Lifestyle?

My question is such: in a modern town or city in antartica, what would people produce/sell in order to import the other things they do not have yet? In this hypothetical city, people can get water ...
4
votes
4answers
227 views

Could a giant floating self-supporting city survive a thousand year voyage?

One of the main plots in my world is that a huge ship arrives in a strange group of isles. This ship a gigantic city that completely self-supports itself with farms, houses, gardens, parks, and even ...
9
votes
7answers
1k views

Can humans survive just by eating hairs and nails?

Can humans survive by eating only nails and hairs of their own? As they grow they consume their own hair and nails. Hair includes even body hair. What is the maximum number days a human can survive ...
11
votes
12answers
6k views

Two countries have a five thousand mile desert between them. How can a city survive there?

In a world that I am building, there are two countries that both are fairly primitive and only have medieval methods of transportation. They have a huge meeting every 100 years. Other than that, they ...
-3
votes
1answer
124 views

What would happen if all the machines on Earth were destroyed by an EMP? [closed]

If all machines on planet Earth were destroyed (possibly by an extremely powerful electromagnetic pulse from an alien civilization), how large of a percent of the human population would die out? ...
27
votes
5answers
4k views

If a civilization could plant only three crops, which ones would cover all nutritional needs?

For example, beans and rice cooperate to make a "complete" protein, providing all of the amino acids the body can't synthesize on its own -- in fact, most traditional dishes that combine legumes and ...
9
votes
6answers
908 views

What would be in a shuttle's survival kit for aliens trapped on a primitive planet?

The scenario: an alien crew has a shuttle landed on Earth in the 1980's. Their main ship is extremely damaged and beyond reach somewhere in the Milky Way. Their shuttle cannot escape Earth's ...
0
votes
2answers
152 views

How would you alert an alien crew that they are in imminent danger? [closed]

The setting: an alien crew has a shuttle landed on Earth in the 1980's. Their main ship is extremely damaged and beyond reach somewhere in the Milky Way. Their shuttle cannot escape Earth's atmosphere....
1
vote
2answers
132 views

How many people can can a self sufficient city, protected by a magical barrier, fit per square mile?

The city of Sanctury has been holding back the volcanic apocalypse for 174 years, and has grown to 60,000 people. The question is, if everything needed for life is grown within the city, how many ...
-1
votes
2answers
200 views

Winter Is Coming…To Earth [closed]

Imagine a world that looks suspiciously like Earth. Summer turns to autumn, autumn turns to winter, and winter turns to more winter. The winter endures for several years before summer finally comes ...
5
votes
3answers
1k views

How small can a population be with regard to genetic diversity?

I'm working on creating a species that favours small families for a number of reasons, and have no interest in 'breeding as much as possible'. As a consequence, their population size is small. But how ...
11
votes
5answers
446 views

Environment suit design for ultra-cold temperatures

What would be the design of a near-future extreme-cold environment suit? Consider a protective suit that is not a space suit because it doesn’t need to augment the pressure felt by the body. It does,...
4
votes
7answers
1k views

How to calculate the probability of survival of a young civilization

In a fictional world a young civilization is struggling for survival. Round about a century ago, it broke up with the core-society that was just beginning to establish itself on an inhospitable ...
1
vote
0answers
234 views

Is segregation inevitable in my unorthodox prison world? [closed]

I came up with this idea of creating this world, where the worst of the worst of a fantastic non-magical world are sent to this prison "realm" which keeps expanding chamber by chamber. The story ...
2
votes
2answers
126 views

How to delay the technological development of my sapients, that have transhumans capabilities in a harsh world?

General Backstory: Humans have advanced enough that they are capable of simulating, entire solar systems that have sapiens life. Earth was destroyed not long after the singularity, because of some ...
3
votes
3answers
217 views

Could natural armor plating protect a creature from radiation?

I was wondering if a creature could use natural armor plating to protect itself from radiation. For some numbers, I would like the creature to survive normally very lethal radiation, 30 Grays, for up ...