New answers tagged

1 vote
Accepted

What would be the differences between our society and one where almost everyone is half-sisters?

I should think that a 'family' would be a rather loose concept. Clearly, with only one true parent readily accessible to a child, I can envision several 'families' consisting of a woman and child ...
user avatar
  • 739
4 votes

How can a creature have an efficient bird like respiratory system without hollow bones?

A bird's respiratory system is about 8x as efficient as ours A bird's lungs and air sacs take up twice as much of a bird's volume as mammalian lungs. A bird's pneumatic bones are also used for oxygen ...
user avatar
  • 63.8k
6 votes

How can a creature have an efficient bird like respiratory system without hollow bones?

Sure. The main advantage of the avian respiratory system over the mammalian one is that the airflow is unidirectional. This is a huge advantage for oxygen transfer, but it's a challenge to get there ...
user avatar
  • 1,146
1 vote

What could be used as an alternative to ATP in boron based biochemistry?

Frame Challenge: Your organism will still be Carbon Based When you say an organism is Carbon Based you are referring to the element that forms the core building block in your organic molecules. ...
user avatar
  • 63.8k
4 votes

How much toxin could an elephant-sized amphibian put out through its skin?

A lot. You want an upper end? Look up hagfish slime. It's something the hagfish oozes when it gets stressed. Scientific studies have been formed around how a single creature could possibly put out ...
user avatar
2 votes

How much toxin could an elephant-sized amphibian put out through its skin?

The amount of a substance going through a surface depends on the specific interaction between the substance and the surface, and on the extension of the surface. If the contact area is a hand, it ...
user avatar
  • 237k
4 votes

A creature has one heart per bodily extremity. How large does each have to be?

The case of the Extra Hearts: Some creatures, like the octopus, already have multiple hearts. In the case of the octopus, this is to compensate for hemocyanin, which is less efficient than hemoglobin ...
user avatar
  • 51.7k
6 votes

A creature has one heart per bodily extremity. How large does each have to be?

This is already the case in the human body, to a limited extent. The pumping action of the blood through the arteries is not just restricted to the heart. The muscles all along the arteries contract ...
user avatar
4 votes

A creature has one heart per bodily extremity. How large does each have to be?

The torso heart would still be almost the same size as a human heart's. This is because the blood volume that needs to be circulated in the unit time remains the same, so the work to do remains ...
user avatar
  • 52k
4 votes

A creature has one heart per bodily extremity. How large does each have to be?

The size of the heart of a creature the size of the limb. A heart has to counter the resistance of the circulatory system. This is in large part the capillaries, the smallest blood vessels that ...
user avatar
  • 412
2 votes

States causing cancer in enemy politicians, spies, world-leaders

Immortalization ex vivo It sounds like a rather unlikely name for a method of assassination - so much the sneakier. The agent obtains live tissue from the victim by some means - anything from a ...
user avatar
  • 18.6k
3 votes

Humanoid Race with Surpressed Myostatin Gene - Appearance?

I am the first female to score a rushing touchdown in a male high-school varsity football game. I was 4'11" 130 lbs and even a starter my junior year as a fullback and outside linebacker. I ...
user avatar
1 vote

Could my Adnaps exist?

Turns out It's Man You are looking at one my friend. Your creature sounds like a human being. A mostly herbivorous ape that can survive eating only meat and vitamin C pills. Bonus points for starting ...
user avatar
  • 37.4k
2 votes

Could papillae or another muscular protrusion act like tube feet on a land-dwelling creature?

Consider blood pressure. Typical human blood pressure peaks around 120 mmHg, but giraffes for instance can have blood pressures peaking at 300 mmHg, or 5.8 psi. If papillae were pressurized by this ...
user avatar
  • 1,146
3 votes
Accepted

What would be the optimal atmosphere for Earth's life and humanity?

Hot and Humid The rainforest is full of life. Let's crank up the heat and humidity and go back to a planet covered in primeval jungle. Rainforests like the heat. Raise greenhouse gas levels to up ...
user avatar
  • 37.4k
0 votes

What would be the optimal atmosphere for Earth's life and humanity?

That much CO2 is going to create an amazing greenhouse effect, roasting any life you will have on Earth. More generally speaking, there is no proof that higher CO2 concentration is beneficial to ...
user avatar
  • 237k
1 vote

If a person had control of every single cell of their body, would they be able to transform into another creature?

Everyone here has very good points. It would be very difficult and inefficient to transform. On top of that it would also be very dangerous. But you could do so much more with a power like this. Your ...
user avatar
6 votes
Accepted

a chemical component in vampire saliva to assist with feeding

Draculin. The lovely little critter depicted above is known as Desmodus rotundus, or the common vampire bat. They are strictly hematophagous, meaning they feed exclusively on blood. To be able to ...
user avatar
  • 11.8k
3 votes

Why haven't humans been absorbed or exterminated by orks?

I think you could also easily ask "Why hasn't [some group of humans] exterminated or absorbed all other groups of humans?" Why didn't Xerxes expand his empire around the entire globe? What ...
user avatar
  • 706
0 votes

Why haven't humans been absorbed or exterminated by orks?

Also Humans adapt better to different conditions while orcs trive only in places where simple hunting techniques are enough for survival.
user avatar
1 vote

Why haven't humans been absorbed or exterminated by orks?

Infighting The orcs could hold more of the planet (or continent) but their tribes (or states) tend to turn on each other when any one gets too strong - or the stronger one eats a smaller tribe which ...
user avatar
  • 89
1 vote

Why haven't humans been absorbed or exterminated by orks?

Technologies It is much more difficult to do research and discover a technology than later use it. Assuming that doing research, converting results of research into technical ideas and building first ...
user avatar
  • 1,397
4 votes

Why haven't humans been absorbed or exterminated by orks?

Humans are more social, we collect in larger groups. This may very well be the reason humans won out over neanderthal, who were larger, stronger, and tougher. Human had no physical advantages over ...
user avatar
  • 69.1k
3 votes

Why haven't humans been absorbed or exterminated by orks?

Multiple factors And there will be synergies; how these play out depends on the discretion of the author, so I'll leave these to everybody's imagination. Also, I'm working off the question as ...
user avatar
  • 1,010
12 votes

Why haven't humans been absorbed or exterminated by orks?

Reproduction is not the bottleneck, calories are In a premodern environment, reproduction rate is not the bottleneck for population, calories are the limiting factor for carrying capacity. Thus "...
user avatar
  • 6,908
1 vote

Why haven't humans been absorbed or exterminated by orks?

Intelligence Simply put, the humans are going to progress further technologically then your orcs. Humans will have fire, strategy, sharper tools, more durable tools, siege weapons, and fortifications ...
user avatar
3 votes

Why haven't humans been absorbed or exterminated by orks?

Experts and Agriculture On the most part, humans are slow-growing and fussy, but they have uses. Uses that ensure the orcs never let them go extinct, even though the humans may try to accomplish this ...
user avatar
  • 18.6k
5 votes

Can a forest provide enough oxygen to breathe on a low oxygen planet?

I am afraid it is totally impossible. The diffusion coefficient of oxygen in air (in your case it will be in pure nitrogen but it should be practically the same) is 0.2cm²/s to 0.3cm²/s depending on ...
user avatar
  • 179
4 votes

Why haven't humans been absorbed or exterminated by orks?

Cooperation and learning from the smart people floats everyone's boats higher Think of the resources available to a modern human. Could you or I independently invent an internal combustion engine, and ...
user avatar
  • 18.8k
1 vote

Can a forest provide enough oxygen to breathe on a low oxygen planet?

A greenhouse-like setup may be viable - it is up to you to make it natural or artificial. The key point is to limit the diffusion of the oxygen out and other unpleasant gases (e.g. carbon dioxide) in. ...
user avatar
  • 4,259
1 vote

Can a forest provide enough oxygen to breathe on a low oxygen planet?

It depends the size of planet, forest area cover, how much the forest covers can produce oxygen and the consumption of oxygen on that planet. This is the simplest and shortest
user avatar
8 votes

Why haven't humans been absorbed or exterminated by orks?

See below my answer to a similar question. See also this answer. The only difference is your orcs are almost as smart as humans. This is not a deal breaker however, because intelligence does not on ...
user avatar
  • 37.4k
19 votes

Why haven't humans been absorbed or exterminated by orks?

Efficiency: Orks are inefficient. They are stronger, but generally strength comes at the expense of endurance. Humans have traditionally relied on endurance for hunting, for daily work, gathering, ...
user avatar
  • 51.7k
3 votes

Can a forest provide enough oxygen to breathe on a low oxygen planet?

It would be perfectly possible for the forest to have the only sufficient concentration of oxygen on the planet - if the forest was at the bottom of the deepest canyon or trench on the planet, and if ...
user avatar
7 votes

Can a forest provide enough oxygen to breathe on a low oxygen planet?

Not only would the oxygen diffuse away, the forest would die. Trees photosynthesize complex organic molecules from sunlight, water, and carbon dioxide, but they also metabolize the molecules with ...
user avatar
  • 20.5k
22 votes

Why haven't humans been absorbed or exterminated by orks?

Education You noted that orcs only get up to about human "average" intelligence, whereas humans have the whole curve above "average" to themselves. However, much more powerful than ...
user avatar
  • 2,738
2 votes

Why haven't humans been absorbed or exterminated by orks?

Niche partitioning Orks are large, strong, mesocarnivorous. They live nomadically and are conventionally hunter-gatherers, emphasis on the hunt. Humans, as you note, are smaller and have a higher ...
user avatar
15 votes

Can a forest provide enough oxygen to breathe on a low oxygen planet?

Only if this forest is located in a "bowl" with low winds Our common deciduous trees are actually poor net producers of oxygen. By different estimates, it may take about an acre of trees to ...
user avatar
  • 40.7k
7 votes

Why haven't humans been absorbed or exterminated by orks?

Strength doesn't stop spears. Lots of other apes are stronger than us humans, but we're the dominant species. Human cooperation and intellect tends to mean humans are much better armed and able to ...
user avatar
  • 23.5k
3 votes

Can a forest provide enough oxygen to breathe on a low oxygen planet?

Perhaps. I figure that since you've pretty remarkable trees to begin with if they can survive at night time (assuming they need oxygen at all), then you can make-up your own rules to an extent. These ...
user avatar
10 votes

Can a forest provide enough oxygen to breathe on a low oxygen planet?

Alien forest? https://www.botanyunbound.com/post/ocean-photosynthesis-what-a-plant-hears-discovery-drones-and-the-coolest-plant-on-earth An Earth forest lets its oxygen diffuse away. But you are not ...
user avatar
  • 272k
2 votes

Can a forest provide enough oxygen to breathe on a low oxygen planet?

Without knowing the size of the forest weather conditions etc. I'd still have to say no. Any single mass of vegetation unless a great amount of time passes wouldnt be able to sustain the needed mix of ...
user avatar
  • 1,285
1 vote

How strong would a humanoid need to be compared to real world humans to be able to wield a 1/4 inch thick solid steel shield easily?

Steel is roughly 12 times denser than wood. Surviving wooden shields from the Vikings have mostly been in the range of 1/4" to 1/2" inches thick. This means your shield is somewhere ...
user avatar
  • 129k
1 vote

How can I fast-track the growth of a human being with an artificial womb?

Your artificial homunculi are basically made out of cancer. They were designed with epigenetic features on their DNA that emulates how cancer cells grow. This allows them to grow many times faster ...
user avatar
  • 12.2k
0 votes

How can I fast-track the growth of a human being with an artificial womb?

3D printer Organ printing is No Longer Weird though it is anything but mature technology. You've sacrificed seven people to make your homunculus, so you have plenty of tissue to work with - even some ...
user avatar
  • 18.6k
0 votes

What kind of scientist would be ideal for studying zombies?

Reanimatologist As zombies are created through the reanimation of a corpse, reanimatology can be considered as an all-encompassing field for the study of zombies and other revenants. It can be a twist ...
user avatar
  • 1,019
0 votes

How long can stubble get before it becomes clear it isn't made of human hair?

Beards are all different Many hair on a human body is more complex than the hair on top of the head. The colour for example can differ. My own beard used to be more blond, is now mostly black, with ...
user avatar
  • 27.3k
1 vote

What kind of scientist would be ideal for studying zombies?

Morticians and medical doctors Zombies cannot exist without magic, so all a scientist of any kind is going to be able to say about how they work is "yeah, it is dead but still moving". ...
user avatar
0 votes

What kind of scientist would be ideal for studying zombies?

Probably not what you're going for but just to throw out the idea: computer science, mechanical engineer, materials scientist and/or mechatronics. Traditional D&D style zombies are fundamentally ...
user avatar
  • 706
12 votes
Accepted

What kind of scientist would be ideal for studying zombies?

I think the comment of @Daron is crucial here - decide the discipline of the scientist based on the discovery that he will make in your story. Just a "biologist" might be too broad indeed ...
user avatar
  • 244

Top 50 recent answers are included