70

I'm going to address the components of your question in reverse order. There is a way to craft new shells, without a big apparatus, like in your own home? Absolutely. You don't even really need power tools, although they help. The question is how LONG you can keep reloading the same brass until it doesn't work anymore. I've seen people state that they'...


55

I for one welcome our new robot overlords Who said the dictator had to be human? The robots could be programmed to serve and protect humans and the best way to do that is rule them with a literal iron fist. Everybody is fed and cared for. They want for nothing and are kept safe and happy but they don't run the place anymore. The robots run everything and ...


44

When everything desirable is available to all, the only commodity that continues to have value is the obedience of others. The dictator benefits from the deference of his subjects in a world where no other motivation for such deference will work. You cannot bribe the rich to obey you because they no longer need your bribes and you cannot bribe the poor ...


26

I'm going to present a frame challenge here because there are a couple of really important factors that your question leads me to believe aren't getting proper consideration. First: The biggest reality check that almost everybody ignores when it comes to spacecraft design is that NOTHING is more important than mass. Earth-based vehicles of all types can ...


20

Power-lust If there is one thing we can see in our current world is that, no matter where a country is in the wealth ranking, the dynamic of its rulers are no different: they crave for the subtle trill of power, some hiding it behind the noble slogans of progress, democracy, equality, etc., some behind fear related arguments (people with 3 nostrils first!). ...


15

I was thinking of a character whose wounds and scars were healed with metal, leaving her with spots and streaks on the skin that was cauterized. You can get them by using a "standard" glowing hot metal bar, like it was done in the past to treat dog bites and other wounds at risk of infections, or pouring boiling water. Using liquid metal makes it more ...


14

Control The dictator has absolute control over the lives of his subjects. The dictator don't need them in any way as the robots do all the work, but keep them around as pets or such. The people are toys. Through manipulating their lives, the dictator feel significant and can forget his own powerlessness against the larger universe. The dictator can give and ...


13

Historical experience is no guide at all if you are working in a new and unknown medium. To use an example, imagine asking a very knowledgeable officer in the 1700's how air combat might work. He might start with the assumption that air vehicles would be some sort of evolution of sailing warships. If he is really astute, he might consider that the newly ...


11

Duty The dictator doesn't want to be one, they just have to be one. They might be the only one an advanced alien race deals with. Or maybe they have to literally sit on a kill button that prevents the intelligent robots from turning against the human race. Or it might be something more mundane, like dutifully pressing the OK button on all major AI decisions....


10

And, assuming that it can 'survive'. The ammunition for it can be created with used shells of the same gun? There is a way to craft new shells, without a big apparatus, like in your own home? Yes, it can be done and people do reload shells. For example, I have read that the Sioux Indians in the 19th century invented a way to reload shells with loose black ...


9

Humanity has the tendency to destroy itself Imagine you are living in this post-scarcity society, everything would be tranquil. But there is always human ambition. There are still crimes, people killing each other over love and hate, family disputes. And there could be religious fundamentalists, preaching technology is our end and plotting the destruction ...


9

In short term (millions of years), most likely already long living, somewhat intelligent and social species with free hand-like manipulators. In longer term (hundred of millions years), pretty much anything can change. So, in order of decreasing probability: Genetically engineered (uplifted) animals with hands. Monkeys, apes, maybe hamsters, ferrets, ...


8

My question is what, if any, factors/events (aside from contact with another civilisation that uses different tactics and/or weapons) would lead to a military force building ships that use armour and/or hull shapes designed to defend against weapon systems that that force does not itself use? Events That Trigger Innovation Small, Far Away Conflicts ...


8

The problem is, cauterizing a wound implies tissue damage to the extent of closing off blood vessels. Such damage leaves a layer of dead tissue on the top. And the dead tissue will slough off in a day or two and take the metal with it. Yes there are metals that melt at temperatures that won't kill the tissue. But they won't cauterize the wound. So it's ...


8

Here are a few reasons: Anonymity - anything "on the waves" can be tracked; cash is harder to track, especially if it's something valuable like silver (ie no number on it) Sustainable Value - digital currencies are prone to rapid fluctuations in buying power; a dollar today will buy more than a dollar in the future (inflation). Any non-paper physical ...


7

I think you may be experiencing a cart-before-the-horse moment here, so I’m going to issue a bit of a frame-challenge. Civilisations shouldn’t develop to KS-II and then look around nonplussed, wondering what to do with all the energy. They should first develop the need to use that much energy (with its attendant mechanisms for dealing with waste), and then ...


7

An Underclocked Civilization Is Only Constrained By Data Storage The number and complexity of minds is irrelevant if you adjust the processing speed. Even if the energy trickle only allows 1 computation per trillion years, a trillion trillion stored hyperminds would still be capable of an infinite number of thoughts forever. So I can think of 4 dangers, in ...


7

Making new powder,percussion caps,shot and casings is not exceptionally difficult. Old casings can be melted and remade when they get too deformed. Lead is very common for the bullet tips themselves and can be molded using a campfire with the right tools. A common method when out of brass for casings is to use a cardboard casing. To help prevent fouling the ...


6

Civilization of fanboys. 1: Your civilization no longer actually makes war. It has not made war for generations. 2: Your civilization loves science fiction in which space aliens make war on each other. 3: Your military ships are art projects constructed by state-sponsored architects who are rabid fans of one SF or another. The ships are patterned ...


6

There won't be any humans to have a society. The single Chicxulub Impactor, which caused a mass extinction that included dinosaurs among many others, was about the size of a small city (not a big city). It's devastation was phenomenal - our estimates of a Nuclear Winter are like a day at the spa by comparison. Shattering the moon, which is the only case ...


5

I'd recommend reading The Dictator's Handbook - it is a great pop science summary of a huge body of research into how different forms of government sustain themselves. The TL;DR from this book would be that what the dictator needs is the freedom to do whatever they want; for that, they need power; for power, they need support; for support, they need money ...


5

How do smart animals survive on Earth? Be unthreatening - Great apes in jungles are largely left alone if they keep away from human settlements. Be a companion - Cats, dogs and myriad other species live as pets in close proximity with humans, albeit they must never show behaviour which would harm a human, or are kept in conditions which prevent it (cages, ...


5

This article might be of interest. It turns out energy expenditure is as much a factor of air temperature as anything else. Figure three seems to be pertinent to your question. As it becomes a matter of simple mathematics to convert from their units to yours, I leave that to you!


4

It is infinite. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P7ojSW5pODk Your thing is not amenable to descriptions of scale. It is infinite, or perhaps has no dimension. Or both - a point opening to another plane. The notion of size does not apply. Fortunately the notion of "where" does apply so you can find it and use it to make your coffee.


4

Diplomacy. These aliens would be looking at the same stuff we do: companionship, satisfying our needs for food, shelter and sex and doing this all through technology and resources. Many of us also have ideologies like protecting wildlife or equal rights. When the aliens meet us they could wipe us out, but why would they? They would be better off supplying ...


4

The dictators needs humans to satisfy some of his/her needs In your scenario, basic needs are satisified by robots, but what about higher needs ? If you look at the famous Manslow pyramid, it looks like in your scenario robots can satisfy only the two lowest steps of the human needs pyramid: The dictator will still need humans for sex, friendship, prestige ...


4

Capture radiant energy in a form easier to transport. A good way to harvest and transport energy is to convert it into a form that is easier to transport and from which is it easy to reclaim energy on demand. Capturing the suns energy as biomass, harvesting the stable biomass, and later burning the biomass. Slightly edgier is capturing hydroelectric ...


4

Let's start the estimation with the drag: $$ F_D = \frac{1}{2}\rho v^2 C_D A $$ Where $C_D A$ is going to be your form factor, depends on your drone design. Here are some example $C_D$ values $\rho$ is the air density. Here are some values, depending on temperature. If you increase the pressure to say 2x, the density also increases 2x. v is the velocity If ...


4

If your currency were to be made solely from an element that can only be obtained from the civilization's homeworld or home system they could be using physical currency to prevent counterfeiting by other civilizations. Alternatively, a unknown alien civilization may laugh when you pull up your digital wallet and show them a big number because they don't ...


4

My initial guess would be that the Earth, like the Moon, would lose about 2779.84 km of its average diameter, and calculations indicate that it would then have 0.478 x its original volume. My initial guess is more like "this is really hard". In order to remove mass from a body, you need to deliver enough energy to a portion of it to allow it to achieve ...


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