Hot answers tagged

162

Glamour is the first spell they learn! In real life, wizards all look like you would expect - skinny spindly bookish guys, chubby balding bookish guys, unkempt old dudes etc. The first thing they do when they get some magic is get glamoured up, buff and Harlequin romance ready! If you are familiar with the internet, you will understand that the hot sexy ...


159

My line of thinking is this: If you want to kill everyone over 18, it should ideally be linked to something that only those older than 18 are able to do. Computers are getting smaller, and wearables are becoming more fashionable, it's not unfeasible that within a few decades we'll have implants in our brains for interfacing with computers. As with all ...


154

Well, there is at least one country operating that way. Perhaps it stops some crime, but that country is not a nice place to live. Most criminals do not believe that they will be caught. Most criminals do not plan for the long term, let alone generations. Depriving the children of legitimate life choices will guide them towards criminal choices. So what I'...


154

This problem has actually been considered very seriously by very serious people, in the context of warning future generations of the dangers associated with long-term repositories of nuclear waste. The Human Interference Task Force was "a team of engineers, anthropologists, nuclear physicists, behavioral scientists and others [...] convened on behalf of the ...


153

Achondroplastic dwarves are resistant to osteosarcoma. Ionizing radiation is a problem for space travelers.* It is very difficult to block energetic particles and as the cumulative dose rises, the incidence of cancer rises with it. The most common radiation-induced cancer is sarcoma, and of these the most common is osteosarcoma.* In the recent past of ...


144

This is a really interesting scenario, and one I've had a hard time thinking up some responses to. Lack of information distribution You will find lots of people doing lots of the same stuff. Information in our world is mainly distributed electronically, through social media and email. However, it is highly likely that many people don't check all of those ...


144

There are a few reasons the government might want you to own a llama for a day: IT could be a religious rite of some sort. If llamas are held in high esteem by priests and government, and they want to bless the people, having them care for a llama is the way to do it. The holy book says be good to llamas to get to the better afterlife, so let's get all ...


137

The most obvious issue applies to all weighted voting systems, whoever gets to define the tests has power to influence the vote. Say everyone on the IQ evaluation board is of a particular political persuasion or have the same opinion on a political topic. This bias could subtly (or overtly) be introduced into the IQ testing, giving higher IQ rating to ...


136

The native Americans DID form their own nation states in south america. The Maya, the Inca, the Aztec, the Pueblo. The idea that the North American natives were all a bunch of stone age subsistence hunter-gatherers exists because something like 90% of them died out from the diseases that swept the continents after the Europeans made their first brief ...


129

Surely you mean the meteorite impact? NCC news: Today a massive meteorite impact in Philadephia caused thousands of deaths and ten thousands of causalites. Authorities believe that the meteorite likely disintegrated shortly before impact explaining the lack of remainders [possible!]. Soldiers from Fort XYZ [in reality special ops] have already ...


124

The uncanny valley would suffice: The uncanny valley is theorized to detach us from the corpses of our dead friends. We strongly dislike things which have a similar level of human likeness as a corpse does. If two groups were close but not quite the same, it would be very possible for each group to fall into the other group's uncanny valley, generating ...


120

It is important to realize that there is a historic context to a capital. This means a lot of things, and let's look at some Earth capitals to compare: Washington D.C. makes no sense as the capital of a large, wide-spread nation like the United States. It is far on the East Coast, is part of a district that isn't in any particular state. Historically, ...


117

Whenever there's a question about socialism or capitalism on here I always get fed up with the trite and blinkered answers which obsess only on the most painfully obvious facts of the matter - namely the USA and USSR. But the fact is capitalism and socialism are broad philosophies with many different implementations. Socialist economies can be mixed, and ...


117

Farmer, farmer, and farmer Assuming it is independent and not a satellite settlement (a satellite community is far far more likely) there is only one job, farmer. there is not enough people to support specialized labor. (note farmer might be replaced with fisher in a coastal settlement) Maybe, maybe they have a blacksmith, although a hundred is is a pretty ...


114

Yes, sadly but for a good reason Rascism is a sub-type of in-group bias, where a person will favor someone mentally labeled as "in my group" over someone "out of my group". Other examples of this type of bias show up in politics, text editor choice, religion, sports team preference and most any other instance where some characteristic can define a group. ...


114

There is a flaw in what you expect. In your scenario, you are assuming that only men can commit crime.The other side of this story is as follows: Alice does not marry Bob. Bob finds Kate. Kate also has a charge of damaging public property(or something else). No one would also marry Kate, that's why Bob and Kate are perfect match. As they are already ...


113

If you plant merchants, they don't grow so good. Jingo (Pratchett) Merchants have goods you want. They tend to repeatedly have goods you want, not just the once. A merchant might tell his friends they have goods you want, that's a good way of getting goods. If you kill the merchants and take their goods, quite soon you stop seeing merchants and have to ...


110

teleportation (magical or technological, it matters not) is perfected I think the devil is in the details here. You have enormous scope for making it as convenient/inconvenient, socially loved/scorned, artificially restricted, etc. as you need it to be for your story to work, on many different fronts. Let's say it's a personal technological teleporter - ...


110

Conservative means wanting nothing to change. Whatever society is, it should stay the same. What that means in practice depends on where you come from, but it is often, and in this case specifically, related to the position of the church. Make it part of the religion Consider the historic concept of the nun or monk under Catholicism and invert it. They're ...


109

If science proved that there was a God, the first thing everyone would try to do would be determine if he was their God. Depending on the nature of the God and how it's proven that he exists, this may be easy or hard to do. During the period in which everyone was still trying to determine which God he is, there would be a host of reactions. Some believers ...


109

Natural Vaccination. Read about how Cowpox was used to vaccinate against Smallpox, this is our IRL first instance of vaccination against a disease. The word “vaccination,” coined by Jenner in 1796, is derived from the Latin root vaccinus, meaning of or from the cow. Once vaccinated, a patient develops antibodies that make them immune to cowpox, but they ...


108

Consider a mountain pass. In short, you need a small village located on a major road. Possibly, your village is located near (on the only road leading to) a mountain pass. You mentioned the mountainous location, so it fits geographically, and such location will result in quite a bit of traffic (merchants, travellers) passing through. At the same time, the ...


106

The story can be summed up as follows. Von Braun is captured by the Soviets, not the Americans. Failure to beat the Soviets to the Moon extends the Space Race. An extended Space Race means space colonies are feasible in the 80s. Nuclear war happens, the Earth is rendered uninhabitable. The remnants of humanity launch colony ships into space. But really it ...


106

The winners are not killed immediately, but after a few months, which they spend in a rather leisurely life: exempted from work, supplied with food and their only task being breeding with a large harem of women (you want the bloodline of the worthy to be preserved, don't you?). After few months of dedicated service to breeding, with a large number of ...


104

They Lack Sophisticated Agriculture Goblins spend a lot of time raiding and extorting villages because they are always on the edge of starvation. Hunter-gatherer populations are never very large: the absolute largest were the indigenous tribes of northwestern North America, who had villages of up to 400 due to the abundance of the salmon runs. The Plains ...


103

It's a computer error. The original constitution of the country mandated that all people aged 43 should consume more foodstuffs containing umami, to improve public health. However the spell-checker used in preparing the original document refused to accept that word and substituted "llama." Since the most politically influential group in the country adopts a ...


102

What you're describing is essentially a literacy test. The biggest concern here is that this test could be manipulated to exclude certain groups of people. For example, the state of Louisiana used a test to try to disenfranchise black voters in 1964.: A group of Harvard students were recently asked by their tutor to sit the 1964 Louisiana Literacy Test -...


102

To shamelessly crib an answer from Isaac Asimov: The ones who went to the stars were the best humanity had to offer. Those left behind were not; therefore to be 'Earthborn' is (in the eyes of the Starborn) to come from inherently inferior stock. This prejudice can set in and become entrenched in the minds of the Starborn, especially if they have a period of ...


94

So, you are planning a rapid rise to power and wealth without it being so conspicuous that you draw attention from the people that could discover your secret. Should be easy for someone of your genius, right? Your primary challenge is that whichever "industry" you use for a cover, you absolutely will draw the attention of competitors in that area. The more ...


93

...once they reach a planet, they do research. Nope. They're doing research all the time. That's their full-time employment. Aside from the usual time off, it's nonstop research. Once they reach a planet, they do fieldwork. That means collecting samples, interviewing or observing people, observing animals, taking careful notes and pictures, measuring ...


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