New answers tagged

1

They would need to look like aerostatic balloons. As I sketched out in this answer the other day, to lift 100 kg one would need above 84 $m^3$ of volume, more realistically around the 150 $m^3$. Let's look at the best case scenario, where the volume in the cloth is completely devoided of air, the cloth doesn't let any air leak in and can withstand the outer ...


1

I believe you would see some differences, some of them depending on the life cycle of your sentient herbivore. Domestication I actually don't believe you will find any domesticated work animals. Early hunter societies would follow herds around, where the food goes, so do you. From here, people will quickly realize that any other predators will result in less ...


1

I think it is plausible. At least, for the part concerning worldbuilding, it has been proposed by me as a way for plants to harvest energy from the wind. In our real world we have piezoelectric spark generators used in lighters and kitchen to start flames. The main shortcoming I can think of is the two step process (1.) in place of the single step one (2.) ...


2

Religions are not specifically about gods. Religions are about cultural values that hold a society together. The deity figure is just that, a figure used to give the whole thing authority. Religions are, fundamentally, memes. They grow, they mutate, they compete. Sometimes they die out. Humans tolerate them because they can (sometimes) be survival technology....


2

What you describe actually exists in the world of First Order Logic (FOL) and its friends. In fact, what you describe is so mindbogglingly close to the work of Dan Willard that I really want to get to see where you take this in science fiction! Let me preface this with an apology for the length. I have tried to condense this several times, and it falls ...


3

They celebrate the logical world via formal proofs. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Formal_proof In logic and mathematics, a formal proof or derivation is a finite sequence of sentences (called well-formed formulas in the case of a formal language), each of which is an axiom, an assumption, or follows from the preceding sentences in the sequence by a rule of ...


1

This question makes me think of Estelle from Arknights. (I don't know how to put pictures in a question or answer on SE, sadly, so you'll have to find it yourself). The spike-like horns on her brow could be accounted for with simple holes in the helmet. However, the big, curved horns on the side of her head would be quite a bit more difficult. A clamshell ...


1

It could progress the same as us. Some Australopithecines were herbivores yet had manual dexterity etc,. For many hunter gather societies hunting is not the main source of food. So assuming these herbivores had tools and fire and the brain power. Then there's no reason they couldn't have agriculture. It's developing the brains and tools that's the hard part, ...


4

Cut, Burn, & Cover: FRAME SHIFT: As fanatical as we Minnesotans might be about our Vikings, horns would be a serious impediment to normal human behavior. Actual Vikings did NOT wear horned helmets, because they were impractical and would provide leverage in combat, so a blow against the very broad horns might twist or break a warrior's neck. If those ...


2

I think that developing agriculture for an herbivore would be more difficult. For an omnivore species like us, domesticated animals played a twofold role: providing additional power for the farming work, which is energy demanding, supplying an additional source of food. For example it is believed that the ability to drink milk as adults, by keeping the ...


0

My idea is that it has an enzyme that repairs telomeres to the point where it can have an seven-thousand-year lifespan. And possibly an impressive healing factor, as aging is the result of damage culminating over time. If we are to slow down the damage, we extend the lifespan.


0

One possibility is that this creature isn't an oxygen-breather at all. There are several other gases and liquids, such as chlorine, that have been proposed as a possible "breathing medium" for extraterrestrial life. If this entity isn't using oxygen, the free-radicals problem vanishes. Another possibility is that it's something along the lines of ...


2

Humans are pretty good ambush predators. Of course that's not all they do, and I would think that anything that fills the "human" niche would have to be a generalist, like humans.


1

As for why greater intelligence would be an evolutionary advantage: Ambush predators could have used greater intelligence to improve their hunting techniques- traps, ranged weapons, and artificial camouflage spring to mind. In humans, developing tools (spears, atlatls, and such) made our basic "chase the animal until it collapses from exhaustion" ...


0

Nature got there first Some forms of fish such as goldfish, salmon, piranha and cichlid can see infrared light. Salmon and some other freshwater fish have an enzyme that switches their visual systems to activate infrared seeing, which helps them to navigate and hunt in murky waters. https://sciencing.com/animals-can-see-infrared-light-6910261.html


0

Of course. It's not about brain, it's about eye. They just need the right cells in their eyes to pick up both infrared and visible light.


0

All prior answers suggest the direct route of materials with high strength. I suggest an alternate solution, based on inertia. Any projectile has a certain mass, and it imparts momentum from that mass onto its target upon impact— No matter how fast it's going, it can only penetrate so far before it's shed enough of its momentum into the struck material that ...


5

As long as it is to the evolutionary advantage of the creature then yes, it could happen. It makes sense that, for a predator that ambushes it's prey, it would be beneficial for a species to have the ability to work well together, predict it's prey well in advance and perhaps even create tools to assist. The more prey they can catch the better the mutation ...


2

Maybe you don't need to be so gentle? A lot of the anserws focus on how to practice sex while avoiding harm entirely. There are pretty good answers but I feel there's a angle that hasn't been explored. Sometimes pain, and small, controlled ammounts of bodly harm can be a positive part of the sexual encounter. Perhaps, to an extent, the pushing round, beating,...


2

I would propose as an addon to the already excellent answers present here the following: You need to know first and foremost how members of your alien species would engage in their own equivalent of intercourse. If they function differently (think egg laying frogs, where there isn't quite any intercourse happening) then they might not have the same kind of ...


1

The possibilities of what might be achieved from genetic manipulation are mind boggling. What we see in the natural world is just a tiny fragment of what is biochemically possible. The problem is knowing what DNA changes are required to produce the required bodily changes. Given the enormity of the possibilities gaining this knowledge would require god like ...


5

Frame Challenge: Assumptions are being made in the question regarding DNA modification being a kind of magic. Pretty Much a Normal Diet It's a pretty common sci-fi trope, but DNA modification isn't magic. If the DNA in every cell in your body changed to that of a capuchin monkey right now, it would be some time before you noticed anything, and it wouldn't ...


8

Well, with technology and a bit of creativity of course! There are several options, all depending on how transhumanist (or transalienist!) the couple is willing to go. Here's a list of potential workarounds/ways the young couple can get it on, ordered from low to high investment: No touching: there's plenty of two-partner erotic activities that people can ...


11

prosthetics AKA sex toys This very funny short story by Naomi Kritzer narrates how a human/alien couple's special request to a sex-toy business leads to a whole line of artificial private parts -- measurements, variations, product-testing -- and their increasing popularity as we find inter-species love isn't so rare, just mostly hidden. (Disclaimer: no, I ...


2

I will write about the safety, how they would come to the point to speak and find a consent about it, is another point. I think we agree, that language and sharing thoughts is not the problem in different body shapes, but touching could be. Option 1: make Mr Xurkesh less dangerous Depending on the dangers that Mr Xurkesh offers,for example stuff the spikes ...


31

With clear communication and active consent. I'm going to assume discussion and light contact (eg hugs) just works between species. It sounds like your asking more about the sexual side of intimacy than the cuddles on the couch. This is going to vary considerably depending on the two races I could make guesses based on the picture and write some inter ...


9

How would a loving interspecies couple with vastly different body plans safely engage in physical intimacy? Physical intimacy extends way past the mere act of intercourse or physical penetration. Even for the human with human couple, there are cases where one or both members of the couple has had their genitalia altered or removed out of medical concerns (...


2

Internet. People can love on the internet. People could fall in love writing letters! As compared to in-person interactions, distance communication makes body plan less relevant and sometimes body plan is not known. In some circumstances it may facilitate the interaction for one or more partners to simulate a physical body plan which is known to be ...


1

Any civilization which has the capability to travel interstellar distances at FTL speeds, also has other technology. This other technology can make inter-species romance easier. Some examples (from low-level to high-level): Spacesuits and translators can be made so that the species can talk to each other People can implant cybernetics or have their genes ...


2

I have a hard time imagining the interest in a physical relationship between such different species. Sexual desire involves a lot of hormones, pheromones, physical cues etc. which will be very different across species with no common ancestry. That said, there are all kinds of kinks, people marry their washing machines, and if the need arises, they will find ...


8

o.m. already gave a useful insight on the relationship side. If you are looking also at the physical part, don't forget that body plans are important only for a subset of all living creatures. A lot of sea creatures, for example, simply spread their gametes in the water, and let fate decide who mates who. Same goes with many anemophile plants, which spread ...


8

Hold deep emotional talks, look deep into each other's dreamy eyes, and hold hands, tentacles, or pseudopods. That's what holds the relationship together. As to a physical relationship, that depends on how close the two species are, but there are humans in the real world who get sexual stimulation from all kinds of things. Having a sentient extraterrestrial ...


2

It's clear that you're not talking about humans here, but I'm going to use human hands as the basis for my answer, as they are by far the most relatable hands for me personally. I would definitely say they'd come out from in between the fingers. For one thing, there's actually space in between the metacarpals for claws to rest. The hands would however need ...


4

Trees use smell. If your trees get eaten by masses of insects, nothing will seem to happen at first. But soon the trees will start to smell tremendously, and before the week is over masses of birds have eaten most of the insects and an equilibrium is created where some insects survive to eat the trees while birds get their share and enough trees survive. ...


1

Imagine just minding your own business while you see a UFO. You would be pretty scared right? For predators, this is like the same thing. You don't mess with the things that you can't understand. What you can't understand is what you fear. Just think about deers. They are pretty smart when it comes to escaping from threats. But any car with it's lights on? ...


4

Two possibilities: To warn off predators that the algae are bitter or poisonous. Easier to be recognized the second time. To attract commensal fish that will eat dead and decaying algae, or fish that would eat the algae.


2

Bioluminescence is used as a defence mechanism to draw predators towards the creature trying to eat the plankton. Furthermore, the tiny flashes of light disorientate and surprise predators.


2

A rigid swim bladder would do the trick Fish already have an organ that allows them to control their floatation called a swim bladder. In fish, it's basically a ballon, but if the bladder covered bone with only a small opening, it would likely be able to hold a low-pressure region relative to the outside. Mythbusters tested if you could cause a container ...


1

The atmospheric entry would be the easy part: meteorites don't get hot on the inside: "Rocky asteroids are poor conductors of heat [...].Their central regions remain cool even as the hot outer layers are ablated away." — Donald Yeomans, manager of NASA's Near Earth Object program at JPL. The next part would be getting out, so we'd need to posit ...


0

My answer to: https://scifi.stackexchange.com/questions/240935/novel-sentient-lifeform-enslaves-all-life-on-planet-colonises-other-planets-b/240976#240976[1] Mentions the classic science fiction story "Seeds of the Dusk" 1938, by Raymond Z. Gallun, in which intelligent Martian plants send billions of spores into space and one lands on Earth and ...


0

You may find an answer here: Panspermia (from Ancient Greek πᾶν (pan) 'all', and σπέρμα (sperma) 'seed') is the hypothesis that life exists throughout the Universe, distributed by space dust, meteoroids, asteroids, comets, planetoids, and also by spacecraft carrying unintended contamination by microorganisms. Distribution may have occurred spanning ...


3

As the previous respondent noted a seed (or better yet a spore) might survive a multi million year journey through the cold and vacuum of space followed by the heat and impact of a descent to the Earths surface if buried deep inside a meteor large enough for the its core not to heat up too much as a result of air friction and the kinetic energy of impact. ...


14

Eon-long stellar journeys and flaming atmospheric entries are harsh environments for any life form, not only plants; but plants have evolved a wonderful mechanism for surviving temporary harsh conditions. It is called, "a seed". Wrapping its vital genetic information in a nutrient-rich medium and then wrapping that kernel in a hard shell, along ...


2

Colonial heat eater based on a comet. I laid out some ideas for a void creature here: What would the biochemistry of a vacuum dwelling creature look like? Colonial creature. This would start with autotrophic archaebacteria colonizing a comet. The comet provides substrate to build bodies out of and shielding from hard radiation. I can imagine different ...


7

Can they perceive depth? YES. Of course they can. You don't even need the mutation, a single eyeball with a single pupil can perceive depth. How can we know this? Your allowed to drive a car with only one working eye. Judging depth is one of the most critical road skills - needed for everything from following distance estimations at highway speeds to ...


6

As you correctly suspected, there won't be any different information to infer the depth from. As you can see from the sketch above, a two eyed viewing system, due to the separation between the two eyes will give a slightly different view of the same object. A single eye instead, while still giving a small separation between the images due to the non zero ...


0

It's very simple: goblins are an ambitious, pragmatic, ruthless, militaristic species. When humans consistently repelled, conquered, or outsmarted goblins they inadvertently made goblins not envious but admiring of them. This was a species that had everything the goblins valued and desired, a species that did everything the goblins focused on and did it ...


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