gnasher729
  • Member for 7 years, 3 months
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What would happen if an alien race gave us a computer capable of 2^256 calculations per second?
23 votes

As far as decryption is concerned: The encryption systems currently in use are using key sizes that make it absolutely impossible to crack them using known technology. These key sizes would be cracked ...

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Tomorrow is Groundhog Day... For everyone. How does society respond?
14 votes

To recapitulate the problem: At some fixed point in the day (maybe midnight, maybe 6am) everything is changed to the exact same state as 24 hours earlier, except that people's memory contains the ...

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How will our world change if all men suddenly die?
7 votes

Seems there is the immediate problem of 3.5 billion dead bodies that need to be removed to avoid immediate health problems, plus severe damage caused by men like drivers (you said death is almost ...

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What happens if the sun disappears and then reappears some days later?
6 votes

72 hours of total darkness will lead to a significant drop of temperature. The difference in temperature between day and night can be anywhere between 10 and 30 degrees Celsius. It depends on cloud ...

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How long would people live in the US if an immortality treatment was available?
4 votes

Are we talking about a treatment that everyone can afford and everyone has to take only once, so basically everyone who is at adult age today, plus everyone who turns 18 in the future, will never die ...

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Superheros and capes
3 votes

It can be very dangerous to wear a cape. You might get trapped in a revolving door. http://comicvine.gamespot.com/dollar-bill/4005-18494/

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How would annually making all crime legal for 12 hours on the same day every year affect the US economy?
3 votes

One big problem: It would be legal for the bank to steal my money, right? So any bank could transfer all the deposits on the day into their own accounts... Since they can do that, I would get all my ...

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Everyone gets an IQ of 300. What are the downsides?
3 votes

Andrew Wiles has (my guess) an IQ of 180, studied mathematics full time for many years, and it took him seven years to prove Fermat's "Last Theorem". An IQ of 300 relative to Wiles is about the same ...

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What change in history would I have to make to stop Christmas from happening?
2 votes

Totally discredit Jesus. One evening, after visiting Magdalena and coming from her home, he is attacked and murdered by someone claiming to be a jealous punter. Totally destroys the whole religion. ...

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Why would a language be undubbable by universal (machine) translator?
2 votes

A very simple example from Earth is that translating German to English is not possible in real time. It's possible and not uncommon to have long German sentences where the last word completely changes ...

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Humans can now fly. What new laws are created?
2 votes

It depends what you mean by "maximum airtime" and "maximum speed". Is 30 minutes at 30 mph something that the average person can do, or is that something for top athletes? Today, some top athletes can ...

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Could I have a culture where stealing is not wrong?
2 votes

Stealing wouldn't be wrong if everybody always had whatever they want available to them. Either because of a massive surplus, or because people need very little. Alternatively, if keeping you ...

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How would annually making all crime legal for 12 hours on the same day every year affect the US economy?
2 votes

Very simply sales of guns and ammunition would go through the roof throughout the year in preparation. That would be the economical impact. Living in a small village, I'd assume that there would be ...

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If guns had a 50% chance of lethally backfiring, what would they be used for?
1 votes

You are a spy on a secret mission. Any spies that get caught will be killed. Any weapon other than a magic gun will be found immediately, you will be identified as a spy, and killed. Bringing a magic ...

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Time Warp: Modern chemist as court alchemist
1 votes

Other people who were asked to turn lead into gold did instead turn clay into china. Well, at least one did. If you can figure out how to create china you will make your prince very happy.

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How to replace a fictional element to the periodic table?
1 votes

What makes an element behave physically and chemically as it does is in the end not the number of protons, but how many electrons it has in the outer shells. An example is platinum and iridium, which ...

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What would it take for society reach a point where the time it takes to learn leaves no time to discover?
1 votes

In Science Fiction, civilisations where nothing new is created can be found - for example, Asimov's Trantor civilisation. However, in that case it still seems that the problem is not that it takes ...

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Using our current understanding of science, is it possible for biologically plausible animals to be resistant to our current military weapons?
0 votes

Controlled evolution There's a science fiction story where I can't remember either title or author. Humans land on a planet whose inhabitants have controlled evolution. That means each single animal ...

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In modern day combat, what would warrant singing during battle?
0 votes

The "Dynamo" character in Schwarzenegger's "Running Man" was singing before he started zapping people. That's a bit in the future, but opportunities for a murderous singing assassin appearing on TV ...

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Is there any material today that could withstand the impact of a baseball at 0.05c?
0 votes

In one of the Star Trek books, the author describes the crew trying to figure out how to destroy a planet-sized machine, at all cost. One idea is to accelerate the ship to close to light speed and ram....

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You're superstrong but you still weigh the same. What happens when you hit things?
0 votes

Superperson can accelerate his fist (which is connected to his arm) to any arbitrary speed, until the arm is completely extended. It has been said that the mass of the arm is supposed to be 5.3% of ...

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Ridiculously Fast Supercomputer
0 votes

If there is only one, with a USB connection only, the damage wouldn't be too bad. It was said that cryptography would be broken: Yes, but only one message at a time. So we would have to think about a ...

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