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  1. #61
    Live Long & Suffer psikeyhackr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kshRox View Post
    Is it possible there are another set of rules waiting for us to discover which do not require we invalidate Einsteins current theories?
    Could the impossible of today be a phenomenon of our current limitations?
    How far fetched are the theories concerning other dimensions and how strict are the conventions which prevent us from interacting with them?
    The trouble is people say theory when they should say "speculation".

    A theory can be tested. A speculation hasn't even gotten to that point.

    Real science is figuring out the unknown not making a big deal about the known. Even is quantum tunneling can work that does not mean it can work with macroscopic objects. So all FTL methods in fiction are over the line into the UNKNOWN. They may all be IMPOSSIBLE. So a writer can either make a good story with one of them or not.

    Originally Posted by Steven L Jordan
    none of which can be extrapolated from current scientific theories or experimentation.
    And the "experiment" of a vertical self supporting structure being completely collapsed by its top 15% was done where?

    psik

  2. #62
    I like SF. SF is cool. Steven L Jordan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by psikeyhackr View Post
    And the "experiment" of a vertical self supporting structure being completely collapsed by its top 15% was done where?
    Sorry, what experiment is this?

    No wonder fantasy is so much more popular than SF right now... who needs all this needling and whingeing over a desire for realism in a story?

  3. #63
    Registered User JimF's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steven L Jordan View Post
    Sorry, what experiment is this?

    No wonder fantasy is so much more popular than SF right now... who needs all this needling and whingeing over a desire for realism in a story?
    I am sure Psikeyhackr will correct me if I am wrong, and I am not trying to put words in his mouth, but I took that as a 911 reference to the WTC collapse.

    Jim

  4. #64
    I like SF. SF is cool. Steven L Jordan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JimF View Post
    I am sure Psikeyhackr will correct me if I am wrong, and I am not trying to put words in his mouth, but I took that as a 911 reference to the WTC collapse.
    Yes, it was; his way of saying (more or less) that we can't account for everything, therefore anything is possible.

    My opinion is that, though we can't account for everything, I would still lean towards what is most likely. I think he and I disagree on that point (or, perhaps, exactly what is most likely).

  5. #65
    Live Long & Suffer psikeyhackr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steven L Jordan View Post
    Yes, it was; his way of saying (more or less) that we can't account for everything, therefore anything is possible..
    That is nowhere near what I was saying. Experiments are partly about getting facts straight to see if reality works the way people BELIEVE.

    psik

  6. #66
    I like SF. SF is cool. Steven L Jordan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by psikeyhackr View Post
    That is nowhere near what I was saying. Experiments are partly about getting facts straight to see if reality works the way people BELIEVE.

    psik
    Which is relevant to this thread because...?

  7. #67
    Palinodic Moderator KatG's Avatar
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    Ah, there's the psikey we know. Psikey, please do not bring up the subject we told you not to bring up any more.

  8. #68
    Live Long & Suffer psikeyhackr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steven L Jordan View Post
    Which is relevant to this thread because...?
    Were you saying that experiments were relevant to reality thereby making your version of fictional FTL superior to the "hated" warp drive or not?

    This concept of turning scientific thinking on and off only in relation to fiction is quite amusing.

    psik

  9. #69
    I like SF. SF is cool. Steven L Jordan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by psikeyhackr View Post
    Were you saying that experiments were relevant to reality thereby making your version of fictional FTL superior to the "hated" warp drive or not?
    And are you questioning the validity of those experiments?

  10. #70
    Live Long & Suffer psikeyhackr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steven L Jordan View Post
    And are you questioning the validity of those experiments?
    I can hardly question the validity of experiments I have not even read about but that does not mean it can ever be applied on a macro scale. Just because physicists can get atomic particles to near light speed in a particle accelerator does not mean they can do it with 10 pounds of mass.

    psik

  11. #71
    I like SF. SF is cool. Steven L Jordan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by psikeyhackr View Post
    I can hardly question the validity of experiments I have not even read about but that does not mean it can ever be applied on a macro scale. Just because physicists can get atomic particles to near light speed in a particle accelerator does not mean they can do it with 10 pounds of mass.
    Maybe not... but it's a lot more to go on, and suggestive of the next steps that must be applied, than anything related to FTL, and by that measure much more likely to be an ultimately workable solution. In real life, or in SF.

  12. #72
    Webmaster, Great SF&F owlcroft's Avatar
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    Da capo.

    I never do understand discusions like this. What is "impossible"? Any novel is full of "impossible" things, because the people portrayed do not and did not exist, or if they perchance did exist, did not do the things portrayed. That is why we invented the word fiction. Fiction is imagined untruths portrayed as if true.

    Science fiction is fiction in which some of the things portrayed are not possible within the world as we currently understand it, but are nonetheless presented as in accordance with the world of natural law as those in the tale understand it. There is, so far as I can see, zero necessity to construct an explicit, readily comprehensible bridge between our current understanding of the laws of nature and that of the world within the tale. Indeed, any such bridge is itself a fiction, by definition.

    So you either have to write "science fiction" stories in which nothing whatever happens that is not within our present understanding of the laws of nature, which is possible but extremely cramping and needlessly limiting, or you have to just accept some handwaving--which is fine, unless the handwaving happens to be essential to the core of the tale (which is rare indeed).

    Fiction is a way of exploring the human condition and of expanding our individual experiences of Life, the Universe, and Everything, of living lives and having experiences impossible within the scope of our real, constrained lives. "Warp drives" or the numerous variants thereof (from inertialess drives to hyperspace) are, as someone said, just the equivalent of automobiles in contemporary settings or sailing ships in historical settings. There may be nut cases who read historical fiction and go postal if the exact details of the sail construction are not set forth in excrutiating detail, but they are just that: nut cases. The vast majority of readers want only this from the tale: to know what happened to whom and how they reacted to it.

    And to presume that our present knowledge of the laws of nature somehow bounds or limits what we might be able to do in a mere century (look at history, and consider the concept of geometric growth), much less a millennium or so, seems--to me, at least--flat-out blind.
    Last edited by owlcroft; August 8th, 2012 at 11:48 PM. Reason: fix garbled sentence

  13. #73
    You know I was wondering why so few had even thought of this.I was actually talking with my father about this subject, about how humans could accomplish such a feat by the grace of science alone and this was the eventual answer we reached.

  14. #74
    I like SF. SF is cool. Steven L Jordan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Riothamus View Post
    You know I was wondering why so few had even thought of this.I was actually talking with my father about this subject, about how humans could accomplish such a feat by the grace of science alone and this was the eventual answer we reached.
    It makes sense, based on the science we know. And it's one thing to say "we don't know everything"--which, of course, we don't--and another to ignore the facts we do know about science and nature, and assume we'll simply find a workable brute-force method and "prove those facts wrong".

  15. #75
    Registered User Pennarin's Avatar
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    This entire conversation has been rather meta, and unsatisfying. There are some tense moments, polarized positions, and little headway made by anyone. owlcroft expresses some of the same misgivings in his post.
    At this point I'd suggest to create another thread altogether, with a similar subject but different premise.

    (Take this suggestion as you like.)

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