Is this really true or it's just science fiction?

This is a discussion on Is this really true or it's just science fiction? within the A Brief History of Cprogramming.com forums, part of the Community Boards category; "Eay back in the 1800's people didnot think it was possible to create a vehical that could fly. But peoplwe ...

  1. #106
    The Earth is not flat. Clyde's Avatar
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    "Eay back in the 1800's people didnot think it was possible to create a vehical that could fly. But peoplwe kept working on it regardless of that until they found a way."

    There is a difference between believeing something is not technologically feasable, believeing something is not possible due to the physical laws of the universe.

    "I don't know how to proceed without repeating myself frankly"

    I understand what you're saying. I've heard it many times before. Whenever science holds something up to be true, people say "But science has been wrong before, therefore you can't be sure".

    But you reach a point where you place things from the -might be proved wrong bracket, into the -is the truth bracket.

    Everyone does this, you do it too, you consider the Earth to be round, and you have that statement placed in the -is the truth bracket. You do not believe that anyone will EVER prove that the Earth is not round.

    The more you know about a topic the better positioned you are to evaluate which bracket to put it in: Someone who doesn't know about evolution could well place it in the -might be proved wrong, bracket, whereas someone who has studied it understand the theory and evidence for it will most certainly put it in the -is the truth bracket.

    Likewise our caveman might well put Earth being round (after we told him) in his -might be proved wrong bracket.

  2. #107
    My diaper's full....... stevey's Avatar
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    well i'm not an expert but i'm fascinated and have read Stephen Hawking's books and made a big effort to understand them. not sure if i've been completely successful.

    so if we can never exceed C in a spaceship, which i think is a given personally, we only have wormholes and some sort of warp drive as a means of exploring our galaxy, never mind other galaxies. both seem unlikely, so were stuck here in our little system, we'll never know whether there is lintelligent life out there or not. what a pity.
    i still think anyone who thinks we're alone is daft, considering the billions and billions of galaxies out there, and the billions of years involved. but we'll never know for sure
    Steve

  3. #108
    The Earth is not flat. Clyde's Avatar
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    Well, the nearest solar system to us is 4 light years away.

    Reaching it is not impossible, i read a recent article showing that if we could make a ship with giant diamond sails (and I really mean GIANT) using light for propulsion we could get to Alpha Centauri in about 100 years.

    Basically the ship contains a small community of 150-200 people, what's interesting is if the ship made the return trip back to Earth the people coming off it would speak a noticeably different language to those on Earth.

    So there is some hope of exploring other worlds

  4. #109
    My diaper's full....... stevey's Avatar
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    i don't think alpa centauri has a solar system though does it ??
    i saw a prog on searching for planets, i dont think they found any close by, so far.
    could be wrong, correct me if i am.

    surely not a diamond sail ?? why diamond ??

    thing is, there may not be intelligent life in our galaxy, and thats about 100,000 light years across !!!

    so we gotta travel > C to get anywhere at all !!
    Steve

  5. #110
    The Earth is not flat. Clyde's Avatar
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    As far as I'm aware there were planets around Alpha Centauri...... though i may be mistaken.

    Presumeably they chose diamond for its properties: high strength and its optical properties. Though i'd have to do some digging to find a more precise reason.

    Though you are right in that there's probably life out them millions of light years away that we will never find because its too far.

    Seems a pity really doesn't it.

  6. #111
    My diaper's full....... stevey's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Clyde

    Though you are right in that there's probably life out them millions of light years away that we will never find because its too far.

    Seems a pity really doesn't it.
    yeah thats what i think, its a shame.
    still we won't get attacked by civilisations millions of years more advanced than us !!!

    thats interesting i think, the time frame
    the universe is around 14 billion years old i believe, and the earth is around 4 billion y/o.
    so there could be life >10 billion years more advanced than us !!
    and weve only really advanced in the last 100/150 years or so.
    Steve

  7. #112
    Ethereal Raccoon Procyon's Avatar
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    Alpha Centauri is a multiple star system (three stars orbiting around each other) but has no known planets. Of course, we can only measure the largest planets; if the system had an Earth-like planet it wouldn't have a significant enough impact on the system for us to recognize with current methods. However, even so, tidal interactions between the stars make it relatively unlikely that any planets will form there, although it's not impossible.

    I'm very skeptical about the 100 year figure for transport to Alpha Centurai. That would require an average speed around 4% of that of light. Maybe it's possible for a spacecraft carrying nothing but a few probes, but a whole community of people with living quarters and life support seems unlikely.

  8. #113
    The Earth is not flat. Clyde's Avatar
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    "I'm very skeptical about the 100 year figure for transport to Alpha Centurai. That would require an average speed around 4% of that of light. Maybe it's possible for a spacecraft carrying nothing but a few probes, but a whole community of people with living quarters and life support seems unlikely"

    The article was in New Scientist, and i think it said ithe ship would reach 10% of the speed of light, using the diamond sail it described.

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    Imagine the look on thier faces when they get there, after all that, just to find nothing.
    If you own a piece of land and there is an volcano on it and it ruins a
    nearby town, do you have to pay for the property damage?

  10. #115
    Ethereal Raccoon Procyon's Avatar
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    I suppose anything is possible with a big enough sail, although it would take some pretty spectacular material to get big enough to provide that power without its own mass weighting it down. Just how big does the article say the sail needs to be?

  11. #116
    The Earth is not flat. Clyde's Avatar
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    I wish i could find.... as best i can remember it was 10 or so km squared in area but only a few mm thick... though I could be an order of magnitude out =)

    Of course such a project is entirely unfeasable until an efficient and (reasonably) cheap method for producing diamond is found.

  12. #117
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    Originally posted by Clyde
    Maybe it's possible for a spacecraft carrying nothing but a few probes, but a whole community of people with living quarters and life support seems unlikely"
    There's no air resistance in space, so it doesn't matter how big your ship is you will just go faster and faster if you leave the engines on.

    sure acceleration = mass/force
    so the mass would be pretty big so it would take longer to accellerate
    um
    whatever im lost in the clouds again.

    why do we need to seek out new life and civilisation anyway?

  13. #118
    My diaper's full....... stevey's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Brian



    to seek out new life and civilisation ?
    are you quoting Star Trek ????

    why not anyway ??
    i want to know more about the universe !!
    unfortunately its all just too far away !!

    whats light propulsion ?? light having no mass, how does it work ??
    your not talking about the solar wind ???
    Last edited by stevey; 04-08-2002 at 06:25 PM.
    Steve

  14. #119
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    Originally posted by stevey



    why not anyway ??
    you could stay on earth and enjoy females

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    Unless you're a girl, in which case there's me.

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