[LMB] Centrifugal gravity, was Re: Cordelia's College sport

Raymond Collins rcrcoll6 at gmail.com
Sat Jun 19 08:58:12 BST 2021

Before Nixon nixed NASA'S space program there were plans for a Lunar space
station,  and a  nuclear powered spacecraft to to Mars.
I wonder where we would be at now if Nixon hadn't cancelled NASA'S primary
goals back then?

On Sat, Jun 19, 2021, 2:45 AM Matija Grabnar via Lois-Bujold <
lois-bujold at lists.herald.co.uk> wrote:

> On 18/06/2021 23:17, Matthew George wrote:
> > The technology to cross the American continent had existed since the
> > Classical Roman era.  The technology to cross space...
> That's a really interesting argument. By the measure by which the
> Classical Roman era had the technology to cross the American continent,
> we already HAVE the technology to cross space. After all, the Voyager
> has left the solar system. Energy wise, once you are in low earth orbit,
> you are halfway to anywhere in the Solar system - so getting to LEO is
> the hardest part. Sure, more speed would be good, and if we want people
> to travel there, life support will have to improve. But none of those
> are fundamentally difficult science questions, just technology
> questions. We have the technology to cross space (within the Solar
> system). But on the other hand, the Romans would be well served by an
> increase of the speed of travel, and in the amount of cargo that could
> be transported, and the cost to do it. But, see, those were problems of
> technology, not fundamental laws of physics. And so are the problems of
> crossing the Solar system.
> > Do not confuse technology being commonplace with its being low-tech.  Our
> > modern computers are higher-tech than they've ever been, requiring an
> > immense mining, refining, and manufacturing base to make and an extensive
> > power grid to use.  They would not long survive even a minor disruption
> of
> > society.
> So? The Roman cement technology did not survive a minor fall of
> civilization, either. Didn't mean people could no longer live in houses
> (just not as tall houses).
> Also didn't mean that a later civilization couldn't develop an
> equivalent technology that gets most of the same results.
> And I don't see that point you are making. Yes, the latest chips require
> fabbing facilities that cost billions to build, and highly skilled
> people to run. But you can put together a facility to build late
> 90s/early noughties chips for a budget in low tens of millions.
> > What has happened on Earth will likely never happen in space.
> Hard to do anything with a statement as vague as that. What are you
> talking about?
> >    Don't even
> > get me started on the idea that increasing funding is all that's needed
> for
> > a technological breakthrough.
> Don't even get me started on the argument of we didn't fund it,
> therefore it has not progressed, therefore it is impossible, therefore
> we shouldn't fund it.
> Circular argument.
> If we were arguing about something traveling faster than light, you
> would have a point. But none of the stuff under the discussion here
> violates the fundamental laws of physics.
> --
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