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    223 KB Issues in SCI FI! Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)01:46 No.6857658  
    I'm working on a sci fi universe, and have been for a while- it's something I've been working on for a few years, and before I went to college even.I love science fiction of all types, from old school pulp sci fi, to Asimov, to even a lot of the modern stuff, and I even love mechas of all kinds, military hardware...I love it all.

    However, I went to college. I actually took college level physics classes, and for a while afterwards, I actually began pondering on the ramifications of all the sciences behind what I was writing.I learned that a lot of my thinking was wrong, even impossible, and my writing so soft in real science, that I've had to scrap/rethink half of my ideas and concepts and rework the other ones.There's so much to think about! Societal growth,technological growth, megascale construction in space, economics, and then things like relativistic speeds in space making every goddamn thing in space a goddamn WMD, and of course how governments will have to step in and regulate space travel for obvious reasons....there's so much to plan- so much to think!

    There's TOO much stuff involved in making hard sci fi! It's almost overwhelming.

    What do you guys think? How do you like your sci fi? What do you like to see?Do you like anything in general? What do you dislike?

    TL.DR: Science Fiction General Thread, picture unrelated to anything but cool sci fi diagrams of powered suits.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)01:48 No.6857688
    I like my lasers in scifi to go pew pew!
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)01:53 No.6857750
    I think that as long as you try to be realistic it doesn't matter if your science is a bit off. I like it when Sci-fi can be fantastic and unrealistic without being stupid. Making obvious errors or making errors for no reason other than lack of caring bothers me. If you just fudge some properties of physics so your spaceship can go fwoom I don't mind.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)01:53 No.6857756
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    A lot of my love for lasers went bye bye.They are supposed to be invisible in vacuum, and only visible in places with heavy gases, like an atmosphere, where there's smoke, even.

    Invisible weaponry makes for shitty storytelling dramatics, specially in a visual medium.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)01:54 No.6857771
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    Start here and come back in a week when you're done reading

    WARNING: Atomic Rocket is almost as much a time-sink as TVTropes.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)01:55 No.6857789
    But you can't see bullets unless they have tracers and we all make do with that in war movies.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)01:57 No.6857802

    Books/RPGs are not visual media. Problem solved broham.

    Just say there are energy shields or something that can diffract the light so it makes pretty auroras and rainbows and shit when the invisible laser hits the shield. That allows for missiles too.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:00 No.6857835
    I dunno, maybe try to work the whole "anti-gravity feild" thing that UFO's supposedly work off of. The wavy-heat effect feild you see in UFO videos. Its supposed to be what lets them zip around hella fast without breaking the sound barrier and making alot of noise.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:00 No.6857836
    I started reading that website when it got linked here a long while ago.It's very informative, and it essentially clarified a lot of the information I needed.But it also kind of...broke me.

    It confirmed a lot of my fears about my stuff, and well, led to even more scrapping of my universe- like for example, one part I never thought about was the simple issue of items in space - seeing as there's a vacuum, means that almost any piece of debris in space, given enough time, technology and effort, can be turned into a relatively powerful WMD on a scale measured by comparisons of extinction level events.

    Which means, no government in their right minds would probably never allow spaceships to be leased to anything but trusted corporations, and probably never to individuals, and all ships would have to come standard issue with self destruct devices, as well as the standard issue of somehow protecting a planet againts rigue planetoids...

    It's mindboggling.

    The worst part was the societal part, though.
    The singularity bit was the one that caught me off guard, too.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:03 No.6857871
    I want to see that try and turn into a morph ball.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:06 No.6857905
    Problem: Space junk
    Solution: Shields
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:07 No.6857924
    My face after reading that page :/

    Although a lot of it is true, but a lot is just scientific penis waving. Plus, realistically speaking, battles in space wouldn't happen. It would be like shooting a bullet at a bullet while riding a bullet.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:10 No.6857955
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    > It would be like shooting a bullet at a bullet while riding a bullet.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:11 No.6857960
    >There's TOO much stuff involved in making hard sci fi! It's almost overwhelming.

    Try the utopian/dystopian method instead of straight up worldbuilding?

    Utopia - denie a/a few facts of modern life you like the least and exaggerate their magnitude.
    Dystopia - aknowledge a/a few facts of modern life you like the least and exaggerate their magnitude.

    There ya go. you really do not need to keep everything in mind for a good scifi tale, just pick a few priciple ideas you'd like to work with and bullshit yourself around the rest.

    >Books/RPGs are not visual media. Problem solved broham.

    And that too. Plenty of writers would love to work with an universe where death and life have become matters of invisible, yet controllable powers. Plenty of people would probably deal with that like it was some sort of magic. Even if it's just to soothe their nerves.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:12 No.6857963
    >>How do you like your sci fi?
    Hard as a catholic priest in a shota convention. Hard SF gets next to no respect these days. Don't give up the fight - trust me, there's a market for this shit.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:12 No.6857969
    You can solve any problem with a sci-fi universe with a sci-fi piece of technology.

    Don't want all your ships to look like like giant eggs in space? Use some inertial dampers.

    Want your combat to be up close? Have you're shield tech be immune to lasers or any fast as light weapons and make ships get close to have a chance at hitting.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:13 No.6857971
    Heh. Problem is, that I'm a Visual Arts and Animation Bachelor's(har har, I know, also pursuing an english minor), and well, anything I want create- I'll want to do something with.

    I'll want to model/draw the ships, the characters, the weapons, the worlds- heck, everything.

    But there's this big, increasingly hard problem.
    Real science is getting totally in the way of near everything , oddly enough- not facilitating it. Example- space ship combat. I now know enough to know that there will likely never be small craft 'dogfights'- that stealth is nigh impossible in space, that fights will probably be incredibly fast, and that with the threat of force being incredibly easy to levy from space-based weaponry, it makes ground troops become less and less valuable, while space based combat becomes also less and less interesting.

    Heck, when I first invisioned my universe, I wanted 20 foot mecha, powered armor, laser weaponry...tons of stuff inspired from armored core, battletech, metroid...

    Then Fermi's Paradox caught my attention years ago. Then it all went downhill.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:13 No.6857973
    the rage about tv sets was funny.
    >I don't care how the Starship Enterprise or the Battlestar Galactica is laid out. With a scientifically accurate rocket, the direction of "down" will be in the same direction that the rocket exhaust is shooting. In other words, a spacecraft will have the general internal arrangement of a skyscraper, not that of a passenger airplane. The floors will be set perpendicular to the axis of thrust, and "up" will be the direction the spacecraft is thrusting. This is one of the most persistent misconceptions, due to the unfortunate fact that practically all spacecraft in SF media get it wrong. I'm looking at YOU Star Trek, Star Wars, and Battlestar Galactica!
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:14 No.6857978
    I am serious. The logistics of space battle just aren't there. Sabotage and surprise bombing could still possibly happen, but epic space battles wouldn't.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:16 No.6857996
    Look up Attack Vector: Tactical. It's a hard SF based tactical wargame.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:16 No.6858002
    Why not?
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:17 No.6858010
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    Just to clarifiy- I'm big on visual mediums. Visual mediums are all about impact, pacing and payoff moments.

    Technical details are no bother to me, I love that shit- I even know as a writer when to put them on the back burner- a script is supposed to be tight and fast.

    The future looks more like guerilla warfare and terrorism than world war 2 with mecha from what little combat I can discern there will be.

    I need inspiration! And Ideas!
    ( I wanted a more realistic battletech, at one time...heh)
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:18 No.6858021
    Because faggy McSoftSF needs shields and explosion sounds and fighters to be "epic."
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:20 No.6858037
    The problem with hard sci fi is outer space.


    Be sci fi under water.
    Be sci fi dealing with technology shit on earth.
    You don't need to hop from planet to planet; have several contained colonies in orbit and you go from one to another. Each simulates an ecosystem or something for some terraforming experiment proof of concept thing.

    If you have to go into outer space to see the galaxy, then remember it is sci FI not sci AUTISM. There is room for FIctional elements in sci FI.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:20 No.6858045
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    as long as everything is internally consistent, no one gives a damn if your physics aren't up to snuff.

    people read science fiction -because- they want epic space fights. stop trying to get rid of them.

    otherwise, stick to near-future spy thrillers about rogue nations taking out satellites or sabotaging shuttle launches or some shit.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:21 No.6858050
    You can have epic space battles with giant ships ripping into with others armor and have the only sound being on the inside.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:22 No.6858060
    Oh yeah, don't forget about time dialation. Thats a pretty basic principle of physics and it all but makes any sort of "space empire" completly impossible.

    Your suppy ship would leave earth orbit, travel 2 light years to a colony and when it comes back, earth time will have advanced some 3 thousand years or some mind-boggling shit like that.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:22 No.6858063
    One of the work through's I had picked up while doing my research on defenses for my universe was this little device.


    Would it be, in you fellas's opinions to think that perhaps one day , such technology could be used againts kinetic weaponry?

    I think so, although the energy consumption bit makes it incredibly inefficient for anything but large craft equipped with amazing energy engines like fusion or antimatter (ha!).
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:23 No.6858076
    Like stargate before earth started making their own mother ships.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:23 No.6858081
    But not at the cost of the SCI in sci fi. SCIENCE, BITCH. Most SF these days is fantasy with lasers.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:24 No.6858088
    >otherwise, stick to spy thrillers

    Yeah, something like this, ending with lazors appearing out of nowhere as they materialize themselves in the atmosphere when your fleet blows up shit in the end.

    Part of the fun of scifi is describing things people have never seen before, isn't it?
    >> Praetor !GlgAJEGbr. 11/25/09(Wed)02:25 No.6858094
    I know we will never get exciting space opera battles in reality. But the problem I have with Atomic Rocket is essentially that they act as if they know the actual way the future technologies will progress. They are basically using a current model to debunk a potential future model that will probably not have much in common with the current model in the first place.

    It's the same as predicting virtual reality and video-telephones back in 1970s. "Virtual reality" and video phoning are more or less marginal and embarrasing blunders for now. But the internet, for example, is dominating the current life of almost every man on earth somehow - and yet it took everyone by surprise. People simply could not predict something that was conceptually nonexistent at the time.

    I think the same holds true for future technologies and is an exercise in futility. Atomic Rocket tries to be "this is why you can NEVER have science fiction in the future, because this is hard science". What we actually get is "this is why you can't have science fiction using TODAY'S concepts and technologies, because this is hard science under the current circumstances". Now, I am aware light speed or black body emission constant are not likely to change any time soon, but to think we know everything there is to know and can use it to extrapolate future advancements is beyond laughable.

    In my personal experience too hard sci-fi tends to be overly anal. Only a few masters of the genre can make a gripping science fiction novel, not have it be boring, and actually USE the science as instrumental to the plot instead of just garnishing. I like self-contained, reasonable, encapsulated sci-fi worlds. They can introduce a concept or two, as long as they use it consistently and logically. That's the beauty of the genre - you can handwave everything, as long as you do it consistently.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:26 No.6858106
    Sci-fi is fantasy. Only magic is replaced with some kind magical science.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:26 No.6858110
    Can't you see them with some sort of detection thing? There's stuff that can see x-rays and infrared. Just have some computer system display the lasers as a beam. It's not like the spaceships are going to have windows all over the bridge to see the lasers.

    Also have them have some sort of gravity shield. The same thing that keeps them from floating around inside the ship can make enough gravity to bend lasers enough to go around/miss the ship.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:27 No.6858118
    Well, if there are energy sources like anti-matter engines or fusion, then you'll have weapons that use such principles.

    Anti-matter warheads, ect. Something the size of a grapefruit being equalivant to 3000 Megatons of TNT. So basically every little spaceship flying around has enough antimatter material to vaporize the western hemisphere and kill every living thing on a planet.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:27 No.6858121
    Larry Niven used invisible X-ray lasers a fair bit in space.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:28 No.6858129
    Dont get me started on that.
    Time Dilation is in my humble opinion, my worst problem for building a sci fi universe.It's just really complex, and the more different theories I read on theoretical ftl; they become incredibly hard to understand 'why'.

    What I do like is things like the alcubierre drive and krasnikov's tube....finding workarounds local space seems like the only way to avoid time dilation as a serious issue in intergalactic travel.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:29 No.6858138
    IMO, the thing to do is invent the science you absolutely need to make your setting work. Need FTL? Go ahead and make it up, whichever kind you need, but don't give up on maintaining realism in other regards. Likewise, if space dogfights are a big part of your setting, there's nothing wrong with installing an aetheric rudder to make turning maneuvers possible (although I suppose you'd need some kind of inertial damper to prevent pilots from flattening themselves or tearing the rudder off during maneuvers).

    But in the end, it's not about the science, is it? Isn't it about the people in the universe? You do your best, but in the end, you can fluff whatever you need to to get your point across. Gregory Benford had some guys communicating backwards through time with tachyons, for fuck's sake.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:29 No.6858147

    A Logic Named Joe; by Murray Leinster (1946)
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:29 No.6858151
    Atomic Rocket are like the people who said you couldn't sail around the earth, or couldn't break the sound barrier.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:30 No.6858158
    >video phoning

    In a way this failed, but in a way thinks like cameras on cell phones and webcams and things like skype and stickam make video calls a pretty common reality, just not in the way you think of them.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:32 No.6858179
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    Cross-posting this from /o/, since I'm the fa/tg/uy who posted it there and this thread looks like it may be able to answer some of my questions.

    I recently found this sketch after work, at a table where a college age guy was sitting and working on a laptop. Guy tipped well, but that's besides the point.

    What exactly did I find/did he leave behind? From what I can tell, it looks to be some kind of powered rollerblade, but on a really minimized scale; is the theory I can see on the sketch actually feasible, or was the dude just doodling?
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:33 No.6858190
    Hyperspace, Slipstream Drive, Warp Drive, K-F Jump drives, Wormholes, or just putting people into stasis before sending on their marry way.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:34 No.6858196
    So, I'm picking up that a lot of you like some Hard Sci Fi, but that there's an even larger amount of you that's kinda telling me to not worry too much.

    Are you guys fine with this?
    How soft is 'too soft'?

    What do you guys like to see in your sci fi?
    Mecha? Power armor? Tanks?Battles in space?

    What about certain settings?
    For example, Mass Effect's entire setting was all about it's titular technology- that unobtanium that essentially permeates the setting.

    Is that too much? or just enough?
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:34 No.6858200
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:36 No.6858226

    What ever you do just be consistent. Make your own rules for your universe but remember to play by your own rules.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:37 No.6858227
    Looks like engineer notes.

    Also, why was he sketching when he had a laptop with him? Assuming he's in some kind of Engineering class, he should have some software that could model that shit easier, and notes would probably be easier to append.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:39 No.6858251

    Fuck it, write Horror.


    But seriously man, even the hardest of hard SF allows for one impossible assumption, just choose yours carefully.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:39 No.6858254
    >>But in the end, it's not about the science, is it?


    I don't read science fiction for the subtle social commentary on current affairs, or the deep character drama and growth. Most SF is terrible in that regard. I read it for the motherfucking science.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:40 No.6858265
    As time passes, I've become a bit more partial to Freespace's and Freelancer's "jump gate" idea.

    Considering how much energy that seemingly what theories of ftl exist out there all claim that at best you'll need shit like 'three solar masses' or 'infinite energy' at worst.... it seems to me that intergalactic travel will be a costly affair, requring railroad-like routes, mid-space hubs, and advances in energy storage and production...as well as mega scale engineering that we just dont have.

    Which means a lot of government involvement.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:41 No.6858270
    Like >>6858226
    said, make up your own science but stick to it in a hard way.

    Also laser beams are cool. Boats in space are cool. Airplanes in space are cool. Stuff that flies out of nowhere at .8c and blows you up in a second is not cool.

    Science, when presented to people in the form of a story, should be cool.
    >> Praetor !GlgAJEGbr. 11/25/09(Wed)02:41 No.6858274
    Simply put, you are lamenting the lack of plausibility of space battles because hard scientific facts get in your way. I will be blunt. Welcome to the real world. If you want space battles, the current setting doesn't support it. Either tweak the setting or tweak the definition of space battles as per >>6857924 .

    I can somewhat see why people would feel not literally adhering to rigid laws of science somehow invalidates their work and makes them less plausible and thus less enjoyable overall. But you know what would make them even less enjoyable? Being boring.

    If you want a space setting, you NEED goddamn FTL. You NEED a way to move or communicate between stars quickly. You NEED a way to explain fast maneuvering fighters not really behaving as Newtonian physics would suggest. If you can't live with furnishing these, well then, don't think about making an exciting space setting.

    There are many sci-fi settings where authors avoid faster than light travel like the plague, but then they add in some sort of an ancient wormhole technology that conveniently cannot be comprehended and/or reproduced. Even giants as Clarke, Sagan and Simmons succumbed to this occasionally. I find this a very amusing paradox. So faster-than-light travel is scientific quackery, but instant teleportation, oh, that's perfectly fine! (even though current science thinks "wormholes" are quantum-sized at best, and most probably nonexistent).

    It is something I feel, Heaven help me, that the 40k fluff handles extremely well. Yes, the ridiculous, grimdark, 40k fluff has one of the best solutions for interstellar travel I have ever sceen in science (BWUAHAHAHAHA) fiction.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:42 No.6858279
    Personally, it seems like a way of converting excess kinetic energy generated when rollerskating into electricity. I had an idea like this in junior high with biking instead of rollerskating, however in this case it might work because there are times when the roller skates are not touching the ground. The kinetic energy is being wasted in this situation, and it seems like the diagrams would institute some sort of turbine to generate electricity.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:44 No.6858290
    Send robots through normal space to make what ever gates. Use what ever gates to travel through space. Priates/Aliens/Terrorist damage what ever gates. ??? PLOT!
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:44 No.6858291

    There's been a ton of extremely entertaining Hard SF anime. Start with Planetes, and tell me you can't get an awesome story out of Hard SF.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:44 No.6858294
    > So, I'm picking up that a lot of you like some Hard Sci Fi, but that there's an even larger amount of you that's kinda telling me to not worry too much.
    Yes, this.

    > How soft is 'too soft'?
    IMO, you can't get too soft. That doesn't mean the softer the better, but it's not like soft science fiction is worthless. Look at Ray Bradbury, or Ultravioleta. Write it how you want it to be.

    > What do you guys like to see in your sci fi?
    > Mecha? Power armor? Tanks?Battles in space?
    Not really any of the three, per se, although any of the three have the potential to be cool. I will say that I'm not a big military science fiction fan, and that mecha stretch my credulity pretty darn far if the science is supposed to be hard. Magic science can pretty easily create warp drive, but what bizarre combination of factors will make walking tanks practical? But they are cool, and a good story is a good story, hard or soft. If you want to write about mecha, do it.

    What I really want is either to have my mind blown by something totally bizarre (e.g. Vurt), or to witness some exquisite, tense plotting in a setting that has the right furniture for me to get off (e.g. Hellburner).

    > What about certain settings?
    > For example, Mass Effect's entire setting was all about it's titular technology- that unobtanium that essentially permeates the setting.

    This is good.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:44 No.6858297
    Addendum- worst part is people's conceptions!

    I;ve done some questions and asked a lot of my friends on college regarding their conceptions on how long they think stuff will take to build- will we ever have ftl, ect.

    WAY TOO MANY PEOPLE think that interstellar travel or at least casual travel to space colonies on the moon/mars/io are just 100 years away.They think 'look at the advancements we've had in the last 100 years'...

    But they dont ponder on the fact that space is like a deathtrap of incredible proportions with ridiculous complexities for everything- not just transportation!

    Heck, the first shipyard in space will probably be an incredibly complex affair that will likely take decades!!
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:45 No.6858305
    Actually I thought Niven's Bussard Ramjet space battles, especially in "Protector" were really interesting. Engagements would take place over days with ships sniping at each other and trying do disrupt each other's ramjets, and you don't know for hours if what you just did actually worked, or if your opponent has already set something up that will kill you.

    It reminded me alto of the way WW2 U-Boat combat was portrayed. Very tense, very claustrophobic, and totally driven by nerves and guesswork.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:47 No.6858321
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    ...Not sure if troll, but those look awfully similar to Air Trek.

    wtf? Is some engineer makin' ATs?
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:48 No.6858327

    If someone builds a space elevator, in system travel becomes quite a bit more feasible.

    Imagine if you can build with conventional materials in space rather than having to use ultralight exotic alloys to keep the weight down.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:49 No.6858343
    Do you just not read much? Who the heck writes science fiction that has anything to do with actual science?
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:50 No.6858350
    Or just mine asteroids. Then use the hollowed out space rocks as refineries and factories.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:53 No.6858385
    Thanks for the explanations, /tg/. Anybody else have input on it? I'm gonna see if I can track down the dude tomorrow and give it back to him.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:53 No.6858387

    these guys, I guess:
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:57 No.6858431
    If it's in the beginning stages, see if you can't bargain with him for a piece of the action. Shit like that might look impractical, but if it works (and judging by those notes, it just might), it'll probably catch on rapidly.

    Then again, it might be some random guy who wanted to be weaboo and make his own weaboo fightan rollerbladez, like >>6858321
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:57 No.6858432
    I dont mind you being blunt, friend.
    But you kind of guessed it, maybe because I was shot down so many times by what -I- wanted for my setting, and what was scientifically plausible.FTL, Giant Mechas,Aliens...so many things had to be sacrificed to the hungry God of Science.

    His wrath demanded all my ideas to be fed to him, and made hard and plausible.Heck, a lot of my ideas have also returned, thanks to reading stuff about plasma windows, carbon nanofiber, non-newtonian fluids...

    I mean, it's all terribly exiting, and sometimes I've just re-written tons of stuff simply because 'well, this makes X possible'.

    But, I digress, yeah, thanks to this thread, I've come to the conclusion that yeah, I'm going to have to make some consessions to plausibility, but it seems that as long as I keep it semi-hard, peopel wont mind stuff.

    Small questions- are you sci fi guys tired of the whole 'ancient alien tech' changing the face of the universe shtick?

    Do you guys even like aliens in your hardish sci fi?
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)02:58 No.6858449
    Hmm, I think I've read four of those. I guess I just don't understand what you mean by reading it for the science.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:00 No.6858466
    >>Small questions- are you sci fi guys tired of the whole 'ancient alien tech' changing the face of the universe shtick?

    God yes. So fucking sick of Progenitor/Precursor/Ancient/Joker/Whatever bullshit.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:02 No.6858505
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    I was thinking about that.
    Seems to me that any planet will have to eventually build one of these to progress beyond a certain industrial level if they want to you know, participate in upgrading their space-based industries and defences...

    Which, I presume, as the planet grows in size and importance, it will need a lot of them.

    A lot of this presumes antigravity is impossible..which it seems it is. I cant find one possible theory on making anti grav possible...besides the whole fact that we dont know what gives something mass.

    (Whole Mass Effect like unobtanium nonwithstanding.)
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:06 No.6858537
    Wow, that bad, huh.
    Anyone else?

    The removal of this kind of stuff makes your plot a bit more 'mature', but without the precense of super advanced alien tech, and their backstory, you really limit the scale of what your sci fi story's 'epic ratio' can reach.

    Maturity vs Epic Scale, if you will.
    UNless you really go forward into the future- which by then you're not writing something that most people will enjoy, humanity is basically unrecognizable.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:07 No.6858551

    It depends on how they're handled. It's way to easy for aliens to be "humans but X", where they should be, well, alien.

    It's a trap, because for an alien to be something other than "space monster" or "unknowable presence" you have to find a way to describe them in human terms. And you can't do that without humanizing them to some extent.

    Lem in Solaris created something convincingly alien, but he refused to describe how it thought AT ALL.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:10 No.6858569
    Exotic sex!
    An item every Sci Fi must have!
    >> Praetor !GlgAJEGbr. 11/25/09(Wed)03:10 No.6858577
    I am glad we see eye to eye.

    I have an example for you. I wanted to have walkers, slow moving aircraft and zeppelins for one of my future computer games. I accomplished that in three easy steps.

    First, make organic fuel horribly expensive. Fluff about world market collapse and nuclear war for remaining oil resources, advent of portable nuclear fusion (and solar power techs for civilian use) and advanced energy storage etc. just wrote itself on that part.
    Second, make a fictional carbon polymer that is easily industrially produced, incredibly light, and also incredibly durable.
    Third, conjure up a method capable of creating near-vacuum for negligible energy costs.

    Everything else follows after these three steps.

    - Walkers are plausible because the carbon polymers can make a light frame still durable to most fire. Sure, making a 50-ton tank out of the same polymer would make a better armoured unit, but walkers are needed because they can move where tanks can't and reach mountainous terrain where population fled from nukes.
    - Zeppelins are created by stacking foot-long modular "cubes" of hard vacuum lined with the carbon polymer. Each of these cubes has such a light mass that its specific weight is lower than that of air. Zeppelins are needed because combustion fuels are low, and you need air superiority to win wars and transport troops. Zeppelins are suddenly plausible because they are resilient to fire - a high-powered railgun shot can pass clean through the zeppelin and only take out 0.1% of the total amount of its modular cubes.
    - After this, floating aircraft carriers, floating fortresses, and even flying cities (to collect solar power above the dust clouds) were simply a matter of drawing the line to collect the dots.

    Sure, there are concessions here and holes can be blown in the theory. But I just made a setting that gets away with ZEPPELINS, MECHA, BIPLANES, AND SKY FORTRESSES while pretending to be semi-hard science fiction.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:10 No.6858579
    I like how stargate handled alien tech. It improved stuff but good old earth tech was still important. Like replicators couldn't be taken down by the fancy alien energy guns but could be kill by Macgyver with a shot gun.

    I.E. I'm fine with it along as alien doesn't always mean better.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:14 No.6858603
    I'm stealing your vacuum blimp idea. Awesome concept.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:15 No.6858622
    >>The removal of this kind of stuff makes your plot a bit more 'mature', but without the precense of super advanced alien tech, and their backstory, you really limit the scale of what your sci fi story's 'epic ratio' can reach.

    To echo an earlier comment, if I wanted 'epic' I'd read a fantasy novel. That's all progenitor tech is, really - a tool for turning a SF work into squabbling over a unique +3 ship.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:18 No.6858648
    Very cool ideas.
    Indeed, I can see where you're going with this.

    One of the ideas I originally wanted was actual power armor for troops.You know, Starship Troopers has the right idea- specially for that sci-fi feel.

    However, the more I learned about weaponry and armor, the more I've learned(specially from angry, screaming /k/ommandos), that even our own, modern kinetic weaponry like .50 caliber sniper rifles produce enough energy transfer, that even if you had a helmet on made out of tungsten enriched titanium, the energy transfer still occurs, essentially liquifying your head, probably leaving your nice armor dinged, with you dead.

    Any ideas?
    Also, I'm still working on the whole economics factor.I know that producing armor for armies on that level and scale of cost to performance is really expensive.

    I'm working it out though.

    Mechas are even a more complex affair. Tanks are just too goddamn versatile, with their goddamn low profile and heavy weapons platform capabilities....(grumble)
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:19 No.6858652
    oddly enough one of the more dated sci fi books in many respects, forever war, seemed to have one of the most uncompromisingly hard looks at space warfare.

    Battles took place at ranges of light seconds, no fighters were used, just drone kill devices that'd move at reletavistic speeds. Doing evasive maneuvers literally meant that the entire population of a ship would have to go into liquid filled pods to avoid being turned into red wall grease due to the insane g forces that the ship's battle computer would have to pull.

    two ships fighting each other essentially came down to a war of which ship had a better computer since human reaction time was way too slow, their crews didn't kow if they had won unltil the survivors are woken up.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:21 No.6858672
    The zepplin idea is kinda neat, and blimps, airships are actually coming back in favor for things helicopters traditionally did. Like airlifting heavy ass radio towers up on top of mountains and stuff.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:23 No.6858693
    >>6858551 It's a trap, because for an alien to be something other than "space monster" or "unknowable presence" you have to find a way to describe them in human terms.

    When you think about it, anyone is unknowable. Instinct and reason can tell us generally how other humans react and feel, but aliens can truly be black boxes. The point being that an alien doesn't need to be a total unknown or a space monster to be significantly different from us, even if they exhibit the same outward response (translated from whatever signals they emit) that we would in some situations. Aliens don't need to be described in human terms any more accurately than a human character understands them, is what I'm saying. The tension between perception and reality is kind of the point with aliens, IMO.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:26 No.6858717
    Mecha, being like 20 foot tall walking tanks is dumb.

    "powered armor" which is basically just a powered suit of body armor that lets a soldier carry a bigger gun, is realistic enough for me.

    The powersource and inheriant inefficiency of "walking" thats the problem. Hafta have some kinda miniture nuclear powerplant and a system that recycles waste heat from firing the main gun or whatever.

    Other then that, I think "laser rifles" and such to be really stupid. Laser cannons, like on a tank, ok, maybe, but if we have a power storage device compact and powerful enough to make a laser rifle work, then that just opens up a pandora's box of shit that could be possible and needs to be explained away.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:27 No.6858725

    Make a material that absorbs impacts.

    Like how >>6858577 made a fictional carbon polymer to make super blimps.

    Invent a gels or some other material expand when struck and channels the kinetic energy from the impact into what ever makes it expand. Any gel that expanded out side the capacity of the armor get expelled out of the suit. Then when it suit runs out of gel reserves or takes a hit that it can't soak the person dies.
    >> Praetor !GlgAJEGbr. 11/25/09(Wed)03:29 No.6858746

    Since you already want power armour, make it so that it is multi-layered with layers separated by a dampening medium. The best way to cope with this hard-science-wise (so, without including "shields") would be a way to have inner layers of the armour repulse outer layers of the armour (and outer layer of the armour should be able to stop anything from penetrating it, which is not THAT much of a hassle if you solve the kinetic energy problem) . A magnetic field or simple electric repulsion is the obvious choice for this, but feel free to spice this up with individual cells repulsing one another or something.

    You could even make it so that the "power" in the "power armour" refers to the energy required to keep the repulsion of inner layers towards the outer layers. So the "power" capacity of the power armour actually determines the maximum firepower of the round the armour can stop.

    You would also need a power source for this.

    In fact, scale this up and you have power armour for tanks and mechs.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:30 No.6858750


    I also liked the defense system for one of the far future bases. Essentially it's a guy/girl with a deadmans trigger to stop the computerized defenses from firing. He releases the pressure, or the system detects he's dead, it kills everything it can see that looks like the enemy.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:30 No.6858754
    Yeah, but having aliens that are just like humans with bumpy foreheads is stupid.

    If a setting has aliens they should think and act "alien" in every sense of the word. Without stupid tropes like a hivemind or anything either.

    No alien alien lazor pistols, either. Why would they have pistols or rifles? Instead of "alien-versions" of familar human-type things, a setting with aliens should be using stranger stuff then that.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:33 No.6858772
    >>if you solve the kinetic energy problem

    Yeah, and FTL travel would be so easy to make hard SF once we solve the FTL problem.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:33 No.6858779
    Very true...which is probably why most science fiction writers tend to go for the 'cool skin human' aliens, or the 'animal-hybrid' aliens.

    They want to use characters people(fans) can empathize wth, who they can have like andaspire to like/love/write fanction about, ect.And the more truly 'alien' something is, the farther apart it becomes where we can only see them as either foes, or unknowables- which most hollywood execs would tell you that these simply equal villains.

    Have we even ever seen a sci fi universe where the 'bug like hive mind' is actually a caring, loving species?They always seem to be destructive omnivores bent on killing and eating everything on their path.

    Then we have Fermi's Paradox to deal with....Which is it;s own can of worms.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:34 No.6858795
    I think EP's Factors are the best aliens in Sci Fi.
    They have a completely alien mindset that comes from the way they evolved.

    We evolved from predators so we solve problems by looking for an answer.
    They evolved from sponges so they solve problems by laying traps and waiting for the answer to fall into them.

    Makes them untrustworthy space jews, without being humans with bumpy foreheads.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:34 No.6858798
    That doesn't really make sense. If the inner layers repel the outer ones, then forces on the outer ones will be transmitted to the inner ones and you've got the same problem, right? IMO, in this kind of situation you're better off with shields that just magically transform that kinetic energy into heat or light or something. Because the alternative is the equivalent of using a cotter to hold a cotter to hold a cotter etc.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:36 No.6858813
    Good "aliens acting alien, yet still relate-able" book: Strata, by Terry Pratchett. The book's major theme is exactly that, actually. Humans and aliens and other aliens can pretend to get along, pretend that everyone thinks the same way, but when it really comes down to it, don't. Each race thinks of the others as "nice guys, if a little barbaric."
    >> Praetor !GlgAJEGbr. 11/25/09(Wed)03:37 No.6858824
    should have read "If you solve the kynetic problem by the methods described in this very post"
    You can't easily make an impenetrable armour. However, you CAN easily make an armour that will fold inwards instead of being pierced.
    That's where the repulsion of the "lower layer" comes in to dissipate the kynetic energy and prevent the folding inwards.

    In short, don't snipe at semantics.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:37 No.6858828
    okay, but you are forgetting a few things. Do you know how much gasoline and explodable substances there are in new york. Enough that if one guy got half assed he could blow the whole thing to hell. Why hasn't it happened.
    One the percentage of people dysfunctional enough to want to try something like it usually do it on a smaller scale/get noticed first.
    Two the people who are capable realize there is no profit.
    Ask yourself this Why would someone kill a planet? Vengeance or profit are your biggest things.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:39 No.6858840
    >inheriant inefficiency of "walking" thats the problem.

    The strange thing is that humans can walk further and longer than most 4 legged animals. Wheels are probably still better though.

    But forget about the walking. Imagine the applications of a tank with HANDS. All the added modularity to weapons and armor. The ability to climb out of ditches. The ability to construct and destruct things. The ability to throw. Don't underestimate the ability to throw. An non-powered ball of rubble could become a viable weapon. Applications with giant grenades too.

    Legs just mean that if you can balance on one less leg, you can throw off troops that try to climb up, something you can't do with a tank.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:40 No.6858853
    On this subject for the moment:

    What do you guys think about power armor?Like , dislike? If so, what's wrong, what sizes do you think they should be?

    Also, mecha.
    Do you like them? What sizes? Would you like them if they are written as hard sci fi as possible?

    What other stuff are you guys tired of seeing?
    >> Praetor !GlgAJEGbr. 11/25/09(Wed)03:40 No.6858854
    Based on how you arrange your repulsion fields (or what ever handwavium you wish to have in its place, like the gel mentioned above), the force will be distributed over the entire inner layer, or at least a considerable portion of it, instead of simply a collision point.

    And distributing the force over a greater surface is basically exactly what you want an armor to do because it's not the kinetic energy of the bullet that kills you, it's the tiny, tiny surface the energy is directed at.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:40 No.6858855
    Why would somebody kill a planet? I dunno, why would somebody shoot up a high school or drive around looking for brown-eyed prostitutes to stab to death?
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:41 No.6858869
    >Why would someone kill a planet?

    "BAWWWW My boyfriend broke up with me and moved to the planet of blue women with big titties! I'll show him... and all those bastard men there!"
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:41 No.6858871
    >>6858754 If a setting has aliens they should think and act "alien" in every sense of the word.

    I don't agree. Maybe they should think alien in every sense of the word, but requiring them to act alien is like complaining that your coin flip is insufficiently random when you get heads ten times in a row.

    IMO, C.J. Cherryh does the best aliens, from the bizarre unknowable kind that have no grasp of human norms (e.g. just grabbing shit they want) to the kind that seem deceptively familiar (the Atevi), except in the ways that really count.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:42 No.6858879
    Please understand that "handwavium" is NOT hard SF, and no amount of "or gel or whatever" will make it so.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:43 No.6858892
    I play Battletech so I like all of the above.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:44 No.6858902
    What about mecha being akin to say, large, urban combat specialized power armor? You know- fast, agile, with hands and feet for doing the agile things some humans can do?

    I know you'd have to cut down the sizes, but 15-20 feet tall isnt that bad.The problem , however, is on the whole 'lose a leg' and you lose 65% of mobility, torque issues from fast movement in a large mechanical frame....

    There's a lot of issues to solve, but do people still like mecha?
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:45 No.6858903
    I also like Pratchett's other SF novel, Dark Side of the Sun. It features an alien race that are basically the ultimate weeaboos; despite being hydrogen things that live in suns, they immerse themselves so much into other species' culture that they seem more human than some humans.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:49 No.6858957
    Are you asking of we like mecha, or if we think mecha is hard 'enough' SF? Because the answers are 'yes' and 'no.' Yes mecha are awesome if done properly (e.g. not a gundam ripoff), no they are not practical and likely never will be.

    Nor will power armor ever be useful - if you're in so much danger that you need a personal suit of APC-class armor, a smarter tactic will always be to back off and blow the shit out of the location remotely. We already can, and the only reason we use ground troops at all is for the human factor - 'face time.' Power armor would just scare the shit out of the people you're hoping to trust you.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:50 No.6858961
    Me, as the OP, I'm more interested in finding plausible ways for all the equipment in my setting besides the COMPLETELY theoretical Alcubierre/Einstein Rosen/Jump Gate which work on space folding instead of violating that standard relativity.

    For the moment, as for my power armor, I was like I said, wondering IF there was away to 'absorb' or redirect that kinetic energy.All heavy armor does is spread it on a greater area- if you dont absorb it somehow, or mitigate it, the pilot will still die quite easily from a heavy enough impact from a modern weapon.

    If power armor cannot deal with it, then there's absolutely no reason to have it in any setting, besides maybe having environmentally sealed suits.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:52 No.6858980

    What if the enemy was using directed energy weapons, because of, y'know...reasons?
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:53 No.6858982
    What if the people you want to blow are are next to shit you don't want to blow up? Power armor would let you send ground troops in with a better chance of coming out alive.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:53 No.6858992
    Power armor should just be the evolution of infantry equipment. Not a replacement for tanks or combat vehicles. Or fucking fighter jets and spaceships for that matter, depending on the setting.

    So think more like Spess Marine Terminator suits, and less like skyscraper-sized walking tanks.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:55 No.6859013
    whats all this about "shock" killing a pilot? If the armor is thick enough to avoid being penetrated then the soldier inside of the power armor should be just dandy.

    Power armor should not be expected to hold up against tank mainguns or anything. Just RPGs and squad-level crewserves.
    >> Praetor !GlgAJEGbr. 11/25/09(Wed)03:56 No.6859020
    Sniping. At. Damn. Semantics.

    Are you saying we need actual technical drawings of the power armour's components with accurate descriptions of their mode of operation, backed by experiments to prove it's viable, before you can call it hard sci-fi? If so, ANY sci-fi is soft sci-fi because anyone who writes hard sci-fi by that criterion would be better employed as an engineer.

    No. "hard" sci-fi is what is based on sound scientific PRINCIPLES, not 100% accurate details of implementation, because if it did, there would be no "hard science fiction" at all. If the details of implementation should be included before something is "hard science fiction", you'd need to engineer a rocket from ground up before being able to use one in your works. Hell, it goes beyond science fiction - you'd need to know how to disassemble and reassemble a handgun before writing a detective story.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:56 No.6859022
    You don't have to make power armor invincible.

    A guy with will die to any bullet.

    A guy with a bulletproof vest will die to a big bullet.

    A guy in power armor will die to a cannon He might also still get knocked down and hurt by the big bullet, but he'll also live.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:58 No.6859043
    One step at a time, man.Kinetic weapons are more likely to be more common place in any hard sci fi setting, as energy weapons will likely not be common enough to have your standard soldier carry them.The problem lies in energy consumption and storage.

    Well, I figure, let's think 'economics'.The average US soldier has around 25,000 dollars of gear on him.Moreover, they are not issued great protective gear, they have to pay for it.

    I have to work around two things-

    A reason why power armor is useful- and why is my economy strong enough to support equipping my troops in such gear.

    But yeah, having soldiers 'move back' and calling in a airstrike seems more logical.Should do some research on modern tactics.

    But then again, as weapons advance and manfacturing becomes easier and cheaper, we might have reasons.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)03:59 No.6859055
    A plausible way to divert kinetic energy: 'recoil gel.' Armor gets hit, transfers energy to gel layer, which diverts it around the body and spurts out the other side. Visually it would look just like blood spurts when someone gets shot in a FPS, only the blood is the gel, diverting KE.

    A 50-cal round to the head would still insta-kill you, but you should be able to take a few to the torso without sucking chest wounds.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)04:02 No.6859072
         File1259139761.jpg-(748 KB, 1300x1129, komodo.jpg)
    748 KB
    >>6858902 There's a lot of issues to solve, but do people still like mecha?

    You can do realistic mecha, but it's very hard. This is about the most realistic mecha design I've seen.

    Note the size; it's not much bigger than a suit of power armor.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)04:02 No.6859073
    If you make the helmet thick enough, a .50 cal isn't going to instakill anything.

    Which would probably be the entire point of feilding power armor, so soldiers don't die from people shooting machineguns at them?
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)04:02 No.6859074
    Semantics are important when you're using them to gloss over the science. That's what puts the Hard in Hard SF. Bitch all you want, you can't pull tech out of your ass and call it Hard SF.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)04:04 No.6859089
         File1259139875.png-(84 KB, 191x272, 191px-SalamanderBA.png)
    84 KB
    So do I, man, so do I.

    To the op: just pick what you like, and go with it. If you're a fan of space opera dog fights and politics, or powered armor, or tanks, or mechs, or whatever. Find a plausable way to work it in your desired softness scifi and go. It's your story, bro.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)04:04 No.6859091

    Not all grunts get the fancy armor. Only give them to special forces.

    >A reason why power armor is useful
    It keep the guy inside alive longer and protects against more powerful weapons than the not powered armor.

    >and why is my economy strong enough to support equipping my troops in such gear.
    Doesn't have to be every single trooper. Not every pilot in the air force fly's a 142.6 million dollar jet.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)04:06 No.6859105
    Use robots, then. We'll have robotic weapons platforms (roomba with a camera and a gun) long before we have combat-usable power armor.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)04:06 No.6859112

    I don't think that power armor would ever be "standard issue" in an Earthly setting, but it's definitely plausible as Special Forces stuff, like just issue enough suits to equip the guys you're dropping right on the other guys head. As for Off-Earth setting....there are as many reasons why they might be practical as there are for them to be impractical.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)04:07 No.6859118
    There's got to be a way around this.
    No way have we already made the perfect killing machine- the .50 caliber rifle. One shot to the head, no matter what you're wearing?

    I dont like that.I know, short of wearing thick motherfucking bulky shit on your head, it seems impossible, but goddamn- there's gotta be something.

    Recoil gel sounds like a nice idea, but what is it based on? Is it just handwavium?

    But then again, maybe I'm asking too much for somethings.

    Kinetic energy transfer.Just because your titanium/tungsten helmet merely gets dented, the energy of that bullet, it's momentum gets transfered through the metal, right to your nearest bodypart.

    Too strong? Crack, splurt.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)04:07 No.6859123

    Kind of like this http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KYSlK4f94p0 Only not an egg.

    Watch out of the loud beep at the end.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)04:10 No.6859146
    >>6859118 Recoil gel sounds like a nice idea, but what is it based on?

    Non-Newtonian fluids, probably. The US army is already trying to make armor out of it.

    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)04:11 No.6859151
    We have guns on robots now. A camera and a guy looking at a screen is no where as good as a set of eyes and a brain is at figuring out what to shoot.

    non newtonian fluids.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)04:12 No.6859157
    I read about this stuff- non newtonian liquids, I mentioned them earlier, but will that stuff be enough to absorb how many newtons of force?
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)04:13 No.6859166
    It can withstand how ever many newtons of force you want.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)04:14 No.6859176

    Most special forces wouldn't benefit from Powered Armor.

    The snake eaters whose job it is to liaise with local groups and try to organize them to fight for you would find that rather more difficult to do in a walking tank.

    The Para/Recon/Ranger types need stealth, mobility and a small logistics tail. Powered armor might help mobility, and maybe they'd get specialized 'stealth' armor but the logistics tail would be a killer.

    The only 'special forces' types who would benefit would be stormtroopers or their spiritual descendants. The crazy brave types heavily armed soldiers you send in against enemy fortifications and strong points to break open a path for the rest of the army.
    >> Praetor !GlgAJEGbr. 11/25/09(Wed)04:15 No.6859180
    >Bitch all you want, you can't pull tech out of your ass and call it Hard SF

    They already have a coloid/gel that can act as a dissipator of kinetic energy and are trying to make a next gen body armour of it. Why couldn't application of this, or a similar solution, between sheaths of armour be at least plausibly expected sometime in the future?

    I was also rather confident that repulsive properties of same magnetic poles, and repulsion of same electric charges, are established facts.

    So either I am bitching or you don't know what you're talking about while pretending to know something about "hard science fiction". Which was a pity. I would have liked to take your posts seriously.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)04:21 No.6859242
    Don't take sci-fi special forces as the same spec ops we have today.

    Perhaps I should have said Elite Forces instead. My points was not every trooper needs to use battle armor in order to battle armor to be plausible. Only the battle armor trooper do.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)04:22 No.6859248
    OP here, friend.I think the other poster's problem is that some people are really quite specific with their definitions of harder science fiction, as Atomic Rocket's website, and Ohm's Range of Science Fiction Hardness dictates.

    Whether this is autism at it's finest or overly anal adherence to scientific dogma, or merely intelligent conclusions isnt really the thing being discussed in this current thread.

    Personally, I like going to those websites to study them as guidelines as to what the more hard advocates of sci fi like as their tender.I once thought Mass Effect was quite hard....turns out I was quite mistaken, it seems.

    However, this thread has been inmmensely valuable to me, and I like the fact that it;s lasted a bit.Perhaps next thread I make we'll talk about the societal parts of science fiction- no one here's talking about them, so let's just continue with SCIENCE!

    I like the idea of having a layer of non newtonian liquid underneath the armoring.It's a nice idea, now that I think about it, however, the problem is that if the outer armoring layer is cracked, ripped the liquid will spill out. Something to think about.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)04:23 No.6859262

    Fair enough, that's pretty much what I'm suggesting. Powered armor troops as the tip of the spear in assaults.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)04:25 No.6859278
    Recon/Ranger style troops would probably have versions of the armor that have some sort of thermoptic camouflage, like shown here:


    Within a few centuries,camouflaged walking tanks are not just a possibility...
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)04:25 No.6859280
    In contact with air a chemical agent in the gel, or even another liquid lay, solidifies and seals the crack. Science today is already working on plastics that can heal them self when cut.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)04:25 No.6859281

    You can have self sealing containers, or just have the fluid contained in something like bubble wrap, where a rupture only causes it to leak from certain segments.

    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)04:30 No.6859316
    Gel for absorbing impact? Armor lined with gel would probably be a BAD THING, since fluid-type mediums transfer kinetic energy.

    Empty space would be the best way to defeat concussion.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)04:39 No.6859401
    i know that at the copenhagen university they're researching teleportation - on an atomic scale. nothing grand, but who knows?

    as per space elevators: we have the technology to THEORETICALLY make some today, but from what I understand we dont have the production capabilities to make enough carbon fiber whatsits to actually make such a tower/cable.

    plus we have a fucton of space junk from old satelites and shit litering the sky above us - a space station linked via a cable to the ground would be pelted with shit all the timee
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)04:41 No.6859422


    It's called shear thickening fluid. Basically it's light and flexible but hardens when force is applied to it.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)04:43 No.6859432
    Does this still apply to non newtonian fluids?
    If so, then tis a problem.

    Production of carbon nanotubes is exponentially increasing, though, some scientists even made a fucking blanket of the goddamn stuff!

    Production will get easier as time passes.
    The point about the junk is rather valid, though.Without some sort of dampener or shock absorber from those orbiting junk piles, we'll have a problem.Though perhaps a junk collecting ship would suffice, too.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)04:46 No.6859464
    You miss the point. You are trying to defeat the kenetic energy, not stop the object. A hardening gel like that would be even WORSE than normal gel because it would absorb even more of the impact.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)04:49 No.6859491

    So use magnetic repulsion between armor layers?

    Too bad you'd need fuckhuge magnets. Like, XBOX heug magnets.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)04:49 No.6859494

    Pressure = force times area

    The basic principle of armor is to reduce the impact by spreading the force of an impact over a larger area. By hardening on impact it distributes a force that would be concentrated onto the point of a bullet across the entire chest.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)04:56 No.6859550
    Yes, but
    >Kinetic energy transfer.Just because your titanium/tungsten helmet merely gets dented, the energy of that bullet, it's momentum gets transfered through the metal, right to your nearest bodypart.
    Is the point that we are going for here. Yeah, it spreads the impact out over your head. No it doesn't matter because your head will still be ripped the fuck off. Negation is the order of the day here, not dispersal.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)04:59 No.6859578
    To OP (if you got this far)

    Our modern understanding of Science says that all the stuff in Sci-Fi is impossible.

    If we knew the science behind the stuff that makes Sci-Fi possible... THEN WE WOULD BE LIVING IT.

    Just because you can't go faster than light by acceleration does NOT mean you can't go faster than light... or at least beat it to the finish line.

    And what if it turns out that we're stuck in our solar system, doomed to die with our sun? That's some pretty shitty sci-fi... because sci fi is fantasy.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)05:01 No.6859597

    You can't 'negate' kinetic energy, barring some sort of force field, or active denial/intercept system. If the bullet hits it will transfer transfer kinetic energy to what it hits.
    >> Blacksheepcannibal 11/25/09(Wed)05:01 No.6859598
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    It takes a large degree of skill just to nail down the hard science - bringing in sociology, genetics, political sciences - you're talking about a lot of different schools of thought, all trying to get the the most accurate representation of futuristic society that you can?

    It's almost impossible. Go with a few things that you find interesting, and focus around them. Pic related; in my opinion it's about as hard sci fi as you can get without going into so much detail it reads like a technical schematic.

    And I've always been of the opinion that the more things change about society and mankind, the more they stay the same. Compare and contrast the average daily life from today and 2000 years ago. There aren't as many real differences as you might think.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)05:05 No.6859629

    Are you on crack?

    Seriously. The majority of the human population was involved in food production or gathering for most of it's history. The mere fact that the bulk of the human race doesn't now spend it's existence trying to grow/hunt/scavange enough to eat is an incredibly radical change.

    This is before we get into mass literacy, communications, artificial light, clocks (Yes, clocks are a huge change) and all the rest of it.

    You might be stating that human nature doesn't change that much, which is true enough, but we live very very different lives than we used to.
    >> Praetor !GlgAJEGbr. 11/25/09(Wed)05:36 No.6859833
    Actually, >>6859494 has it right. Bullets have relatively small total kinetic energy. If they didn't, they'd knock back anyone who was shot by them - and due to Newton's third law they'd knock back the shooter as well while the projectile is being fired. Anyone who's fired a rifle before will tell you the recoil of an individual bullet is not much. Even for large calibers you get a solid jolt in your shoulder but that's about it.

    If you somehow manage to disperse the kinetic energy of a bullet all over a side of a helmet, for example, instead of that tiny spot on the helmet where the bullet actually hits, then the person wearing this miracle helmet will feel nothing more than a slap to the head, even though it is the entire kinetic force of the bullet. Which beats getting your brains spilled out by a wide margin.

    Of course, if we are talking about cannon rounds, it's a different story and you would indeed get your head smashed off by it (unless you had a helmet the radius of a football field or something).
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)06:11 No.6860080
    I envision power armours being used as squad assault weapons are now, one in each squad or fire-team to provide extra firepower and protection in an all-out assault.

    Only in extreme situations would entire units with these units be fielded, since such a concentration would warrant an enemy concentration of anti-suit weaponry.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)10:05 No.6861554
    The depressing part is, once you look into it, what physicists excitedly call 'teleportation' is not what we would normally call 'teleportation'.
    They are 'teleporting' the state of one atom onto another of the exact same type of atom. You have to have a relative duplicate of what is being 'teleported' to transfer the data to.
    So we have something useful for communication purposes, but not transportation.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)10:12 No.6861574
    (though the previous poster is probably long gone)
    That's pretty silly. Squad Automatic Weapons increase the firepower of the entire squad, Power Armour only protects one person. Even if that person does the assaulting, it still leaves the rest of the squad vulnerable. If you can get around power armour by simply shooting the people who aren't wearing it, it's not really useful.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)10:32 No.6861714
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    While I think the guy is optimistic about the logistical concerns and endurance of any powered armor that would allow it to be used at squad level, it WOULD provide firepower for the whole squad.

    A SAW gunner provides firepower for the whole squad by travelling with them and providing the larger volumes of suppressive fire that it can with an automatic weapon. Just as the grenaider engages in targets in defilade or harder targets that the rifleman can't engage.

    Yes you can just shoot at the rifleman, or preferably, the SAW gunners and grenaiders, but this doesn't mean they don't bring that extra firepower.

    A powered armor walking around carrying heavy weapons would bring the same firepower, if not more to a squad. Every squad having it's own 12.7mm heavy machinegun and automatic grenade launchers or ATM/rockets (all of which only available at platoon level or higher) would be a large upgrade indeed.

    Personally, I see powered armor being synonymous with mechanized infantry dismounts. Vehicle dismount teams tend to be smaller, operate closer to vehicles, don't travel as far independently, and carry heavier weapons. Powered infantry dismounts could charge while in the vehicle, hop out to fight, and go back to the vehicle to recharge or swap out their many heavy batteries. They can benefit from weapons commonality with the vehicles they're in (the heavier caliber MGs, grenades, crew served weapons), since they'll likely be carrying heavier weapons and ammo than regular infantry. They also have access to a lot of the logistical support the vehicles will have that might not be available as often among infantry.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)10:35 No.6861739
    Mmm, good point. I was looking at Powered Armour as a method to improve protection for the individual, not as a heavy weapons platform.

    It kind of helps think of it like a mobile .50 turret.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)10:45 No.6861797
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    Honorverse - although crewing and size is a bit -er large
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)10:47 No.6861812
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    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)10:48 No.6861820
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    >> I apologized on 4chan (whilst at work) 11/25/09(Wed)10:49 No.6861824

    Oh fuck yes. Tell me Sins has got a near complete Honor Harrington mod.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)10:51 No.6861835
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    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)10:55 No.6861863
    The Honorverse ships were so much cooler in my head.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)10:58 No.6861888
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    actually already done in at least one game I know.. this one.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)10:59 No.6861904
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    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)11:01 No.6861916
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    The ships in Albedo are actually laid out in decks so the BSG and Trek haters will be satisfied.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)11:02 No.6861929
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    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)11:03 No.6861942
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    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)11:04 No.6861949
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    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)11:05 No.6861964
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    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)11:05 No.6861972
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    >> Thou Dog 11/25/09(Wed)11:08 No.6862003
    A little ironic.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)11:12 No.6862058
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    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)11:12 No.6862065
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    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)11:13 No.6862073
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    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)11:15 No.6862089
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    I liked the comic and never really considered it "furry" bought the game but honestly - just having a good psych profile and not losing it on the battlefield is hard.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)11:17 No.6862098
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    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)11:18 No.6862107
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    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)11:19 No.6862114
    >inheriant inefficiency of "walking" thats the problem.

    I want to clear this up right here and now so less people continue on thinking this.

    Bipedal locomotion is incredibly efficient. It's more efficient than quadrupedal locomotion, and it's more efficient than wheeled or tracked locomotion EXCEPT on a hard flat surface with high friction.

    Yes, that's right, and I'll say it again to clarify: Wheels and tracks are less efficient than legs unless they are on a road.

    Limbs such as arms and legs are not just efficient, they're also extremely adaptable and resilient. They can be used for more than one task, and they can be used for multiple tasks even when grossly damaged.
    >> Thou Dog 11/25/09(Wed)11:20 No.6862121
    "Not losing it on the battlefield" - means you have a sane, well-adjusted and charismatic character who just gets unlucky in a gunfight and gets killed out of existence, because you rolled a 1?
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)11:28 No.6862183
    it's controlled falling.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)11:32 No.6862199

    There is unlucky and then there is blowing your "cool" rolls and freezing. -suffering from combat fatigue because of your calculated encumbrance.
    I understand that the combat in the game is deadly and best to be avoided - but it's about mainly military characters.. I dunno.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)12:16 No.6862503
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    >>Yes, that's right, and I'll say it again to clarify: Wheels and tracks are less efficient than legs unless they are on a road.

    Not exactly. Whether off road or on road, wheels and tracked system will always be able to carry a greater percentage of mass that isn't movement system than walkers of an equivalent mass/volume.

    They can also attain greater peak speeds.

    And when it does come to climbing over shit (the reason why you would want legs over wheels or tracks) quadrupeds/hexapods/etc all beat the ever loving shit out of bipeds. Quadrupeds and hexapods are also a hell of a lot faster than bipeds.

    If you want hands to pick crap up, you put arms on the vehicle. This has been done countless times throughout history for various reasons, but in practice is only all that useful on vehicles devoted to specialized tasks.

    The military has researched and continues to research walking vehicles and robots. None of them are bipedal though.

    The only people interested in humanoid, let alone bipeds are people looking to make androids in order to better facilitate human interactions.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)12:28 No.6862591
    What infantry will *not* be mechanized, heli-carried or base-bound in the future? That's how it is in many modern armies already. I don't see this as a problem, rather a good solution.
    I didn't mean that the power armour would actually physically protect the entire squad, but imagine this. There's a house/bunker/foxhole/whatever filled with people shooting. They have a machine gun- Normally an assault would be disastrous and require at least three times as many soldiers as the defenders have, with at least 50% wounded or dead. Many times, aswell, you simply cannot blow the building up. Collateral, missing air superiority, other priority targets, etc.

    The power armour would, in this situation, engage out of cover and lay down heavy fire from heavier weapons to force suppression that would, by volume of fire, provide cover.

    Cover doesn't have to be physical, shooting is a valid cover technique.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)12:38 No.6862714
    Hammer's Slammers is OK hard sci-fi, but its so painfully obvious that he is riding his Veitnam tank'an experience very hard.

    You can just take any Nam-era non-fiction book and replace the nouns with futuristic counterparts and you have just written a David Duke novel.

    Who's to say economic prosperity and energy will be easily affordable for everyone in the future? With things like peak oil and over population, you really suppose ever conscript private will be equipped with a nuclear-powered 700 million dollar peice of equipment? (adjusted for inflation, even)
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)12:48 No.6862829
    >>What infantry will *not* be mechanized, heli-carried or base-bound in the future?

    The majority, likely.

    >>That's how it is in many modern armies already. I don't see this as a problem, rather a good solution.
    You can call up an armored vehicle or helicopter when tactically moving very small numbers of troops, but you can't have every squad with its own IFV/APC or transport helicopter.

    Hence the overwhelming majority of troops don't get anything more than big trucks to haul them around en masse.

    By mechanized infantry, I don't mean riflemen that are capable of riding in/on an armored vehicle or transport helicopter when possible or convenient. I'm talking about troops that regularly ride around in vehicles or transport helicopters as part of their normal job. They are part of the vehicle platoon.

    The advantages of having infantry that are not permanently assigned to mounted cav forces (mainly the insane levels of autonomy and muuuuuuch smaller logistical footprint) are more than enough to ensure that they won't get saddled with them unless needed.

    You need a combination of them in all combinations.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)14:08 No.6863672
    That looks like some Stargrunt
    >> Thou Dog 11/25/09(Wed)14:11 No.6863703
    Ideally, you'll use the big guy in bulletproof armor to lay down a hail of fire for your other guys to advance under, while at the same time you have less conspicuous and less fire-magnet-y marksmen picking off their machine gunners and officers.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)14:18 No.6863784
    We already have such guy. It's called tank.
    >> Lucky Bitch ★ 11/25/09(Wed)14:33 No.6863955

    Don't get hung up on it. You'll never please the crowd that wants complete realism. They'll only be happy when you're writing a story only about what you can do with today's tech and nothing more. Then it isn't scifi. The point of fiction is to NOT write about real life.

    Just don't resort to anything totally goofy or just stupid. Don't get the point where science is magic. Cover the obvious bases. Stick in a few real workable inspirations. Fudge the rest in a way that doesn't get the reader thinking too much about it. Give the scifi a nice hard coat to keep the squishy soft insides protected, essentially. Keep the logic consistent. You want something to work the same way every time. Don't make up new rules as you go.

    Have whatever technological doodads you implement have the proper repercussions. Even if the tech would never actually work, have the world react accordingly to it. Don't conveniently ignore something exists for PLOT or SUSPENSE or any reason at all. If you can't handle it then take that bit of tech out.

    And don't just throw new tech in out of convenience either unless you're willing to have it go through the proper steps of being incorporated into the setting. No one load blows to get something happening. Maybe it's not something you can always use due to rarity or difficulty of the tech.. but it doesn't just disapear into the void of plot devices. Don't do that.

    There. You've got yourself a good base for scifi works that only a douche would really complain about the workings of(BUT.. BUT.. FTL IS IMPOOOSIIIBLLLLE). The rest is just your skill as an actual writer to create interest and suspense.

    Don't think too much about the tech and logic behind it. Don't let it consume the very story itself.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)15:22 No.6864620
    >>6863955 They'll only be happy when you're writing a story only about what you can do with today's tech and nothing more. Then it isn't scifi. The point of fiction is to NOT write about real life.

    There are a million things you could do with current tech that for one reason or another haven't happened. Why are these less deserving of exploration?
    >> Lucky Bitch ★ 11/25/09(Wed)15:53 No.6865036
    Feel free.

    But the idea this thread seems to put forth that scifi isn't scifi unless it's 100% realistic using already proven technology and nothing else.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)15:55 No.6865063

    In that case, does it stop being sci-fi once the scientific ideas it was based on have been disproven?
    >> Lucky Bitch ★ 11/25/09(Wed)16:08 No.6865223
    Depends.. like what?

    I mean, it's a tricky subject. The very descriptor of the genre can oppose itself. Science Fiction. Making shit up does not lend itself to science. What we could consider 'blatantly ridiculous" changes as the world turns too.

    If you violate some of the most basic laws of the universe.. probably not. If you fudge shit to actually make a show that is interesting.. it's still scifi.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)16:25 No.6865470
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    < This thread.

    Personally, I don't give a fuck if the "science" is right or wrong. If I want accurate scientific stuff or speculations, I'll pick up an issue of any number of science magazines out there. What I want from a book, is to give me a good story, not technoporn. "Hard" scifi is like reading a fantasy novel where you go into detail about smithing, marksmanship, seasons, hunting, societies, etc., and leave the whole BBEG and characters at the background, because the author is too busy showing off the size of his brain.
    >> Anonymous 11/25/09(Wed)17:29 No.6866330
    The hardest sci fi I ever came across was Earthhammer 2k, though I must say its starting to get a liitle unrealistic - the main faction has flying robots in its army

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