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Old 17th March 2008, 11:23 PM   #136 (permalink)
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Re: On Creating Imaginary Worlds: Questions and Answers

Heh, I was thinking of a giant pufferfish. But the dual use of hydrogen is certainly intriguing.
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Old 28th March 2008, 03:54 AM   #137 (permalink)
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Re: On Creating Imaginary Worlds: Questions and Answers

Made up a universe of sorts.

Humans, one of the most advanced and oldest races in the universe find they are alone in the Universe, not by intellect but by species. The meteor that wiped out the dinosaurs turned out to be a freak 1 in a billion billion chance.
With population increasing the search for new worlds to inhabit is paramount to the expansion of the human race. But the league of alien races which are 99% theropods
View humans with the utmost suspicion and want to keep them fenced in on there own world.
Now with news that the humans have discovered how to time travel, fear has grown that the humans may go back in time and cause mass extinctions on the theropods home worlds, thus promoting their own species throughout the universe.
(Twist: they both have their eyes on a newly discovered planet.....Earth).
The time line earth is found and the reasons why earth is so important reveal them selves later
This was a short story with a shock ending that i never got around to finishing, (due to a new project) just thought i would throw it out there. I have loads of this kinda stuff lying around.

Last edited by TorrnT; 28th March 2008 at 04:28 AM.
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Old 1st April 2008, 03:12 PM   #138 (permalink)
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Re: On Creating Imaginary Worlds: Questions and Answers

sounds promising torrnt

i just have a concern about your advanced dinosaur race(s) if they are cold blooded how do they remain active especially in the depths of space?
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Old 1st April 2008, 03:53 PM   #139 (permalink)
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Re: On Creating Imaginary Worlds: Questions and Answers

Ah ha... Theropods are warm blooded, birds are the closest relatives, some even believe birds are what they evolved into, but that is another matter.
As for warmth, nothing short of bacteria could survive in space without some means of heating. Their ships would all have this.
As on the Galapagos islands, Darwin found many types of finch, but each had evolved differently to adapt to the food sources.
So this has much the same premise, each Theropod evolved differently on each planet, different cultures, philosophies and religions, but they are all Theropods none the less. The only major difference would be thier chromosomes, the older races have more. (they can not inter breed because of this)
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Old 4th April 2008, 07:56 PM   #140 (permalink)
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Re: On Creating Imaginary Worlds: Questions and Answers

fair enough, so your races will actually be more bird-like (obviously without the wing adaptation, possibly small feathers, or pseudo-feathers) than dinosaur-like because their is still debate on whether all theropods were all warm blooded spinosaurus for example especially dealing with the sale on its back

seems you're quite keen on your idea i wish you luck it is very interesting indeed
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Old 4th April 2008, 08:37 PM   #141 (permalink)
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Re: On Creating Imaginary Worlds: Questions and Answers

The larger Dinosaurs did have sail like skin on there back, and many didn't,
some will be bird like, some with crude fathers some with scales, Im not working on this at them moment, don't know if i ever will, i have a few side projects that are keeping me very busy, but thank you very much for your comments, much appreciated
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Old 4th April 2008, 08:51 PM   #142 (permalink)
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Re: On Creating Imaginary Worlds: Questions and Answers

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Originally Posted by TorrnT View Post
Made up a universe of sorts.

Humans, one of the most advanced and oldest races in the universe find they are alone in the Universe, not by intellect but by species. The meteor that wiped out the dinosaurs turned out to be a freak 1 in a billion billion chance.
With population increasing the search for new worlds to inhabit is paramount to the expansion of the human race. But the league of alien races which are 99% theropods
View humans with the utmost suspicion and want to keep them fenced in on there own world.
Now with news that the humans have discovered how to time travel, fear has grown that the humans may go back in time and cause mass extinctions on the theropods home worlds, thus promoting their own species throughout the universe.
(Twist: they both have their eyes on a newly discovered planet.....Earth).
The time line earth is found and the reasons why earth is so important reveal them selves later
This was a short story with a shock ending that i never got around to finishing, (due to a new project) just thought i would throw it out there. I have loads of this kinda stuff lying around.
But, fot there to be dinosaurs everywhere, (assuming, and this is a very big assumption, that evolution will automatically bring up the same adaptations to handle the same problems - in fact, our data here on Earth would suggest the opposite) either the dinosaurs would have had to spread out from a single point, which fossile evidence would suggest would have to have been the earth, or had time travel to organise the extinction event in which the trilobites were supplanted etc., back ten billion years.
More reasonable would be a sheaf of universes where every choice produces a bifurkation, a splitting of the time path into two near identical parallel tracks. Unfortunately this would be giving us a google of extra universes a second, and all the close ones would all be populated by humans who'd got just slightly different histories, so we need a collapse mechanism that means that minor differences warp back and reinforce, rather than separating, probably related to the "observer" function in uncertainty theory. So human history keeps folding back on itself, and round the human thread are a load of "primitive" threads where man never left Africa, and various animals became dominant in their regions, without ever feeling the need to discover intelligence. These all split off at the extinction point, when there was a noticeable lack of observers to collapse the eigenstate.
Then, around this is the sheaf of dinosaur worlds where the asteroid missed, and the few which have developed intelligence did it quite a lot earlier than mankind, and have learnt travel between the individual histories long ago, but never explored through the dinosaur-free zone because there were so many other worlds with nice tasty hadrosaurs, and the right climate (intelligence will develope in the carnivores, evidently; how much brain do you need to sneak up on a cabbage?)

And way, way out are other sheaves where trilobites still rule, or bilateral symmetry was never chosen as the optimum way of facing up to the world, and distributed intelligence takes the place of chordate hierachical organisation...
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Old 4th April 2008, 11:29 PM   #143 (permalink)
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Re: On Creating Imaginary Worlds: Questions and Answers

(actually this evolved from an extremely small story i wrote at school, that story got me detention for a week)
An alien lands on the third planet of a newly formed solar system, he explores and finds nothing of interest, in need of the toilet he squats down and has a s**t then returns to his craft which was some distance away, and leaves the barren planet. 600 million years later we evolved.
My teacher who was a devout Christian was mortified that i tried to say life sprung from alien dung, he had a strap, and wasn't afraid to use it.
(I apologize now if this offends anyone)

Everyone has there own take on evolution. mine is, there is bacteria drifting in space that lands on different worlds and colonizes them, obviously many seeds/bacteria are pulled in by the gravitational pull of dead worlds, black holes and suns, where this bacteria comes from and why it is in space is the consequence of the end of the story. however many worlds that contained the right ingredients to support this bacteria flourished.
On all of these worlds, evolution of the bacteria took place, always striving towards what it was intended to be. unfortunately one of these world suffered a disaster that wiped out 90% of life, thus disrupting the final process of the evolution, thus that world was dominated by 4 legged mammals instead of sauropods and two legged mammals instead of theropods.
That disaster only happened on one world.
So every other world followed the design of the bacteria, and without the disaster that befell the human world, there was nothing to stop the dinosaurs from fulfilling there full potential. (each dinosaur has its mammal counterpart, the fastest, the biggest, where it differs is, there is no smartest counter part for human mammal in the dinosaur world, the dinosaurs had been dead for 65 million years before we arrived) these other worlds have the smartest mammal counter part, highly evolved theropods.

(remember these human are not from earth, they have just discovered earth and decide to colonize it)


The federation of theropods, (each world has its own variation of theropods, each very unique to its own world, 8% of the federation is made up of non theropods, these species come from worlds that were not 90% water based and could not follow the same evolutionary pattern. ( the mystery comes when they compare DNA with the humans, they find something that sends shock waves through the federation, and an embargo of sorts on the human world, holding humans prisoners on there own world.
I have many notes, i like stuff thought through with a feasible angle, opposed to shot in the dark theoretics.
Anyhow, I have studied evolution in my great quest for an answer, this short story is an elaboration on what i found, with a real shocker of an ending.
Here is a clue, If you had a newtons cradle with 10 million balls and a torch.
dropping the first ball, and simultaneously turn on the torch at point or ball impact, which would win. would the last ball move immediately or would light reach the end of the cradle first?
The answer to that leads the first human to discover the true nature of time, and realizes humans have been looking in the wrong place.

I intended this to be a short story, but never got around to fully developing it, i have all the plots, side plots, facts and a few shockers but no characters. I am actually tied up (not literally lol) with another project, that has to do with the evolution of magical beasts, the unicorns are descendent's from trinicorns etc, I am currently working on this new project with great passion. As for this short story, for the moment it is dead, unless someone else wants to take it on.
Thanks for the heads up though, some heavy thinking and explanations there, appreciated.

Last edited by TorrnT; 4th April 2008 at 11:47 PM.
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Old 21st April 2008, 08:40 PM   #144 (permalink)
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Re: On Creating Imaginary Worlds: Questions and Answers

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On all of these worlds, evolution of the bacteria took place, always striving towards what it was intended to be. unfortunately one of these world suffered a disaster that wiped out 90% of life, thus disrupting the final process of the evolution, thus that world was dominated by 4 legged mammals instead of sauropods and two legged mammals instead of theropods.

That disaster only happened on one world. So every other world followed the design of the bacteria, and without the disaster that befell the human world, there was nothing to stop the dinosaurs from fulfilling there full potential.
This is not so far out as to be unbeleivable, even from a scientific point of view. The part about striving towards what it was intended to be is particularly worth noting, since it is essentially a way for science and religion to agree (if they both give a little). This is similar to my version of the evolution theory. I'm not sure bacteria is entirely necessary though, as the right combination of a set of chemicals (and the right environment - i.e. temperature, presence of "fuel", etc.) can create life without the presence of bacteria. Mainly what you reminded me of was some information I gleaned in an astronomy class which is that any element heavier than iron has to be created by a super-nova. The pressures and heat that occur in a sun our size (our sun will never go super-nova) can only fuse atoms up to that level. That's why the expression "We are stardust" is quite literally true, even if only in some small degree.

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I have many notes, i like stuff thought through with a feasible angle, opposed to shot in the dark theoretics.
I agree. I prefer that an author has done the research if they are going to breach the subject at all. I don't mind if an author makes things up with no explanation when it's done in an entertaining way, but if you try to explain the science, it should be consistent within itself.

- Z.
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Old 22nd April 2008, 12:57 AM   #145 (permalink)
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Re: On Creating Imaginary Worlds: Questions and Answers

To explain how the bacteria arrived in the first place would give away the ending of the short story (which is meant to be a surprise). Although it would not be hard to figure out now, since all the clues are available. The bacteria was a man made strain created to bypass the reptile/theropod stage.
Remember time travel is involved, this leads to the paradox of how life started. I have only placed parts of the story/plot (as to tell all would ruin it) But I wanted to do a larger twist on which came first, "the chicken or the egg", (a scientific mind would say egg) with time travel added, the survival of a race v the survival of many, and a meteor set on a collision course for earth, (before humans had evolved). The trial and error (the earth had many extinctions) Believe me it all ties together in the end, how believable it is.... well the whole story would have to be written and read.

(spoiler)********(the earth was a test bed)

This is how it would have happened had had the earth been allowed to follow its course naturally.
Amino acids and electrical charges of minute quantity causes chain reactions, in a chemical soup. DNA and RNA, both made of amino acids and develop in chains, this is to close of a connection to leave unstudied, which scientists are presently doing. (and no connection to the short story other than the use of DNA and RNA)
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Old 22nd April 2008, 07:01 AM   #146 (permalink)
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Re: On Creating Imaginary Worlds: Questions and Answers

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This is not so far out as to be unbeleivable, even from a scientific point of view. The part about striving towards what it was intended to be is particularly worth noting, since it is essentially a way for science and religion to agree (if they both give a little). This is similar to my version of the evolution theory.
It is completely mistaken: evolution doesn't "strive towards" anything; it is a process with no purpose or goal in mind, any more than a river is "striving" to flow downhill. It just happens, that's all.

I suggest that you read the excellent links on this site. Every SF author should, because they explain how evolution works and therefore what it can and can't do: Evolution: 24 myths and misconceptions - life - 16 April 2008 - New Scientist
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Old 22nd April 2008, 03:49 PM   #147 (permalink)
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Re: On Creating Imaginary Worlds: Questions and Answers

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It is completely mistaken: evolution doesn't "strive towards" anything; it is a process with no purpose or goal in mind, any more than a river is "striving" to flow downhill. It just happens, that's all.
Dear Anthony, The last thing I want is to start a flame war with you, but you can't possibly know all of the answers. The current understanding of evolution by the scientific community is that it is a process with no purpose or goal. That doesn't mean it's true. What I am describing is a "belief", and you might just agree with me that people are free to believe what they will. What is going on behind the scenes in the non-material world is something no man or woman can say. I have a belief that evolution is guided from the onset by a power greater than any of us can imagine. I am not a creationist, but I also don't rely solely on science. If the religious were not so rigid, they might take the scientists at their word, but the same goes in the other direction. (That's what I meant by "it is a way for science and religion to agree if they both give a little") This is simply my point of view, and I have reasons for believing these things that are matters of the heart, and not of the mind. I hope that clears up where I was coming from.

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Old 22nd April 2008, 04:15 PM   #148 (permalink)
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Re: On Creating Imaginary Worlds: Questions and Answers

I don't wish to get involved in flame war either, and I have no problem with religious beliefs - except where they contradict what we have learned from science.

"Guided evolution" is basically in the same camp as "intelligent design", and that is just a figleaf to try to get creationism taught in science lessons in US schools. As far as I'm concerned, this is to be deplored as it encourages scientific illiteracy. Given the number and scale of the problems our civilisation is being faced with, which we need some understanding of science to comprehend, we cannot afford to have our children grow up with a flawed understanding of how science works.

I would have no problem at all with a belief that God initiated the Big Bang with which our universe commenced, and that God set up the initial conditions which led to the development of planets and the evolution of life. That doesn't contradict anything we have learned so far. I don't happen to believe it myself, but I wouldn't argue with anyone who did.
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Old 22nd April 2008, 05:44 PM   #149 (permalink)
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Re: On Creating Imaginary Worlds: Questions and Answers

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I don't wish to get involved in flame war either, and I have no problem with religious beliefs - except where they contradict what we have learned from science.
Well, then you do have a problem with religious beliefs, because a lot of them do conflict. Not to worry, I am not with most of those people.

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"Guided evolution" is basically in the same camp as "intelligent design", and that is just a figleaf to try to get creationism taught in science lessons in US schools. As far as I'm concerned, this is to be deplored as it encourages scientific illiteracy. Given the number and scale of the problems our civilisation is being faced with, which we need some understanding of science to comprehend, we cannot afford to have our children grow up with a flawed understanding of how science works.
I'm sure you've heard the line "A mind is like a parachute, it only works when it is open." (If not, I hope you like it.) My stance is that this needs to go both ways. Science needs to be open to the possibility that they don't know everything, and that it is possible that there is more to natural selection than meets the eye. In fact there may be more to everything than meets the eye, ears, nose, etc. The best theorists in the world came up with the notion that the sun revolves around the earth in ancient Greece. Look how much more we know now. My point is that there is always more to discover, so let's not assume that we know it all. I don't believe in creationism, and I think it is absurd, and I don't want it to be taught in public schools. (I have young children). It seems I am in the most unpopular camp there is right now - one that is trying to get science and religion to balance. ("agree" might be the wrong word)

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I would have no problem at all with a belief that God initiated the Big Bang with which our universe commenced, and that God set up the initial conditions which led to the development of planets and the evolution of life. That doesn't contradict anything we have learned so far. I don't happen to believe it myself, but I wouldn't argue with anyone who did.
This is not far from what I beleive. I believe in "spiritual seeds". Every living thing was created in the mind of God before it became a material reality. The difficulty of course is that scientific facts can be proved in the material realm, and existence of God cannot, etc. and so on. That's why they call it "faith". I'm glad you have an open mind toward this possibility. The thing that seems odd to me is: Why would God set all of this up, and then want nothing to do with it? He just set it up so he could sit back and watch? I suppose, but if he has the power to set all of this up, then all of that power is just useless for the rest of eternity? (I know, these questions are getting ludicrous because it's all conjecture anyway)

Also, I'd like to apologize to TorrnT for "de-railing" your thread. It seems that my meaning isn't what you meant at all, and I do like your idea anyway. I especially like the time travel interference paradox part.

I am a scientific person for the most part. Things have occured in my time on this planet that have led me to my current beliefs. We can influence what people believe, but we certainly cannot change it by force.

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Old 22nd April 2008, 06:27 PM   #150 (permalink)
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Re: On Creating Imaginary Worlds: Questions and Answers

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I'm sure you've heard the line "A mind is like a parachute, it only works when it is open." (If not, I hope you like it.) My stance is that this needs to go both ways. Science needs to be open to the possibility that they don't know everything, and that it is possible that there is more to natural selection than meets the eye. In fact there may be more to everything than meets the eye, ears, nose, etc.
Science certainly doesn't have all the answers, and doesn't claim to. It has nothing to say about the spiritual side of life (except that there's no objective evidence for it). However, as far as the material world is concerned, the scientific method has a remarkable record of success in explaining the world. If it weren't for that, we'd still be living in the Stone Age.

I see the scientific method as akin to doing a huge jigsaw puzzle. At the time the Bible was written, humanity knew very little beyond their immediate daily experience; the jigsaw was mostly in loose pieces. Over the centuries, discoveries have slowly filled in the picture. We now, I think, have a good idea of the outline of the jigsaw and have filled in huge areas of it (with more every year) but there's still a lot to do. Perhaps our civilisation won't last long enough to complete the puzzle. But science potentially can resolve all of the answers concerning our material world.

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The best theorists in the world came up with the notion that the sun revolves around the earth in ancient Greece. Look how much more we know now. My point is that there is always more to discover, so let's not assume that we know it all.
Precisely - and how did we learn all that we have about the material world since the ancient Greeks? Not from religion, but from applying the scientific method of observation, hypothesis and testing, resulting in theories which remain valid until better and contradictory evidence emerges. The scientific method is inherently open to new ideas - which religion is not. Individual scientists may not be either, but that's human nature for you

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I don't believe in creationism, and I think it is absurd, and I don't want it to be taught in public schools. (I have young children).
I'm glad to hear that, as I think that misleading children as to how science works is as bad as preventing them from learning how to read - it's a form of child abuse.

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It seems I am in the most unpopular camp there is right now - one that is trying to get science and religion to balance. ("agree" might be the wrong word)
That is a laudable aspiration, but there's a fundamental problem with it. I really don't believe that you can mix religion and science in this way. Either the way in which life has developed was divinely inspired (in which case, science has no role, and is in fact useless) or evolution has followed a logical pattern which is explicable via natural forces (in which case divine intervention has no role). You can't have it mostly natural but with a bit of religion added, any more than a girl can be "just a little bit pregnant".

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The thing that seems odd to me is: Why would God set all of this up, and then want nothing to do with it? He just set it up so he could sit back and watch? I suppose, but if he has the power to set all of this up, then all of that power is just useless for the rest of eternity?
I agree with you - that's why I don't believe it myself.

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We can influence what people believe, but we certainly cannot change it by force.
Absolutely. In fact, in my experience it is really very difficult to influence what people believe, once they've made their minds up. And if their belief is based on religious doctrine, it's just about impossible!
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