Heteromeles

Heteromeles

  • Commented on Books I Will Not Write #8: The Year of the Conspiracy
    I'll tell the old legend from Florida. It's from before cars. A sheriff was worried that certain parties were going to rig an election by stealing the ballots on the way to the state capitol. He therefore rigged a dummy...
  • Commented on Books I Will Not Write #8: The Year of the Conspiracy
    How weird Alexander's career was Genghis Khan, Muhammad, and Nurhaci, Qin Shi Huang, and Cortes did similar things. The problem is that conquering and ruling are two very different things, and skilled conquerors rarely set up political systems that stand...
  • Commented on Books I Will Not Write #8: The Year of the Conspiracy
    It can take weeks to count ballots, in large states like California. And that's with machine-readable ballots. We're doing mail-in this fall, and ballots go out 5 Oct. My understanding is that they're not late as long as they show...
  • Commented on Books I Will Not Write #8: The Year of the Conspiracy
    The naval ram used by the ancients wasn't pointed, it was a stack of three horizontal bronze fins, stiffened by one vertical fin. And by fin, think something that looks a lot like a giant axe blade. My mental model...
  • Commented on Books I Will Not Write #8: The Year of the Conspiracy
    Re: Alt-Rome-ing: there may be a better way to get windjammers into the classical world. The place where this alternate history starts is when Alexander the Great doesn't die in Babylon in 323 BC, but lives on to a ripe...
  • Commented on Books I Will Not Write #8: The Year of the Conspiracy
    On noon of January 20th the sitting President and Vice President are out of office; the Constitution is very clear on this. Normally they're replaced without fuss but what happens if there is no President and no Vice President? Happily...
  • Commented on Books I Will Not Write #8: The Year of the Conspiracy
    I agree, and I think I do understand where Foxessa was coming from, and forgetting about the rape and abuse allegations on my part was a mistake (I simply forgot, actually, which is a different mistake in itself). That said,...
  • Commented on Books I Will Not Write #8: The Year of the Conspiracy
    Pence can't pardon him if he's not indicted while Pence is in office. Also, once he resigns, he loses presidential immunity, so a storm of non-federal legal actions is going to descend on him within days. But he might still...
  • Commented on Books I Will Not Write #8: The Year of the Conspiracy
    Already been done on Mercury, in Kim Stanley Robinson's Blue Mars. The colony runs on rails and is powered somehow by the differential expansion and contraction of the rails, such that it always slides along the dawn line. My solution...
  • Commented on Books I Will Not Write #8: The Year of the Conspiracy
    Your recipe is better than mine. I'd alter it by doing the equivalent of a Philadelphia fire kite (or one of John Powell's jellyfish balloons) by filling an inverted trash bag with hydrogen, not closing it, and lighting two equal...
  • Commented on Books I Will Not Write #8: The Year of the Conspiracy
    Agreed. Trump did give charitably before he occupied the White House. I mean, heck, like Jeffrey Epstein, he was a registered Democrat back in the day, not that this makes him a better person. The best thing about Trump is...
  • Commented on Books I Will Not Write #8: The Year of the Conspiracy
    For bicycle troops, try WWII and the Malaysian campaign. The Japanese got the jump on the British by putting their advance troops on bicycles and getting them into battle faster than the British predicted they'd march in. Eventually the Brits...
  • Commented on Books I Will Not Write #8: The Year of the Conspiracy
    I agree with Luke on this. Right now, people who oppose Trump and Trumpism have two jobs: --Get out the vote (including donating money to GOTV efforts elsewhere if your municipality is safely blue*), and --Prepare for the coup. For...
  • Commented on Books I Will Not Write #8: The Year of the Conspiracy
    Hydrogen has a couple of advantages during catastrophes: being lighter than air, even if it's burning, it's rising. Remember that most of the people survived the wreck of the Hindenburg, in part because of that. Accidental releases also don't cause...
  • Commented on Books I Will Not Write #8: The Year of the Conspiracy
    I agree about the wine, but that both misses the point and brings up others. One of the basic weirdnesses about the switch to capitalism is the gradual (around 400 years) switch from alcohol as the default drink to caffeine...
  • Commented on Books I Will Not Write #8: The Year of the Conspiracy
    You mean, that much opium, to trade with the Qin or Han for tea? I did actually check, and apparently the Qin did drink tea, although not all the Chinese did. Coffee, on the other hand, isn't recorded before the...
  • Commented on Books I Will Not Write #8: The Year of the Conspiracy
    Okay, this is where I say some nasty things, starting with please get a clue, and please get a grip. IF I have ever said I believe in time travel, please let me know, because I do not. To me,...
  • Commented on Books I Will Not Write #8: The Year of the Conspiracy
    Wait, that was 15 foot circumference, no? So 2.39 foot radius, 1.6 cubic meters or tonnes. Still big, but not huge. "At The Mountains of Madness: "Sculptured images of these shoggoths filled Danforth and me with horror and loathing. They...
  • Commented on Books I Will Not Write #8: The Year of the Conspiracy
    Oh, I think it's entirely plausible. I also think it's plausible for those in the opposition to jitter themselves into uselessness thinking that Evil Mastermind T is going to outfox them, when his people are desperately flailing around to stay...
  • Commented on Books I Will Not Write #8: The Year of the Conspiracy
    Sorry that no one else is posting. Just one last non sequitur. The canonical size of the average shoggoth is given as a sphere 15 feet in circumference, assuming they want to be spherical. The other factoid is that a...
  • Commented on Books I Will Not Write #8: The Year of the Conspiracy
    Mainly night-time temperature. For reasons I don't know, cold nights cause the chlorophyll to be absorbed and the rhodophyll left in place. A lot of botanists have had fun with this, and I'm not sure the answer is completely known...
  • Commented on Books I Will Not Write #8: The Year of the Conspiracy
    There's also SP Somtow's three volume Aquiliad, where steam-powered Romans trip off to North America. Time pirates were involved, IIRC....
  • Commented on Books I Will Not Write #8: The Year of the Conspiracy
    How, y'all are tough up there! Down here, we call five meter circumference pits sinkholes, not potholes (that being the canonical size of a spherical shoggoth)....
  • Commented on Books I Will Not Write #8: The Year of the Conspiracy
    The thing to remember about the current Republican President is that, while he's definitely abusive, none of his multiple marriages, multiple bankruptcies, or thousands of lawsuits have ended in violence. He's more about bluster, bullshit, and being bailed out. Now...
  • Commented on Books I Will Not Write #8: The Year of the Conspiracy
    Thinking about it some more, if the current political mess is a creation of some time traveling organization (Future Fascists of Amerikkka?), then bitcoin, the government of Russia, Brexit, and El Cheeto could all be part of some grand plot...
  • Commented on Books I Will Not Write #8: The Year of the Conspiracy
    What technology might a time traveler from our future bring back to us? Bitcoin? No one's come forward to confess to being Satoshi Nakamoto....
  • Commented on Books I Will Not Write #8: The Year of the Conspiracy
    One thing I'd point out to all the authors and wannabes out there is that there's potentially some fun to be had with the idea of Rome figuring out an equivalent of an Age of Sail windjammer. I'm thinking of...
  • Commented on Books I Will Not Write #8: The Year of the Conspiracy
    The trick with a kite, I think, is that you get away from the surface winds, and if the line is long enough, you may well find winds going in a more favorable direction. As for who developed which sail,...
  • Commented on Books I Will Not Write #8: The Year of the Conspiracy
    The reason that people fooled around with models for simple calculations was that they were 'mathematically challenged' (as most people are today). Or you could look at the prevalence of model boats in Polynesia (kid's toys, of course), and get...
  • Commented on Books I Will Not Write #8: The Year of the Conspiracy
    What technology might a time traveler from our future bring back to us? The cure for social media? You know, it's just possible that we're in a version of Turtledove's Guns for the South scenario. Instead of bringing back AK-47s...
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