icehawk

icehawk

  • Commented on Canned Monkeys Don't Ship Well, the Remix Version
    Ocean-going cultures that settle new lands do not jump straight to ocean-crossing tech from nothing. You start with lots of navigational and boat-building abilities and work up. Spent some time in the remote islands in Fiji, or etc, and you’ll...
  • Commented on Canned Monkeys Don't Ship Well, the Remix Version
    One thing you need to become aware of is Boserup's Ratchet....What happens is that, when population grows to hit its limit to keeping everybody fed and happy, people start innovating with agricultural techniques and culture, to find ways around that...
  • Commented on Canned Monkeys Don't Ship Well, the Remix Version
    The Polynesians were island-dwellers who searched for more islands. That's very different than leaving a continent in one huge jump across the ocean. So if you want an analogy to Polynesia, then a better question to ask would be whether...
  • Commented on Unsustainable Interstellar Civilization, Hotspot Colonies, and Dwarf Culture
    The idea that population always grows to consume food resources is a cultural assumption. No, it follows from biology and population modelling. Populations that grow beat populations that don't. You're the one making cultural assumptions by saying "they didn't do...
  • Commented on Unsustainable Interstellar Civilization, Hotspot Colonies, and Dwarf Culture
    This all feeds into our understanding of how difficult (or easy) it is to survive by foraging. The great example from the 1970s was a study of a !Kung tribe that they spent less than 20 hours/week foraging to provide...
  • Commented on Unsustainable Interstellar Civilization, Hotspot Colonies, and Dwarf Culture
    "Maybe there will be a central coordinating body to ensure that everyone who can gets out alive, and then assigns the world to a species that can use it as is..." Jared Diamond's "Collapse" is the best work I've read...
  • Commented on Unsustainable Interstellar Civilization, Hotspot Colonies, and Dwarf Culture
    While this presentation is premised on the behavior of current developers, I got the initial idea from how vernal pools work, and developed it based on how Polynesians settled new islands. Does that change your view of it? Nope, doesn't...
  • Commented on Unsustainable Interstellar Civilization, Hotspot Colonies, and Dwarf Culture
    As the Polynesians and Guanche demonstrated, it's possible to terraform an island using neolithic technology I'm sorry that I seem so argumentative. And I think your point about limiting contact to a closed eco-system for terraforming has good points....
  • Commented on Unsustainable Interstellar Civilization, Hotspot Colonies, and Dwarf Culture
    When you have FTL, you don't need long-term sustainability, so long as the rate at which successful colonies are founded is greater than the rate at which established colonies fail, with successful colonies being those that can build their own...
  • Commented on SF For Nothing, Stories For Free
    Once upon a time, SF novels were shorter. Slaughterhouse Five is actually just under the 50K word threshold that the Hugos use for novels. The reasons for the growth has been adequately covered here in the past. That discussion of...
  • Commented on The Pivot
    I think you underestimate earthquakes. Humans armies in a hurry blow up a few bridges in a mountain pass. A major earthquake will drop half a mountain on the pass, and if it’s feeling funny then create a new small...
  • Commented on The Pivot
    ...they have made their displeasure known on the golf course and in the smoke-filled rooms, and the quiet whispering campaign has finally turned heads at the top of the media empires I won't deny that effect. But I think it's...
  • Commented on Happy 21st Century!
    Actually, in theory, I think that we could run our civilisation on 10% of the population, probably even 1%. But that would need a completely different society. 70 million people is a lot. Really a lot. There's room for a...
  • Commented on Happy 21st Century!
    When the government is anti-racist, it's normal for the racists to claim to be libertarian. I think that's the basis for your observed correlation. Libertarianism, like environmentalism, is a broad church. There's no logical reason why the broader environmental movement...
  • Commented on GDPR compliance notice
    There's a long history of large orgs relocating when/if they happen to dislike some new piece of legislation in their current geography. I too will be interested to see how this pans out. We have the USA trying to unilaterally...
  • Commented on GDPR compliance notice
    I will add that assuming you're not planning to write your website backend code in C, Unicode is trivial. That was kind of my point. It's a default for most web frameworks (unless you look really closely at the relationship...
  • Commented on GDPR compliance notice
    ...machine learning and other mass-data efforts... Google's fancy spam filter has years of your email baked into it's big detection matrix I'm not sure there's a real problem there. If you're talking about your footprint in a convoluted neural network...
  • Commented on GDPR compliance notice
    "I'm starting in the US, I do *not* want to deal with unicode" At risk of derailing this thread so soon, but it is about websites... Why? What's so hard about unicode? Don't most programming languages cope with it just...
  • Commented on Cthulhu Counterfactual
    For Americans 9/11 was a defining moment in their history, for me it was a Tuesday. Americans who were not yet born when 9/11 happened (or when the US invaded Afghanistan) will in a few months be serving in US...
  • Commented on Cthulhu Counterfactual
    If you really want a true collapse, though, you have to look at approx -1250 - -650 CE. If they didn't want apocalyptic collapse of civilization, Paris shouldn't have kidnapped Helen....
  • Commented on On hold
    Thank you! I hadn't realised that Hilbert set the "finite number of operations" limit himself in his question. That's an interesting bit of history....
  • Commented on On hold
    | | | The harm done by the deification of the language recognition model to computational theory is incalculable" | | But without that would it be computational theory? | Good God, why not? It was before that was...
  • Commented on On hold
    None of that changes results of the Goedel and Turing form, as they place no limits on the resources needed At risk of being really pedantic (but this is logic, I'm allowed): the limit is that the resource to complete...
  • Commented on On hold
    "Actually, allowing the systems to have errors doesn't affect the computability issues all that much, if at all" Are you seriously claiming that permitting logical systems to contain inconsistencies does not affect proofs regarding those systems? It's been years since...
  • Commented on On hold
    I assume you’re making a point about quantum mechanics, but if so I don’t understand it. Your point, I mean. I don’t understand QM either, but I’m not sure anyone does. But analog computers have real-number inputs in *exactly* the...
  • Commented on On hold
    A few comments from the sidelines: 1) "This physical system can be modelled mathematically" doesn't relate to "computable" in a useful way. Operations that inputs or outputs real numbers are not, in general, computable. This includes: addition of real...
  • Commented on On hold
    You're missing the point. It's not reproducing the old artistic style and old art for 5,000 years in the same place that's the give-away. It's that there is no new artistic style. Not reproducing the old - failing to do...
  • Commented on On hold
    Sorry, major typo. About the art in Niaux: it should read "WITHOUT notably advancing or changing technique"....
  • Commented on On hold
    The transition to "civilization" and "agriculture" is very odd. Remember that we're dealing with evolution of culture (memetic evolution). Evolution doesn't aim towards a final point - that what you're doing will make things better for your great-grandkids is irrelevant....
  • Commented on On hold
    Global civilisation totally upends the evolutionary order, by moving vast numbers of species from continent to continent. I really think we’d see if that had happened at any time in the last 150 million years. And probably earlier too, though...
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