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Sci-fi Writers

Lightsabers, Warp drives and Phasers

Viewing 13 posts - 1 through 13 (of 13 total)
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  • #124889
    Rusted Knight
    @rusted-knight

    Hello and welcome. Everyone has seen cool stuff in books and films that spawn your own ideas. Of course there are questions that must be answered. How does the Lightsaber maintain its length? How fast can a Warp drive go? What would happen if a person got a pair of robotic limbs while having his original limbs?

    The purpose of this tag is to discus, debate and brainstorm these ideas and/or their consequences and/or uses. There is only one real limit. What ever is brought to the tag must have some form of technology involved. This is Sci Fi.

    The Devil saw me with my head down and got excited. Then I said Amen

    #124949
    Cathy
    @this-is-not-an-alien

    Ooh I had an idea for a si-fi story where “islands” were built and hovered in the air using artificial gravity because the government deemed the ground-level “uninhabitable” so cities were built on the island and an AI was designed to control all the resources. This had a sprinkling of magic to explain most of the technological difficulties XD but one thing I need to have relatively accurate, or based off accuracy, was “gravity surfing”.
    Because the islands used strong artificial gravity to break somewhat from earth’s gravity, hover boards could, in theory, be used to “surf” on the gravity between islands. It was gonna be this really dangerous competition in the story and only the absolute elite would be able to “surf” with non-electronic boards.
    Also the AI was gonna be able to control every technological aspect of everyone’s daily life so it could shut off or cause a malfunction anywhere it was convenient so the non-electric board was pretty important. So how can I incorporate that practically?

    Don't let the voices in your head drive you insane;only some of them can drive; most are underage

    #126041
    Rusted Knight
    @rusted-knight

    @this-is-not-an-alien
    Well from what I know which is little, gravity pulls. When two gravitational fields meet, you get the hover ability. The catch is forward movement. To “surf” on the border of the two gravity fields, there must be continued movement of some fashion or the surfer will become stranded. Another problem is there would be no safe way to map or predict the border of the gravity fields. Miss it by even a little and the surfer will be pulled into one of the fields. After than, if the surfer is not rescued very quickly, more than a few bones will be broken.

    The Devil saw me with my head down and got excited. Then I said Amen

    #126125
    Cathy
    @this-is-not-an-alien

    Good points! I guess there’ll have to be a lot more ‘science’ to the undertaking and a whole new facet of aerodynamics to meet. Forward propulsion is a definite problem there, thanks for catching that! It might be fixed with engines in some cases but it’d always be either fighting or in harmony with gravity pull. And finding the right points like you said can’t be done safely. There’s a whole new level of challenge to working this theory here, I’ll have to see what techniques and technology can offset that. Thanks for pointing those out!

    Don't let the voices in your head drive you insane;only some of them can drive; most are underage

    #126136
    Edmund Lloyd Fletcher
    @edmund-lloyd-fletcher

    Have you seen upside-down?

    Trailer:

    Pretty interesting movie.  They solve the gravity problem — twice.  Of course, by “solve” I mean in sci-fi plot terms.  I guess from a writing perspective it’s a lot like a magic system in fantasy – as long as you establish clear rules for what it can do and its limitations, you can get yourself into all kinds of interesting situations.

    @cathy back to your original idea, you could also go the steampunk route as well – maybe zeppelins or propellers sticking up everywhere on your islands.

    Or maybe there’s some rare mineral or something that makes things float?  That would be helpful in causing geo-political tensions to add plot conflict.

    Homeschooling father of 10, writing Christian action/adventure novels from my home high in the Rockies.

    #126150
    Cathy
    @this-is-not-an-alien

    I haven’t seen the movie but it looks like it’s got a great aesthetic and fascinating concept! Thank you for the advice, I like researching excessively but when it comes to si-fi concepts it does end up like a magic system. This baby’s been in deep-storage for years waiting for a good plot to go with it.
    I love the steampunk idea, I’d been starting out with a glass-aesthetic and the zeppelins and propellers would give it an extra flare and contrast great with visual fragility I’d imagined.
    The rare mineral is definitely something I can work with, although I’ll probably over-complicate it as a blackmarket item more suited to gravity surfing than any other material. I wonder where it comes from and how to do a new twist to ‘people serving despotic upperclass to gain mineral’. Maybe it’s imbued with a bit of a magic system or maybe only two or three scientists in the world know how to make it.
    Thanks again for the help! <3
    …Ten kids, that’s impressive. What’s it like living on the Rockies, if I can ask?

    Don't let the voices in your head drive you insane;only some of them can drive; most are underage

    #126204
    Edmund Lloyd Fletcher
    @edmund-lloyd-fletcher

    Cool, I hope it sparked some new ideas.

    Yeah, that movie had some fantastic visuals.  I’d recommend it.

    What’s it like in the mountains?
    The climate is very dry year round.  The major cities are pretty similar to any other I suppose, but if you’re crazy enough to live up in the mountains, it’s an experience.

    Here’s a pic I took just this morning of our turkey friends that come to visit.

    Wild turkeys visiting this morning

    I think since moving to the rural mountains from the suburbs I’ve grown a lot in terms of self-reliance. Life throws you all these new curveballs and you just have to figure out how to roll with it – from wells freezing up to having a water heater go out in the dead of winter and no way to get a new one up to the house. “Hmm. Okay. So it looks like we’re going to do *that* now.”

    Most years when the snow gets really bad, we have to park our van at the bottom of the hill. We use a dog-sled to pull the groceries up to the house. Picture this long row of kids in parkas and a sled… like we’re on some polar expedition or something. LOL

    Homeschooling father of 10, writing Christian action/adventure novels from my home high in the Rockies.

    #126328
    Cathy
    @this-is-not-an-alien

    Whoa, that’d be an epic setting for a murder-mystery since it’d make it easier to explain why the sleuth is solving the crime instead of the police. Also just an epic novel setting in general, it looks so beautiful and exciting! I love the turkeys they looks like alien pilgrims.

    I think since moving to the rural mountains from the suburbs I’ve grown a lot in terms of self-reliance. Life throws you all these new curveballs and you just have to figure out how to roll with it – from wells freezing up to having a water heater go out in the dead of winter and no way to get a new one up to the house. “Hmm. Okay. So it looks like we’re going to do *that* now.”

    Wow that’d be a constant…adventure. I know we’ve had to be pretty self-reliant here but never like frozen-well self-reliant, I guess it’s something about being tested and pushed that’s its own sort of reward, but must really love it up there to stay 🙂

    Most years when the snow gets really bad, we have to park our van at the bottom of the hill. We use a dog-sled to pull the groceries up to the house. Picture this long row of kids in parkas and a sled… like we’re on some polar expedition or something. LOL

    Lol that would make every ‘normal’ activity an adventure, how many dogs do you have to pull a sled like that? It sounds like a beautiful wild place you live, what made you move from the suburbs?

    Don't let the voices in your head drive you insane;only some of them can drive; most are underage

    #126657
    Catholic Creed
    @hannahrenner

    @rusted-knight

    Yo.  Flying ships.

    How’s your new design coming along?  And more importantly, how does it fly?

    When life knocks you down, wait 'til it passes over you and then attack it from behind.

    #126660
    Rusted Knight
    @rusted-knight

    @hannahrenner

    Well, flying ships are quite a thing to read about or see in film. It is another matter to figure out how to make one fly. The current designs I have been working on use a combination of helium or similar material and large, high power engines. The real problem is the ones I am working on are warships. Armor is super heavy and recoil of battleship guns can sway a real battleship. How does all that affect an airship?

    The Devil saw me with my head down and got excited. Then I said Amen

    #126729
    Catholic Creed
    @hannahrenner

    @rusted-knight

    How does that affect an airship?

    Depends – I suppose – on the genre and setting.

    Fantasy – not the forum for it.

    Sci-fi?  Well, most air-ships are go on the soft-side of sci-fi so you just need to be plausible and consistent enough that it doesn’t jerk the reader out of the story.

    For example, if you say that ships can fly because the gravity on this planet is less, I’m gonna expect to see other effects of lesser gravity like very tall and very thin trees with a broad canopy and maybe bigger animals flying.  On some planets, the gravity is so low, we could strap huge wings on our arms and fly like Icarus.  However, if we were designed for a planet like that, wouldn’t we be heavier?  So, in a story like this, your premise would be “gravity is lighter, and this is how it affects the world.” Which is getting away from airships.

    So you could go the helium route.  Is some kind of air-balloon in the center of the ship?  Is helium particularly flammable?  Do engineers have a continual helium voice?

    Or – since we are creating elements now (like, for reals) – do we create a “floatium” that we pocket inside the ship?  (I’m assuming inside because it will be safe behind the armor plating and less likely to escape or explode.  I’m thinking whatever it is, it will be nasty if hit by the right thing.  Like all fuels.). If you go the “science made this” route, you can make up a lot of rules as plausible as you can get them.

    Anyway, I’ve always considered this a hand-wavy, rule-of-cool thing.  And if someone picks up your book on airships, they’re probably interested in the adventure in a crazy new world and not so interested in detailed science behind it.  (But a “harder” science might pleasantly surprise them.  Who knows?)

    When life knocks you down, wait 'til it passes over you and then attack it from behind.

    #133966
    ScoutFinch190
    @scoutfinch190

    Greetings, more seasoned sci-fi writers! I am predominantly familiar with fantasy, and am currently writing a sci-fi, I wanted to ask about a couple ideas I had for the world:

    • A material that can be used for artificial gravity?
      • I was thinking something along the lines of a material harvested from blackholes (or something along those lines where the mass is incredible), or a material that can be compressed and decompressed with different electrical charges or something along those lines to change it’s mass so when a space ship is on a planet, the occupants aren’t overwhelmed by too much gravity. It could just be a material with such a dense mass that it works great for creating gravity on space stations, but is terrible for anything that goes on a planet so not everything has artificial gravity.
    • A planet the size of Jupiter, with the mass of earth.
      • So it’d basically be a swiss cheese planet? Vaguely similar to Ego from Guardians of the Galaxy 2. I was thinking that it’d have different climates in it’s various layers, varying from a very moist and still environment at the core, to a very dry and windy environment on the surface with the atmosphere very close to the planet so the air’s thinner on the surface and the sky looks black in the daytime.
        • but about the gravity: would the gravity’s power alter the closer one got to the core? Would the gravity change directions at the core?

    Thank you! (I hope this isn’t off-subject)

     

    Very interesting thought on the spaceships by the way!

    We crazy people are the normal ones.

    #133967
    ScoutFinch190
    @scoutfinch190

    I never thought about there being a flotation device within the spaceship.

    We crazy people are the normal ones.

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