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Colonize Antarctica, not Mars

Skynet
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6/23/2013 10:39:44 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
All this talk talk talk about colonizing Mars. We've got an entire uncolonized continent right here on Earth. And it has AIR, water, and low radiation levels. What's not to prefer about Antarctica if you're comparing the two? Difficult: Yes. But not Mars difficult. But that's another topic. Why is this always pooh-poohed?
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Skynet
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6/23/2013 10:40:22 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/23/2013 10:39:44 PM, Skynet wrote:
All this talk talk talk about colonizing Mars. We've got an entire uncolonized continent right here on Earth. And it has AIR, water, and low radiation levels. What's not to prefer about Antarctica if you're comparing the two? Difficult: Yes. But not Mars difficult. Why is this always pooh-poohed?

fixed
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DanT
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6/23/2013 11:28:00 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/23/2013 10:39:44 PM, Skynet wrote:
All this talk talk talk about colonizing Mars. We've got an entire uncolonized continent right here on Earth. And it has AIR, water, and low radiation levels. What's not to prefer about Antarctica if you're comparing the two? Difficult: Yes. But not Mars difficult. But that's another topic. Why is this always pooh-poohed?

Longer nights in the winter, longer days in the summer. Can't grow food, because everything is frozen. The air is thick, and there are volcanoes that constantly pump chlorine into the air. Not to mention how cold it is.

With Mars we can terraform the planet, which we can't do with Antarctica. By terraforming the planet, we can make a more inhabitable environment than Antarctica.
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AlbinoBunny
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6/24/2013 8:20:52 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
I still think Venus would be better than Mars. I'm sure we can find ways to live on previously uninhabited land on planet Earth, probably sooner, though.
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ClassicRobert
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6/24/2013 9:47:22 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/24/2013 8:20:52 AM, AlbinoBunny wrote:
I still think Venus would be better than Mars. I'm sure we can find ways to live on previously uninhabited land on planet Earth, probably sooner, though.

And why do you think that Venus would be better than Mars?
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dylancatlow
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6/24/2013 9:58:17 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
How about we do neither and not delude ourselves that there's some legitimate back-up plan waiting if we exhaust what the habitable areas of earth have to provide.
Skynet
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6/24/2013 9:29:34 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/23/2013 11:28:00 PM, DanT wrote:
At 6/23/2013 10:39:44 PM, Skynet wrote:
All this talk talk talk about colonizing Mars. We've got an entire uncolonized continent right here on Earth. And it has AIR, water, and low radiation levels. What's not to prefer about Antarctica if you're comparing the two? Difficult: Yes. But not Mars difficult. But that's another topic. Why is this always pooh-poohed?

Longer nights in the winter, longer days in the summer. Can't grow food, because everything is frozen. The air is thick, and there are volcanoes that constantly pump chlorine into the air. Not to mention how cold it is.

With Mars we can terraform the planet, which we can't do with Antarctica. By terraforming the planet, we can make a more inhabitable environment than Antarctica.

People already live with funny hours in above the Arctic Circle, they find ways of getting food, whether it be hunting or reindeer, or imports.
Mars is frozen, too, and the soil is toxic.
Better too thick than too thin with no free oxygen.
I'm not sure about the chlorine thing. Are volcanoes really that common there?

I would say that if terraforming Mars made it at all like Antarctica, it would be a resounding success. Why not just start with the place that is already Antarctica? It would be much more affordable.
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YYW
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6/24/2013 9:31:10 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/23/2013 10:39:44 PM, Skynet wrote:
All this talk talk talk about colonizing Mars. We've got an entire uncolonized continent right here on Earth. And it has AIR, water, and low radiation levels. What's not to prefer about Antarctica if you're comparing the two? Difficult: Yes. But not Mars difficult. But that's another topic. Why is this always pooh-poohed?

I would much rather colonize the oil producing countries of the middle east.
Tsar of DDO
Skynet
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6/24/2013 9:33:17 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/24/2013 9:58:17 AM, dylancatlow wrote:
How about we do neither and not delude ourselves that there's some legitimate back-up plan waiting if we exhaust what the habitable areas of earth have to provide.

Wow. That is pessimistic. So, should we not explore for more resources in your opinion?
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FREEDO
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6/24/2013 9:39:50 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
I'd rather colonize the ocean. It's much safer. If nuclear war goes off, we have a big cushion.
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fnord
Skynet
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6/24/2013 9:44:28 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/24/2013 9:31:10 PM, YYW wrote:
At 6/23/2013 10:39:44 PM, Skynet wrote:
All this talk talk talk about colonizing Mars. We've got an entire uncolonized continent right here on Earth. And it has AIR, water, and low radiation levels. What's not to prefer about Antarctica if you're comparing the two? Difficult: Yes. But not Mars difficult. But that's another topic. Why is this always pooh-poohed?

I would much rather colonize the oil producing countries of the middle east.

I don't know if our oil income would outweigh our necessary warchest if we invaded the Saudi peninsula. It's been bad enough for us after we were invited there to protect them from Saddam in Desert Storm.
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Skynet
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6/24/2013 9:54:52 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/24/2013 9:39:50 PM, FREEDO wrote:
I'd rather colonize the ocean. It's much safer. If nuclear war goes off, we have a big cushion.

I've thought of that, too. Towns built on barges or oil platform-like ships. For longevity, they'd either have to be made of bronze alloys or non-metals, like plastics or organic shell-like material. Even stainless rusts. The storms would be a major concern on the surface. A colony below the surface would kind of be like a space station because of the need for atmospheric controls and pressurization. Not that it's undoable. Vietnam has floating cities, kind of.
One perk to being a dad is you get to watch cartoons again without explaining yourself.
FREEDO
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6/24/2013 10:09:27 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/24/2013 9:54:52 PM, Skynet wrote:
At 6/24/2013 9:39:50 PM, FREEDO wrote:
I'd rather colonize the ocean. It's much safer. If nuclear war goes off, we have a big cushion.

I've thought of that, too. Towns built on barges or oil platform-like ships. For longevity, they'd either have to be made of bronze alloys or non-metals, like plastics or organic shell-like material. Even stainless rusts. The storms would be a major concern on the surface. A colony below the surface would kind of be like a space station because of the need for atmospheric controls and pressurization. Not that it's undoable. Vietnam has floating cities, kind of.

I was thinking more along Atlantis kinda lines.
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fnord
Skynet
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6/24/2013 10:39:06 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/24/2013 10:09:27 PM, FREEDO wrote:
At 6/24/2013 9:54:52 PM, Skynet wrote:
At 6/24/2013 9:39:50 PM, FREEDO wrote:
I'd rather colonize the ocean. It's much safer. If nuclear war goes off, we have a big cushion.

I've thought of that, too. Towns built on barges or oil platform-like ships. For longevity, they'd either have to be made of bronze alloys or non-metals, like plastics or organic shell-like material. Even stainless rusts. The storms would be a major concern on the surface. A colony below the surface would kind of be like a space station because of the need for atmospheric controls and pressurization. Not that it's undoable. Vietnam has floating cities, kind of.

I was thinking more along Atlantis kinda lines.

I was embarrassed I liked the show. I think I mainly watched it to see Rachel Luttrell.

The Atlantis concept would overcome a lot of weather issues. Then what do we do about corrosion: It's greatest at the tide line of any object, since the water and salt act as catalysts between the air and structure. And dipping the entire thing in and out of seawater would mean virtually the whole thing would be within the tide lines.

I like the idea, but what materials could be used to reduce this?
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FREEDO
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6/24/2013 10:45:46 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
Idk what show you're referring to...I just meant to say an underwater city.

But I think we could live in a bubble made of this:
http://en.wikipedia.org...
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fnord
dylancatlow
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6/24/2013 10:57:44 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/24/2013 10:45:46 PM, FREEDO wrote:
Idk what show you're referring to...I just meant to say an underwater city.

But I think we could live in a bubble made of this:
http://en.wikipedia.org...

How will constructing skyscrapers not always just be a more practical means of solving space constraint problems than flying off to Mars, plunging ourselves into the ocean to find refuge in giant carbon bubbles, or attempting to turn a continent of ice into something habitable?
FREEDO
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6/25/2013 2:07:42 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/24/2013 10:57:44 PM, dylancatlow wrote:
At 6/24/2013 10:45:46 PM, FREEDO wrote:
Idk what show you're referring to...I just meant to say an underwater city.

But I think we could live in a bubble made of this:
http://en.wikipedia.org...

How will constructing skyscrapers not always just be a more practical means of solving space constraint problems than flying off to Mars, plunging ourselves into the ocean to find refuge in giant carbon bubbles, or attempting to turn a continent of ice into something habitable?

Because building Atlantis and Disneyland on Mars in not about why we should. It's about "why not?".
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fnord
Skynet
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6/25/2013 5:15:20 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/24/2013 10:57:44 PM, dylancatlow wrote:
How will constructing skyscrapers not always just be a more practical means of solving space constraint problems than flying off to Mars, plunging ourselves into the ocean to find refuge in giant carbon bubbles, or attempting to turn a continent of ice into something habitable?

All these are definitely ambitious, and maybe not even practical, but no one's really ever tried any of these ideas. But nothing incredible ever becomes ordinary, like electricity or powered flight or cell phones until it's at least discussed. This is thread is just a discussion about "what if." Don't take it too seriously. The President isn't going to sign my Antarctic Colony and Penguin Ranching Subsidy for Underprivileged Children Act until next Tuesday, so your tax dollars are still practically yours.
One perk to being a dad is you get to watch cartoons again without explaining yourself.
dylancatlow
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6/25/2013 5:40:02 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/25/2013 5:15:20 PM, Skynet wrote:
At 6/24/2013 10:57:44 PM, dylancatlow wrote:
How will constructing skyscrapers not always just be a more practical means of solving space constraint problems than flying off to Mars, plunging ourselves into the ocean to find refuge in giant carbon bubbles, or attempting to turn a continent of ice into something habitable?

All these are definitely ambitious, and maybe not even practical, but no one's really ever tried any of these ideas. But nothing incredible ever becomes ordinary, like electricity or powered flight or cell phones until it's at least discussed. This is thread is just a discussion about "what if." Don't take it too seriously. The President isn't going to sign my Antarctic Colony and Penguin Ranching Subsidy for Underprivileged Children Act until next Tuesday, so your tax dollars are still practically yours.

Is the question "why" not a pertinent question to ask someone making a proposal, or were they not meant to be taken seriously? It's one or the other.
Skynet
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6/25/2013 5:45:18 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/24/2013 10:45:46 PM, FREEDO wrote:
Idk what show you're referring to...I just meant to say an underwater city.

But I think we could live in a bubble made of this:
http://en.wikipedia.org...

There was a movie called Stargate in the mid-nineties, a successful cable show based on it called Stargate SG-1, and a spin-off called Stargate Atlantis. A team of people were stranded in an ancient floating, submersible fortress/city on another planet. I assumed you were referring to that because I'm a huge nerd and it's not a bad concept for the discussion.

I looked up graphene. It still needs development, but it's strength is incredible, at 150 million psi, but it's cost is still $150 per square cm. I don't know enough about chemistry or physics to grasp half of what they're saying in the article, so how it would react to sea water and organisms found in it is still an open question in my mind.

Kevlar is very high strength, relatively cheap, and already used in marine applications. That could work, if a bubble is used.

Ok, how far underwater would this colony have to be? The closer to the surface, the more vulnerable to weather and attack you are, but the safer in case you need to escape, and you don't need to build as strong. Plus there's the light factor. People and plants need it. It would be hard to get people to live in a place where it's dark 365 days a year. Should this be submersible, or totally submerged? I would go with submersible with most of the time spent on the surface or just below.
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Skynet
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6/25/2013 6:23:01 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/25/2013 5:40:02 PM, dylancatlow wrote:
At 6/25/2013 5:15:20 PM, Skynet wrote:
At 6/24/2013 10:57:44 PM, dylancatlow wrote:
How will constructing skyscrapers not always just be a more practical means of solving space constraint problems than flying off to Mars, plunging ourselves into the ocean to find refuge in giant carbon bubbles, or attempting to turn a continent of ice into something habitable?

All these are definitely ambitious, and maybe not even practical, but no one's really ever tried any of these ideas. But nothing incredible ever becomes ordinary, like electricity or powered flight or cell phones until it's at least discussed. This is thread is just a discussion about "what if." Don't take it too seriously. The President isn't going to sign my Antarctic Colony and Penguin Ranching Subsidy for Underprivileged Children Act until next Tuesday, so your tax dollars are still practically yours.

Is the question "why" not a pertinent question to ask someone making a proposal, or were they not meant to be taken seriously? It's one or the other.

Why is a good question. I was just trying to make a joke about government funding, not trying to be rude. I started this discussion because I hear people talk often about Mars colonization as if it's inevitable. I disagree from a practical point of view because most people are not aware of what we actually know about the Martian surface, and how unsuitable and nonredeemable it appears to be.

However, I recognize that some people are bent on the idea, so I'm just trying to use my tiny sphere of influence to ask the right questions to make at least a few people look at more practical colonization options, while still satisfying their need for ambitious dreams.

WHY colonize? Many people, like myself, can't stand congested living conditions. I've lived in small cities, and didn't like it, and I can only spend a few days at a time in big cities before I can't stand it. Would I live underwater or sign up for an Antarctic colony, or even homesteading in Alaska? Probably not. But there are plenty of people who will always be willing to do so, because that is what they are driven to do. Any species needs to expand and found new colonies if it is to continue thriving. There are no exceptions I am aware of. Overcrowding leads to sanitation and psychological problems like undue stress. I am not at all convinced we will run out of natural resources in the near future, and what is under the surface of the land is largely unexplored, contrary to popular perception. I am convinced We can mine and farm indefinitely on this planet and if you wish, I can discuss my reasoning on that issue at length.

Back along social lines, I think that political and social divisions are necessary between regions as a firewall against social vices like violence, prostitution, or dishonesty. Culture shock is useful for making a people realize their shortcomings. So that's another reason I believe people should spread out.
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Sidewalker
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6/28/2013 7:16:57 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
We should colonize West Virginia first.
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Ore_Ele
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6/29/2013 1:15:24 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/24/2013 9:47:22 AM, ClassicRobert wrote:
At 6/24/2013 8:20:52 AM, AlbinoBunny wrote:
I still think Venus would be better than Mars. I'm sure we can find ways to live on previously uninhabited land on planet Earth, probably sooner, though.

And why do you think that Venus would be better than Mars?

Don't even start.

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AlbinoBunny
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6/29/2013 1:45:10 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/29/2013 1:15:24 AM, Ore_Ele wrote:
At 6/24/2013 9:47:22 AM, ClassicRobert wrote:
At 6/24/2013 8:20:52 AM, AlbinoBunny wrote:
I still think Venus would be better than Mars. I'm sure we can find ways to live on previously uninhabited land on planet Earth, probably sooner, though.

And why do you think that Venus would be better than Mars?

Don't even start.

http://www.debate.org...

I'd add to that that I think Venus is closer on average too. Also, how do you think humans react to long exposures to low gravity? Do you think that living at 0.376G would be healthy? Also Venus is closer to the Sun, so receives more power.
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sadolite
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6/30/2013 3:32:01 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
To what end for either? To amuse those who would? And at who's expense?
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Skynet
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6/30/2013 10:31:27 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 6/30/2013 3:32:01 PM, sadolite wrote:
To what end for either? To amuse those who would? And at who's expense?

There are unclaimed resources in both places. Antarctica could be profitable. Also, there are always people that need to escape from where they currently are. Those are the two reasons all the British Colonies were founded. Or they were captured during war.

I bet I'm missing some other reasons, but those are two big ones.
One perk to being a dad is you get to watch cartoons again without explaining yourself.