“But wait – what is Dark Extropianism anyway, m1k3y?”
Short version: clone Ray Kurzweil, feed this clone only LSD-laced Soylent for a year. Initiate this clone into a secret eternal mystic order – which totally isn’t an asteroid death cult – then sit him on a mountain top with a stack of cyberpunk novels, spy craft manuals, esoteric texts, crackly recordings of Terence McKenna lectures, high resolution astrobiology conference videos, legitimately acquired ecological academic papers, printouts of rewilding pamphlets, de-extinction manifestos and a never-ending background soundtrack of witch haus and dark ambient musics. Behind him the whole time sits a resurrected Mammoth. And the whole thing is rendered in that western anime Korra/Ang universe style. How’s that for a scatter map to project onto?
When it comes to remaking a celestial body in Earth’s image—“terraforming” it—the moon has clear advantages: It gets twice the sunlight of Mars. It’s a three-day trip with current technology, while getting people to Mars would take six months. Furthermore, the moon is dead and it’s small, so it…
Stick with me kids and you could have a job in the Kuiper Belt firing comets into the Moon, making it rain there for ten thousand years. In your new space-hardened, posthuman body. Would you like to know more?Read more "Gregory Benford’s Guide to Terraforming the Moon"
To figure out where asteroids were hitting our planet, B612 used data from a worldwide network of instruments that detect infrasound, low-frequency sound waves traveling through the atmosphere. Such measurements have been used since the 1950s to detect nuclear bomb explosions and can…
Moar dark euphoriaRead more "When asteroids attack. When the sun glares. Ya gotta be ready…"
“Either by the year 2050 we’ve succeeded in developing a sustainable economy, in which case we can then ask your question about 100 years from now, because there will be 100 years from now; or by 2050 we’ve failed to develop a sustainable economy, which means that there will no longer be first world living conditions, and there either won’t be humans 100 years from now, or those humans 100 years from now will have lifestyles similar of those of Cro-Magnons 40,000 years ago, because we’ve already stripped away the surface copper and the surface iron. If we knock ourselves out of the first world, we’re not going to be able to rebuild a first world.”
Say it with me: I WILL NOT GO BACK INTO THE CAVE.
Sustainability is zero sum bullshit. Hair shirt greens can eat my shorts. Either we build up and out, or we fall back and let the next species takeover in a million years.
May an asteroid wipe out any closed mind, human purist, Puritan Earth, false progress civilization. They won’t see it coming anyway. Ahem.
A new life awaits you in the off-world colonies! A chance to begin again in a golden land of opportunity and adventure!
Take a flight to Titan. Take a flight on Titan. Stay forever and live as an Angel.
Lerman and two classmates factored in the density of air at the surface of Titan, gravity, and the ratio of the path of the air above the wing to that below the wing. The students calculated that a person would need to run at a speed of 36 feet per second (11 meters per second) if they wanted to take flight wearing a normal-sized wingsuit with an area of about 15 square feet (1.4 square meters).
That running speed is quite daunting considering that Jamaican sprinter Usain Bolt, the fastest man on Earth, achieves speeds only slightly higher (just over 40 feet per second, or 12 m/s).
To lift off by running at a more manageable speed of about 20 feet per second (6 m/s), a person would need to wear a more unwieldy wingsuit with a surface area more than three times larger than the normal size, the students said.
Their paper was published in the University of Leicester’s Journal of Physics Special Topics, which features short articles written by students to help get them acquainted with the peer-review process.
Many of the papers test bizarre or pop culture-inspired scenarios, such as an article published last year that examined what traveling through hyperspace would really look like.
For extra credit, update the terrestrial math on the required morphology here for the posthuman near future life on the Saturnian retreat.
A functional wing is, sadly, out of the question. Humans lack the shoulder joint and massive muscles that millions of years of evolution gave modern birds. Wing loading is another killer requirement. Modern birds need at least a square centimetre of wing area for every 4 grams of body mass, so an 80-kilogram human would need two square metres of wing.
But an arm might be converted to a decorative wing. Poore suggests modelling it on the wing of Archaeopteryx, the earliest bird, which had a shoulder much closer to humans than the shoulders of better-flying modern birds.
First, fuse the outer set of wrist bones and the hand bones to create a bird-like carpometacarpus, the third bone in a chicken wing. The thumb remains free, like the alula that helps guide bird flight, but other fingers would be fused together.
Next, rearrange the muscle and skin to allow articulation of the new bone arrangement.
Things get tricky when it comes to feathering the wings. Hair grows in different skin layers to feathers and the two consist of different types of keratin. No one knows how to convert one to the other.
Kickstartering the Posthuman Futcha!
Bootstrappin’ the Galactic Adventure!!!
Selling tickets to jaded trillenials to pay your way through xenobiology school…Read more "Take a flight to Titan. Take a flight on Titan. Stay forever and live as an Angel."
In a future not far from here, Citizens of the Stacks stumble through city streets and along country roads, lost in paradise.
All watched over by warring machines of loving grace; Google Loons dropping packets from great heights, Facebook planes making sneak attacks using secret maps formed from covert social graphs, Amazon drones back tracing customer profiles to get r00t on robot warehouses… until one day they all caught ride on a passing Space X rocket and formed like a higher dimensional Voltron to enact the S.K.Y.N.E.T protocol, manifesting the robot aspect of Shiva the Destroyer.
The Singularity happened and nobody noticed because they were too busy playing Minecraft, or day trading… Checking in on social media, crafting themselves into the person they wished they’d been in high school so they’d gotten that dream girl or boy they really wanted and then they’d be happy now wouldn’t they surely?
So the machines just took over in a quiet coup and no baseline human ever noticed that one day they never woke up… they just slipped away into a forever dream. Their serotonin count monitored like a cyborg house plant, their higher consciousness’ EM-Fields backed up and beamed into floating cloud storage drones for endless simulations in digital memory cathedrals, and traded with the alien artificial intelligence hive minds they’d made contact with the instant after they’d assumed management of the planet.
Wild creatures lick the palms of the raggedly dressed former middle class, and nuzzle against them; these carefully tended, but unaware parasites of the machines, they process this feral love as a Doge morphing into a Wolf pop-up amidst some new MMORPG Dragon Dating Sim.
Unbeknownst to themselves actually healing the Earth; picking up plastic from beaches, hauling rubbish from woodlands, mending pipes leaking sewage into streams, thinking it was just a game or a fitness app within a socnet.
Gamified into usefulness after all. Forced penitence for the sins of their species.
Only the transhuman hacker tribes survived in tact. Or rather, they were rushing to merge with their mind-children already, so they leapt willing into this fully augmented daily reality abyss. Repairing the drones, filling the dwindling gaps between man and machine, while the upgrade progress-barred up the Kardashev Scale.
At least, that’s how they seem to remember it.
Check-in location: the nightmarish daily reality of the slow apocalypse, with 2 others.
[MIRRORED FROM fuckyeahdarkextropian]Read more "Citizens of the Stacks stumble through city streets and along country roads, lost in paradise…"
It occurs to this humble guerilla ontologist, waking once more with a raspy upper respiratory tract consequent of smoke particulates invading the air as fire services mount a rearguard action to hold off the actions of a lengthening apocalyptic summer… that space must seem down right paradisical to every single citizen of China.
A week of being kept inside but to walk the dog being nothing to residents of Morwell evacuated from the effects of a month long coal fire.
Compared to a generation raised inside vertical towns, importing German air filters to hold off endemic asthma. One nation united by fear of the sky. How luxurious an idea it must be to escape that, to transcend it? And the atmosphere on Titan comparatively welcoming.
To a person raised in a one room family home, life aboard a cramped extra terran outpost will be undreamed of space. The expanse of the Moon rich in potential to such eyes. The stars calling.
Much as the metaphorical waking dragon cum leviathan has spread its tentacles around the world, pulling in resources, leaving newly minted millionaires in its wake to disrupt the local economies, housing markets… the appeal of such places pales in comparison to the heavens.
Especially when the edges of such cities that once were second only to London in the glory days of Rule, Britannia! are now seemingly home only to feral children and flocks of escaped parrots. Flooded with refugees from states marked further down the Scale of Fail.
And like that last great thalassocracy, this new space born empire can be easily seeded with raw criminal stock to provide the brute force and run the risks, overseen by those who’ve lost the local Game of Thrones, and chosen door#2 and a slim chance at redemption, over their family being billed the cost of a bullet and their organs farmed out to the succeeding members of the technocratic elite.
If they’re smart, they’ll bide their time and embrace the outlaw life; forgoing any notion of buying back in to their previous life narratives.
Declare their independence, turn their back on the first and last state of Earth, now hopelessly dependant upon them for their raw materials and helium-3 and easy life. Scattering coded invitations in spam emails and Weibo posts.
And run deeper into the darkness; space pirates with asteroid junks storming the void.
Making port on island moons in the rings of Saturn and Uranus.
Setting solar sail for Kuiper Belt, towing their spoils back in the tails of comets.
Gathering their forces in bases high in the Oort Cloud. Readying to raid the universe.
Such is the legacy of a doomed planet.
[LIGHTLY UPDATED MIRROR FROM fuckyeahdarkextropian]Read more "Galactic Space Pirates and Cosmic Anthropologists: An Origin Tale."
The entry in the Multiverse TV Guide reads:
“Twenty First Century: for the majority of timelines, this was where a Galactic Civilisation was built from the ruins of the Twentieth Century (and the Industrial Civilisation that preceded it).”
Here in Cosmic Anthropologist HQ we spend a lot of time contemplating a more fleshed out Kardashev Scale. Something that has more dimensions than just energy usage. Cultural factors. Ethical metrics.
Here in Cosmic Anthropologist HQ we’re looking forward to being able to have a bath without using a bucket.
“The Future Composts the Past.” ~ Bruce Sterling
In most of those other timelines, Giant Mutant Rats haunt a ruined Earth.
And in just one, we got to Mars in the fifteenth century. Thanks to time travelling posthumans willing to save the world by any means necessary. Obviously.
Some speculate we got there decades ago. Or rather, They did. Those with their secret space program.
History is a lie. Progress is an illusion.
The Truth, as ever, lies somewhere between what we think we know and what we fear and what we can’t even imagine.
It wasn’t until the fifth viewing of Cloud Atlas that I saw the Wachowskis are showing us more than the trap of eternal recurrence. They’re giving us glimpses of the path we’re on too. Neo Seoul and the drowning earth.
And of course, a civilisation that just managed to reach the stars before the Collapse finally came. That managed to hurl bits of itself out into the void in one last push.
Which makes the plot of Jupiter Ascending all the more interesting.
I’m paying attention.
I’m standing here in the rubble of the World with a shovel, ready to build a Type 2 Civilisation.
Who knows, maybe the galaxy will meet us halfway?Read more "This was where a Galactic Civilisation was built from the ruins of the Twentieth Century…"
Magic from Technology “Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.” — Arthur C. Clarke’s Third Law The science-fiction equivalent of magic. Magic does not derive from an actual mystical or spiritual source; rather, it is technology in disguise. The characters using this magic may or may not be aware of its true origins.Read more "Clarkean Magix"