Jeff Bezos has a plan

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daylen
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Re: Jeff Bezos has a plan

Post by daylen » Fri Oct 05, 2018 3:23 pm

jacob wrote:
Fri Oct 05, 2018 12:09 pm
... it's also interesting to note that Amazon Studios picked up season 4 of The Expanse after Syfy cancelled.
That is interesting. Gives me another reason to watch season 3.

daylen
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Re: Jeff Bezos has a plan

Post by daylen » Fri Oct 05, 2018 3:34 pm

I have a hunch that microbiolgy will limit space operations. Humans evolved in a sea of microbes, and we are microbes to a large extent. This has come up recently in the news as astronauts lack a diversity of gut microbes, but I think this is a much farther reaching concern. Thoughts?

I do not see an easy solution to cultivating a healthy, diverse ecosystem of microbes on another planet that does not involve terraforming.

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Re: Jeff Bezos has a plan

Post by jacob » Fri Oct 05, 2018 3:45 pm

Ehh.. lets recall that humans failed at running both biosphere projects(*). Also that the Earth's atmosphere has been unbreathable to humans for much of the Earth's history. But good luck on terraforming Mars anyway ...

(*) Fun fact: Stephen Bannon was put in charge of picking up the pieces after Biosphere 2. True story!

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Re: Jeff Bezos has a plan

Post by prognastat » Fri Oct 05, 2018 5:09 pm

Well even if situations are suboptimal for human live but still within possible margins humans themselves would adapt to a new environment as stronger selection pressures would mean faster genetic drift. Those that do best in the new environment would be most likely to survive and produce offspring.

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Re: Jeff Bezos has a plan

Post by jacob » Fri Oct 05, 2018 5:18 pm

What makes you think the drift would be forced by genotypes/offspring? Timescales would be much shorter than that ...I think this selection will be based on movement of pre/already-existing phenotypes.

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Re: Jeff Bezos has a plan

Post by prognastat » Fri Oct 05, 2018 5:40 pm

At first it would and depending on the way this were to happen it might be a larger effect. It could be that at such a point we intentionally pre-select the people being sent based on their genetic ability to cope with the new environment. However in the longer term say a few thousand years we definitely could see genetic adaptation.

I mean we started drinking cows milk less than 10,000 years ago and in some places in Europe there are populations where a large majority is lactose tolerant as adults. Depending on the hostility of the environment we would be moving to the selection pressures could be much stronger than those for lactose tolerance were increasing the odds of beneficial traits for the new environment spreading faster.

This is of course disregarding whether at any point we become capable and willing to accurately modifying genetics ourself.

daylen
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Re: Jeff Bezos has a plan

Post by daylen » Fri Oct 05, 2018 5:50 pm

Didn't mean to imply terra-forming was easy or that we should even do it. Quite the contrary; I thought the whole mars colonization thing was ridiculous the first time I heard about it.

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Re: Jeff Bezos has a plan

Post by jennypenny » Fri Oct 05, 2018 6:05 pm

I assumed all those astro-naires were relying on CRISPR/biotech to help evolution along so they could survive in artificial environments.

daylen
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Re: Jeff Bezos has a plan

Post by daylen » Fri Oct 05, 2018 6:11 pm

Bezos has said that he desires to build the infrastructure that powers the next generation of space companies. This implies that Bezos does not intend to colonize space himself but to allow others to do so efficiently. He also talks about how he makes important decisions based on intuition, and he bought The Washington Post without much prior planning. So, he seems highly adaptable and will stop at nothing, it seems, to further the human race. It will be interesting to see where this leads.

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BRUTE
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Re: Jeff Bezos has a plan

Post by BRUTE » Fri Oct 05, 2018 8:31 pm

daylen wrote:
Fri Oct 05, 2018 3:34 pm
I have a hunch that microbiolgy will limit space operations. Humans evolved in a sea of microbes, and we are microbes to a large extent.
brute thinks it's not just microbes, but the entire evolutionary context humans have evolved into. the niche humans thrive in is extremely specific. atmosphere, circadian rhythm matching the exact combination of earth's rotation and speed. temperatures. humidity. trace minerals in the soil of the plants that the animals humans eat ate.

even living in northern Scandinavia is basically not viable for humans because the lack of sunlight leads them into depression and alcoholism.

the infrastructure projects of living in the deserts of Southern California, Nevada, and Arizona are barely working and might crumble any minute now. and that's just about water, which is just about the most abundant substance on this planet.

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Re: Jeff Bezos has a plan

Post by suomalainen » Fri Oct 05, 2018 8:36 pm

I've always assumed that radiation would screw any attempt at biology trying to move beyond the earth. Perhaps if "humans" could be uploaded into a non-biological interface that could be more easily shielded from radiation could it work? I dunno. Amateur speculation.

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Re: Jeff Bezos has a plan

Post by BlueNote » Fri Oct 05, 2018 9:43 pm

jacob wrote:
Fri Oct 05, 2018 11:45 am
The ERE book is pretty much available exclusively through amazon now. There's just no competition(*). I tried opening it op to third parties at one point. However, the printer (a subsidiary of amazon, now recently absorbed into KDP) would offer it with less royalties to me and slightly cheaper than amazon could profit from it.

What consequently happened? Various algorithmic book arbitragers would offer the book on amazon's used market for $0.01 less ... and people being frugal or hating amazon would buy it from them instead of amazon thus saving the buyer 1 cent and costing me five bucks in lost revenue per book. It took me a few years to realize what was going on before I shut the channel down.

(*) Or maybe there is. I'm too lazy to investigate. I'm pretty sure that cult nonfiction doesn't compare with going wide on romance novels. Anyway ...
I have always assumed that it's more profitable to print your own books at a book manufacture and warehouse them in your home (say 1000-2000 copies) and then sell them through an e-commerce model vs amazon. Can you share what you cost per unit is using Amazon? I'm guessing you couldn't care less for dealing with the shipping and administration of an online bookstore so you just use Amazon.

daylen
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Re: Jeff Bezos has a plan

Post by daylen » Fri Oct 05, 2018 9:54 pm

jacob wrote:
Fri Oct 05, 2018 2:39 pm
This is lot like how humans apply their favorite metaphors to the world and ascribe all sorts of qualities that might not be there after all.

With apologies to daylen for co-opting the phrasing.
Here is why it makes sense to me. Fungi are basically scaled-down animals that communicate and consume. There do exist universal scaling laws between organisms. Cities are for facilitating human interaction, and companies bring humans together. I am just saying it is possible that intermediate-level systems would exhibit some sub-set of attributes from a scaled up version of themselves. .. Or maybe it is meaningless. I dunno.

.. But I do know that coming up with imperfect mappings is what humans do best!

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Re: Jeff Bezos has a plan

Post by Jason » Sat Oct 06, 2018 8:20 am

I didn't think people were actually going to live on other planets. I guess they could build some Jetson like city. But I just assumed they would build huge space crafts that could sail through the universe where people could stuff their faces 24 hours a day and unhappily married men could push their wives into black holes but tell everyone she got drunk and got sucked out her cabin window. Like cruise ships but in space. That would be my model. Everyone gets in a rocket and blasts off and then docks into some Love Boat type of bullshit. Maybe they land on the moon like its Puerto Vallarta and then give everyone a little flag that they plant on it as they bounce around for a few hours. Or if they happen to find some other life form which I personally don't think is out there but if they are and they are friendly enough people can take selfies with them and buy T-Shirts that say "I got my ass grabbed by an alien and all I got was this lousy Amazon T-Shirt." It's just an alternative to French Disney World. I'm sure there will be accidents but people get killed on vacation all the time.

They are saying colonize but I think they really mean commoditize. It's like the desert before they turned it into Las Vegas.

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Re: Jeff Bezos has a plan

Post by jacob » Sat Oct 06, 2018 8:48 am

BlueNote wrote:
Fri Oct 05, 2018 9:43 pm
I have always assumed that it's more profitable to print your own books at a book manufacture and warehouse them in your home (say 1000-2000 copies) and then sell them through an e-commerce model vs amazon. Can you share what you cost per unit is using Amazon? I'm guessing you couldn't care less for dealing with the shipping and administration of an online bookstore so you just use Amazon.
IIRC, the unit cost for me per pb was something like $3.50 and I made $8.27 per pb on amazon. I assume the amazon numbers are quite similar. You're absolutely right that I don't want to run an online bookstore. Also, while profit/book would be higher, I don't think I would sell as many (which could be a good thing).

FWIW, initially I contemplated making all the books myself using a BW duplex laser printer and a homemade book press made out of plexiglass. (Keep in mind that I only expected to sell 30-50 copies total). With that approach I would have died from ozone poisoning by now.

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Re: Jeff Bezos has a plan

Post by Sid » Sat Oct 06, 2018 3:15 pm

Based on what I have learned from "Scale", In order for humans to colonize space, innovation must grow at an accelerated pace so that it may beat the super linear growth and energy consumption of humans. If this does not happen we are screwed, not only in terms of space colonization but also the earth's environment, and the author does not see innovation accelerating fast enough to prevent this.

But perhaps the colonizing space is the innovation that would solve our energy, population, and environment problems. I guess the question is will this happen before it is too late? probably not.

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Re: Jeff Bezos has a plan

Post by ThisDinosaur » Sun Oct 07, 2018 2:17 pm

Sid wrote:
Sat Oct 06, 2018 3:15 pm
But perhaps the colonizing space is the innovation that would solve our energy, population, and environment problems. I guess the question is will this happen before it is too late? probably not.
It might, but not for the obvious reasons. IOW, not because we'll move half the population to mars via chemical rockets.

A more likely scenario would be lowering of launch costs and developing spacefaring tech allows us to exploit space resources. Specifically, space based solar power and phosphorus from asteroids and Mars' moons.

Solar concentrators orbiting the sun and at Earth's Lagrange points could direct more than adequate energy to earth.

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Re: Jeff Bezos has a plan

Post by Sid » Tue Oct 09, 2018 8:57 pm

Also reducing energy usage per time would increase the amount of time we have. I think that is what "Scale" is getting at, in the future, incorporating models of scale and exponential growth inherent in the nature of cities and businesses so that they may be better and more efficiently designed.

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Re: Jeff Bezos has a plan

Post by daylen » Thu Oct 11, 2018 7:50 pm

Jason wrote:
Sat Oct 06, 2018 8:20 am
They are saying colonize but I think they really mean commoditize. It's like the desert before they turned it into Las Vegas.
Yeah, I think this is a solid point. Not sure if Elon is in this camp or what his motivation is in general.

The love boat reminds me of a sci-fi book idea I came up with where a General AI wonders the galaxy picking up hitchhikers. The AI being made up of nanobots that can morph into any configuration, and the purpose being to establish a slim, mobile society (highly libertarian). Utopian dreams, of course.

@sid

Right, we have been on an accelerating treadmill where the treadmill itself is being upgraded. The innovation cycles are tightening, and before too long we are going to fall. Maybe space will help keep us up a little longer, or maybe not. We have front row seats to an interesting show and plenty of time to watch it.

A big part of the shared philosophy around here is a focus on the individual. If an individual can handle something, then there is no need to outsource it to a business, city, or government. Businesses and cities allow for an economy of scale that saves time, hence why many of us like the idea of having one foot in and one foot out.

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Re: Jeff Bezos has a plan

Post by Mister Imperceptible » Fri Oct 12, 2018 12:26 am

daylen wrote:
Thu Oct 11, 2018 7:50 pm
The AI being made up of nanobots that can morph into any configuration, and the purpose being to establish a slim, mobile society (highly libertarian).
Reminds me of a 1982 film, “John Carpenter’s The Libertarian”:

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=m6shktwDwzM

Utopian dreams

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