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Writing: Input Wanted Generation ship questions

  1. May 19, 2016 #1
    In my most recent story, the aliens have built a generation ship for humans to travel on. These humans are traveling to a planet that has dinosaurs originally from earth that survived as species. The planet itself is 200 light years away and the ship is traveling at .5 C.

    I have designed it so that each generation can only reproduce after they have went through survival training. This comes after basic training(from toddlers to adults).

    The aliens themselves run on specific protocols and to them they are needed laws. To the humans, the protocols are unnecessary and wrong.

    Now after survival training, any remaining males and females of reproductive age are randomly paired up and then in the second sleeping quarters(there are 2 of them for humans and 1 for aliens) they mate and sleep throughout the day and night(diurnal: mate during day, sleep at night, nocturnal: sleep during day, mate at night)

    Now they make sure that they never have a diurnal x nocturnal pair to make things easier for all humans and aliens.

    A week later, the aliens take all the mated females and use an endoscope/microscope to see the egg and whether or not it is developing properly. They terminate the pregnancy only if:

    1) it is ectopic

    Or

    2) it isn't developing properly in the embryonic stage

    Basically they induce a miscarriage in either of these circumstances if possible and if that doesn't work, they do surgery, again with super small tools to minimize damage to the mother.

    Now the pregnant females are taught about pregnancy and what to expect.

    This is important because, most likely some pregnant women will be cryopreserved near the end of the trip.

    Anyway I have some questions about this.

    1) If human A develops a natural antivenom to a particular animal and is pregnant, will that antivenom be passed on to the baby?

    2) Should the humans follow the aliens' protocols or do things when they want to as long as it isn't harmful?

    3) Should they have a second round of mating a month later for any non-pregnant females of reproductive age but this time with different males or multiple males mating?

    4) Is survival training really needed for every generation in 400 years of space travel?

    5) The lecturing room is already very flexible but should it be the humans and not the aliens that decide on the courses?

    6) Should survival training include everything from quicksand and first aid to croc and shark attacks(not with real animals of course) and a T rex attack being the ultimate survival challenge?

    7) Should some aliens go through the same mating and pregnancy process as the humans and support them through it with their own pregnancy knowledge?
     
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  3. May 19, 2016 #2

    Simon Bridge

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    ... sounds like they would be better off to fertilize in vitro - implanting after viability. Also allows easier control of the population.

    1) If human A develops a natural antivenom to a particular animal and is pregnant, will that antivenom be passed on to the baby?
    ... it would have to be a heritable trait, and conditions favorable for the gene to be expressed.

    6) Should survival training include everything from quicksand and first aid to croc and shark attacks(not with real animals of course) and a T rex attack being the ultimate survival challenge?
    ... the main survival challenge is usually the environment not the wildlife.
    If you think about African wildlife, the biggest danger is from mosquitos... and dehydration or exposure. Just like in the sea there is more danger from drowning than there is from sharks.

    The rest of the questions are not answerable because there is not enough information.
    Once you know how the behaviour or attitude contributes to the story you want to tell, you will have your answer.
    It's your story. You decide.

    Note
    Dinosaurs are not a single species - and it is very remarkable that particular dinosaur species would have remained unchanged for millenia on an alien world. But if the idea is that you just want modern humans living side-by-side with dinos then OK.
     
  4. May 19, 2016 #3
    The plural of species is the same as the singular and in this case I am using it as a plural, NOT a singular.
     
  5. May 19, 2016 #4

    Drakkith

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    Probably not.

    Quicksand isn't really that dangerous or that common. From wikipedia's article on quicksand:

    Quicksand itself is harmless: a human or animal is unlikely to sink entirely into quicksand at all due to the higher density of the fluid (assuming the quicksand is on dry ground and not under water, but even if underwater, sinking is still impractical). Quicksand has a density of about 2 grams per milliliter, whereas the density of the human body is only about 1 gram per milliliter. At that level of density, sinking in quicksand is impossible. Descending about up to the waist is possible, but not any further. Even objects with a higher density than quicksand will float on it—until they move. Aluminum, for example, has a density of about 2.7 grams per milliliter, but, a piece of aluminum will float on top of quicksand until motion causes the sand to liquefy.[2]

    Continued or panicked movement, however, may cause a person in quicksand to sink deeper, leading to belief that quicksand is dangerous. Since it increasingly impairs movement, this, then, can lead to situation where other factors such as weather exposure, dehydration, hypothermia, tides or carnivores may harm a trapped person.[3]

    Quicksand may be escaped by slow movement of the legs in order to increase viscosity of the fluid, and rotation of the body so as to float in the supine position.

    Training is probably unnecessary, but if you think you need it then most of what needs to be said is, "Don't panic. Use slow movements."

    First aid is always necessary, but there's not really much training you can do when it comes to crocodile, shark, or dinosaur attacks. Avoid dangerous animals if at all possible. If not, you're probably screwed.

    We can't answer this or most of your other questions because we have no knowledge of the details of your story. I can't imagine that it would be necessary, though.
     
  6. May 19, 2016 #5

    Simon Bridge

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    Fair enough - you'll need to make that clear if you have to write it down for a general audience.
    It's a common problem. I should have said "a " or "any" before "particular dinosaur species".
     
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