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A matter of words

Posted: Thu Jul 23, 2009 12:00 am
by kunkmiester
This may seem intrinsically silly, but I thinking about some word problems. Specifically, the work reactor. No matter how we might like it, the word has been firmly attached to those evil fission plants, and would make rallying easier.

This is not about definition, definition is irrelevant. What is relevant is perception. If you say "reactor," people will immediately think uranium, and melt downs, etc. This is not a good relation to have, especially considering the massive differences in operation of Bussard's system.

Fortunately, this massive difference has provided a nice alternative. Due to the direct conversion capability when running PB11, it wouldn't be that far out of character to call a Bussard reactor a "generator" instead. "Generator" has very different memes attached to it. With a bit of spin, any attempt to compare Bussard fusion to traditional fission could be fizzled very easily.

Keep in mind this isn't about the smart folks who aren't scared of the word "radiation," but the millions that don't understand, and probably won't anytime soon.

Posted: Thu Jul 23, 2009 1:12 am
by MSimon
Good point. We need to get rid of chemical reactors as well. And biological reactors are bad. Also lets not talk about fusion reactions because people start thinking. Reactor.

I propose fusion happenings. And the Polywell Fusion Happening. Very avant guard. At least at one time.

When we work on the device we can say "I'm going to work on the happening".

Some people hate anything to do with nuclear power. So how about this: The Polywell Solar Energy Collector. Or the Polywell Wind Generator. Or the Polywell Biomass Collector. Or the Polywell Tidal Generator.

The Polywell Organic Device. Or the Polywell Organic Food Maker.

I got it: The Polywell Local Organic Sustainable Fair Trade Apple Pie and Ice Cream.

The Polywell Local Organic Sustainable Fair Trade Whole Food.

There is no end to the good we could do by changing the name of things. We could eliminate murder by calling it love. We could call war peace.

Posted: Thu Jul 23, 2009 3:42 am
by MSimon
I think if we had a reputation as liars and dissemblers it would really help our cause.

Posted: Thu Jul 23, 2009 3:46 am
by kunkmiester
There is a limit to sanity. Unfortunately the world is not sane. Ask your congressman if a reactor or a generator is easier to sell. The bed's been made, and it might be hard to lay in it if you're not careful.

Posted: Thu Jul 23, 2009 3:56 am
by MSimon
kunkmiester wrote:There is a limit to sanity. Unfortunately the world is not sane. Ask your congressman if a reactor or a generator is easier to sell. The bed's been made, and it might be hard to lay in it if you're not careful.


What happens is that the antis then come back at you and ask why have you been fooling with the name? What do you have to hide?

It is what it is. When people are desperate enough for energy it won't matter what it is called (within reason). BTW the Moon movie and ITER don't seem to have tried to hide the facts. I wonder what the "R" in ITER stands for.

Posted: Thu Jul 23, 2009 4:35 pm
by KitemanSA
MSimon wrote: It is what it is. When people are desperate enough for energy it won't matter what it is called (within reason). BTW the Moon movie and ITER don't seem to have tried to hide the facts. I wonder what the "R" in ITER stands for.
I've seen it as the International Tokamak for Energy Research. Maybe he has something!

Let's reclaim the BFD phrase from Big F-ing Deal to Bussard Fusion Device. :D

Posted: Thu Jul 23, 2009 5:34 pm
by Aero
We could do what the navy has done in the contract and call it an AGEE.

Posted: Thu Jul 23, 2009 7:29 pm
by KitemanSA
Aero wrote:We could do what the navy has done in the contract and call it an AGEE.
I AGREE - Advanced Gaseous Reactor for Electro-Static Energy..... no, wait, there is that dratted word again!

Posted: Fri Jul 24, 2009 4:17 am
by Roger
I see MSimon has this completely covered. Since MSimon has reacted to this post, that makes MSimon a reactor, does it not?

Kunkmiester, you just experienced an over reaction, er ah reactor.... er... never mind.

A major NJ Green Party Official gets his Polywell updates from me.

Most of the Greens I know are fairly smart, they know what the word aneutronic means. TO them it means shutting down coal plants, and that is why they will love Polywell like crazy. Worrying about the word "reactor is just crazy, bat shite crazy.

A MSimon has noted Polywell is something that brings us on the left together with those on the right. This is much bigger than that.

Reactor indeed.....

Posted: Fri Jul 24, 2009 7:41 pm
by tombo
When I worked with epi-reactors (semiconductor processing) I was all the time having to explain no-this-is-not-radioactive, it is just chemicals.
People would hear that word and go all red-alert on me and I had to smooth their feathers all the time.
Their "reactions" told me which people NOT to tell how horrendously toxic Arsine and other stuff is and how much we used.

If it works, the smart greens will educate the knee-jerk greens.
And some people will never come around. So be it.
The public relations problem is during the time where it costs (public) money and has not yet generated impressive (to the finance people) results.

Posted: Wed Sep 01, 2010 7:04 pm
by rjaypeters
I think the polywell reactors should be called either: "Bussards" or "Bussard/Nebels". If the reactors really work out, there won't be any need to remind people they fuse or react things.

Posted: Wed Sep 01, 2010 7:42 pm
by Stoney3K
rjaypeters wrote:I think the polywell reactors should be called either: "Bussards" or "Bussard/Nebels". If the reactors really work out, there won't be any need to remind people they fuse or react things.


You could just do Farnsworth a favor and call the whole lot 'fusors'.

Coming round full circle again...

Posted: Wed Sep 01, 2010 8:03 pm
by zapkitty
Aside from giving certain someones an opportunity to whale on a supposed instance of "political correctness" that may or may not actually happen... :) ... this is pretty much a non-issue.

And there is no problem with referring to an electrical generator as a generator... as long as you do not lie about or attempt to obfuscate the fact that there is a fusion reactor at the core of the generator.

"Problem" solved.

The only people who'd want to tun around screaming "REACTOR!" at the top of their lungs in regards to a polywell installation would be those who want to "right" a perceived "wrong" in how the public views a particular subject... and those people could come from either camp.

Posted: Thu Sep 02, 2010 1:08 am
by rjaypeters
Not trying to solve a problem.

Trying to honor (at least some of) the people who got us off the planet.

edit.

Everyone will know these reactors fuse nuclei.