djolds1 wrote:Tho yes, economics apply even in post-scarcity societies. It will be an interesting alteration to human psychology. We're wired to see physical objects as being of value. I have to wonder how that tendency twists when it is no longer true.
If energy and resources are essentially removed from the economic equation, which BFR will ultimately do, economy is reduced to time, labor/effort and education/experience. It will be an incredible blooming for aesthetic considerations, everywhere. Instead of a client asking his architect if he can even afford to build what he wants for $100/s.f., they'll be asking: "how nice can you make it look for $100/s.f.?"
The value of most material objects will be in history and aesthetics - basically, people's emotional attachments to them.
djolds1 wrote:Bioreactors are now capable of growing meat in small quantities, IIRC. Apply that tech widely & efficiently with various different food types and arable land is no longer necessary. All you need is the raw material feedstock sludge to pump into the process.
I see hydroponic farming happening first. Tall skyscrapers of farmland, growing a variety of goods year round in highly automated, fully conditioned surroundings.
Then, compact them, and sell them to people so you can feed a family of four with a volume of 1000 ft3 (no idea if I'm close or not). Goodbye (vegetable) farms. Hello nature.
The value in food then becomes not the food itself, but the variety of genetic material available, and difficulty of growing it.
Wholly synthetic food might be palatable one day... it'll be interesting to see how people react. Frankenfood? Or sliced bread?
drmike wrote:It would be really nice to be able to travel around the solar system in this century. The people who get to go will be the really rich, or the really powerful. I don't see that changing too much in the next 100 years.
If BFR happens, I see the progress in space of the next 100 years making our trip to the moon look like the stone ages. I suspect BFR will create an exponential cost-reduction effect, so that if BFR reduces electrical costs by 1/10, it will amplify to 1/100 or better for rocketry, and then do it yet again when fusion propulsion designs come online. $5000/lb becomes $5/lb. A $20 million jaunt to the space station becomes a $20,000 vacation to "Free-Fall Hilton".
Send one of those compact hydroponic farms to Mars, take the deed you bought for $20 from that crazy guy
back in the 20th century, and an inflatable habitat, and retire for $1 million. Spend your last years looking for native microbes in the dirt. Or design towering monuments out of Martian stone in 1/3 gravity, and put your robots to work creating your bizarre legacy.
djolds1 wrote:No. Not jumping ahead. Take the reprap fabber. Add several hundred Megawatts of power, precision mechanical positioning of components, sintering modules for 3D printing with any range of materials, some specialist modules for fabbing good quality electronics. You could "print" an entire vehicle or any small item from the bottom up, or copy the entire fabber in say a week to a month. Exponential growth of your industrial base with each new fabber.
Miniaturized industrialization: just add water!
I just don't see these technologies advancing as rapidly as that to such a generalized and high-resolution use as depicted in "Star Trek" within 100 years or so. It'd sure be nice, though.
Tho my preferred colony would not be Mars. Too crowded. If the right GUT comes along I get FTL. If not, the radiation belts of Jupiter are attractive.
I'd like to run calculations and see what would happen if Mercury were slammed into Venus. If it were fast enough, at the right angle, would a permanent moon be created similar to Earth's? Would enough angular momentum be transferred to give Venus an earth-like rotation on its axis? Would enough atmosphere be stripped away in the collision to ameliorate the greenhouse effect? Would the higher rotation help create a stronger magnetic field like Earth's? How long would it take for the planet to cool back down from the collision, allowing direct terraforming?
Well, that would be my science project, with unlimited resources.
If FTL comes along, then I'm signing up as anything but a red shirt.