The oft-overlooked actual difficulties of space settlement. Not technology and logistics, but like, how hard it will likely be for the humans doing the job at first. And second. And then for a while after, too.
Plants in spaaaaaaaace
Growing fresh food in space habitats. Poop-potatoes. Wide-spectrum LEDs. Self-contained hydroponics/aeroponics.
People in spaaaaaaaaace. Dealing with microgravity. Bro, do you even lift in space? Eyeball un-squishing. Figuring out how to burp. Fluid-pooling and major injury.
Turning people into jelly. Differing human sensitivity to sustained g-forces in different directions. The wonderful engineering concept of the ship with omnidirectional seating that reconfigures on-the-fly for optimal g-resistance (The Razorback).
High-speed space impact
Turning into jelly and then having your jelly explode your ship, because physics. Relativistic baseballs. Long-haul space-racing and how to be your own butt-wiping pit crew.
Kinetic weapon diplomacy
Nuclear non-proliferation treaties in space. Orbital kinetic weapons and cloaked nuke-ships playing the role of the submarine as deterrent.
Interstellar highway program
Minimum viable star system bootstrap answering machine. The Fermi paradox. The odds that most of the signs of alien civilization that we might discover would be past.
The Universe Today Ultimate Guide to Viewing The Cosmos: Everything You Need to Know to Become an Amateur Astronomer by David Dickinson & Fraser Cain: Amazon
The Expanse Season 3: Prime Video
Guide to Space by Fraser Cain: YouTube
Ahhhhnold! Your average Joe, working construction just like any other regular guy who is a giant bodybuilding monster-person. We really missed this in our coverage of Total Recall 2012.
Memory “insertion” and memory “deletion” or “blocking” in mouse studies. The great distance from where we are now to trivial memory “vacations” a la Recall. Semantic memory, autobiographical memory, and muscle memory.
Ideal tracking-implantation locations. The incredible utility of the anus for tracker storage, weighed against the small time window.
Building Martian settlements with as much radiation exposure as possible: glass! glass everywhere! Radiation exposure on the Martian surface. Burying your dead on Mars: a tasteful resource-wasting mausoleum indoors, a giant pile of bleached-out mummies outside the door, or arrange them in awesome poses?
Natural resources in space. Calculating mining cost vs cost to get it where it will be useful. Mining and transporting Helium-3 for fusion energy. Harvesting oxygen from frozen water and getting rocket fuel as a bonus. NASA’s Moxie and inventing trees for spaaaaace. Making your Martian habitat smell like a dirty fish tank, for science.
Keeping the peace when independent operations can make their own giant robots. Staying somewhat prepared for returning existential threats.
Stowing expensive purpose-built machinery. Aircraft graveyards. The economics of storing and securing out-of-production technology for later use.
Avoiding trouble with the square-cube law by building smaller robots. Boston Dynamics and the inevitable impression of the coming robot apocalypse. Parkour Atlas. Robot kumite.
Securing mobile war machines. EMPs. Resistance to signal-jamming. Broad attack surfaces.
Brain in a jar
IRL progress towards a brain in a jar: human brain organoids implanted on a mouse brain. Sensory apparatus and feeling pain. Getting (ethically) hairy.
Rare earth elements
Actually: not so rare! But a pain in the ass to extract. The Japanese rare earth ocean-bottom treasure trove and how it will be difficult to access. Mining rare earth elements from spaaaaaaaace and how we probably need a new colloquial name for these materials. Underwater volcanoes.
Jaeger blood rocket fuel
Magical Jaeger blood rocker fuel. Gravity gun space race. Keeping Earth as a farm for kaiju blood, fueling our expansion into the entire solar system. Throwing rocks at things for fun and profit.
What: The 100 descend for teenage drama on earth 97 years post-nuclear-apocalypse. Also there are grownups on a space settlement with simulated gravity. Produced by: Jason Rothenberg Starring: Eliza Taylor, Bob Morley, Marie Avgeropoulos
What: Matt Damon gets desperate and tries to bring equality to a world divided into the haves (in the space station Elysium) and the have-nots (on Earth). Directed by: Neill Blomkamp Starring: Matt Damon, Jodie Foster, Sharlto Copley