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Should we invest in seasteading?

Aquanova

Well-Known Member
I think this is a bad idea because of the environmental impact it would have. We dont need to screw up the oceans more than we already have and thats exactly what would happen with Seasteading, and of course as many people have mentioned, weather wold be a problem, as there are hurricanes, earthquakes and Tsunamis. Basically I think it would be more trouble than its worth.
 

SugarFreeJazz

not present
Not really.

One. Food. A little difficult to come by on a floating city.

Two. Water. Yes, you would be surrounded by it, but the salt water would have to be purified, (by evaporation and re-condensation) and that's energy consuming and highly impractical.

Those could be imported, but that would be tricky, and I don't know how ready countries would be to do it, especially with the economy like it*is.

Three. Haven't various forms of government already been experimented with? When people revolt, they often establish a different form of government.

I've got to run, so I'll just spit out my last concern for now: what impacts will it have on the ocean?

I'll be back later. (hopefully)

One: Food.
Food would be tough to come across, seeing as how plants and animals don't naturally grow on man-made structures. However, makeshift farms could be built (greenhouses for the greens) to make up for this. Not to mention, like someone else pointed out earlier, most food nowadays is transported far from it's original source anyway, so going the extra distance probably wouldn't be too tough.

Two: Water.
It's true, the process of cleansing ocean water to become drinkable is an energy consuming and costly process. What if the seastead used alternative forms of energy for this instead? Would you be more in favor of the idea? There are people currently working on harnessing the energy from the ocean as an alternative source (wave power is a viable option).

Three: Other forms of governments?
Many forms of government have been conceptualized, but I think you would be surprised at how many different forms of government there actually are. Rather than just conceptualizing, I see seasteads as a way of actually putting the ideas to the test (and figuring out the best combinations through that process). It's probably harder than it sounds, but if you have the means to try to advance, why not take advantage of them?

Four: Impacts on ocean.
While reading on the "official" website for the advancement of seasteading, I noticed that they didn't mention alternative energy sources, and that bothered me. If people do attempt seasteading, I think it would be wrong to continue using forms of energy like coal and oil. I would hope that people take advantage of the ocean and the powerful winds to use those as alternative energy to reduce impact on the ocean. Minimal damage would be best, but it's inevitable that creating a seastead would cause damage (at least initially). If the seastead was built to flow with the ocean (feng shui comes to mind) and not just to be there, then the damage might be mitigated.

It's really not necessary. There's plenty of undeveloped and vacant land. And really, the excuse of just wanting to get away from government is silly, as there will always be some kind of government and administration in action. Society can't thrive for long under anarchy.

I honestly just see seasteading as more of a novelty. One that's probably too expensive for what it's worth.

The goal (from what I understand) is not to escape from government, rather to form new and (ideally) better ways of governing. And while there is plenty of undeveloped and vacant land, all of it is owned in one way or another by a preexisting government. Trying to establish another government in that area would likely just cause problems, even if the preexisting government allowed it.

Where would the money for this huge project come from, again..? Modern cities aren't cheap, especially not if you're expecting them to float.

I would assume the money would come from anyone interested in pursuing the project. It would most likely not be funded by a preexisting government, considering the goal is to form new governments.
 

02939

Missingno
^I know that my second post was quite long and you probably didn't read all of it, because I talked about those things, especially the food, but I'll add that we as humans shouldn't be supporting these long routes that food takes if we want to protect the environment.
Your point about water and alternate energy coming from the waves is very good. That is definitely worth investing in, and if the energy was enough to actually make enough ocean water drinkable to sustain an entire city, well that would be amazing. But ... I can't help but think of other things that energy could go to, the things we currently use coal and such for. And I don't like the idea of dumping all that salt back into the ocean. At least in the area of the seastead, people would change the salinity of the water, given time.
As for where the money would come from, you're right. I think this debate is supposed to be about whether we (Sppf users) think that seasteading is worth investing
 

SugarFreeJazz

not present
Ah, I somehow missed this. Not sure what I was thinking at the time. Anyway, since I already replied to some of it I'll just reply to the points that I missed.

Okay, so the thing about importing food is, wouldn't that mean outside influence? The countries where the food is coming from could impact the city a lot. They'd have the control! And the imports would have to be consistent. If the country giving the food was having hard times, well, then the city's out of luck!

And with water in underground tubes ... is it just me, or is that a little too far down? It's possible, but it would be hard and costly.

Even if these two were possible, the city would still be dependent on the outside world, which seems ironic.

See reply to first quote.

And as many people have pointed out, if there's a storm, the people there would be stuck. Get a bad enough storm, and no planes or boats can get in, and people go hungry. Yes, they city would stock up food, but still, it's a risk.

And even in good weather, the city's still pretty isolated.

There are many different ways to protect against the weather, namely the dynamics of the building. Geodesic and Monolithic (name of the company that designed the shape) domes are both viable shapes to building aerodynamic buildings. Tornadoes aren't a problem in open waters, but hurricanes can be.

And if someone, just one someone, manages to take an axe to whatever's supporting the city, keeping it from sinking, then everyone goes down.
Many people are currently investing in floating cities and the best way to build them. Amsterdam is actively working on constructing a floating city, which surprisingly is only expected to be 2 billion dollars.

http://science.discovery.com/tv/build-bigger/projects/netherlands/ijburg-floating-city.html

I guess a few strategically placed powerful bombs could sink this, but nothing that one person, let alone a group of people would be easily capable of. Like in any other situation, protection requires security.

What would the city be made of? Wood? That could flip easily enough, with a bunch of people bustling around. Styrafoam? It would break off bit by bit, and a whole city would dump a lot of styrafoam pretty fast.

How would it be stable? An anchor on any kind of rope, metal or regular, could wear out, rust or be eaten through. Posts? Well, you'd need some seriously thick posts to be able to go that far down and withstand the current without breaking. Just floating? It could tip, and if it's a city, you'll have a bunch of people too young, too old or otherwise unable to swim and tip the whole city back up. Not to mention the damage and pollution done if everything not secured was lost in the ocean.

Something like this would be perfect.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencet...cities-day-house-climate-change-refugees.html

How far is too far? Becuase, if the original idea is to work, they'd have to be far enough to not have any influence from that coastal city. There's also the chance of the city later being incorporated into the country it's near by. And if say the city's right off the coast of San Francisco. Well, that would mean that mostly, if not only, Americans would move there, right? So the point is lost.

I don't think you can be too far. Of course it wouldn't be safe to go into dangerous waters that are plagued by storms, but there are plenty of places on the ocean that aren't that bad.

Yes, I know, for something as big as this, there is always going to be a risk, especially on the first try. I personally just don't think it's worth the risk.
Fair enough.
^I know that my second post was quite long and you probably didn't read all of it, because I talked about those things, especially the food, but I'll add that we as humans shouldn't be supporting these long routes that food takes if we want to protect the environment.
Your point about water and alternate energy coming from the waves is very good. That is definitely worth investing in, and if the energy was enough to actually make enough ocean water drinkable to sustain an entire city, well that would be amazing. But ... I can't help but think of other things that energy could go to, the things we currently use coal and such for. And I don't like the idea of dumping all that salt back into the ocean. At least in the area of the seastead, people would change the salinity of the water, given time.
As for where the money would come from, you're right. I think this debate is supposed to be about whether we (Sppf users) think that seasteading is worth investing

While I don't know how long it would take for something like the salt levels in the ocean to drastically change, I agree that people shouldn't pursue alternative fuels if they could also pose a threat in the future. However, I can't see the salinity issues posing a big threat. I would think the ocean would recover at a faster rate than what we would be capable of damaging (in terms of salt levels).

Unless, of course, seasteading catches on and everyone begins to make a move towards it. Regardless, it should be looked into.
 

GrassTypes.

Well-Known Member
America (and other countries) have enough problems on land due to * economy, a Dwindling Infrastructure and pollution. We need to put or money in solving those things instead of something that is not neccessary. Hurricanes/Typhoons would entirly destroy everything since on sea almost nothing would be grounded. It's not the sensible thing to do. It's better to just suck it up on land.
 

SugarFreeJazz

not present
America (and other countries) have enough problems on land due to * economy, a Dwindling Infrastructure and pollution.
So? Why should a privately owned seastead care about America's problems?

We need to put or money in solving those things instead of something that is not neccessary.
Please, elaborate.

Hurricanes/Typhoons would entirly destroy everything since on sea almost nothing would be grounded. It's not the sensible thing to do. It's better to just suck it up on land.
According to your first point about America and other countries having tons of problems of their own, the more sensible thing to do would be looking for solutions that work. Not "sucking it up". You can only suck up so much **** before vomiting everywhere.

Regarding hurricanes/typhoons, see my previous post.
 

Notalwaysbalckanddwhite

Neighbor? Neighbor!
*is oddly reminded of her fanfiction* But yeah, food, water, medicine, etc. would be kinda hard to come by. It's worth a shot, maybe one or two, but probably won't pan out.
 

SugarFreeJazz

not present
but probably won't pan out.

Why not? I understand the issue with security, natural hazards, money, etc., but every nation has those problems.

As for the location of seasteads, I think it would be best to have them built close to land, but far enough away from other government territory so that it doesn't pose a problem.
 

deoxysdude94

Meme Historian
This idea is really cool. Sadly, though, I don't think it will ever happen.
 

02939

Missingno
^ please elaborate a bit? Why not?

Um, why a privately owned seastead (and who owns it? because whoever owns it is naturally in control) should care about America's money problems? Maybe not America's, but global economy will affect whether people are willing to invest in something like seasteading.

However, we should not just "suck it up." I shall elaborate on GrassTypes idea.
Projects that would be good ... refining solar pannels, finding a viable replacement for gasoline, schools in poor urban areas, teaching crafts, factories in America so the majority of the country's products are not imported and made in other countries, gardening (vegetables, fruit, ect) in schools, and someone knowledgable to teach the kids about it ...
I'm no economy expert, nor is this a thread about how to fix America's economy.
 

ebilly99

Americanreigon champ
Seasteading could be a verry valuable tool if we can make it carbon negative.
#1 food. Most of the seastead must be built under the water to grow algae and small fish.
This would allow for being self sufficiant.
#2 Water. Harder but remeber it does rain as much in the ocean as on land. We just need a way to store it.
#3 Government. Probably the first Commercialism a government run by corporations.
#4 impact on ocean. If done right it can slowly heal the oceans by producing more algea then needed.
 

Bill Nye the Sneasel Guy

Well-Known Member
#1 food. Most of the seastead must be built under the water to grow algae and small fish

I don't think you can satisfy the food needs for an entire city by scraping off algae from its walls, not unless this city has an extremely low population density for its size. Additionally, um, extensive underwater construction for the sake of growing a bit of algae on the walls? You could use that space to hydroponically grow food, which would be much more efficient (and probably tastier) and less likely to poison you.
#2 Water. Harder but remeber it does rain as much in the ocean as on land. We just need a way to store it.

There are plenty of ways to store rainwater that we already have. Large funnels, all that. But depending on solely rain to support a city is a bad idea, unless there's some sort of monsoon season nonsense going on. There are techniques already developed to seperate salt from the water, they just tend to be somewhat pricy. Work on those.

#4 impact on ocean. If done right it can slowly heal the oceans by producing more algea then needed.

... what? You're sticking a whole city under the water and, according to your advice, intentionally starting up large algal blooms. There's no way that's not going to be negative.
 

foxyman1167

From Zero To Hero
Unfortunately, this will probably be the only solution left after we render the land uninhabitable.

If its clean, go for it.
 
They also thought the idea of connecting computers together through networks was crazy, let alone use it for anything else other than military or academic purposes.

In this world there are always masses of ignorant people voicing antagonism for what they can't comprehend due to their limited knowledge and thinking on a subject, and just the overall natural repulsion for anything that's too different for them.
 

Bill Nye the Sneasel Guy

Well-Known Member
They also thought the idea of connecting computers together through networks was crazy, let alone use it for anything else other than military or academic purposes.

In this world there are always masses of ignorant people voicing antagonism for what they can't comprehend due to their limited knowledge and thinking on a subject, and just the overall natural repulsion for anything that's too different for them.

Since you obviously have a vast breadth of knowledge that poor intellectual peasants such as myself lack, convince me. What makes seasteading such a breathtakingly important idea that we need to get on board with right now, up there with the Internet? Why should money be thrown into this?
 
Since you obviously have a vast breadth of knowledge that poor intellectual peasants such as myself lack, convince me. What makes seasteading such a breathtakingly important idea that we need to get on board with right now, up there with the Internet? Why should money be thrown into this?

The solution is to stop giving aid to those countries with eternal problems, and invest it in new forms of habitation. Even though to us it doesn't seem like a necessity now. You never know its true use until its developed and experimented upon.
 
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Bill Nye the Sneasel Guy

Well-Known Member
The solution is to stop giving aid to countries to those countries with eternal problems, and invest it in new forms of habitation. Even though to us it doesn't seem like a necessity now. You never know its true use until its developed and experimented upon.

We already have areas underwater and on the water where people can live. I fail to see a reason why we should construct whole cities on the water when we've not gone near filling out the land, and aren't really likely to ever do so, given how the human population is almost certainly going to peak in the next fifty years. I don't deny that a good deal of the aid money is poorly spent (borrowing money from China to send as aid to China against AIDS? Um...) but making highly uneconomical and unsustainable floating cities for no other reason than 'because we can and it may give us a few useful ideas if we sink a few billions into it, maybe' doesn't seem much better.
 

Bill Nye the Sneasel Guy

Well-Known Member
Once again, you are trying to bash something you don't comprehend. Uneconomical, unsustainable? According to what evidence, or only your guess?

It is your position to state how they would be anything approaching economical or a use to society, and you haven't, aside from saying that, even though it doesn't look useful, it could maybe bring us something if we'll just fully develop the idea. Forgive me, but that doesn't appear to be the soundest of bases to say, "Slash foreign aid, put those billions here instead! I'm sure that, with enough money, we could maybe get something halfway useful out of this."

But as it is, we'd be putting a whole city floating out in the ocean. This isolates it from any trade by land. It'd be incredibly expensive (current aircraft carriers cost around 4.5 billion dollars, let alone building a whole floating city! That would also require some incredible engineering.) and maintenance would be a killer, especially since the ocean is great at corroding almost anything. If the city springs a leak, well... that's a bummer. Would the city be capable of moving around? If so, how would it move, using what systems? It's hard to build a motor large enough to move the city, and the energy costs are astonishing. Does it just float around? Great, what about when it washes up in some country? If one crashes into San Francisco and blocks off trade routes, then what? Are we anchoring it in one place, then, and if so, how? How is an incredibly heavy city even supposed to be floating? If we'd be anchoring it down, why not just a large off-shore structure instead?

What would the economy be based around? Fishing? Plenty of places do that already, and they don't cost billions or more in start-up fees if you decide none of the existing fishing villages are good enough. I could go on and on about this.

This is the 'new idea' that's supposedly shaking up the order for 'people who don't comprehend' like myself, so tell me something that'd make me think this makes an ounce of sense, if this is so brilliant. If it's so clear why this is a great idea to you, please explain your reasoning instead of saying the equivalent of 'you are a small-minded nimrod who just doesn't understand'.
 
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