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Posts posted by Moontanman

  1. 21 hours ago, beecee said:


    Some other interesting alternative life forms there.

    Lots of possibilities but how many are really likely? Ammonia in place of water suffers from the fact that water and ammonia dissolve in each other forming a hybrid liquid, hard to separate them in any planetary biosphere. On earth bacteria consume any ammonia dissolved in water and oxygen reacts with it. 

    Isaac Asimov suggested that life might be based on silicon oxygen chains with methane radicals attached to the silicon atoms. Possibly sulfuric acid as a working fluid and metabolizing gaseous sulfur as a breathing gas. Of course the temps would be quite high, lower than Venus but quite a bit higher than Earth.      

    21 hours ago, beecee said:


    I feel a bit iffy about A1 and/or mechanical life. Robotic life, nanobots etc, can do and achieve much today that fit the necessary provisos of life as we normally define it. 

    As it happened, I also watched a movie last night after the footy, "MoonFall"  Based on the unlikely "hollow Moon hypothetical" .... and A1. meh! sort of movie.   

    I agree, "life" suggests it is self replicating but completely artificial life forms, like "Data" from Star Trek might be a compromise assuming that such a thing is possible.  

  2. 7 hours ago, dimreepr said:

    Not so much for Will...

    Maybe, maybe not, we'll have to see how this plays out, it's still disturbing to see Will in that situation with the look of a man who is not all there. 

    9 hours ago, beecee said:

    Here are other examples of "rare" controversial moments with the Oscars. One that comes to mind was giving the wrong presentation. Another from the following link, was with regards to the classic movie, Gone with the Wind......."Actress Hattie McDaniel made film history by becoming the first black American to win an Academy Award, winning for her role as "Mammy" in "Gone With the Wind." While the award was an honor, McDaniel had to face racism and segregation. McDaniel was only allowed into the ceremony upon the intervention of the film's producers. Even then, McDaniel was seated away from the rest of the creative team at a segregated table, making this historic win an example of racism".

    or 1973: Marlon Brando declines Best Actor for 'The Godfather'


    I have yet to ever watch them, other then news items of the event. Bores me teriffically to tears.

    Popularity of the academy awards has fallen off so much in recent years I am sure they would desperately like more publicity. 

  3. On 3/29/2022 at 3:52 PM, MigL said:

    We have a very limited definition of what 'life' is.
    Our carbon based life that needs liquid water, is not the only way to build complexity.
    Sulphur and Silicon provide large numbers of compounds also, but would require other liquid solvents than water, at much higher temperatures, for interesting chemical reactions. 
    And, who is to say, that once our civilization ends ( for whatever reason ), we don't leave behind an electro-mechanical civilization that evolves from AI that we developed.

    The possibilities are endless.

    Actually silicon life would require low temps and has been suggested as a possibility for titan using liquid hydrocarbons for a working fluid, for high temps it would require silicones and possibly sulfuric acid as a working fluid. 

    The mechanical life possibility is one I feel is most likely for long term survival of a civilization but AI is not necessarily needed. Perhaps we could down load our own minds into machines at some point.   

  4. On 3/26/2022 at 3:15 PM, beecee said:

    Have you any reference for them starting at the same time? What do you mean by "roughly"? 

    So why did you misinterpret what we generally mean by Alien in context with this thread? How do you know we will ever meet any alien for that matter?  "we are them" is another rather iffy statment, so we will ignore that bizarre bit.

    Yes, that is for certain. Obviously you have none.

    What is it referring to then if not the universe or anything that followed that necessary first step? And generally speaking, when the word "creation" is mentioned and used, it inevitably is inferring a god. The universe evolved more then was created.

    ??? 🥴 Would you like to explain that? or at least give a link to where you dug up that phrase? 😉

    I know where he got it, the sun doesn't often shine there. 

    On 3/27/2022 at 6:23 AM, dimreepr said:

    NOBODY!!! Has any evidence...

    I agree with you to a point, there is some evidence of odd chemistry of Titan that is consuming hydrogen reacting it with acetylene and producing methane. 




    Although all living things on Earth (including methanogens) use liquid water as a solvent, it is conceivable that life on Titan might instead use a liquid hydrocarbon, such as methane or ethane.[28] Water is a stronger solvent than hydrocarbons;[29] however, water is more chemically reactive, and can break down large organic molecules through hydrolysis.[28] A life-form whose solvent was a hydrocarbon would not face the risk of its biomolecules being destroyed in this way.[28]

    Titan appears to have lakes of liquid ethane or liquid methane on its surface, as well as rivers and seas, which some scientific models suggest could support hypothetical non-water-based life.[19][20][21] It has been speculated that life could exist in the liquid methane and ethane that form rivers and lakes on Titan's surface, just as organisms on Earth live in water.[30] Such hypothetical creatures would take in H2 in place of O2, react it with acetylene instead of glucose, and produce methane instead of carbon dioxide.[30] By comparison, some methanogens on Earth obtain energy by reacting hydrogen with carbon dioxide, producing methane and water.

    In 2005, astrobiologists Chris McKay and Heather Smith predicted that if methanogenic life is consuming atmospheric hydrogen in sufficient volume, it will have a measurable effect on the mixing ratio in the troposphere of Titan. The effects predicted included a level of acetylene much lower than otherwise expected, as well as a reduction in the concentration of hydrogen itself.[30]

    Evidence consistent with these predictions was reported in June 2010 by Darrell Strobel of Johns Hopkins University, who analysed measurements of hydrogen concentration in the upper and lower atmosphere. Strobel found that the hydrogen concentration in the upper atmosphere is so much larger than near the surface that the physics of diffusion leads to hydrogen flowing downwards at a rate of roughly 1025 molecules per second. Near the surface the downward-flowing hydrogen apparently disappears.[29][30][31] Another paper released the same month showed very low levels of acetylene on Titan's surface.[29]

    Chris McKay agreed with Strobel that presence of life, as suggested in McKay's 2005 article, is a possible explanation for the findings about hydrogen and acetylene, but also cautioned that other explanations are currently more likely: namely the possibility that the results are due to human error, to a meteorological process, or to the presence of some mineral catalyst enabling hydrogen and acetylene to react chemically.[1][32] He noted that such a catalyst, one effective at −178 °C (95 K), is presently unknown and would in itself be a startling discovery, though less startling than discovery of an extraterrestrial life form.[1]

    The June 2010 findings gave rise to considerable media interest, including a report in the British newspaper, the Telegraph, which spoke of clues to the existence of "primitive aliens".[33]

    This is IMHO evidence, just not proof. 
    Finding such life on Titan would revolutionize our thought on how life starts and indicate that life arises much more often than we currently think. 

    Finding life, water life, anywhere would beg the question of where is originated. Planets sneeze on each other often and such events like the Chicxulub impact could splash relatively large rocks into the solar system for them to be picked up by other planets and moons in the solar system. 

    A unique second genesis of life in our solar system would be a scientific boon of major proportions.   

  5. 20 hours ago, dimreepr said:

    When I watched the footage, two thing's struck me:

    1. Will initially laughed at the joke.

    2. Jada decided to take umbridge.

    She must have known, that by coming out and wearing that hat with pride, that not everyone will be grown up about it; if she can't take an immature jibe she should have worn a wig.

    In my view, she decided to be the victim in order to make her man fight for her, rather than with her.

    Much like a child stepped of the path and onto the grass; how strict are you going to be?

    And yes, I am being cryptic; sorry if that puzzles you...


    I still think it was faked, publicity, any publicity, is good publicity. 

  6. I think something is wrong with WS, I've watched the clip several times, his facial expressions do not match his emotions, not even close.  The slap itself was weird, If someone had insulted my wife to the extent I thought physical punishment was mandated a slap would not have cut it. The whole thing was far too deliberate and strange, if it wasn't play acting them WS is one strange dude.   

  7. 16 hours ago, Genady said:

    Well, I was not talking about seasonal variations, but rather about changes in populations from  year to year. And, being a (former) SCUBA instructor with about 3000 logged dives, I see the "invasion" first hand. The bottom line, what I see here is very different from what you describe. Maybe the process is just different in different parts of the ocean, but here we don't see these disturbing things. The lionfish seems to be just another fish in our "aquarium".

    BTW, there are many native fishes that are not preyed on by other native predators. For example, nothing eats adult green morays, barracudas, jacks, scorpionfish, rays. This is not something that is special about lionfish, not a factor that makes them different.

    Yes, sometimes we find them swarming around a rock. But then there are thousands rocks without them and with plenty of native fish doing there usual things.

    Ok, I acknowledge your experience on this but scientists at NOOA seem to take a different view, possibly the areas with only lionfish and lacking in small fish is a transient phenomena.   

  8. On 2/24/2022 at 10:43 PM, Genady said:

    I have been following this "invasion" for many years as well, starting with the very first appearance of the very first lionfish in our waters in 2009. Our Marine Park management got seriously involved in the research and in the population control attempts of lionfish. They organized many presentations by scientists as well as by other parties interested in this development. And I have witnessed the process directly under water over the years.

    "Long term" is the the only issue because there is no stability or balance state of the ecosystem in short term. Every year is different, with or without lionfish. One year, there are unusually many barracudas, other year - "flamingo tongue" snails cover soft corals everywhere, yet others - lobsters, ctenophores, floating sea weed, mass moray die off, etc. etc. There is no base line to compare against in a short term. The ecosystem is highly dynamic and "disruptions" is a norm.

    That lionfish got from Florida to Carolinas is understandable. The Gulfstream pushes them that way. But how did they get to the Southern Caribbean? It's a long swim against current...

    I am not sure you are seeing the tree due to the forest, seasonal variations in fish populations do not match the density of the lionfish populations. In general native fish do not prey on lionfish. This seems to be changing but is takes a quite large predator to eat an adult lionfish, they spread their pectoral fins to make themselves appear much larger than really are. This makes predators view them as too big to eat even if the predator is in fact plenty big enough to eat them. I've seen films that show dozens just swarming a isolated rock in the ocean. Divers can go down and spear hundreds of them in one day and not make a dent in the populations.

    I am a certified open water diver, it's been a long time since I dived, but I have seen how fish swarm around isolated rocks and I have never seen fish thickly cover areas like lionfish, not even close btw. The almost absolute lack of the small native fish that normally school around such rocks is probably the most disturbing thing, this indicates the bottom of the food chain has been disrupted. 

    I am sure that eventually the ecosystem will absorb these lionfish but is has not happened yet. Native predators will learn to recognise them as food but scientists have told me it is a slow go so far. I've had native octopus climb from one aquarium to another and eat captive lionfish so I know they are not invulnerable but as i said lionfish are good to eat and a fishery has sprung up in some areas and restaurants are listing them on menus so maybe they will prove to be a boon to commercial fishermen in the long run. 

    As for invasive species, Florida is famous for it's fresh waters being full of nonnative fishes released by the aquarium industry as well as by home hobbyists. The Florida DNR is also famous for releasing non native fish for their sportfishing industry and tourism... the peacock bass comes immediately to mind.  I tried to lobby for Pseudoscaphirhynchus hermanni to be released into a smallish river in WV that was recovering from years of pollution and fish populations were beginning to recover. In it's own range is is rare and dying out due to habitat destruction. Being so small i thought it would be a great addition to the biodiversity of this river but I was shot down do to the possibility, no mater how remote, that it would become invasive. I guess i should have lobbied for it be released in Florida. 


  9. I've been following this "invasion" for many years, home aquarium release is being blamed but at the very beginning it was assumed that a large number of individuals escaped from a public aquarium/lab during a hurricane and the spread began from there. I have no doubt many have been released by thoughtless home aquarists as well. The actual volume of biomass represented by the hordes of large lionfish currently occupying the ocean where there was once nothing but small native fish is very concerning if nothing else. They have even invaded the water of my coastal Carolina area, mostly deep water, but the sheer numbers being caught have only one enduring quality, they are very good to eat. 

    Anytime a nonnative species begins to reproduce in huge numbers it is a threat and considered invasive. Sometimes, over long periods of time the ecosystem will find a new balance with the invasive species, European carp are an example of a long established species that still has negative consequences long after it's introduction but it's effect on native populations cannot be ignored even now some 250 years after it's introduction. Asian carp are an example of an evasive that has not, as of this time, settled into the ecosystem and is still very disruptive. Introducing large native predatory fish to the Asian carp's new range that had been hunted to extinction are one of the efforts currently being used to try and control them... alligator gar being one of carnivores of choice.   

    Again the unnatural hordes of lion fish are a quite good indicator they are not harmless and native predators are not, for the most part, interested in eating them. That may change as time goes on but for now we are pretty much stuck with them.

    BTW, I predicted the Asian Carp invasion, not because I am smart but because I can see the writing on the wall, I was told it could never happen because of hormonal problems caused by some species of native fish that wouldn't allow Asian carp to reproduce in water where the natives lived... never say never. 

  10. 3 hours ago, beecee said:

    Octopuses drying on a line

    Octopuses drying on a line

    I am going to be real with you, this image disturbs me, having interacted so much with octopus and the intelligence they showed it's like some one hanging a cat or a dog out to dry on a line. I had real interactions with them and could judge their emotions at least if not their thoughts by watching the colors run around their bodies. I would give them gifts of unusual materials and they acted as thought they really enjoyed the odd objects i gave them to build their houses. They really seemed to relish the oddities, except for ping pong balls they hated ping pong balls. They loved golf balls... go figure.     

    BTW, squid are calamari, and i bet cuttlefish are smarter than octopus...then you have the very brainy mormyrids which i currently keep.   

  11. On 1/16/2022 at 2:11 PM, StringJunky said:

    I just learned some soil bacteria and blue-green algae (diazotrophs) can fix nitrogen from air, they are a potential N source.

    If you set up a kiddie wading pool, maybe one of those 8' ones in a sunny place, add a handful of Azolla, by the end of the summer you'll have a 55 gallon drum full of very nitrogen rich Azolla that can be composted or even plant things directly in compressed Azolla in a pot, I used to use half sawdust and half Azolla for my birds nest ferns, Azolla fixes nitrogen from the atmosphere using photosynthesis. I used to harvest and compost it regularly.  

  12. Why is everyone assuming that octopus could not adapt to living on land? Given opening up of evolutionary niches on land by, say a mass extinction of vertebrates, The octopus would seem to be a contender for being amphibious quite easily. Their reproductive strategy could change and they could become land animals, and having nine brains could result in a creature beyond our imagining just like pikaia, I bet no one here would have seen pikaia evolving into humans 450 million years ago. How many changes did pikaia have to go through to become us. Imagine that on an alien planet vertebrates never evolved, pikaia could have gone extinct. There is no guarantee that vertebrates would evolve on another planet.

    Speculative evolution video



  13. I honestly do not think that assuming that an octopus, given a few hundred million years of evolution, couldn't evolve into a space fairing species is a bit of hubris considering what was to be our ancestor several hundred million years ago. Pikaia 

  14. 4 hours ago, beecee said:

    Sure it does, and obviously the octopuse is among the most surprising....

    here's another article...



    Hve you heard of the Sydney blue ringed octopus? It's bite/poison can kill a grown man in a short time.....................image.png.eed4f18c7922779709a1151e706bc6e5.png

    "At first glance, the blue-ringed octopus looks perfectly innocuous. Its psychedelic coloring and pint-sized packaging make it seem more adorable than alarming. But don’t let its cuddly exterior fool you: this tiny octopus can kill you. And quickly.

    Native to the Pacific Ocean, the blue-ringed octopus can be found in the soft, sandy bottom of shallow tide pools and coral reefs. When not seeking food or a mate, blue-ringed octopuses often hide in crevices, shells or marine debris. If you catch them outside of their cozy hiding spots, it’s easy to see how the animal gets its name: when threatened, bright blue rings appear all over its body as a warning signal to potential predators". 


    Actually I've kept them in captivity, not much fun as you can't interact with them. I've managed to keep small squids for short periods of time, weeks, I'd love to try cuttlefish I think  they are quite special in intelligence and communication. 


    All octopus have a beak and can bite and inject poison but they mostly use it on crabs or other crustaceans. 

    But my point is that on another planet even vertebrates are not a sure thing much less humanoids. 


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