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PostPosted: Mon May 08, 2017 5:32 pm 
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dire wrote:
So, here's the big, ugly problem with the dyson cloud of virtual persons as a "defense" against the long guns:

The humans, in particular, don't have one, and don't have the luxury of spending a few centuries carefully designing, debugging and implementing that system, because they already have long guns, their pet arms dealer Urtheep Industries already knows about long guns, and Urtheep hasn't shown any particular compunctions about -who- they'll sell to. The UNS had a prototype model decades ago, but they no longer have that prototype.
They do have an effective virtual up/downloading option - that's RED. We've seen Mako as a good example of being able to take your personality and dump it into another body. If you can do that with a mind, you can put it on storage (see: the gavmogres turning into killing machines by means of slow-release kowalski brain) and at that point all you need is illegally modified cryokits to churn out clone bodies for the minds to be dumped into.

At that point, all humans or other species need to do is set up somewhere where they won't be bothered for a bit (e.g. in a nice dark hole in the ground where passing probes won't see them) and set up a better solution to being shot at than putting all your eggs in one basket. Admittedly as said, living in a hole in the ground is hardly "civilisation surviving" but it at least allows for a comeback rather than "instantly everyone dead".

As for the probes, I'm still doubtful you don't need a ship for interstellar travel. What I'm saying is 1.2 million probes the size of a ping pong ball simply isn't likely going to be able to cross hundreds of light years, and I doubt that even Petey's probes can scan an entire system in an instant if not ping-pong ball sized.

What happens is a ship gets in system, and then it deploys a squadron of probes/terapedoes/mobile TAD field. It doesn't launch the probes from another star system.

I could be wrong, has Ennesby ever teraported someone between stars on his lonesome before? I know he managed to teraport a Doyt-clone out but I'm pretty sure he had a taxi on standby for that. In the meantime, if you're loading your 1.2 million probes on a ship, the enemy is going to shoot at your ship with any available long-guns, not the probes.

The main problem with long guns is, most people can't build infinite numbers of them just off the bat, and once word's got out that one group has them, everyone and their mother is going to tear that group apart to get their hands on the plans. Even Petey probably can't churn out effective infinite amounts of them, or at least not without losing all his holdings in Andromeda, and that's not going to end prettily for anyone either.


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PostPosted: Mon May 08, 2017 6:28 pm 
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Reaver225 wrote:
dire wrote:
So, here's the big, ugly problem with the dyson cloud of virtual persons as a "defense" against the long guns:

The humans, in particular, don't have one, and don't have the luxury of spending a few centuries carefully designing, debugging and implementing that system, because they already have long guns, their pet arms dealer Urtheep Industries already knows about long guns, and Urtheep hasn't shown any particular compunctions about -who- they'll sell to. The UNS had a prototype model decades ago, but they no longer have that prototype.
They do have an effective virtual up/downloading option - that's RED. We've seen Mako as a good example of being able to take your personality and dump it into another body. If you can do that with a mind, you can put it on storage (see: the gavmogres turning into killing machines by means of slow-release kowalski brain) and at that point all you need is illegally modified cryokits to churn out clone bodies for the minds to be dumped into.

At that point, all humans or other species need to do is set up somewhere where they won't be bothered for a bit (e.g. in a nice dark hole in the ground where passing probes won't see them) and set up a better solution to being shot at than putting all your eggs in one basket. Admittedly as said, living in a hole in the ground is hardly "civilisation surviving" but it at least allows for a comeback rather than "instantly everyone dead".


I think in Vog's case it was "Everyone dead 1600 years later."

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As for the probes, I'm still doubtful you don't need a ship for interstellar travel. What I'm saying is 1.2 million probes the size of a ping pong ball simply isn't likely going to be able to cross hundreds of light years, and I doubt that even Petey's probes can scan an entire system in an instant if not ping-pong ball sized.

What happens is a ship gets in system, and then it deploys a squadron of probes/terapedoes/mobile TAD field. It doesn't launch the probes from another star system.

I could be wrong, has Ennesby ever teraported someone between stars on his lonesome before? I know he managed to teraport a Doyt-clone out but I'm pretty sure he had a taxi on standby for that. In the meantime, if you're loading your 1.2 million probes on a ship, the enemy is going to shoot at your ship with any available long-guns, not the probes.
During the teraport war, Petey blanketed the entire galactic core in TAD probes, right after he convinced the F'shrl'ganni that they were actually facing extinction. And he only had a couple of B'uuthandi to do it with. Granted, the Ganni wield orders of magnitude more power than anyone they subjugated, mostly because the Ganni worked long and hard to keep it that way.

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The main problem with long guns is, most people can't build infinite numbers of them just off the bat, and once word's got out that one group has them, everyone and their mother is going to tear that group apart to get their hands on the plans. Even Petey probably can't churn out effective infinite amounts of them, or at least not without losing all his holdings in Andromeda, and that's not going to end prettily for anyone either


You only need one long gun shot to win a war. Unless you're the Toughs, then you need two shots.

How many people do you think know about LOTA and the discontiguous whatsit? My guess is, at least two people too many know about it.

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PostPosted: Mon May 08, 2017 7:12 pm 
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dire wrote:
You only need one long gun shot to win a war. Unless you're the Toughs, then you need two shots.

How many people do you think know about LOTA and the discontiguous whatsit? My guess is, at least two people too many know about it.


Even in current circumstances you'd need more than one shot! Sure, it's kind of dumb for the UNS top brass to all physically be in the same building discussing the issue, but even their instantaneous vapourization doesn't win a war. A large civilization has many, many layers of fallbacks in the case of loss of leadership, and typically don't pin their entire economy or military on a single point of failure. It'll take a lot of shots to win a war.

Of course, it only takes one shot to start a war, and then the cat is out of the bag, resulting in the problem we're trying to brainstorm solutions for.

I think you've got a good case for the difficulty of pivoting to a virtual civilization, that is certainly no easy task. It's not an impossible one, though; there are intermediate steps you can take to tide you over. You can distribute and hide your leadership, scatter and begin building redundancies for crucial economic and military infrastructure, and start enforcing the light-lag minimum distance trick on your crucial infrastructure or hiding it altogether. Hiding just a part of your civilization is probably doable in the short term. Security by obscurity isn't a great idea in the long term but it can be a reasonable short term gambit.

After you've got that in place, you can start expediting the process of building a distributed network. There's already likely an infosphere of enormous scale in place, but now you need to start expanding it in a hurry. As someone else already pointed out, the RED nannies form a bridge for actually moving your people over to the net once it's in place, so once you've got enough swarm servers you can start transitioning people into it and creating a hybrid virtual-physical civ. You'd be a little vulnerable during the transition, but I don't think it's an all-or-nothing thing; even a partially virtual civilization would be more robust.


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PostPosted: Mon May 08, 2017 10:14 pm 
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starstriker1 wrote:
dire wrote:
You only need one long gun shot to win a war. Unless you're the Toughs, then you need two shots.

How many people do you think know about LOTA and the discontiguous whatsit? My guess is, at least two people too many know about it.


Even in current circumstances you'd need more than one shot! Sure, it's kind of dumb for the UNS top brass to all physically be in the same building discussing the issue, but even their instantaneous vapourization doesn't win a war. A large civilization has many, many layers of fallbacks in the case of loss of leadership, and typically don't pin their entire economy or military on a single point of failure. It'll take a lot of shots to win a war.

Of course, it only takes one shot to start a war, and then the cat is out of the bag, resulting in the problem we're trying to brainstorm solutions for.

I think you've got a good case for the difficulty of pivoting to a virtual civilization, that is certainly no easy task. It's not an impossible one, though; there are intermediate steps you can take to tide you over. You can distribute and hide your leadership, scatter and begin building redundancies for crucial economic and military infrastructure, and start enforcing the light-lag minimum distance trick on your crucial infrastructure or hiding it altogether. Hiding just a part of your civilization is probably doable in the short term. Security by obscurity isn't a great idea in the long term but it can be a reasonable short term gambit.

After you've got that in place, you can start expediting the process of building a distributed network. There's already likely an infosphere of enormous scale in place, but now you need to start expanding it in a hurry. As someone else already pointed out, the RED nannies form a bridge for actually moving your people over to the net once it's in place, so once you've got enough swarm servers you can start transitioning people into it and creating a hybrid virtual-physical civ. You'd be a little vulnerable during the transition, but I don't think it's an all-or-nothing thing; even a partially virtual civilization would be more robust.



The thing is, you don't need to go digital right away, either. You can disperse your ships, order them to go dark, and only meet at pre-arranged times and locations. Once you develop a geo-location free hypernet, deploy it as a backbone. Every ship carries n people and 2n, or 3n backups of people on other ships.
A whole ship may die, but the rest are still dark. Make sure any ship that gets in trouble broadcasts its distress so it doesn't become a trojan horse later.

Since battleplates can apparently refuel on the fly, (compress into neutronium, instead of sweep under that ratty old rug,) it would follow that a ship-borne civilization could function quite effectively. So long as you can build ships on the run, you're fine.
Make sure each ship has cloning capability. Preferably insta-clone, as from an illegally modified cryokit.

All those sub-sandwich arks, with the long-eared toad analogs? They just left their system for uncharted places. Haven Hive? burning out of Celechul so they can jump somewhere invisible. The shipyards around Mars? They're now somewhere else.

Edit. Heck. Every ship can carry n people, 2-3n backups of other ship borne people, and 20-30n backups of planet-bound people, just in case the planet gets a first-strike before they get everything geared up.


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PostPosted: Tue May 09, 2017 1:21 am 
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starstriker1 wrote:
Well, there's always establishing trust and diplomatic solutions that will ensure that nobody with a long gun will ever have cause to aim it at you, or putting treaties in place that limit the scale of the long gun arsenals much like the START treaty limits nuclear weapons here on earth. That's the boring, difficulty diplomatic approach that Petey wants everyone to consider, though. Let's find something more interesting. :P

I think there are a few options for military defense that fall short of complete information blackout. One is to enforce a delay on information (or at least any information with location data) to prevent the enemy from having up to date targeting data. If you've got a warship with 1000G of acceleration that applies a 1s delay to all outbound communications and doesn't let any other vessel get within a light-second of it, that warship is essentially never going to be targetable by a long gun because the volume of space it can random-walk to in that time is enormous, unless it's sitting still. This is energy intensive, but the Schlockiverse has energy to spare, and even if you only apply it to crucial military infrastructure and weapons that guarantees your second strike capability in a MAD scenario. You can also manage the energy costs by scaling down your random walk based on how far the closest observer is. If they're a light minute away, a much more leisurely approach to a random walk will secure your installation. This all also becomes more effective if the target you're protecting is physically small, reducing the amount of your random walk volume that you occupy. You do need to become very aggressive with your point defense, traffic management, etc, but space is big. There's room to keep everything at arm's length.

The other approach I can think of is to ditch your attachment to being in a particular physical space. Upload all your minds to an infosphere that can now be distributed across billions or trillions of nodes, maybe as part of a Dyson swarm. Sure, the individual servers will be targetable, but since your enemy has a limited number of long guns that require extensive fueling between shots, you can create enough server nodes that they simply can't hit enough of them with long guns to really make a difference. You now have too many targets of too little importance to hit, and a huge number of them need to be hit before the infosphere is substantially impacted. You still have difficulties with large infrastructure projects, but your population is secure as well as any infrastructure you can distribute in a similar manner. You don't even need to move your entire civilisation into a distributed virtual reality, either; just enough of it that you're still kicking if someone decides to go and nuke your static installations, planets, etc.

Combine the two approaches and you can make an environment that the rather precise and slow firing long guns are unable to cope with.

(edit) It also just occurred to me that the "ditch your attachment to physical space" approach might also mean trying to upload yourself to an environment unaffected by long gun shots entirely. That might explain the Paanuri; someone decided uploading themselves into dark matter was an expedient way to nullify the threat of long guns.


The "jamming, comms delay, and random-walk" defense is actually what I think Ennesby's frigate was originally designed to counter: If you can't send a real-time message about the enemy's precise location, even with your own reconnaissance drones, the best counter is get a ship armed with a long-gun close enough to SEE the target before they fire... presumably at ranges of under a light-second. In that environment, you want lots of potential "spotters", attacking in swarms, plus maybe fleet support, like the Broken Wind Battelship, to escort them most of the way in, through the defensive clouds of enemy munitions.

The concept of uploading your life into a decentralized network of redundant servers.... is surprisingly clever. On the other hand, that's arguably a fair description of what Petey has done to himself, so why isn't something like Petey still around from the last several iterations of Galactic civilization?


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PostPosted: Tue May 09, 2017 5:25 am 
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Quote:
The concept of uploading your life into a decentralized network of redundant servers.... is surprisingly clever. On the other hand, that's arguably a fair description of what Petey has done to himself, so why isn't something like Petey still around from the last several iterations of Galactic civilization?
Depends on what you call "something like Petey" - the Allstar is still around, Broken Wind survived and I don't know if we ever learned whether the archive actually lived through the last cycle(s) or was just given the knowledge of them. Presumably, the core generator is a new factor.
With Broken Wind in particular, we don't know if the Can full of Sky was the only such habitat or if there might be more - after all, they went dark for a reason.


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PostPosted: Tue May 09, 2017 7:07 am 
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Krennson wrote:
The concept of uploading your life into a decentralized network of redundant servers.... is surprisingly clever. On the other hand, that's arguably a fair description of what Petey has done to himself, so why isn't something like Petey still around from the last several iterations of Galactic civilization?
See: Uli-oa, can of sky to where the people went, and I'm going to wildly speculate and point at the DMEs as to where last generation's peteys were,


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PostPosted: Tue May 09, 2017 5:51 pm 
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The Fshrl'''-Ganni (and no, I'm not ever going to be able to place those apostrophes in the right spots) are the survivors of the last galactic extinction event.

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PostPosted: Tue May 09, 2017 9:59 pm 
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dire wrote:
The Fshrl'''-Ganni (and no, I'm not ever going to be able to place those apostrophes in the right spots) are the survivors of the last galactic extinction event.

F'shrrl-Ganni.


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PostPosted: Tue May 09, 2017 10:17 pm 
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evileeyore wrote:
dire wrote:
The Fshrl'''-Ganni (and no, I'm not ever going to be able to place those apostrophes in the right spots) are the survivors of the last galactic extinction event.

F'shrrl-Ganni.

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PostPosted: Tue May 09, 2017 11:20 pm 
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grahamf wrote:
evileeyore wrote:
dire wrote:
The Fshrl'''-Ganni (and no, I'm not ever going to be able to place those apostrophes in the right spots) are the survivors of the last galactic extinction event.

F'shrrl-Ganni.

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We're definitely in "Buried Alien" territory here, aren't we?

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PostPosted: Wed May 10, 2017 1:53 am 
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Black Sheep wrote:
grahamf wrote:
dire wrote:
The Fshrl'''-Ganni (and no, I'm not ever going to be able to place those apostrophes in the right spots) are the survivors of the last galactic extinction event.
evileeyore wrote:
F'shrrl-Ganni.

Fishing Grannies
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We're definitely in "Buried Alien" territory here, aren't we?

I ain't got the time to memorize names that are made to sound alien by contracting out the vowels to the lowest bidder.

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PostPosted: Wed May 10, 2017 12:46 pm 
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Krennson wrote:
The "jamming, comms delay, and random-walk" defense is actually what I think Ennesby's frigate was originally designed to counter: If you can't send a real-time message about the enemy's precise location, even with your own reconnaissance drones, the best counter is get a ship armed with a long-gun close enough to SEE the target before they fire... presumably at ranges of under a light-second. In that environment, you want lots of potential "spotters", attacking in swarms, plus maybe fleet support, like the Broken Wind Battelship, to escort them most of the way in, through the defensive clouds of enemy munitions.


I'm not sure that makes sense. If you can get a warship close enough that its own (single shot) long gun can be used to engage a target from a range where the ships own observation can give you sufficiently low latency for targeting, you're in knife fight ranges and the long gun is now the wrong weapon for the job (better something like Synthetic Certainty's primary weapon). A light second is way, way too far away when you've got 1000G accelerations (which I believe is what the Touch and Go could pull); in that time they could have offset their position anywhere within a 5000m radius (though, admittedly, thats an optimistic interpretation of their ability to change directions and move unpredictably). In order for a 1km diameter ship with that acceleration to be a sure shot for a long gun, you need to be around .3cs away, and the distance drops even further for smaller targets.

That said, if you've got a 100m ship the guaranteed shot range is .1cs, so there's clearly a decisive advantage to a small long gun equipped ship engaging a large one in a scenario where everybody is jamming every hypernode. I feel like traditional weapons would rule the day at those sorts of ranges, but I suppose the long gun might still have a niche there as a 100% reliable weapon versus point defense and shields.

You bring up a really interesting point with the jamming, though. If you're 100% capable of saturating the hypernodes of every observer near you, you can enforce the observation exclusion zone around your vessel to whatever range your jammers work to, and that means you can secure any maneuvering target with a certain combination of maneuvering, size, and jammer range against accurate long gun fire. Doesn't take the long gun out of play (particularly not for static targets!) but it does make it ineffective against war fleets. However, if you're not able to 100% jam enemy hypernodes (either in terms of reliability or in terms of being limited to how much you can jam at once), your jamming now is more comparable to your point defense systems; you use it to try and swat observers that are getting to dangerously close range, but you can't rely on it and you better be trying to do something else to get out of trouble.


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PostPosted: Wed May 10, 2017 1:06 pm 
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Remember, while fuel is trivial to warships in a battle, it's not non-trivial for entire habitats or infrastructure ships to be constantly pulling 1K Gs constantly. You might survive, but only while your resources hold out and that's not going to be easy if you can't stop moving.

Nasty thought about getting around hypercomm jamming: if you have passive probes in a hypercomm jammed area, can you extract information from them through a long gun portal? Simply open the portal, preprogram the probe to transmit through the portal via light beam or whatever, get instant targeting data in much less than a millisecond.

Not necessarily possible since the wormholes seem to mostly transmit undifferentiated energy, but just suggesting one potential application.


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PostPosted: Wed May 10, 2017 2:40 pm 
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grahamf wrote:
I ain't got the time to memorize names that are made to sound alien by contracting out the vowels to the lowest bidder.

/spittake

Nice!


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PostPosted: Thu May 11, 2017 9:25 pm 
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Fish-earl gannies

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