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Dead Horses - Discussion

Join us in talking discussing all things Honor, including (but not limited to) tactics, favorite characters, and book discussions.
Re: Dead Horses - Discussion
Post by cthia   » Mon Jan 20, 2020 2:47 am

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ThinksMarkedly wrote:
The point of the thread was to discuss what should be in the sticky post, not to be the sticky post. And not to rediscuss the topics themselves, of course.

We need to clean up the multiple topics and explanations of why they are dead horses, then make the post for Duckk to make sticky.

And yes, please include that RFC = runsforcelery = David. When I started reading the forum, I was wondering why people were talking about Request for Comments. And why Pooh sometimes got into the conversation or why the cost of refitting Beowulfan SDs was relevant (signatures are not clearly separated from the text).


The GRAV LANCE should not be part of this discussion. It has the distinction of being the MVP of this thread. From what I'm told, it gave birth to all of the other horses. It's a Clydesdale.

It should have its name up in lights NOW! Since it ran a race and set records that rivals what even Secretariat accomplished.*



I'm aware that the intention of the thread is to produce the final version. But, as always in the case of most threads, the human element is missed.

I'm concerned with this window of vulnerability of newcomers hypering in NOW, and stepping on that damn grav Lance NOW.

Why is the grav Lance part of the discussion, and why is it not getting FIRST BILLING?

There is no need to discuss the grav lance. As it stands, a hapless, innocent snotty may feel he can bring it up, NOW.

THE HUMAN ELEMENT found inside of HUMAN NATURE has this persistent thing lurking inside it called procrastination. Procrastination can bite one IN and ON the ass. Believe me, I know. It cost me over fifty grand fresh out of college when I hypered into Silicon Valley and purchased my first flat. Procrastination here could cause one to lose his head.

In this case, when a newbie hypers in system, and he sees the newbie thread, he may procrastinate reading it until a much later date. One reason he may choose to procrastinate, is because he has taken the time to compose a very detailed, brand spanking new use for the grav lance and wants to publish it before he loses it.

BUT! HOPEFULLY, that same human element found inside of human nature has a very strong thing called curiosity. Curiosity most likely will cause, at the very least, a "quick" cursory glance at the thread for newbies.

WE MUST USE THAT QUICK FIRST GLANCE TO WARN HIM ABOUT THE GRAV LANCE, before he, HOPEFULLY, gets back around to completing the newbie thread!

In this case, curiosity could keep the cat from being killed, if the grav lance warning buoy is seen IMMEDIATELY!

Does anybody disagree that the grav lance is a capital offense? No? So let us not act like it.

I agree about the aliases of the author. When I first joined the forum, I thought runsforcelery was some guy who ran the gauntlet of getting constipated from eating too much celery, then suffered the effect of a laxative. Later on I incorporated it as a joke in the humor thread.

I'd like to know IMMEDIATELY if I'm butting heads with the author. Like, say, when bringing up the grav lance???

Anything else is just plain uncivilized, and no amount of explanation short of an apology is going to suffice for a newbie who hasn't gotten around to completely reading the newbie thread.

Matter of fact, even an apology falls short of atoning for something that shouldn't happen in the first place. BUT!

Admittedly, that's the bar my parents set when they raised ME.

A warning buoy for the grav Lance should be listed NOW!

NOT after these discussions are finalized, the cows come home, the creek rises, or that damn python lump is complete. But NOW!

I'm wrestling with my spell checker because it wants to substitute grab for grav. It wants to capitalize lance. And it wants to turn TheEmile into the smile. Why? Because I haven't gotten around to editing the dictionary included with my keyboard. Why? Glad you asked. Procrastination!

*Grav Lance.

Son, your mother says I have to hang you. Personally I don't think this is a capital offense. But if I don't hang you, she's gonna hang me and frankly, I'm not the one in trouble. —cthia's father. Incident in ? Axiom of Common Sense
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Re: Sticky for Newbs - Dead Horses
Post by TFLYTSNBN   » Mon Jan 20, 2020 10:57 am

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kzt wrote:
TFLYTSNBN wrote:



Coherent laser or graser beams do diverge. However; given good optics the divergence is diffraction limited. Shorter wavelength combined with larger optical system yields smaller divergence angle and longer range.

Well yes, but when your spot size doubling range can is best measured in light-hours it's a pretty darn tiny angle.



You are of course correct which is the entire point of the discussion.

Weber's descriptions and explanations of his Grasers implies extremely high power output and energy density but relatively limited range. I recall him posting something about the difficulty of focusing such a hot emitter. Gravity lenses can help focus the beam although they might have an astigmatism. Impeller wedges and sidewalls probably are somewhat imperfect and defocus the beam. However; optically linking together perhaps 216 Grasers that are arranged in a 100 meter diameter array that fire down the open throat of an impeller wedge without need of gravity lenses or interference from sidewalls would enable precise focusing.

Drop out of hyper.

Deploy recon drones.

Drones position themselves in the precisely calculated future positions of where free falling or constantly accelerating targets will be when beam arrives. FTL communications helps. Drones fire a low power, not particularly focused gamma ray at the deploying ship. The deploying ship detects the gamma ray beacons, assjusts the phase shifters to focus and aim, then fires. Perhaps multiple shots are fired at multiple targets. Ship then jumps back into hyper and is gone before graser beam destroys multiple targets.
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Re: Sticky for Newbs - Dead Horses
Post by tlb   » Mon Jan 20, 2020 6:31 pm

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TFLYTSNBN wrote:Weber's descriptions and explanations of his Grasers implies extremely high power output and energy density but relatively limited range. I recall him posting something about the difficulty of focusing such a hot emitter. Gravity lenses can help focus the beam although they might have an astigmatism. Impeller wedges and sidewalls probably are somewhat imperfect and defocus the beam.

I do not believe that anyone has disputed that phased array grasers might work some day in our universe. The question is whether RFC would allow them, when he does not want unlimited range for high power grasers in the Honorverse.

If RFC does not want this to work, then it is appropriate that you are posting about it in a dead horse thread.
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Re: Sticky for Newbs - Dead Horses
Post by kzt   » Mon Jan 20, 2020 9:41 pm

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tlb wrote:
TFLYTSNBN wrote:Weber's descriptions and explanations of his Grasers implies extremely high power output and energy density but relatively limited range. I recall him posting something about the difficulty of focusing such a hot emitter. Gravity lenses can help focus the beam although they might have an astigmatism. Impeller wedges and sidewalls probably are somewhat imperfect and defocus the beam.

I do not believe that anyone has disputed that phased array grasers might work some day in our universe. The question is whether RFC would allow them, when he does not want unlimited range for high power grasers in the Honorverse.

If RFC does not want this to work, then it is appropriate that you are posting about it in a dead horse thread.

It's very difficult to figure out what exactly David visualized with the graser. I suspect it was basically a SF word for a big gun, so basically it behaves like he wanted.

So I think it's pointless to try to explain why it behaves the way it does. Duckk might know some people who could come up with a valid-in-universe explanation that David would agree to, but without that I'd just say "It is so written that it does not work that way. The End." If someone also wants to then attach an explanation as to how an actual gamma ray laser would work then that's fine, but I'd suggest using a link to a different thread, not as part of the dead horses thread directly.
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Re: Sticky for Newbs - Dead Horses
Post by tlb   » Mon Jan 20, 2020 10:59 pm

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kzt wrote:So I think it's pointless to try to explain why it behaves the way it does. Duckk might know some people who could come up with a valid-in-universe explanation that David would agree to, but without that I'd just say "It is so written that it does not work that way. The End." If someone also wants to then attach an explanation as to how an actual gamma ray laser would work then that's fine, but I'd suggest using a link to a different thread, not as part of the dead horses thread directly.

I have seen it argued in this forum that the Honorverse is simply a projection of our universe to several thousand years in the future; so if something is scientifically true here and now, then it also must be true in the Honorverse. For example when the Scrags were introduced, students of Biology were upset because they stated that genes do not act that way. But we now know ways to lock gene changes (at least in insects).

However even if what they had said was forever true, it is a fundamental misunderstanding of science fiction to prohibit the author from changing various aspects of science when building the world of the book; the only guiding principle is that the author should be consistent. So we have to accept the authors declaration that certain things are prohibited in his world that might be allowed in ours (and vice versa).
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Re: Dead Horses - Discussion
Post by kzt   » Mon Jan 20, 2020 11:06 pm

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I'm exceedingly impressed by how much David has maintained consistency and the world building, but there are points at which you just have to say 'umm, don't look behind this curtain.'
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Re: Sticky for Newbs - Dead Horses
Post by Loren Pechtel   » Mon Jan 20, 2020 11:36 pm

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ThinksMarkedly wrote:
Loren Pechtel wrote:VLB requires knowing the positions of your sensors I believe to a fraction of a wavelength. I don't think you can know your position relative to other ships that accurately. Note that on Earth it's done in the radio band, not visible light.


Sure you can know the positions. You can bounce a radio wave off it and measure the time it takes to come back. Radio Detection And Ranging has been known for nearly a century... it is, after all, "RADAR". Do that with multiple sources in 3D amongst themselves and you can accurately map their positions in 3D too (triangulation, though in space would it be "tetrahedrination?").


And you just revealed that you're out there with military-grade equipment. Somebody's going to come have a look. If you want to maintain stealth you need to restrict yourself to passive sensors.
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Re: Sticky for Newbs - Dead Horses
Post by Loren Pechtel   » Mon Jan 20, 2020 11:39 pm

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Joat42 wrote:
Joat42 wrote:VLB doesn't require knowledge of an exact position of each sensor, because they have been combining sensor data from telescopes all over the world since the 60's, it's all in how you number-crunch the data.

For optical interferometry, very large synthetic apertures is thing.
Loren Pechtel wrote:And we don't know exactly where those telescopes are relative to each other???

Of course we know the distance, but the precision is in tens or hundreds of meters, not VLB requires knowing the positions of your sensors I believe to a fraction of a wavelength as you suggested earlier.


Tens or hundreds of meters? We can survey locations far more accurately than that!
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Re: Dead Horses - Discussion
Post by ThinksMarkedly   » Tue Jan 21, 2020 12:51 am

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kzt wrote:I'm exceedingly impressed by how much David has maintained consistency and the world building, but there are points at which you just have to say 'umm, don't look behind this curtain.'


That's where David hides his perpetual motion machines.
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Re: Sticky for Newbs - Dead Horses
Post by ThinksMarkedly   » Tue Jan 21, 2020 12:56 am

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Loren Pechtel wrote:And you just revealed that you're out there with military-grade equipment. Somebody's going to come have a look. If you want to maintain stealth you need to restrict yourself to passive sensors.


Remember we were talking about a ship or ships that hypered in light-weeks to light-months out. The radar waves, which wouldn't be powerful enough to be detected at a distance anyway, travel at the same speed of the gamma ray beam that you're using as a weapon. The worst that would happen is that the target receives a packet of photons preceding the graser beam's arrival by a couple of minutes.
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