Date: 2019-04-07 01:25 pm (UTC)
zotz: (Default)
From: [personal profile] zotz
There's a trailing " in the URL of that link.

Date: 2019-04-07 04:38 pm (UTC)
armiphlage: (Default)
From: [personal profile] armiphlage
"2: For some reason Piper imagined utterly enormous starships. Each freighter could hold a significant fraction of the US’s industrial output. It’s not clear why they have to be so huge or exactly WHAT will fill those echoing holds."

Not sure if Piper considered it, but it's the logic used by shipping lines investing in massive 10,000 TEU container ships. If you have to hire the same number of crew for either a tiny ship or a big ship, and the incremental operating cost for a big ship is low, you go big or go home.

They're now building ships more than 20,000 TEU. Each ship carries more than five times the amount transported by a WWII North Atlantic convoy.


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/OOCL_Hong_Kong

Date: 2019-04-07 06:01 pm (UTC)
graydon: (Default)
From: [personal profile] graydon
Absolute minimum size for a starship in Piper's future history was around two hundred feet in diameter; a pinnace or a yacht. They all seem to have carniculture vats and hydroponic gardens to support relatively long duration (but not indefinite) closed-loop environmental systems.

Intrasystem ships are often much smaller, so it's possible the hyperdrive is just huge; we get an explicit mention that below a certain size, the intrasystem ships aren't worth converting to starships.

Plus the artificial gravity is spherical and we never see collapsium in anything other than flat sheets and smooth convex curves, so if you need surface area for something (like waste heat radiators!), you're stuck with a much larger volume of ship.

I suspect a big part of the volume at starship mission start is ice, because making the heat management work for three thousand hours in hyperspace otherwise seems challenging.

Date: 2019-04-07 06:06 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
It seems quite likely to me he was following that logic. World trade was expanding rapidly during Piper's time, and he might have just looked at the graphs and extrapolated that in a few centuries we would indeed be shipping more goods than were produced in all of Earth's factories in 1960. And the switch from coal to oil powered freighters happened in Piper's lifetime, which caused huge reductions in needed crew.

--
Nathan H.

Date: 2019-04-08 01:51 am (UTC)
kedamono: (Default)
From: [personal profile] kedamono
And the fact that these monsters could land on a world is impressive. Thankfully they used contragravity so no turning vast areas into molten glass with every landing.

Date: 2019-04-08 01:44 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
The name Poictesme presumably a James Branch Cabell reference.

Are his works a potential 'tears' reread?

(All I recall is the policy of politeness when interacting with mysterious strangers, and a strange sense that the denouement of one of the novels involved trading an adventurers life (or the life of a writer?) for the tyranny of the pram in the hallway. As a child I was mystified why this was considered a trade up.

Curious how much of this is left after the suck fairy takes her due --- does it crumble to pieces, or are they robust in their peculiar individuality?)

Date: 2019-04-08 11:42 am (UTC)
jreynolds197: A dinosaur. (Default)
From: [personal profile] jreynolds197
Poictesme is a Cabell reference.

I read some Cabell way back in the day. I read The Silver Stallion and found it amusing. Figures of Earth was more of a struggle. I made it 1/3 of the way through Jurgen and put it aside.

I found JBC's treatment of women majorly offputting - and that was to the me of the 1980s. He's one of the authors who, while influential, has not stood the test of time. IMO, of course.

That being said, I'd be happy if he came up in a Tears reread.

Date: 2019-04-08 05:23 pm (UTC)
jbwoodford: (Default)
From: [personal profile] jbwoodford
From the novel:
That had been two hundred years ago, at the beginning of the Seventh Century, Atomic Era. The name "Poictesme" told that--Surromanticist Movement, when they were rediscovering James Branch Cabell. Old Genji Gartner, the scholarly and half-piratical space-rover whose ship had been the first to enter the Trisystem, had been devoted to the romantic writers of the Pre-Atomic Era. He had named all the planets of the Alpha System from the books of Cabell, and those of Beta from Spenser's Faerie Queene, and those of Gamma from Rabelais. Of course, the camp village at his first landing site on this one had been called Storisende.

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