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Thread: Humanity from scratch

  1. #1 Humanity from scratch 
    Forum Professor pyoko's Avatar
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    This is a hypothetical situation:
    • 100 000 people have been stranded on an uninhabited planet that is identical or very similar to Earth. There are no prior civilisations.
    • The people vary in expertise from scientists to agriculturists to factory workers.
    • All they have on them is the clothes they are wearing.
    • No tools, not even a pen knife, are available.
    • No books are available. All knowledge is in the heads of the populace.
    • The area(s) where they have been stranded contains ample fresh drinking water, has mild, pleasant weather, and has plenty of game wildlife around.
    • There are forests that can be readily used for timber etc.
    • The soil is fertile and there are open fields.
    • The space ship they came on disintegrated and not even a scrap is available (no metal scraps, no anything).
    Question:

    How many years would it take for the 100 000 person population to get back to the level of technology (and society, but not population numbers) that we are at today, assuming that among the 100 000 people are some very good scientific and practical minds?


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    Forum Radioactive Isotope cosmictraveler's Avatar
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    Depends upon what those people decide as to what they want to do with their society. Perhaps they will vote on using low tech to do things which they would need and not want high tech stuff. There's to many variables as to which way they will go. Perhaps some will want to go out on their own and not be a part of the group.


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    OK, let's assume that the "goal" of this group of people is to get back to the same technological level. And that pretty much everyone is on board.
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    Forum Radioactive Isotope cosmictraveler's Avatar
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    That's a very big leap to get everyone to want the same goals. But after saying that It would take many generations to get to a advanced society that could be where they were before they crashed. Also remember that there might be a search and rescue team that could find them and take them back to wherever they came from. I mean 100,000 people Is allot to lose so I'd think someone would be trying to locate them.
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  6. #5  
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    Quote Originally Posted by cosmictraveler View Post
    That's a very big leap to get everyone to want the same goals. But after saying that It would take many generations to get to a advanced society that could be where they were before they crashed. Also remember that there might be a search and rescue team that could find them and take them back to wherever they came from. I mean 100,000 people Is allot to lose so I'd think someone would be trying to locate them.
    They are the last 100 000 humans left in the Universe. Yes, a big stretch, but it's hypothetical and not very realistic. I was just thinking about how we would have to start off with making crude metals from ore, then crude tools etc. But it would be a lot more accelerated than what happened on Earth in reality. We do not have to dawdle or have dark ages.

    I put this in the General section because of the "stretch" of imagination involved.
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    Think of it as a sandbox type experiment. No need to complicate it by rescues, alien intervention, etc.
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    Forum Radioactive Isotope cosmictraveler's Avatar
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    They would at first just try to survive so all of their efforts would be allocated to food, water, homes and medicines. Then tools would go along with that. Tools can be made without metal , at first, but metal would be made eventually In a few generations If nothing out of the ordinary occurs to the society. So many things could happen. diseases, bad water, fighting and on and on.
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    The scenario gives the impression they don't have information either--that would set them back thousands of years as the survivors would be forced to learn to survive rather than have time to record what they know. Most of what they know would be worthless.
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    Quote Originally Posted by cosmictraveler View Post
    They would at first just try to survive so all of their efforts would be allocated to food, water, homes and medicines. Then tools would go along with that. Tools can be made without metal , at first, but metal would be made eventually In a few generations If nothing out of the ordinary occurs to the society. So many things could happen. diseases, bad water, fighting and on and on.
    You do not think metal would be made in the first generation (the people that crash landed). I know I would, after setting up a liveable area, would definitely mine a small amount of ore somewhere and make metal (copper or such). I do not see why it would take generations for metal tools.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post
    The scenario gives the impression they don't have information either--that would set them back thousands of years as the survivors would be forced to learn to survive rather than have time to record what they know. Most of what they know would be worthless.
    No, they have information. They have among them highly educated people from all walks of science and industry. They just don't have books/ computers etc. All knowledge is in the minds of those people.

    • The people vary in expertise from scientists to agriculturists to factory workers.
    • No books are available. All knowledge is in the heads of the populace.
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  12. #11  
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    agriculturalists*
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    Quote Originally Posted by pyoko View Post
    You do not think metal would be made in the first generation (the people that crash landed). I know I would, after setting up a liveable area, would definitely mine a small amount of ore somewhere and make metal (copper or such). I do not see why it would take generations for metal tools.
    Which metal tools would you make?
    And do they need to be metal?

    There are alternatives to a lot of metal tools. e.g. knives/arrowheads made from flint; hammers made from stone; spades made from wood - all quicker and easier to make than mining/smelting ore.
    This makes me think that metal would be a very low priority compared to establishing housing/public hygiene/agriculture/education/etc.
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    Quote Originally Posted by RedPanda View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by pyoko View Post
    You do not think metal would be made in the first generation (the people that crash landed). I know I would, after setting up a liveable area, would definitely mine a small amount of ore somewhere and make metal (copper or such). I do not see why it would take generations for metal tools.
    Which metal tools would you make?
    And do they need to be metal?

    There are alternatives to a lot of metal tools. e.g. knives/arrowheads made from flint; hammers made from stone; spades made from wood - all quicker and easier to make than mining/smelting ore.
    This makes me think that metal would be a very low priority compared to establishing housing/public hygiene/agriculture/education/etc.
    I can, as one person, likely make some metal on the weekend (from ore I find). Although I agree that we can use a lot (and will, in this situation) of materials other than metal, I still do not think it should take "generations" to get there. We have the knowledge and do not need to let things progress naturally. We can take control.
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    Quote Originally Posted by pyoko View Post
    This is a hypothetical situation: How many years would it take for the 100 000 person population to get back to the level of technology (and society, but not population numbers) that we are at today, assuming that among the 100 000 people are some very good scientific and practical minds?
    Steps:

    - Appoint a project management team with the 1st generation aim of recording knowledge for future generation transfer. This team will become the community leaders (to be voted into position by community with terms of say 5 years). The time in this position would depend on community vote. Later, productivity targets aligned with strategic plan (gaant chart) would be used as a basis for evaluating success and roles of entire community and it's groupings.
    - Assign the bulk of the community to hunter-collection/farming tasks with the aim of storing surpluses. Once surpluses have been obtained, some members on this group can be re-assigned to other sub-group tasks.
    - Assign some members as explorers to identify important resource points, water and food availability, safe environs for a community;
    - Assign some members to the task of critical resource extraction (eg. timber felling/ quarrying/ coal extraction etc.)
    - Assign some members as teachers to transfer oral knowledge amongst groups and retain knowledge. Important to retain knowledge integrity and prevent information loss;
    - Assign some members to healthcare tasks;
    - Assign some members to peace keeping/security roles and ensure that members of this group are are regularly rotated/re-assigned to prevent power-bases forming.
    - Assign some members to building tasks for safety/defence, community infrastructure projects and storage;
    - Determine most efficient and pratical means of retaining community information/knowledge - My guess would be that the traditional recording of oral knowledge in paper form might be the best bet using timber and pulp processes.
    - Assign small team to paper/writing production
    - Once paper/writing production completed then record and prepare strategic plan for the recording of essential milestones critical for achieving community objectives. Determine timelines and resources required and identify critical tasks. Ensure strategic plan adopts logical progression of precedent tasks that progress with gains in technological improvements. Alo ensure that specialisation occurs in progressive order to release members from working parties and commence on new projects. The Community leaders (project managers) would use this plan as a road map and this plan would be the basis for productivity targets and performance measures.
    - Once strategic plan agreed on, commence recording of oral knowledge for future generation transfer and commence roll-out of strategic plan. Make sure this occurs as rapidly as possible to prevent loss/destruction of integrity of critical information held by the community.
    - Estimated timeline assuming a realistic strategic plan with risk contingency measures and no major hiccups ....*picks number out of air* ....8 generations at say 50 years contribution per generation = 400 years


    EDIT: Timeline compressed given headstart with knowledge already acquired by community to say 6 generations or 300 years.

    :-))
    Last edited by Implicate Order; December 30th, 2013 at 11:00 PM.
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  16. #15  
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    Robinson Crusoe. I believe the tale was a fairly accurate representation of how people strain to build the civilization they're accustomed to. Even where the mother civilization is not appropriate to the new environment.

    Reconstruction in wake of catastrophe. Cities have burned before. Isn't it amazing how rapidly we rebuild? Of course unemployment drops to zero, and everything one does is profitable.


    Okay, now to answer "how many years to restore current technology?" I'd guess the second generation would complete most modern technologies we actually want. The first would be occupied mainly with preparing the infrastructure i.e. they would take care of the industrial revolution, so their offspring could recreate its nicer products. When I consider the transformations wrought by someone born in 1860, who lives to see the year 1960, two generations seems about right to me.

    I imagine four phases:

    1) Social/economic restructuring. Include establishing a government. This is dicey.

    2) Basic survival. This is easy, and our advanced knowledge helps in primitive endeavors like making fire, chipping stone, catching fish. After a few years, we'd be pros.

    3) Industrialization. This is hard, because a lot of things we can't shortcut, we've lost all knowledge of. How do you make a screw without a modern lathe? How do you make strong rope by hand or by primitive machine? Historically, it was what's properly called the early industrial revolution (ending around 1850) that was hard, because we did a lot of tinkering and learning without producing much of widespread impact. Steam engines and electric cables brought it all to application and acceleration.

    4) Post-industrialization. A bit weird. Because 100,000 is nothing like the global consumer economy that pulled this stuff from business plan to market. Is it really worthwhile to recreate the popup toaster or the car alarm? I think we'd strive to construct 3D printers and little universal computers before we had refrigerators in every home.
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    .. when are you going to stop pulling the other one Pong?
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    Would these people be well-versed in survival training techniques?

    Otherwise I imagine they'd be dead within a week.
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    Northern Horse Whisperer Moderator scheherazade's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Daecon View Post
    Would these people be well-versed in survival training techniques?

    Otherwise I imagine they'd be dead within a week.
    The premise in the hypothetical situation as presented in the OP is that the habitat is 'user-friendly' and that these people would have access to water and plants until they can become proficient in taking game and fish and setting food by. That is my understanding, anyway.
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    - Assign small team to paper/writing production
    - Once paper/writing production completed then record and prepare strategic plan for the recording of essential milestones critical for achieving community objectives. Determine timelines and resources required and identify critical tasks. Ensure strategic plan adopts logical progression of precedent tasks that progress with gains in technological improvements. Alo ensure that specialisation occurs in progressive order to release members from working parties and commence on new projects. The Community leaders (project managers) would use this plan as a road map and this plan would be the basis for productivity targets and performance measures.
    - Once strategic plan agreed on, commence recording of oral knowledge for future generation transfer and commence roll-out of strategic plan. Make sure this occurs as rapidly as possible to prevent loss/destruction of integrity of critical information held by the community.
    Me? Maybe it's the public servant coming out in me. But I'd put a much higher priority on permanent records of the knowledge of the various technicians and experts in the group.

    It's all very well for people to teach carpentry or crop rotation by oral transmission, but we know very well that messages get distorted over time. These people - and the paramedics and everyone else - need to get busy writing down stuff in any way possible as soon as possible. Put in 4 hours of the morning digging a latrine, then several more hours in the afternoon writing down the principles underlying latrine design, placement, maintenance.

    Which means finding suitable materials for writing on. To start with it'd probably be a fairly crude version of animal skin vellum. But being without access to modern medical services means that any one of your essential experts might very well be one of the first to die and all their expertise is lost before anyone could do an apprenticeship or memorise a whole treatise from oral sources.
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    Quote Originally Posted by adelady View Post
    Maybe it's the public servant coming out in me. But I'd put a much higher priority on permanent records of the knowledge of the various technicians and experts in the group.
    Well maybe it's the Marxist coming out in me, but if you feel paper so important, perhaps you'd like to toil in the tannery? So others can get down to the important business of writing on your paper.

    Ah, social/economic restructuring would be very dicey. We'd be clamoring for position. Each of us would want to dictate the laws, or enter our idiosyncratic points-of-view in the book of knowledge, or direct construction of that cool geodesic dome habitat we'd dreamed of. Or simply live off the work of others.

    Can we assume most people would rather pen their opinions and memoirs for cherished posterity than anonymously dig a latrine? If so should we not regulate the production of papers? Because seriously we know egotists will fancy themselves great authorities and they'll say anything to acquire and hold a position of status. That'd be a drag in every way. Okay, here's an idea: Ban personal authorship. Instead, institute a system of interview and interrogation. People will have no incentive to aggrandize their knowledge if they receive neither accolades nor profit from it. Also, a body tasked with extracting information will gather gems whose owners thought unimportant, and would've omitted from their own writings.
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    Well, I think you'd have a meeting an designate what needs to be done and DO IT!
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    Can we assume most people would rather pen their opinions and memoirs for cherished posterity than anonymously dig a latrine? If so should we not regulate the production of papers?
    In the mornings, demonstrate and teach the skills as well as the underlying principles - apprenticeship for budding latrine builders. In the afternoons, write down what you know. Do the same every day.

    Tannery? Fits in nicely with the principles relating to latrines.
    Number 1. Never put your tannery near a water source like a stream or a well, just as you keep latrines away from clean water sources.

    I presume the skills in the group would include butchers if not tanners. Learning to kill and dress carcases so that every single portion of them can be used for a variety of purposes might not be a skill that modern abattoir or retail butcher workers now have, but they'd be best placed to learn it and teach it. Learning to prepare animal skins to produce different leathers for footwear, garments, tents and other building materials, water and other storage containers and for paper should be a skill most people would need to learn. But while people still have garments from their initial supplies, that would be a good time to build up a stock of not-very-good vellum produced by all the apprentice tanners along with a basic range of containers and tent materials.

    Instead, institute a system of interview and interrogation. People will have no incentive to aggrandize their knowledge if they receive neither accolades nor profit from it.
    Oral transmission is the least effective way to do this. Remember, the person on the listening end will be obliged to be the teacher for others - faaaar too easy for things to go haywire.

    In a desperate situation like the one initially described everybody would be obliged to demonstrate skills, teach apprentices and record their knowledge. Aggrandizement has nothing to do with it. In that situation, a butcher is equivalent to a carpenter and both are equivalent to a nurse or a botanist and to every other trade and profession. And everyone would need to learn several skills from several other people - and all of them would have the obligation to record their knowledge for the benefit of everyone - especially those who aren't in their immediate group.

    I think you might be under a bit of a misapprehension about how hard primitive life is. This environment we're talking about is well supplied with potable water, animals and plant life. Anthropologists now estimate that most "primitive" groups in our history needed only four hours a day to get enough food for themselves and their families. The rest of the time was given over to weaving or making pots or such necessities and to story telling - plenty of time for literate people to write down their thoughts and record their knowledge.

    The other thought that just came to me. Without access to vaccines or any other modern medical facilities, it would be very important to manage everyone's workload so that fatigue doesn't make people susceptible to illnesses for which there are no drugs or other treatments. Nor should they work when they're too tired to avoid injuries that might become infected. Making the standard workday include a substantial segment dedicated to learning, teaching, recording would be a good health and safety practice.
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    If you are set down randomly somewhere on earth, the likelihood of being near an outcropping of metal ore would be rather slim. Without any tools, you're in big trouble right away, even with an abundance of game around. How are you going to catch it? Maybe you could rig up a deadfall trap or something. You're probably going to have to reinvent flint knapping. Even that's going to be a challenge, unless there is a goodly supply of flint nearby. That's probably going to require some searching.

    You can go ahead and try to record your modern knowledge, but I don't think it will be much good. People won't find much use for it, and it will be forgotten in a couple of generations. They're going to need real survival knowledge, like hunting, farming, weaving, toolmaking, and so forth.
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    You can go ahead and try to record your modern knowledge, but I don't think it will be much good. People won't find much use for it, and it will be forgotten in a couple of generations.
    Oh I think a good bit of biology would be helpful. Germ theory for understanding of general hygiene and disease transmission along with good basic nursing/ midwifery practice would be useful if well taught and properly practised.

    Teaching basic cooking hygiene and safe preserving practices - initially by drying and by fermenting vinegars for the purpose - but also recording how salt, alcohol, honey, and sugars can be used for those purposes once they're more generally available. Finding a good source of salt would be a high priority for such an isolated group. It's not clear that there is an ocean as we know it, but you can extract salts from river and lake waters if you know what you're doing.

    The basics of good animal husbandry - and selective breeding - for maintaining healthy animals for food and for other helpful roles. Maybe even beasts of burden if there's anything big enough that can be bred to be docile enough - or animals of goat or dog size can be trained to work in teams if you select to breed the desirable characteristics.

    Basic physics of levers, wheels and simple hydraulic devices (like rams) should be recorded with schematics as a basic permanent record for technology. Levers can be worked out from first principles with branches from trees, but rams and similar water based technology have to wait until there are pipes - of some sort - so they'll have to be represented some way or another.

    You know that the specific knowledge will eventually be dissipated if not lost so you want to set up the habits and practices and skills on the best possible footing. So that people in 2 or 3 generations time will have appropriate knowledge to make best use of what they read. Most importantly, the original group and their descendants should know how to record their own observations of their environment and incorporate that knowledge into the total knowledge available to the group as a whole.

    Because if you're serious about developing an advanced civilisation in double quick time, you'll need to incorporate teaching reading, writing and maths - to everyone. Otherwise you risk setting up a powerful priest style caste with "mystical powers" to decode documents and equations which anyone of average intelligence should be able to understand but access will be denied by people hanging onto their source of social power and prestige - they'd prefer to keep the majority innumerate and illiterate. Which will decrease the total available talents and skills for the population as a whole to develop further.
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    Quote Originally Posted by adelady View Post
    Can we assume most people would rather pen their opinions and memoirs for cherished posterity than anonymously dig a latrine? If so should we not regulate the production of papers?
    In the mornings, demonstrate and teach the skills as well as the underlying principles - apprenticeship for budding latrine builders. In the afternoons, write down what you know. Do the same every day.
    You're asking a random sample of 100,000 to each determine what they know that is most worth sharing, to be effective teachers, and coherent authors every day, yet frugal with the animal skin and squid ink.

    Quote Originally Posted by adelady View Post
    Instead, institute a system of interview and interrogation. People will have no incentive to aggrandize their knowledge if they receive neither accolades nor profit from it.
    Oral transmission is the least effective way to do this. Remember, the person on the listening end will be obliged to be the teacher for others - faaaar too easy for things to go haywire.
    Not oral transmission. If we seek individuals for interview (by state scribe), or summon them for questioning, we extract knowledge to paper in a deliberate organized fashion. Just what is worth knowing and in what priority is better decided by public debate than individual initiative. A person might be asked to write a treatise on a particular topic, or become a full time instructor, but people shouldn't be allowed the temptation to supply knowledge for fame or profit.

    If left to personal authorship we'd have 100,000 disparate ramblings of varying style and quality, on random subjects, formatted by daily entry. Information salad. Then try organizing it while retaining the repetitive or obscure, without going haywire.
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    Get to know the skills of the 100,000. Just one of them may be Sid Meier. :-))
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    yet frugal with the animal skin and squid ink.
    Frugal? If what they write isn't good enough you just scrape the surface off the vellum and start again. That's what the monks used to do.

    Squid ink? I was thinking more along the lines of charcoal or other pigment rubbed into impressions in the surface.

    Fame? Profit? Nothing like it. I was thinking more along the lines of social obligation. You have skills or knowledge - you're obliged to transmit them to as many people as possible. Keeping knowledge to yourself would be a social no-no in such circumstances I would have thought.

    I can see no reason why the butchers shouldn't all put their heads together and come up with a standard manual of practice - from animal handling all the way through to sausage making. Nurses and botanists and cheese makers can do the same. Seeing as we're talking 100000 people, I'd think that writing stuff down that can be passed from group to group for critique, amendments and revisions would be a good idea.

    Personal authorship? Just like any committee undertaking. If you write a few paragraphs on setting broken limbs, she can write about managing fever, I'll write what I know about managing sprains or identifying deafness in children or whatever, and you over there seem to know about ... so you've got that job and you at the back can't hide, you're left with ... unless you've got a better idea. We'll get back together in 10 days time and talk about editing and getting non-experts to check for readability before we send it on.

    I'd expect a few people with neat, tiny writing (with maybe accounting/ engineering/ architecture in their background) might finish up as scribes for getting as much legible stuff as possible onto the smallest possible area of writing surface once the text has been refined. (There's no reason why people wouldn't write their drafts and outlines by scratching in sand or dirt before approaching a precious piece of vellum.)
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  29. #28  
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    100,000 people. Calculating the BMR (Basal Metabolic Rate) of both the men and women, assuming all were of a healthy weight (unlikely), averaged out each person would need around 1,600 calories a day. In one pound of ground beef, there is around 600- 800 calories... so each person would need to consume 2 pounds of beef daily. (Beef is just a way to define calories for the meat, I wouldn't imagine this place would have cattle.) 200,000 pounds of meat to sustain the 100,000 people a day in terms of calories, along with fruits/vegetables/grains (All of which would have to be in season, unlikely), optimistically let's say only 1/2 of the calories came from meat. Now we're at 100,000 pounds of meat a day, let's assume there are deer here, which in my opinion would be the most likely animal inhabitants due to the widespread distribution of the species. As a member of a rather rural and somewhat traditional family, I am familiar with how much meat can be gathered from a single deer. A buck weighing 150 pounds will give you roughly 45-55 pounds of good meat, the rest is bone and guts, neither of which are terribly palatable/easy to cook properly/nutritious asides from a few organs. But let's be optimistic and say that every deer killed would provide 60 pounds of meat. 60 pounds of meat would feed 60 people for one day, ergo in order to feed everyone, 1,666 deer would need to be killed daily. Out of the 100,000 people, how many would be athletic and knowledgeable enough to hunt said 1,666 dear a day? Optimistically, let's say that more than %1.666 of the population can do this. Also assuming that every single one of said percentage kills one deer a day via CRUDE hunting instruments (I.E spears, rocks, traps). The more I think about it, the less likely I find that a large percentage of the original 100,000 would survive more than a few months. Within several years, I believe the numbers would dwindle down to significantly smaller population. Those who would survive said change would be those who could provide for themselves, so the number of agriculturalists/hunters/biologists/etc would be significantly higher than those in more technologically oriented disciplines. My guess for getting back to the original level of technology, 600-1,000 years due to time spent trying to simply survive.
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  30. #29  
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    Quote Originally Posted by pyoko View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post
    The scenario gives the impression they don't have information either--that would set them back thousands of years as the survivors would be forced to learn to survive rather than have time to record what they know. Most of what they know would be worthless.
    No, they have information. They have among them highly educated people from all walks of science and industry. They just don't have books/ computers etc. All knowledge is in the minds of those people.
    Which quite honestly would be very little. I have probably 40 books in my home representing my Masters knowledge of meteorology, and another 20 or so for my knowledge of education....of that I probably remember a third to half (and I'm being extremely generous)...now left in a situation where I don't have have paper to wipe my butt. My Maine guide knowledge about how to track, build shelters, dress and cook game from 30 years ago would probably be MUCH more valuable to teach and transmit than the equations of motion or laws of thermodynamics. The best all "this education" could hope for is to transmit some of the methods used--most of the rest would be both difficult and impractical to record compared to just surviving.
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    A buck weighing 150 pounds will give you roughly 45-55 pounds of good meat, the rest is bone and guts, neither of which are terribly palatable/easy to cook properly/nutritious asides from a few organs.
    Firstly, people who can't be extravagant with meat have no compunction about using the whole of an animal. Sausage-making is a good way of using all that stuff as well as being calorie dense with a lot of the fat from the animal. (An aunt of my father's was reputed to use everything but the squeal whenever they killed a pig.) And large animals aren't usually the main source of protein / calories for people in such circumstances. Small animals - think rabbits, cavies, lizards, snakes, pigeons, ducks, geese - are much more likely to be eaten more often. And they're much easier to kill - and many of them produce eggs which are also high quality fat and protein.. Of course, there's that other protein source we don't like to think about - insects.

    If there are streams, wetlands and rivers, there should be fish and shellfish available at various seasons. I'm presuming that the 100000 wouldn't be gathered in a single city but divided into sustainable settlements - 20 to 50 families, and that everyone would have equitable access to water and the fishing possible there. If I were in one of these, I'd certainly try to build one or more of those fish farm/ holding pool/ barrier arrangements that indigenous Australians used to have on some of our rivers. And manipulating the edges of wetlands - to get more "edge" - gives much higher productivity of small shellfish as well as more nesting spaces for waterbirds.
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    The number of people (100,000) is far too large to stay in one location for any significant period of time. (I live near a city of 25,000 people and the population density is far too high for the carrying capacity of this terrain, hence everything has to be shipped in by truck.) No matter how resource rich the immediate environment, that many people would soon put a strain upon said resources unless there is some dispersal, in my opinion. Most important would be the need to site and manage human waste so that there is no contamination of usable resources or vectors for disease and illness.
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    The OP wasn't really about survival skills, and assured us food and resources wouldn't be too difficult.

    Quote Originally Posted by adelady View Post
    Personal authorship? Just like any committee undertaking. If you write a few paragraphs on setting broken limbs, she can write about managing fever, I'll write what I know about managing sprains or identifying deafness in children or whatever, and you over there seem to know about ... so you've got that job and you at the back can't hide, you're left with ... unless you've got a better idea. We'll get back together in 10 days time and talk about editing and getting non-experts to check for readability before we send it on.
    Okay then. I'd gotten the impression you thought people should do this as individuals, each sitting down in the evening to write whatever they judged important, each publicly expounding on whatever they thought people ought to know.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by pyoko View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post
    The scenario gives the impression they don't have information either--that would set them back thousands of years as the survivors would be forced to learn to survive rather than have time to record what they know. Most of what they know would be worthless.
    No, they have information. They have among them highly educated people from all walks of science and industry. They just don't have books/ computers etc. All knowledge is in the minds of those people.
    Which quite honestly would be very little. I have probably 40 books in my home representing my Masters knowledge of meteorology, and another 20 or so for my knowledge of education....of that I probably remember a third to half (and I'm being extremely generous)...now left in a situation where I don't have have paper to wipe my butt. My Maine guide knowledge about how to track, build shelters, dress and cook game from 30 years ago would probably be MUCH more valuable to teach and transmit than the equations of motion or laws of thermodynamics. The best all "this education" could hope for is to transmit some of the methods used--most of the rest would be both difficult and impractical to record compared to just surviving.
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    People can learn things they never thought about when pressed. Our brains can adapt to circumstances. People have been stranded and called upon to provide for themselves till rescue. Learning those survival skill sets can be done.
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    The OP wasn't really about survival skills, and assured us food and resources wouldn't be too difficult.
    That's all very well. But the most important resources for survival, other than nutrition, aren't provided in nature.

    Without vaccines or anaesthetics, nor the capacity for super hot steam to sterilise bandages (and non-existent surgical equipment and difficult to sterilise substitutes), there's a lot of vital knowledge that such a group would need to be able to survive with basic nursing and midwifery care. No caesareans for difficult/ prolonged childbirth just for starters. Only unanaesthetised extractions to deal with abscesses in teeth - and only if you can devise a tool strong enough to do the extraction.

    Though I do think a lot of problems for such a group would be prevented if they ensured 100% vaccination rates for absolutely everything for absolutely everybody before they got started. If no one can get sick with whooping cough or rubella, it won't be in the population to be transmitted in the first place.
    "Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak; courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen." Winston Churchill
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    Quote Originally Posted by adelady View Post
    The OP wasn't really about survival skills, and assured us food and resources wouldn't be too difficult.
    That's all very well. But the most important resources for survival, other than nutrition, aren't provided in nature.

    Without vaccines or anaesthetics, nor the capacity for super hot steam to sterilise bandages (and non-existent surgical equipment and difficult to sterilise substitutes), there's a lot of vital knowledge that such a group would need to be able to survive with basic nursing and midwifery care. No caesareans for difficult/ prolonged childbirth just for starters. Only unanaesthetised extractions to deal with abscesses in teeth - and only if you can devise a tool strong enough to do the extraction.

    Though I do think a lot of problems for such a group would be prevented if they ensured 100% vaccination rates for absolutely everything for absolutely everybody before they got started. If no one can get sick with whooping cough or rubella, it won't be in the population to be transmitted in the first place.
    HOW would you get the vaccines?
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  38. #37  
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    Before you're stranded.
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    Quote Originally Posted by adelady View Post
    Before you're stranded.
    ok...that made me laugh...and yes...that I a wise move!
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    Quote Originally Posted by adelady View Post
    The OP wasn't really about survival skills, and assured us food and resources wouldn't be too difficult.
    That's all very well. But the most important resources for survival, other than nutrition, aren't provided in nature.
    So you're saying initial illness and deaths would set us back some years?

    My guesstimate for "How many years would it take?" assumed population health comparable to Europeans 300 years ago (they basically reach that level of development after ~5 years). Then during their 1700-1900 AD period they'd suffer slightly less health problems than historic Earthlings. So like their ancestors they too would suffer flu epidemics, infant mortality, die from gum infections etc. Yet factoring accelerated development (advanced knowledge + benefit of hindsight) I reckoned the last member of 1st generation would reach retirement age in 1900 AD.

    People said there'd be crushing hardship initially. Food scarcity and disease. Okay, so for ease of calculation let's say practically zero technological development is possible during the crisis. How many years to emerge from it?
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