Thread: Tech levels
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Old June 23rd, 2018, 06:05 AM
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I think what we are discussing is the difference between science and technology. the two are often treated as interchangeable, but they are not quite the same thing, as things like Damascus steel demonstrate.

it is quite possible for a civilisation to utilise technology based on science you don't understand (for example, magnetic compasses, or Damascus steel), and the reverse is also true to a degree (for example, Binary maths was a thing long before computing systems gave it a real world application)

a Lower tech world that was in contact with the interstellar community would have access to very advanced science, but would lack the ability to create devices that can utilise that scientific knowledge. For example, Having a complete understanding of the forces driving the weather is one thing, but being able to collect, collate, interpret and extrapolate weather information into a accurate forecast requires a great deal of infrastructure, and serious computing power, and may would be beyond a world at a pre-stellar tech level.

to use a pair of quotes form one of the greatest Sci Fi strategy games ever made:

Originally Posted by Chairman Sheng-ji Yang, form Sid Meiers Alpha Centauri
Technological advance is an inherently iterative process. One does not simply take sand from the beach and produce a Dataprobe. We use crude tools to fashion better tools, and then our better tools to fashion more precise tools, and so on. Each minor refinement is a step in the process, and all of the steps must be taken.

Originally Posted by "Col. Corazon Santiago, from [I
Sid Meiers Alpha Centauri[/I]" ]I have often been asked: if we have traveled between the stars, why can we not launch the simplest of orbital probes? These fools fail to understand the difficulty of finding the appropriate materials on this Planet, of developing adequate power supplies, and creating the infrastructure necessary to support such an effort. In short, we have struggled under the limitations of a colonial society on a virgin planet. Until now.
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