"It's not spiders I dislike, just people." -Petra
Question #91866 posted on 11/28/2018 8:54 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

If you had the power to create your own alternate reality, what would it be like? How would it be different or the same from current reality? What would the weather, creatures, social structure, etc. be?

-Windrose

A:

Dear Directional, 

All of the planets in the solar system would be habitable for humans, and the interplanetary space travel would be easy and fast. Each planet has a unique climate, comparative to characteristics they have in this reality (example, Jupiter is windy, Neptune is mostly water (like a tropical planet!), Pluto has rejoined the gang and is the prime spot for all things snow related, Venus doesn't rain acid, but it's rainy and misty and beautiful like the Pacific North West... or Norway.) Earth's climate becomes more generally temperate, and we get better autumn than we do now. Continents are not like they are now. Not every planet has plate tectonics, etc. Geography of each planet is unique. 

Initially, I thought maybe I'd just redo this reality, but take out slavery and wars and imperialism and sickness and all the bad things... but the fact of the matter is, humanity has learned from those experiences. We've grown to where we are today because of the history of those who came before us, stupid as their decisions might have been. Somy new reality still has things that need to be fixed. It still has concerning history, though that history may be different than ours, and I've decided that racism doesn't get to exist in this reality. It just doesn't. However, there is still sickness, still people that need to be helped, still sad things. Mankind needs space to progress, so my alternate reality couldn't possibly be perfect in every sense of the word. 

Culture still exists, but people celebrate and respect differences between groups. The solar system is a mosaic of beautiful people of all kinds, more than what we have now. Humans can be born on any of the planets, so there are more cultures than we can possibly imagine in current terms. Each has its traditions and languages etc. just like today. But there is also a universal language that everyone learns in school, tandem to their primary language. This way, everyone can communicate with each other! 

Fashion and food vary mainly by planet. You can tell when someone is from Neptune or from Saturn or Mercury, because the climate and geography of each determine the lifestyle, unsurprisingly. In general, people have realized they care more about experiences and less about having nice things... so people travel from planet to planet often to learn about the various cultures and such. Tourism is one of the major industries. 

There are only planetary governments, not countries anymore. However, each planet is also subdivided into different clusters, and each cluster is further subdivided. The Interplanetary Council consists of a planetary ambassador from each planet, and councilors from each cluster. There is no single leader, because the solar system has a lot of people in it, and finding one person would be hard. The ambassadors make up the main committee, though their actions are monitored and advised by the secondary ruling body, full of the cluster councilors.  It's a lot like the representative government that we have in the U.S., but there are no parties and no president. The planetary ambassadors are basically presidents of the individual planets, though. The Interplanetary Council focuses on solving social issues and monitoring/maintaining resource management and trade between planets. They try to keep the number of laws to a minimum because having laws that govern an entire solar system AND being able to implement them is kinda dumb. The guiding principle of the Ruling Document that guides legislation for the Council is based largely on fundamental human morals that have been agreed upon after many years of studying various religious groups, cultural groups, and human philosophy. In general, good human morals guide everyone.

Empathy, kindness, and charity have been implemented into the curriculum of the schools, which is highly successful at producing community-oriented citizens. So successful, in fact, that the only rehabilitation center (there are no prisons) for the whole galaxy is located on Ceres, and only the totally impenitent are sent there, with expectations to return to their home planet when they have been assessed as rehabilitated. (Not everyone does return because humans are not infallible, and even though in general we've got morals sorted out, there will always be a few bad eggs.)  There is an Interplanetary Military, but the planets are peaceful, so it's mostly just for enforcing laws when necessary or dealing with problems that arise regarding trade. Mostly, they're like supervisors. They do also plan ahead for the day when humans are contacted by aliens. Planetary police forces are used to enforce laws on a more local level and are heavily supplemented by robotic police drones that are very friendly. 

Flora and Fauna are also planet specific. Life on Earth is a good blueprint for understanding which kinds of plants and creatures exist where. Watery planets have a lot of aquatic animals, of course. Drier climates have cacti and lizards... Earth Evolution is pretty indicative of which traits work best where. That being said, given how much expansion having 9 full planets allows, it is hard to predict what kinds of evolutionary diversity would exist on each of the planets. Maybe birds have hands and more animals develop opposable thumbs, and more plants are like succulents. Who knows! 

Humans also have a keener sense of intuition and trust that intuition. While science in this new reality far surpasses what we are familiar with, intuition is also incredibly necessary. It allows us to know who is most in need of help, prepare better for unexpected events, and make better decisions in general. 

While I could probably go into significantly further detail, I think that's a good place to stop. People write novels based on this question. That's how we ended up with Harry Potter and Ender's Game. So before I go developing characters and plot lines and more complex social structures, I'll just end with one other idea that may get you thinking. Watch this. Wouldn't it be cool if there was a reality where people could control their size so we could be as tall as mountains or small enough to play soccer on a dish sponge? Totally rad. 

Cheers, 

Guesthouse

A:

Dear you,

Do I also have all of the knowledge to create a good alternate reality? Honestly, creating an alternate reality sounds hard, so I would probably just copy and paste the old reality and make changes one at a time. Here's my first three changes:

  • Passion fruit trees grow well in pretty much every environment. Fresh passion fruit for all!
  • Penguins also do well in all the environments. Pet penguins!
  • No more cancer! Cancer sucks and it has to go.

Those are just the ones of the top of my head. As I learned about all the crazy physics, biology, geology and all that stuff I'd go for something more magical, but I think this is a good place to start.

Peace,

Tipperary

A:

Dear person,

In my alternate reality, people would love each other and humanity in general more than they do. They wouldn't be forced, they would just naturally have more altruistic inclinations.

Also, everyone would have magic powers. 

Also, ice cream would be healthy.

-Sheebs

A:

Dear citizen kant,

I am indecisive, and therefore in my alternate reality I'd have the option to alternate between realities at will without completely wrecking the former ones à la Rick and Morty.

Suerte,

--Ardilla Feroz