Re: Even more basic construction ideas.

> Well, I do want to eventually build it, or at least see it built.
> My worry with a smaller structure is functionality.
> Can a "small" structure be stable enough and permanent enough to 
> use
> for this kind of structure?

Stability depends on several factors, one of which is scale.  Another
is weight distribution.  Cruise ships feel extremely stable, and are
only about 1 acre per deck for the smaller ones.  The last cruise I
took was on a 13 "story" boat, and it was basically rock solid stable.
I couldn't feel it move at all, except when first starting up -- there
a slight "lurch."

> And another question... what about buildings?  How high would they 
> be
> able to go?  How stable and "ground-like" are these platforms?

Um, you're stuck in a "ground based" design paradigm.  Who said 
that the buildings had to be entirely above the surface?  Assuming
sufficient waterproofing (shouldn't be too hard -- we can build
"sealab" type structures all day long, and spherical geodesics are
ideal for this sort of thing) there is no reason that I see that it would
have to be on top of the platform.

Bucky designed, at one point, a 1 mile per side half octahedron.  His 
design was for a floating city, and since the upper floors decreased in 
size so rapidly, the vast majority of the mass was near the bottom,
providing stability.  Low center of gravity.  It also displaced, due to 
the huge surface area at the bottom, only a few tens of feet of water, 
allowing it to be moored in a harbor.  I think the projected population
was in the ballpark of a million people.

> > Personally, I think its a waste of time designing big floating 
> cities
> > when no small ones exist.  The practical experience of overcoming

They do exist, though not in the same way you're describing.  Cruise
ships are floating cities.  There is one that's a super ship, but I can't
remember its name.  Discovery channel did a special on it.  It's over
a mile long, and is more self sufficient than anything before it.

These are the predecessors to sea-topia platforms.

> that the rest of the geometry of the platform stays the same).  But
> what about under water... if shape similar to an upside-down U is to 
> be
> used... should we follow the iceberg 1/3:2/3 ratio, and have the 
> "legs"
> of the U go down a long way (again a subjective number, say 500m), 
> or
> can they be shorter?  I don't know the answers to any of these
> questions, but they seem pretty fundamental.

The iceberg 1/3:2/3 ratio is true only because of the specific gravity of
ice and water.  It's where the forces balance out.

     -- Chuck Knight

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