|Credit: NASA, ESA, S. Beckwith (STScI), and The Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA)|
In response to some comments I made on speculative lighter-than-air organisms on the Planet Furaha blog I was invited to write a two part guest post. Ballonts VIII: Blue Sky Thinking Part 1 and Part 2 have now been published. This made me think that my thoughts on speculative evolution and other matters might be of interest to people. So, here is my own blog where I can publish those thoughts on similar topics to see if anyone is actually interested.
I have recently rekindled my childhood interest in both biology and space through the field of astrobiology. Therefore discussing world building in relation to astrobiology seems to be a good starting place.
Astrobiology is the study of the origin, evolution, distribution, and future of life in the universe.
As my education and career have been in physics, I thought I would take a bottom up approach to investigate the physical nature of exoplanets (i.e. planets around another star) before considering what life might evolve under those circumstances. Since I will be attempting to consider scientifically accurate concepts this means that I will be leaning towards a "hard science fiction" approach.
There are many things to consider when creating an entire world from scratch, so that should give me plenty of world building related topics to write about. I cannot promise to produce a fully populated star system complete with rich ecosystems in just seven days but, hopefully it will take less than 3.5 billion years though!
As I am a physicist I will inevitably try to illustrate concepts using charts when appropriate. I don't wish to scare anyone off by doing this as the speculative evolution and/or world building community is small enough already. I will therefore use friendly xkcd style charts, such as the one below showing what I plan to do over the coming months. Only time will tell if I succeed at this...
Unfortunately, I am no artist and so I won't be producing stunning images of this speculative world. Perhaps with some practice I may be able to produce something but for the foreseeable future I will focus more on scientific aspects and less on the artistic side of things. You'll just have to use your imagination but then, that's what this is really all about, isn't it?
My own speculative evolution project involves a planet called Khthonia orbiting twin red dwarf stars. As with all such projects it is an ongoing work of art and this blog will give me an excuse to organise my thoughts on this topic. Writing down what is swirling around in my head on this will certainly be useful to me and hopefully it will be useful for others too. The following posts will therefore cover my journey into various areas of science to attempt to craft an alien yet realistic exoplanet that is teeming with life.
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