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This is Keith's opinions on Brad's next book.

The purpose of the bible is a non-fiction back of the envelope proof. Keep pushing the boundaries between good ideas and bad.

A fictional book would be good, but that is your next book.

Leaving the planet has new data and stories, better pictures and better editing, but it is not a proof. Something that is the best of both would be really awesome

Making a book 2x better will make sell 4x more copies. Market: 16-year old boys, Congressional staffers, etc. The goal is the the next book so good that friends demand their friends read it, and one that Oprah could understand, if not care to read. The 2003 book is close to that level if some things were removed.

Nontechnical suggestions

I believe these are important for market success

Anyone who goes to the trouble to read such a book will want a proof. It needs things like adaptic optics. You can make such a book readable by everyone and I am doing it with my book.

The Glass Giants Planets table has 1 or 2 too many columns. Your estimates of the cost of the 3rd and fourth ribbon are even more speculative so probably not necessary. Some of what is in your book isn't even your work. You can put them on a website. Any calculation which depends on 2 other calculations of yours is likely wrong. How confident are you even of the length it will be? Surely it is more settled than the payload, but is it truly settled?

I think you should shoot down microwave power beaming, but only use one number to communicate that idea, not the page of them.


We could have the shipping capacity for space ships from 46 tons to the 200 ton ribbon to the 116 ships on the 500 ton ribbon if we stay within the FLP traffic size climbers; and up to 350 ton ships using max ribbon limit

Two problems with above: 1. That sentence has no new information. 2. The idea of using the max ribbon limit instead of using FLP is bad and you shouldn't advocate it throughout the book. You should discuss this idea in your book as it is an interesting concept, then assume it will be implemented as you suggest throughout the rest.

The force from the wind perpendicular to the ribbon face required to break the initial and weakest ribbon is: MATHMATHMATH To do the calculation correctly we need to calculate the aerodynamic drag on the two distinct material areas, the ribbon or the set of strings or rods

Note that I don't want to suggest you remove your deployment schedule chart, the budget summary table, etc. Or your funny jokes. In total, I love your 2003 book. Please do not throw out the baby. I would feel horrible if you trimmed to much.

You might make 2 or 3x more money if you translate this book into the other big languages. I have translators who I'm sure would be interested.

Technical suggestions

I'm not the expert, but these are my considered opinions

I propose a 100 ton daily payload elevator. Focus on powers of 10: 1, 10, 100.

We should build the two ribbons 100% in parallel. We could even build 3 in case one of them doesn't make it.

We need to solve the 200 mph situation, or have a solution for humans.

What about the space station and the moon station? These come up right after the elevator. There is too much about Jupiter, etc. and not enough back of the envelope information of what is at GEO.

There are too many predictions of dates. Each one is a potential for error. Are you really sure that Venus is a century away? Then why do you even talk about it? I think it is decades after the elevator and that you are too pessimistic. I like what you have to say although like other parts it can be tightened up.

Also, we need something that takes 1 week to 1 month to go to Mars. If there is so much matter and energy out there, let's use it.

You need to think about whether we really need atoms from other asteroids in the form of knives. Are we really running out of atoms here? With carbon nanotubes replacing steel, that will free up lots of iron. What atoms are on the moon? That is a good question. It seems easier to get atoms from there, seeing as how we've already done that.

The anchor needs to be near land, a big electricity grid, etc. Pick as close to land as possible. I think Sea Launch is an interesting idea, but it doesn't scale to 10 ships, etc. We need to set something up that allows us to add a 2nd elevator right next door, and start to share resources. Plan for a phase 2, even if it isn't in your numbers. Do not paint yourself into a corner.

Some of these things are hard to get right. I might say no laser power beaming to earth, but it would provide energy for the moonbase. It might end up being the reverse. Don't go to deep on things that aren't core to your case.

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