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» Hatrack River Forum » Active Forums » Discussions About Orson Scott Card » Shadows in Flight, a stupid question

   
Author Topic: Shadows in Flight, a stupid question
Marek
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Just king of wondered, if all of Bean's body grows at the same rater, so that he is the larger version of a normally proportioned adult, why would his heart and lungs be too weak? Wouldn't his larger heart, veins, arteries, lungs, etc. be able to sustain his super sized body, since they would be on the same scale?

I know it seems to be accepted that people who turn into giants in the real world out grow their hearts, but I kind of figured the way it is described in the books, he should be okay.

Any thoughts?

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Geoffrey Card
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I'm pretty sure that as a body gets larger linearly, the work required to support it grows exponentially. Not sure WHY I believe that, but I heard it somewhere and it sounds reasonable [Smile]
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rivka
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quote:
Originally posted by Geoffrey Card:
I'm pretty sure that as a body gets larger linearly, the work required to support it grows exponentially.

Close. The organs' cross-sectional areas (which is the key issue) increase with the square of the linear dimensions; the stress grows with the volume, so with the cube.

A twenty-foot giant would break his own thighbones with every step he took.

http://galileoandeinstein.physics.virginia.edu/lectures/scaling.html

[ April 24, 2012, 01:37 AM: Message edited by: rivka ]

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Stephan
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Biggest reason I don't like being 6'4". I don't know too many that tall and about that make it to 90.
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Marek
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Cools, thanks for the info
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neo-dragon
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Commonly known as the Square/Cube Law.

Also very commonly ignored in fiction

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