33 posts tagged with hypothetical.
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Terminal velocity of an Etruscan shrew

Smaller, lighter animals can fall from further up without being harmed (I believe). Is there a mammal that is so small it could fall from any height and not be hurt? Is my basic premise wrong? Does terminal velocity figure into the explanation?
posted by Naib on Aug 25, 2016 - 7 answers

Software that makes the user design the User Interface before using it

I am looking for software (no video games; see inside for explanation) that lets you design the graphical user interface however you wish before you start actually using the software. [more inside]
posted by 2ghouls on Nov 11, 2015 - 24 answers

At what point have I committed a crime?

At what point in the following hypothetical sequence of events would I have committed a crime? (You are not my lawyers) [more inside]
posted by JDHarper on Aug 10, 2015 - 25 answers

Please indulge me in my 100% hypothetical work situation

I know, what good is worrying about something that hasn't happened yet? Well, I am anyway. I am fairly certain that my supervisor in our very small office will be leaving her job soon. I am also fairly certain that when this happens, I will be offered her job. Our boss is lazy and this has always been her way of doing things (maybe I am giving myself too much credit?). While I sometimes like my work, I am also sometimes miserable, and I have been sending out applications for other jobs for a while now. I really, really, really do not want my supervisor's position for many reasons, not the least of which is that it doesn't align with what I want to do with myself career-wise anymore. I know there would also be no significant pay raise. What would you do in this situation? Decline and stay in your current position? Accept the new one and then jet when the time comes? I realize there are a ton of ifs involved, but I feel like I need to think about it.
posted by sandwiches on Oct 18, 2013 - 10 answers

Holding the dog over the toilet, yes or no.

100% hypothetical question. I saw a tiny dog being walked today who couldn't have weighed more than 10 pounds. I wondered if such a tiny creature had to be walked at all, couldn't you just train it to go when you held it over the toilet, if it was going to remain tiny for its entire life? Please note I'm not planning to do this. I just want to know if it would be possible. I don't have a dog, and I don't want to have a dog, toilet-trained or not. This is just not an easy or quick thing to google because people use "toilet/potty training" to describe general housebreaking. Thanks for any insight you can provide.
posted by bleep on Aug 29, 2013 - 25 answers

How can a person give themselves cancer?

Hypothetic/literary filter: Book character is looking for ways to die that are self inflicted, but would like it to seem like a deadly disease, but one that kills over a period of about 6 months. All I can come up with are nitrosamines but I don't think that is a sure thing. Any ideas? [more inside]
posted by htid on Feb 13, 2013 - 26 answers

Fooling a Blood Test (Not in the way that you think)

How can one simulate a medical condition that involves low potassium, low calcium, fewer electrolytes, and low blood pressure? [more inside]
posted by wolfdreams01 on Nov 13, 2012 - 19 answers

Hypothetical: Skin Graft Wedding Rings

Hypothetical Question: Would it be possible to trade skin grafts with someone (cosmetically/ superficially) in lieu of wedding rings? Would a plastic surgeon be willing to do it, if it is possible? [more inside]
posted by howgenerica on Jun 19, 2012 - 23 answers

Hypothetical Astronomy

If all non-solar-system stars ceased to exist, how would things look different to us on earth? Would anything change? [more inside]
posted by juniperesque on May 15, 2012 - 16 answers

What does it take to turn a home into a theater that shows new releases?

A hypothetical question: what would it take to turn a room into my house into a theater that shows new releases (and avoid loud audiences)? [more inside]
posted by gchucky on May 8, 2012 - 22 answers

First, be smart from the very beginning.

If an average-sized human body were rolled into a sphere, how big would that sphere be? [more inside]
posted by shakespeherian on Oct 5, 2011 - 11 answers

Just kidding. I don't own a car!

I just bought a new car! It's a 2011 Honda Civic EX sedan; AM/FM/CD stereo system, moon roof, the works! I just drove it home from the dealer and my plan is to park it my garage and not drive it again for fifty years. Any tips on making this work? [more inside]
posted by Hey Dean Yeager! on Sep 1, 2011 - 13 answers

Galacto-Goddesses Wanted to Help Rebuild Civilization!

Hypothetical post-apocalyptic usefulness of lactating women: not only the first time that particular phrase has been typed, but ALSO a question which has been bugging me for years. [more inside]
posted by julthumbscrew on Oct 6, 2010 - 20 answers

Where in Chicago can someone get in a bit of trouble?

Where do young adults (late teens, early 20s) "hang out" in Chicago? [more inside]
posted by arniec on Jul 7, 2009 - 40 answers

What would someone who is blind experience when under the effects of LSD?

What would someone who is blind experience when under the effects of LSD?
posted by peregrine81 on Apr 7, 2009 - 16 answers

How will stealth air combat work?

What happens when two stealth fighters attempt combat? [more inside]
posted by wilful on Jan 8, 2009 - 18 answers

How would a very large cash deposit affect a small bank?

Lets say you win a very large lottery (ie +$50 Mil), and you decide to just take the whole thing in to your local small town bank, what would that large of a deposit to do the bank?
posted by ShawnString on Aug 28, 2008 - 7 answers

It's not that I don't trust you... I just don't trust HER.

To what extent could sleeping with my ex-girlfriend, who is now very firmly just a friend, jeopardize the acceptability/reasonability of said relationship to any future potential girlfriends? [more inside]
posted by Annon E Moose on Mar 31, 2008 - 52 answers

What would happen if you could create a perfect two-way mirror into a sphere?

What would happen if you could create a perfect two-way mirror into a sphere? [more inside]
posted by Lownotes on Oct 30, 2007 - 12 answers

Oh, that's a zombie.

Please list visual traits that identify zombies. [more inside]
posted by ikkyu2 on Aug 9, 2007 - 50 answers

Could you be charged with your own botched murder?

HypotheticalLegalFilter: In a particular scenario, could the victim of a botched murder be charged with the murder? Details inside. [more inside]
posted by chudmonkey on Jun 7, 2007 - 11 answers

I am not actually going to Cuba

Hypotheticafilter: If my wife (UK Citizen) pays for everything on a trip to Cuba from the UK, will I (US Citizen) still be guilty of "Engaging in Trade with an Enemy"? [more inside]
posted by medium format on Feb 8, 2007 - 16 answers

Crime, Web 2.0 Style

ShadyDealingsFilter: Since I've read some how-to's on cyberstalking and murder and such here lately, I have a hypothetical question about criminal fund-raising... [more inside]
posted by chudmonkey on Mar 26, 2006 - 19 answers

Can God change the past?

Can God change the past? [more inside]
posted by cillit bang on Nov 21, 2005 - 65 answers

A World With no Moon

After a long and ridiculously heated quasi-scientific discussion last night, I absolutely must know: what would happen to life on earth if the moon suddenly disappeared? I say the results would be disastrous, but my friend doesn't think it would matter much. I'd be interested to know who is more accurate in her assessment and the specific problems associated with a moonless earth.
posted by TheGoldenOne on May 24, 2005 - 43 answers

A cubic world?

What would a cubic world be like? [more inside]
posted by ac on Feb 17, 2005 - 24 answers

Tubes? In spaaaaaace?

What would happen if someone were to build a tunnel or tube into space? (Description inside...) [more inside]
posted by punkbitch on Jan 20, 2005 - 10 answers

What is the penalty for escaping from prison if you prove your initial innocence?


A man is arrested for murder, and appears absolutely 100% sure to be convicted. He then escapes from prison (assume no one is hurt or property damaged in the escape,) tracks down the real killer, and proves beyond any doubt whatsoever that he is innocent as all hell, and all murder charges were dropped.

How much trouble is this guy going to be in for escaping? What fate awaits him?

Asking both the strictly legal answer, and thoughts on what would actually end up happening.
posted by John Kenneth Fisher on Dec 29, 2004 - 15 answers

Criminal Minds

"Kill the president... or your daughter dies!"

Does the assassin have a legal leg to stand on? [more inside.... or your daughter dies!] [more inside]
posted by John Kenneth Fisher on Nov 13, 2004 - 13 answers


Hey Tommy, if a spring is bound and dropped into a vat of acid which dissolves it instantly, what happens to the spring's potential energy?

(If you haven't seen the comic before, you should start at the beginning.)
posted by Tlogmer on Jul 19, 2004 - 16 answers

Can You Keep a Severed Head Alive?

MedFilter: Is there any reason why, with an enriched blood supply attached, a severed head couldn't be kept alive? If so, could it be kept alive beyond typical life expectancy? The only worthwhile attempt at an answer I can dig up is this, but I imagine this question comes up in med school quite a lot.. (There is a particularly kookie book called If We Can Keep A Severed Head Alive.. on this topic but it's generally regarded as 'nut literature'.)
posted by wackybrit on Jul 15, 2004 - 22 answers

What are the ethical consequences of using up an uninhabited planet?

What are the ethical consequences of "raping" a lifeless planet like Mercury or Venus of its natural resources. Assuming there's a way to establish with absolute certainty that there is no life on, above, or inside the planet, and with the understanding that we won't remove more than .001 percent (or some reasonable number) of its total mass, what's the problem?
posted by crumbly on Jun 21, 2004 - 46 answers

Could a nuke make Yellowstone Caldera erupt?

Could a small nuclear device, sunk to the bottom of Yellowstone lake and detonated, actually cause the Yellowstone super-caldera to erupt? (more inside)
posted by troutfishing on May 4, 2004 - 25 answers

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