On Thu, 30 Dec 1999, abrigon wrote:

> Skeleton as in Exto, or Endoskeleton.
> The sacs would be a way to move around. The Elecrtrostatic field
> (sorry for misuse) could be used in many ways, what sort of
> planet would have fields strong enough so that a race could use
> them for motion or ..

Heck, jet propulsion could be used for movement -- octopodes don't seem to
have any trouble getting around as is.

Let's see -- planet with strong enough magnetic field so that an animal
could use its natural electrical field for locomotion . . . I'm guessing
here, since I know very little about science, but one high in heavy

> Maybe a race could naturally use the radioactive decay to produce
> helium? I know a stretch, but.. Or could the hydrogen be used,
> but made into a state that is more stable than it is for us..

Used for *what*?  I dont' understand the purpose for the He.  It's really
*not* a very useful gas, aside from being inert (and that's one of the
reasons its not very useful for biological beings).  Hydrogen is already
*very* stable -- if I remember my periodic chart (and it's been what, six
years since chemistry?), H is one of your more stable gases.  Combines
in an exothermic reaction with oxygen, but is not radioactive.  You're not
going to be able to get rid of that exothermic reaction with0out changing
the nature of matter itself.

Here's an interesting thought: silicon-based octopoidal aliens living in
an ocean of sulfuric acid.  If they developed space-faring technology, got
to earth, and decided to terraform it . . . that could be unpretty.  (What
would a silicon-based life form breathe?  Methane?  I'm half remembering a
discussion of silicon-based life from an article in Amazing about a
million years ago)