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As spacefaring civilization continues to develop, artificial habitats are likely to be constructed at a distance from Earth beyond which the overview effect tapers off, and eventually where Earth is just another star in the sky, as on Mars.

(Which is a thought born of an aging civilization, by the way). But can you conjure up before you, in your mind, a wall with a hundred thousand bricks in it: and see all the bricks simultaneously? No wonder Imperial Terra let the facts about Freehold lie unheeded in the data banks.

Freehold was nothing but an obscure frontier dominion, a unit in the statistics.

This means if the Note: the above equations are based upon the work of Jill Tarter and Margaret Turnbull.

They were not trying to figure out which stars could host a human habitable planet.

As long as no complaint was registered worthy of the sector governor's attention, why inquire further? Something more urgent is always demanding attention elsewhere.

The Navy, the intelligence services, the computers, the decision makers are stretched too ghastly thin across too many stars.

While living on Mars will not be easy, it will be far more planet-like than living in an entirely artificial habitat.

We are the kind of beings that evolve on a planetary surface, i.e., our bodies and our minds both were shaped by our planetary endemism, and this homeworld effect is expressed in our characteristic modes of life and thought.

In his Flandry of Terra novels, Poul Anderson specified that the Terran Empire was four hundred light years in diameter. A sphere 400 light years in diameter has a 200 light year radius. Anderson cites a figure of about four million stars, which means one of us is a bit off the mark Why, I shall tell you what we are and these are, John Ridenour.

We are one more-or-less intelligent species in a universe that produces sophonts as casually as it produces snowflakes. No wonder Dietrich Steinhauer here is altogether ignorant about Freehold.

If residents are born on the habitat, the tie to Earth is likely to be somewhat weakened, and they may feel the want of a homeworld, if only on a subconscious level.

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