Bringing this thread back to the original subject, I am currently reading
"Lonely Planets" by David Grinspoon which covers all aspects of astrobiology
including Fermi's Paradox. I recommend it.
Bruno, you mentioned a few days ago that encryption or compression was an
interesting thought, but you weren't sure if all aliens would try to avoid
having us detect them. I think any advanced society would use a highly
efficient encryption and/or compression system in their communications
regardless of whether they thought the communication would be detected by
someone else. Most data uploaded and downloaded over the internet is
compressed, and it only stands to reason more advanced technology would
allow far more data transmission through advanced compression techniques.
Therefore, I don't suspect we will intercept alien radio signals anytime
soon unless the aliens are intentionally trying to signal us. Also, I
highly doubt that radio telescopes are the ultimate form of communication in
the universe. It seems almost impossible to imagine that we would go from
deliver information via a man on a horse to the final ultimate communication
method in less than one century. Aliens may use laser pulses, or more
likely, something we can not even imagine to communicate.
As a final thought on this, I wanted to mention a theory of evolution that I
read about a few years ago that invokes QM and the MWI to explain how the
first self-replicator came to be against unimaginable odds. The idea was
presented in "Quantum Evolution", written by Johnjoe McFadden, and (very
generally summarizing here) basically argued that even given all the time
that passed and all the opportunities that would have been provided on a
global scale, the odds against a self-replicator forming are so staggeringly
large that it is still difficult to explain through standard theory.
He argues something along the lines that peptides formed in carbon
microtubes that would have been sufficient to cut off the peptides from the
outside world, prevent decoherence, and allow a superposition of the
peptide. Then, when the peptide experienced decoherence, one in 20^32
universes would have a self-replicating peptide. Of course, invoking the
anthropic principle, we are in one of those very rare universes.
A consequence of this is that alien life would be pretty much nonexistent in
OUR universe. Other planets suitable for life would have life in other
branches of the multiverse, but the quantum selection effects would make the
separate evolution of life in the same brach of the multiverse highly
[mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED] On Behalf Of Bruno Marchal
Sent: Saturday, July 08, 2006 9:59 AM
Subject: Re: Fermi's Paradox
> Faith usually refers to some belief independent of evidence.
I guess we have a serious problem of terminology. Faith without
evidence is bad faith or perhaps better blind faith.
I was meaning faith in truth. (Although faith in your 1-self works also
in my setting). I cannot define "truth",(nor your 1-self) but I can
argue that "faith in truth" leads to modesty, even in "religious"
I would say Fundamentalism is even a typical symptom of blind faith.
It appears when, sometimes driven by despairing events, some people
(collectively or privately) loose faith in truth, or in themselves,
and then jumps on any populist herzats concocted by mad, ignorant, or
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