Ancient Aliens

Discussion in 'Science and Technology' started by BillJ, Jun 19, 2012.

  1. YellowSubmarine

    YellowSubmarine Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I've always said that not keeping backups should amount to involuntary manslaughter due to recklessness.
     
  2. Crazy Eddie

    Crazy Eddie Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I can already see the ads on the Cyborg Church of Christ. "Have you been saved recently? Upgrade your cloud storage to Kingdom of Heaven 2.5 and save your soul today!"
     
  3. RAMA

    RAMA Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Um...why? There's actually been some progress on this in the last few months since this thread was active..

    RAMA
     
  4. RAMA

    RAMA Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I posted this about a month ago on here somewhere. Look under: "It's Easier for Aliens to Visit than previously thought

    http://davidbrin.blogspot.com/2013/07/galactic-self-reproducing-probes-plus.html

    There is also the video I posted here from a lecture which suggested a similar timeframe to seeding other galaxies as it is to seed this one.
     
  5. Herkimer Jitty

    Herkimer Jitty Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Your enthusiasm is almost infectious, but let's be frank, it's more like cloning or copying. There's no "transference" in the same way that a fan-made 3d model of the Enterprise is not the original filming model from the 60s.

    Brain transfer is not a particularly accurate term to use for the animal brain simulation that's been done.

    Just make sure our probes don't collide with anybody else's.
     
  6. RAMA

    RAMA Vice Admiral Admiral

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    :lol:

    Not likely, if there's so much space between stars and objects that a galaxy collision won't produce collisions, I doubt a few trillion swarming bots will either.
     
  7. Herkimer Jitty

    Herkimer Jitty Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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  8. Crazy Eddie

    Crazy Eddie Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Which, as usual, doesn't address the point at all: a civilization that does not explore/colonize its own solar system is in no position to explore/colonize OTHER solar systems.

    In much the same way a culture that has not yet discovered air travel probably isn't going to be putting astronauts into orbit.
     
  9. RobertVA

    RobertVA Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I'm suspecting asteroids will eventually be utilized as a source of construction material for orbiting research and manufacturing activities. Governments on Earth will continue the long tradition of a central power wanting to impose its "benevolent" will on distant territories. Some groups of independent minded miners will take a few asteroids in tow to establish a slowly moving colony beyond the reach of government authorities in interstellar space. They will plot their course toward another system so their distant descendents will have the option of settling that system (on a planet or in orbit) or slingshoting back into interstellar space.
     
  10. RAMA

    RAMA Vice Admiral Admiral

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    As usual it DOES address the issue, you just have a narrow view of it. The whole point of the lecture was that you very well CAN reach other galaxies in the same timeframe as this one. I almost feel that the solar system(s) is an afterthought at this point, it's a given that we'll either be forced to exploit/settle it or we won't be around for a 100 year starship. We can certainly enhance/mitigate those scenerios with a starseed project.

    As for the discovery that aliens might have it easier in settling the galaxy, well of course that's related because it means the timeframe is accelerated more than I originally posted about, and it's analogous to us...so far the only known "alien" species that might colonize the galaxy.

    RAMA
     
  11. Crazy Eddie

    Crazy Eddie Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Actually, I have a realistic view of it. A society with finite resources and a limited lifespan is not going to make an open-ended commitments to support an unproven technology on an untested concept whose prospects for success are entirely unknown and whose tangible benefits will never be returned to the people who actually built it. There is no PRACTICAL reason to attempt to colonize other galaxies -- or even other solar systems -- when you do not yet have the technology to explore your OWN solar system.

    The fact that it's impractical doesn't mean the attempt will fail. Quite the opposite, in fact, if it was just a matter of technology it would be easy to conceive of a 100 year starship design that could succeed even using modern technology. On the contrary, the fact that it's an impractical endeavor means that no one who wields the resources to BUILD such a thing would have any logical reason to do so. Put simply: if you were the kind of altruistic dreamer who had a trillion dollars sitting in a bank account somewhere, there are a thousand more important things you would try to do with that money before "100 year starship" even came up in conversation.

    In much the same way that you CAN stick your head up an elephant's ass and yell "Geronimo!" at the top of your lungs. Much harder to do is convincing anyone who matters that this is a productive use of one's time.

    That's not a discovery, that's a hypothesis with no factual support whatsoever. The reason it's unrelated is because it still assumes the presence of an interstellar exploratory imperative that is not known to exist even in OUR OWN species. You might as well assume that intelligent species on other worlds will have lower population densities because they're more likely to practice cannibalism.
     
  12. Edit_XYZ

    Edit_XYZ Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Crazy Eddie
    A society with limited resources/etc will support an untested technology with only symbolic value just fine if it's cheap enough.
    And RAMA just pointed out it can be quite cheap - for a society that has colonised its solar system (a very probable step for an intelligent/technological species - we're on the verge of doing it).

    BTW, humans do have an exploratory imperative; that's why we don't presently live in a cave in Africa.
    That is to say, a fraction of humanity always desired/desires to explore, seek its fortunes beyond the next hill, the next horizon. As for the rest of humanity: in the long term, it becomes irrelevant - just ask those half-monkeys who died in that cave in Africa after their betters left.
     
  13. Crazy Eddie

    Crazy Eddie Vice Admiral Admiral

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    We are about a hundred years short of really beginning the process and at least a thousand short of completing it. It is far from certain along that progression that we actually WILL colonize the solar system, though most of us would like to think so.

    What's significant is that we cannot speculate on what a system-spanning society will or will not do with its technology because that society looks dramatically different from ours and has different pressures and priorities. It would also have different capabilities; by the time they have the ability to feasibly construct an interstellar mission, they might not NEED to.

    In pursuit of a concrete objective, yes. We trek across the plains in search of useable farmland, we sail across an ocean in search of trade routes, gold and other natural resources.

    The one thing we have NEVER done is conducted generation-long exploration missions purely out of curiosity. That's the thing about planetary exploration: we haven't figured out yet how to exploit the resources of the other planets, so there's no huge rush of people/governments trying to colonize it now. An interstellar voyage that has no prospects at all to return those resources to Earth (Mars, Ganymede, the People's Republic of Saturn, etc) would be a symbolic gesture AT MOST.

    You DO know people still live in Africa, right?
     
  14. Edit_XYZ

    Edit_XYZ Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Far from certain, but quite probable - barring self-destruction.

    Of course we can speculate - our descendants will still be human. Unless you assume a singularity, changing human nature, is coming.
    If your horizon for speculation is so limited, what are you even doing on this forum?

    And it will not be one society, but many of them, with different values.
    And a relatively small group of people belonging to any of them will be enough to launch the kind of interstellar probes RAMA talked about. Enough to launch even more - and that's assuming no technologies not predicted today.


    Yes, it would be symbolic, in large part; it will return information to you/your descendants*.
    But humans are big on symbolism; a lot of actions/programs were undertaken due to it, in all or in part.
    If interstellar probes become cheap enough (as they will for a solar system spanning species), they will enter this category.

    BTW, launching RAMA's probes will not be a generations-long undertaking. FAR from it.

    *Unless we're talking about interstellar colonisation - which is not symbolic at all.
    Not in the cave where the humans too scared to leave stayed. And even if their descendants would still be living there, they would be utterly irrelevant by now - little more than an afterthought.
     
  15. Crazy Eddie

    Crazy Eddie Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Not without making some fundamental assumptions what paths humanity will take to GET there. You can extrapolate all kinds of possibilities based on those starting assumptions, but that won't tell you whether or not those assumptions are justified.

    Strictly speaking, we've ALREADY launched two interstellar probes out of the solar system. It's the very specific scenario RAMA talks about that is unlikely, as it seeks to superimpose 20th century assumptions about technology on a speculative future humanity that will not be limited by -- or even related to -- 20th century culture OR technology.

    Basically, it's like Jules Verne trying to extrapolate what a 21st century space program would look like. Apart from the generalities (astronauts land on the moon at some point), his best guesses weren't even close, and had no chance of being so because there was too much about the future that 19th century writers couldn't have even BEGUN to predict.

    Assuming it returns anything at all. We have never built anything designed to function over that long of a time scale, and even if we did, such a technology is impossible to test.

    Unless somebody discovers a working FTL drive or a power/fuel source a thousand times more powerful than anything we have conceived of at the moment, it will.

    But that's kinda my point. If we had such a propulsion system, we probably wouldn't use it for "star seed" projects or interstellar colonization. The technology ITSELF would be such a game changer that the new social/political paradigm that comes with it would govern a different set of uses than we would imagine.

    Seeing how ancient Africans never actually LIVED in caves, that sort of goes without saying.

    To the extent that any particular human being anywhere could be called "relevant."
     
  16. Metryq

    Metryq Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    From THE MAKING OF KUBRICK'S 2001 by Jerome Agel:

    People are often surprised to run into someone they know while visiting a distant city. The "coincidence" is really not all that surprising when one considers the tiny portion of the Earth's surface that is land. One can further reduce the "randomness" of the event because people move in fixed areas, like cities, and the people involved probably have common interests that narrow their movements, etc.

    So while the universe is very large -- a star system is also very large -- the odds of two biosphere probes running into each other is thus reduced. Besides, Nomad did not collide with the alien probe. Nomad was damaged by a meteoroid and later found by the alien probe. Nomad was probably still within the system where it was damaged when the alien probe found it.
     
  17. RAMA

    RAMA Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I would really think I was crazy or being picked on by the universe if I ran into a truck in the middle of nowhere..but even that example doesn't take ito account the vastness of the galaxy. There's also no reason for anyone to make this a hub activity, there probably wouldn't be anything to make us stand out to increase the odds of occurrences.

    RAMA
     
  18. RAMA

    RAMA Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Ironically I just saw an article that basically supports my entire speculation on this subject which is why I was looking for the thread. Unfortunately it was days ago and have yet to find it again. Stay tuned.

    In lieu of that, yet another of a numerous list of sites that support my position on the efficiency of this method which you erroneously disagreed with: http://news.softpedia.com/news/Self...hould-Underlie-Space-Exploration-265189.shtml

    RAMA
     
  19. Metryq

    Metryq Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    We keep going round and round on this one point that Crazy Eddie already nailed down on the first page of this thread when he said:

    One speculative article about interstellar colonization techniques or ancient aliens does not "support" or "prove" another. Evidence must be empirical. No amount of mathematical modeling can "prove" anything either, nor are models and speculations "statistics," such as Drake's equation.

    Speculation is useful to science because it can suggest avenues for research. Mathematical models can be used to reduce complex problems to a manageable size—but don't confuse the math in technology/engineering (which is grounded in empirical data) with the mathematical models in science (venturing into the unknown).

    As for self-replicating probes, I see that as a potential disaster waiting to happen. Suppose some of the "parts" the probe needs to make a copy of itself turn out to be a living creature? I read that the first computer virus was a self-replicating party invitation that eventually overwhelmed the system's resources (aka "The law of unintended consequences").
     
  20. DarthTom

    DarthTom Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Daily Mail

    The drawings in question:
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