Monday, August 27, 2018

"Fermi Paradox: Imperial Pragmatism": why we don't see alien civilizations yet

Science fiction author John Michael Godier (“Supermind”)_ gives us his take on the “Fermi Paradox: Imperial Pragmatism”.

He discusses the Kardashev scale of civilizations (Earth is approximately at 0.72) and then examines why we find no examples of Type 3 civilizations – based on the idea that such a civilization would put Dyson spheres around each star.

Well, maybe not all stars because many are too unstable.

Actually, he doesn’t consider the Bootes Void, a gap of darkness about 300,000 light years across, which could be an example of such a civilization.

Also, an expanding civilization able to leave its home star would probably invent AI and find a way to attach consciousness and identity (through quantum computing) to it. It might not need biological reproduction, reversing out idea of demographic winter. But it would have to overcome the political problems of deciding who moves out.

Godier notes that expanding empires tend to become too far flung and overextended to remain politically united, and typically break up into independent local units. 

But the biggest reason we don't find alien civilizations easily is that there is so much opportunity to miss them. Our own civilization occupies only a few thousand years out of 14 billion. 
Wikipedia attribution link for map by Andrew Colvin, CCSA 3.0 

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