Category Archives: simulated reality

Could Q-life be UFOs?

UFOs by far are some of the most unexplained mysteries of the 21st Century. Nobody has any hard physical evidence of their existence (but trace evidence at certain sites do) and of course eye-witness accounts still come in.

This week I posted an article from Kevin Randle on how the ‘old geezers’ of UFO study has solved the problem long ago. And I posted some articles against that argument, but not too much. I really wanted to get more responses from other readers about the ETH (nuts and bolts theory/extraterrestrial hypothesis). And I wasn’t disappointed by the answers I got. One of the most prevalent answers I got was about the ‘cryptoterrestrial’ or an earlier life form that evolved intelligence and went through an intellectual ‘singularity’ before humans have ever evolved intelligence.

Thus during the centuries of our existence, these beings have always observed us, occasionally interacting with us at a level that early humans, and even today some would call supernaturally.

And that is the cusp point we are with UFO studies now; the ‘nuts and bolts’ folks and the folks who theorize the phenomenon is more along the lines of the paranormal, the realm of ghosts, spirits, demons, angelic beings or telekenetic formations.

My thoughts lean more toward the nuts and bolts side, simply because at some sites physical trace evidence such as burns, chemical changes and metallic flaking/powders has been collected by MUFON researchers. At paranormal visitations/sites there is usually no trace evidence left at all, other than questionable photographic evidence.

So to me, Clarke’s Third Law still holds up.

That doesn’t mean UFOs are alien in nature, it just means whomever, or whatever is doing this stuff, their tech is like magic to us.

So which brings me to this; what kind of life would possess this magic/tech?

Well, according to Peter Fotis Kapnistos, “Q-life” :

The introduction of modern science finally consigned ghosts and spirits to the fantasy zone of delusions and superstitions. In our day, eminent reasoned thinkers are in charge of our scientific and educational systems. But the swift growth of astrobiology in the past few years has presented an exceptional challenge. Several popular theories have been proposed about the possible basis of alien life. The latest phase in the critical analysis of extraterrestrial life now focuses on what physicist and astrobiologist Paul Davies recently described as “Q-life.”

“A century and a half after Charles Darwin published On The Origin of Species, the origin of life itself remains a stubborn mystery, and is deeply problematic. The simplest known living organism is already stupendously complex, and it is inconceivable that such an entity would arise spontaneously by chance self-assembly. Most researchers suppose that life began either with a set of self-replicating, digital-information-carrying molecules much simpler than DNA, or with a self-catalyzing chemical cycle that stored no precise genetic information but was capable of producing additional quantities of the same chemical mixture. Both these approaches focus on the reproduction of material substances, which is only natural because, after all, known life reproduces by copying genetic material. However, the key properties of life — replication with variation, and natural selection — do not logically require material structures themselves to be replicated. It is sufficient that information is replicated. This opens up the possibility that life may have started with some form of quantum replicator: Q-life, if you like.”

Q-life –– set apart as a “life form without material structure” –– ironically harks back to our ancient belief in spirits. According to Professor Davies, the benefit of simply copying information at the quantum level, instead of building rigid duplicate molecular structures, is speed: “Q-life can therefore evolve many orders of magnitude faster than chemical life,” Davies pointed out. The environment of theoretical Q-life is unclear, but the surfaces of interstellar grains or the interiors of comets could allow “low-temperature environments with rich physical and chemical potential.”

The possibility of a quantum replicator became evident in 2007, when an international panel from the Russian Academy of Sciences, the Max Planck Institute of Germany, and the University of Sydney found that under certain conditions galactic dust “comes alive” in outer space. The panel’s chief researcher, V.N. Tsytovich, announced that microscopic corkscrew shapes (helixes and double helixes) could form “spontaneously” in interstellar space. As they have memory and the power to reproduce, the helical strands show the necessary properties to meet the criteria for life. Since that affirmative disclosure, NASA scientists have given weight to a search for what they now call “weird life” –– organisms that lack DNA or other molecules found in life on Earth.

I have read some articles on Physorg during the year about dusts and plasma in the Universe that take on ‘life-like’ qualities, but it’s hard for me to understand their jargon.

So like most people, I tune it out.

But maybe, just maybe, there just might be K-type 3 or 4 civilizations that are dust formations around black holes, contemplating great thoughts.

Or post-singularity Kurzweillian civilizations?

Wouldn’t they be considered ‘supernatural’ by our reckoning?

The “spirit or alien” Question

Optimism despite the coming Panopticon

As the world plunges further into economic chaos and war being brought about by the world’s elites (few of which actually realizing they shot themselves in the foot), scientific endeavors funded by tax dollars have either reached a rather dystopian turn, or have gone to research that encourage an inward turning of human interests.

But there are still people who dream of an interstellar future for mankind and Paul Gilster is one of them.

In yesterday’s post on his Centauri Dreams site, the dream of finding planets around our closest interstellar neighbor, Alpha Centauri, still is on the front burner and not about to be snuffed out yet:

Finding Earth-like planets around any star would be a stunning feat, and either Kepler or CoRoT may deliver such news before too long. But how much more exciting still if we find a planet like this around a star as close as Centauri B? After all, the Centauri stars are our closest stellar neighbors, close enough (a mere 40 trillion kilometers!) to conjure up the possibility of a robotic mission there and, if we play our propulsion cards right in the future, perhaps a manned trip as well.

[…]

Gregory Laughlin (UC-Santa Cruz), on the other hand, armed with a planet hunter’s insights, a passion for the Centauri system, and a realization that patience could tease out faint signals like these, traded ideas with Debra Fischer (San Francisco State) on the possibility of devoting years to an Alpha Centauri search. Fischer is now hard at work, using a telescope at the Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory (CTIO) in Chile. She works with a decommissioned spectrometer and other vintage equipment. Call it ‘Alpha Centauri on the cheap.’

On the cheap indeed, most money tied up in astronomical research is done either in NASA, DARPA, Pentagon with a little thrown toward Seth Shostak’s way.

It may take promising early data to get even this modest setup funded after National Science Foundation funds run out in November, but we’ll take the funding problem one step at a time. For now, the precision work continues, with software Fischer herself coded being used to filter out distortions of weather, instrumentation and stellar activity on the target stars to hunt for the minute shifts in wavelength that could signal the breakthrough discovery. If she pulls this off, Fischer’s patience may become legendary.

This is the only good thing about the advanced programming being developed by Microsoft and Google, the ability to clean out distortions made by the atmospheric glare, pollution, dust and lights from cities.

Actually, Microsoft and the Google-Plex are writing these programs to enhance their own new telescopes they are building for Google-Moon and Google-Mars in order to sell more realistic VR tourist jaunts to folks sitting in their Panopticon/Matrix prisons, er…living rooms.

Alright, maybe that’s a little paranoid. But with most of our tax money going to the Pentagon, DARPA and the growing domestic “spy on the public because there’s terrorists there” industry, I think we all should be a little paranoid.

It’s shaping up to be that if we’re going to the stars, it just might be folks like Branson and Musk pushing the envelope because there’s money to be made.

Very Heinlein-like.

And if I remember right, most of Heinlein’s characters hated the government snooping in their privacy.

The Hunt for Centauri Planets

The Yale Law Journal – Escape Into the Panopticon: Virtual Worlds and the Surveillance Society

Download a new telescope

FBI “Going Dark” Program to add $234M in new surveillance technology

Paddling Against the Meme-Stream

m87thunderbolts41609

From Thunderbolts.info:

According to conventional cosmological theories, black holes are formed when a star with a mass approximately five times that of our sun uses up its thermonuclear fuel and collapses under the force of its own gravity. Because the equations that describe gravity can be manipulated in irrational ways, some solutions imply that such a large star can contract into a zero volume containing infinite inertial mass. Astrophysicists have contended for years that black holes are real and that their effects can be observed, although they are invisible to detection.

[…]

The research team’s observations are of Doppler-shifted Fraunhofer lines in the spectrum of J0927. Due to “red-shift equals distance and speed” calculations, the “accretion disk” of matter surrounding the black hole is said to be moving at 2650 kilometers per second. The acceleration is presumed to be from the “recoil” of two black holes colliding, causing them to rebound and fly out of their parent galaxy as a single, supermassive combination of the two.

In previous Picture of the Day articles, we have taken issue with the very idea of black holes and the indirect “evidence” for them that has been presented by the scientific community. Any substance with a “multimillion-degree” temperature is not a gas but is ionized plasma. What the Max Planck scientists fail to realize is that the x-rays they are seeing is synchrotron radiation and not the incandescent glow of hot gas. The x-rays (and the gamma rays and ultraviolet light) are due to electrons spiraling along helical magnetic fields.

The Electric Universe Theory runs counter to the accepted “gravity run” universe theories that are mainstream and I have to say their arguments are very compelling.

A Sea of Holes

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*Sigh*

It looks like Shostak’s “vision” of space exploration is going to be the consensus reality here, unless people get a serious wake-up call:

Swooping in over Olympus Mons, the largest volcano on Mars, you see lava flows and the Pangboche Crater. Opening your traveler’s guide, you find that Olympus Mons is not only the highest mountain on Mars, but the largest volcanic cone in the whole solar system. You hover briefly over the crater and then zoom in on Guzev, where the cute little Mars Explorer Rover (MER) Spirit is busily taking pictures of the very red, desert-like landscape. Yes, little Spirit is still alive!

Is this the “Red Mars” of 2061 from science fiction writer Kim Stanley Robinson’s famous Mars Trilogy? Where thousands of Earth colonists from completing political and religious groups attempt to implement their visions of utopia? Where megacorporations invest heavily in terraforming and mining, using an orbital space elevator to shuffle settlers out of low orbit to the Martian surface from a resource-depleted, overpopulated, hothouse Earth?

Well, no, not exactly. You can travel to Olympus Mons or Vallis Marineris (the Grand Canyon of Mars) today – from the comfort of your home PC or Macintosh computer using the latest free Google Earth software. Don your 3D gasses and view the latest anaglyph images of Mars recently released by the HiRISE camera on NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) or simply fly around where Phoenix, Beagle, and the MER rovers are exploring today.

The High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) aboard NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter continues to send astonishing photos back to Earth. Although other Mars missions have taken 3D images, HiRISE is the most powerful camera to ever orbit another planet. It resolves features as small as one meter across – roughly the scale of a person. “I am very happy!” says principal investigator Alfred McEwen of the “sharp, clear and beautiful” images it produces. Another HiRISE team member says: “If you’re not jazzed by this, you’re not alive!”

Hoo-f*cking-ray, more virtual reality navel gazing. I can’t wait.

Maybe we are living in a Bostrum Simulation.

NASA and the Post-Capitalist Vision of Kim Stanely Robinson

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Somewhere, Bob Heinlein is working for Richard Branson as head of R&D along with Burt Rutan designing moon landers for Branson’s Lunar Hotel business.

There would be none of this silliness going on.

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Can we ever take the “Unidentified” out of UFOs?

If you are a serious UFO researcher and want to listen to professionals in the field, listen to this week’s Paracast with Gene Steinberg and David Biedney. They interview Richard Dolan, noted UFO researcher and author of “UFOs and the National Security State.

Biedney and Steinberg pull no punches in their interviews and are always intelligent and rational in scope (99% of the time).

http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/media.blubrry.com/paranormal/www.theparacast.com/podcasts/paracast_090222.mp3

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On the other hand, here’s one of the mainstream explanations for UFOs:

Mysterious UFO sightings may go hand in hand with a puzzling natural phenomenon known as sprites — flashes high in the atmosphere triggered by thunderstorms.

The dancing lights have appeared above most thunderstorms throughout history, but researchers did not start studying them until one accidentally recorded a sighting on camera in 1989.

“Lightning from the thunderstorm excites the electric field above, producing a flash of light called a sprite,” said Colin Price, a geophysicist at Tel Aviv University in Israel. “We now understand that only a specific type of lightning is the trigger that initiates sprites aloft.”

Researchers have detected the flashes between 35 and 80 miles (56-129 km) from the ground, far above the 7 to 10 miles (11-16 km) where usual lightning occurs. Sprites can take the form of fast-paced balls of electricity, although previous footage has suggested streaks or tendrils.

The cause or function of the flashes remains murky, but Price suggested that they could explain some of the UFO reports which have cropped up over the years. That might provide some solace for UFO enthusiasts disappointed by human-caused hoaxes in the past.

The ball lightning explanation has been used before, but not in such a studied manner.

But what about the Stephenville, Texas and Chicago O’Hare airport UFOs? Are they ball lightning too? What about abductions, implants that can’t be explained, circular burnt areas and pieces of mysterious metals being left behind at some sites?

Ball lightning indeed.

http://www.space.com/scienceastronomy/090223-ufos-sprites-explained.html

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When all is said and done, could this be another explanation for the UFO phenomenon?:

It’s almost a year since Nicolas Gisin and colleagues at the University of Geneva announced that they had calculated that a human eye ought to be able to detect entangled photons.

That’s extraordinary because it would mean that the humans involved in such an experiment would become entangled themselves, if only for an instant.
Gisin is a world leader in quantum entanglement and his claims are by no means easy to dismiss.

Now he’s going a step further saying that the human eye could be used in a Bell type experiment to sense spooky-action-at-a-distance. “Quantum experiments with human
eyes as detectors appear possible, based on a realistic model of the eye as a photon detector,” they say.

One problem is that human eyes cannot se single photons–a handful are needed to trigger a nerve impulse to the brain.

That might have scuppered the possibility of  a Bell-type experiment were it not for some interesting work from Francesco De Martini and buddies at the Universityof Rome, pointing out how the quantum properties of a single particle can be transferred to an ensemble of particles.

That allows a single entangled photon, which a human eye cannot see, to be amplified into a number of entangled photons that can be seen. The eye can then be treated like any other detector.

 

 

So could we be seeing entangled photons from another civilization that is not actually physically here, but is some sort of advanced sensor technology?

It could explain the seemingly impossible flight characteristics of UFOs.

Then again, we are left with the same conundrums that the “sprite” hypothesis does.

http://arxivblog.com/?p=1230

Quantum entanglement remote sensing technology paper; http://www.bufora.org.uk/Articles/UFOart.pdf

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Techno-Rapture of the Elites!

Some technologies are so complex and have so many frequent breakthroughs that few people can keep up. Now comes a new nine-week summer program in Silicon Valley for super-smart people. Dubbed Singularity University, its founders hope it will help close the gap in understanding and applying fast-developing technologies to solve what they called “humanity’s grandest challenges.”

The goal of the Singularity school, which will be located at an Ames facility in Sunnyvale, Calif., is to bring together the world’s top graduate and postgraduate students in 10 diverse disciplines, such as biotechnology, nanotechnology, medicine and law. They will spend nine weeks together learning about each others’ disciplines and then focus on …
… finding ways to overcome pressing challenges such as poverty, hunger and pandemics. Technology heavyweights, including Internet pioneer Vint Cerf, are slated to give the lectures.
Applications should be available at Singularity University’s website, which is supposed to go live tonight.

Peter Diamandis, the Santa Monica physician credited with fueling private space rocketry; S. Pete Worden, director of NASA’s Ames Research Center; and futurist Ray Kurzweil are behind the move to form the school. Internet giant Google is a sponsor.

 

I had started a humongous post about the GooglePlex and its link to the Singularity and above individuals noted, but I ran away with myself writing it and it ended up not making any sense.

But I will provide link(s) to a person who has studied the subject extensively, in fact, he’s going to release DVDs concerning it within weeks;

http://ignoranceisfutile.wordpress.com/2008/12/02/darpa-ibm-building-a-global-brain-to-monitor-people/

KurzweilAI & New Scientist are supporting a 30 year old Club of Rome economic forecast

I used to think the Singularity could be a good thing, but I found it’s just another Apocalyptic Religion.

The bad thing here is, this Apocalypse has a good chance of happening!

http://www.redicecreations.com/article.php?id=5766

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Every baby born a decade from now will have its genetic code mapped at birth, the head of the world’s leading genome sequencing company has predicted.
A complete DNA read-out for every newborn will be technically feasible and affordable in less than five years, promising a revolution in healthcare, says Jay Flatley, the chief executive of Illumina.
Only social and legal issues are likely to delay the era of “genome sequences”, or genetic profiles, for all. By 2019 it will have become routine to map infants’ genes when they are born, Dr Flatley told The Times.
This will open a new approach to medicine, by which conditions such as diabetes and heart disease can be predicted and prevented and drugs prescribed more safely and effectively.
The development, however, will raise difficult questions about privacy and access to individuals’ genetic records. Many people may be reluctant to have their genome read, for fear that the results could be used against them by an employer or insurance company.

The prospect of genome screening for all has emerged because of the plummeting cost of the relevant technology.

The Human Genome Project, which published its first rough sequence of mankind’s genetic code in 2001, cost an estimated $4billion (£2.7billion). By the time the scientists James Watson and Craig Venter had their genomes mapped two years ago, the cost had fallen to about $1m (£700,000).

 
Hmmm…2019…the same year the Singularity University plan to have their worldwide AI working.
Notice the name of the company too! (Oh no, there’s no such thing as the Illuminati, is there?)

These guys are fooling themselves into believing that an artificially intelligent GooglePlex will let itself be controlled by genetically perfect “elites”. By its very nature the Singularity is unpredictable and beyond any human comprehension.

I asked IIB about this one time and he said the elites might not even care if they get wiped out along with the rest of us, if the GooglePlex decides to do just that. His impression is that as long as this “child” of humanity survives mankind’s death, so much the better for Mother Gaia.

I know a few people who would go along with that, but I’m not one of them!

http://www.redicecreations.com/article.php?id=5751

Hat tip to Red Ice Creations today!

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Week of February 2nd, 2009

The Obama Economic Stimulus Package is getting a lot of media attention this week, mainly concerning tax cuts to the corporations to placate the Republicans (who still claim fiscal responsibility; *gag**choke**puke* and pay worship to St. Ronnie’s “trickle down on the sheeple mantra”), wondering why the first 350 Billion Federal Reserve Note gift to the banksters didn’t have the desired effect (D’oh!), how much money should go to social programs like extending Unemployment Insurance, Medicaid, college loans (and grants) and infrastructure rebuilding.

Some of this money slated to go to NASA, a mere 600 million Federal Reserve Notes in the House version of the bill, to supposedly maintain or create jobs.

But there is no money for the human space exploration or monies allocated to shorten the gap between the shuttle decommissioning in 2010 and the supposed Orion ship start-up in 2015.

What money that is allocated to NASA is for “increased study in Earth sciences.”

Which to me means “anthropocentric global warming.”

Although the hue and cry of the above has been tempered because of the InnerTube chatter and exposure of the scam has penetrated the sheeple’s ears somewhat, the promotion of “green tech” continues unabated.

Now I’m not slamming the development of green tech per se, we should’ve done this a generation ago during the 1970s, but the global pharoahs deemed otherwise. Now the world economy is going through the “creative destruction” the pharoahs love to torture the shuman beans with (nod to Geez here) and there needs to be a new foundation to build the New World Economic Order.

What better way than to promote green tech, paid for on the sheeples’ dime?

The pharoahs don’t have to invest any of their own gold, because everyone is being thrown into a panic and are afraid of ending up with nothing at all.

They’ll be more than happy to pay for a “new economic sustainable” infrastructure that indentures their grandchildren, great-grandchildren, great-great granchildren, etc., etc., forever, via Obama’s economic package.

Fear certainly works wonders where control is concerned, a time honored tactic indeed.

So how does this affect future space programs?

For one thing, it stifles civilian rocket propulsion research because there won’t be any government funding, any development would have to be funded by private companies who are not controlled by the military industrial complex. But they may not be allowed to pursue research anyway just for that very reason.

Not only that, the development of any kind of nuclear space technology will be further stymied by the promotion of said “green tech”; the public has been indoctrinated by fear of anything nuclear, whether it’s bombs or not, despite the fact that advanced nuclear technology could’ve taken us to Mars over 20 years ago!

Many things and events are linked inexplicably in this web of deceit and control; one hand washes the other as they say. And many will continue to gain from our inability to expand out into the Solar System, and onto the nearest stars.

From the military-industrial-congressional complex that controls advanced technology, to the “professors” in the institutions of higher learning who spread the propaganda that humans are the only “intelligence” within 1,000 light-years (if not the galaxy), chemical rockets are the best we can do, radio telescopes will detect ET ,  interstellar travel is forever impossible and proclaim only sustainable “green tech” and population control will save us and planet Earth, those are the criminals we need to break our chains from.

If we don’t, we will sink further into Brave New World instead of Star Trek.

BAB/Dad2059  8)

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SOURCES

http://www.agmates.com/blog/2009/01/19/hansen-tells-obama-you-have-four-years-to-save-earth/

http://www.nasa.gov/worldbook/rocket_worldbook.html

http://www.fermisparadox.com/detecting-other-civilizations.htm

http://www.dailygalaxy.com/my_weblog/2009/01/space-experts-c.html#more

http://www.space.com/searchforlife/090115-seti-spacefaring-humanity.html

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Interplanetary Google-Plex

Universe Today:

In an initiative energized by Google Vice-President and Chief Internet Evangelist Vint Cerf, the International Space Station could be testing a brand new way of communicating with Earth. In 2009, it is hoped that the ISS will play host to an Interplanetary Internet prototype that could standardize communications between Earth and space, possibly replacing point-to-point single use radio systems customized for each individual space mission since the beginning of the Space Age.

This partnership opens up some exciting new possibilities for the future of communicating across vast distances of the Solar System. Manned and robotic space craft will be interconnected via a robust interplanetary network without the problems associated with incompatible communication systems…

The project started 10 years ago as an attempt to figure out what kind of technical networking standards would be useful to support interplanetary communication,” Cerf said in a recent interview. “Bear in mind, we have been flying robotic equipment to the inner and outer planets, asteroids, comets, and such since the 1960’s. We have been able to communicate with those robotic devices and with manned missions using point-to-point radio communications. In fact, for many of these missions, we used a dedicated communications system called the Deep Space Network (DSN), built by JPL in 1964.”

Indeed, the DSN has been the backbone of interplanetary communications for decades, but an upgrade is now required as we have a growing armada of robotic missions exploring everything from the surface of Mars to the outermost regions of the Solar System. Wouldn’t it be nice if a communication network could be standardized before manned missions begin moving beyond terrestrial orbit?

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On the observational mainstream surface, the concept makes good, logical sense.

I cannot make any additional, knowledgable comments because my expertise in InnerTube Networking is limited at best, even though I am an experienced ‘user’. I simply find the ‘architecture’ aspect overwhelming.

Okay, I’ll make a guess ( so I lied about not commenting ); From what I get from this is that each planet, moon, artificial satellite and probe will have its own individual ‘Internet.’ Each local network will then send time delayed TCP/IP ‘packets’ to each other, thus linking up to the major Earth Google-Plex.

The deal breaker is the light-speed delay, but this should be negated somewhat by a hardy ‘time delayed’ TCP/IP protocol.

It would seem to me that would require more memory packed into even smaller physical entities.

Quantum computing to the rescue?

Or perhaps the GooglePlex AI needs to happen first?

Google and NASA are working on Interplanetary Internet

Novamente: Intelligent Virtual Agents – Updates

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Monument Beacons of SETI

Centauri Dreams:

The Benfords — Jim at Microwave Sciences, Gregory at the University of California’s Irvine campus, and Dominic (Jim’s son) at NASA GSFC — believe that advanced societies, if they are to be found, ought most likely to exist toward the galactic center, and probably at distances of over a thousand light years. We’re thus talking, in all likelihood, about interstellar beacons rather than targeted transmissions when it comes to SETI. And if beacons are indeed at play, what can we say about their costs, and do our own standards of terrestrial cost have any application in an ETI context?

The message here is that any SETI search has to make assumptions about the beacon builders, and if we can determine something about the economics of the situation, we may learn how to target our searches more effectively. Here’s the essence of the argument about ETI:

We assume that if they are social beings interested in a SETI conversation or passing on their heritage, they will know about tradeoffs between social goods, and thus, in whatever guise it takes, cost. But what if we suppose, for example, that aliens have very low cost labor, i. e., slaves? With a finite number of slaves, you can use them to do a finite number of tasks. And so you pick and choose by assigning value to the tasks, balancing the equivalent value of the labor used to prosecute those tasks. So choices are still made on the basis of available labor. The only case where labor has no value is where labor has no limit. That might be if aliens may live forever or have limitless armies of self-replicating automata, but such labor costs something, because resources, materials and energy, are not free.

Our point is that all SETI search strategies must assume something about the beacon builder, and that cost may drive some alien attempts at interstellar communication.

SETI always seems to come with a built-in willingness to think the best of extraterrestrial cultures. If an alien civilization is sending out a message, it must be doing so out of altruism. The Benfords, though, are interested in exploring motivations from a different angle. They’d like to relate them to the only case of a technological civilization we know of, ourselves, and speculate based on human history. From that perspective, there are two reasons for sending out messages across vast time scales.

Think about what people do. You can go to the Tower of London and explore the chambers where famous prisoners like Thomas More were kept. Invariably, on the walls, you’ll find graffiti, names written into the stone. People have an apparently robust need to engage in one-way communication, putting a note in a bottle and throwing it. Indeed, the Pioneer and Voyager spacecraft are examples of the impulse. Is it likely that any of these tiny vessels will ever be intercepted? Yet putting our names, our stories, our music and our pictures on board outgoing vehicles is a method that resonates. We have a need to encapsulate who we are.

A second reason is the drive to communicate the optimum things about our culture, what Matthew Arnold called “…the best that has been thought and said in the world.” Here the Benfords cite time capsules and monuments as examples of our need to propagate our culture. The contemplation of a legacy is involved here, especially in a scenario where human lifetimes are rising. Here again the communication can be one-way. The statue of King Alfred my wife and I admired in Winchester some years back was not built to impress people within a tight time frame, but to stand as a monument that would reach future generations.

So imagine scenarios like this: A civilization with an ability to plan over millennial time scales foresees problems that are beyond its capabilities. A SETI beacon might encapsulate a call for information and help — send us everything you have on stellar warming…

Here’s another: A civilization in its death throes decides to send out an announcement of its existence. We were here and are no longer, but as long as this message endures, so in a sense do we. And let’s not discount sheer pride of the sort that could keep a beacon in operation long after the beings that built it were gone. Robotically maintained, it might boast of achievements set against the backdrop of the ruin that may eventually attend all technological cultures. Or perhaps we’ll run into interstellar proselytes, out to convert the galaxy to a particular set of beliefs by placing their highest values into their outgoing signal.

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I’m glad that finally somebody in mainstream SETI studies have proposed something different to think about when it comes to listening to, or broadcasting signals.

While I feel SETI should do more than just do the radio thing and look for possible Bracewell Probe signals, the Benford Clan at least looked outside the box.

Somewhat.

The Monument Beacon theory sounds good, but something else should be added onto that.

If a suspected source is found, perhaps we should train all of our available listening, optical, and any other measuring devices we can muster to locate a Transcension Fossil in its general direction.

Yeah I know, semi-religious technorapture crap and such an object would be hard to find, even if the broadcast signal was strong enough.

But if we were lucky enough to intercept a Beacon in the first place, why not trace it back to the source to see if such things as Technological Singularities take place?

It could explain the Fermi Paradox.

And give us a clue to our ultimate fate possibly.

SETI: Figuring Out The Beacon Builders

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Transhumanist ezine now available

Whether it was intentional or not, my theme this past week has been transhumanist subjects.

Now, thanks to Posthuman Blues, a new online ‘zine named H+ ( Humanity Plus ) was brought to my limited, left-brain medicated attention. And it’s got some good stuff in it.

The inaugural editorial is written by editor RU Sirius.

That’s right, that’s his name!

Serious.

The guest interviews, dubbed ‘InterMINIviews’ are pretty cool and feature luminaries like David Pearce, Aubrey de Grey and Charlies Stross.

Stross’ miniview was my personal fave, but de Greys’ was interesting to say the least.

Even if my usual readers don’t care for transhumanist fare, there’s important info to be had, so give it a shot before you shoot it down. The science isn’t overpowering at all and it’s layman oriented.

So that’s how things worked out this week. I intended to do more financial hijinks shit, but it got too depressing, even for me.

So I copped out and had some wholesome distraction.

Good stuff.

http://www.hplusmagazine.com/hplusmag_fall_2008.pdf

Been fun hangin’ with ya past coupla days Mac, hat tip to ya!

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The Universe: God, VR Simulation or Boltzmann Fantasy?

Uh oh, Mac Tonnies is at it again:

A god-like intelligence wanting to understand the workings of our civilization might not be content with occasional “reconnaissance missions” or eavesdropping on our broadcasts. Perhaps nothing less than a robust, interactive simulation — with the aliens playing the roles of indigenous inhabitants — would suffice. In this case, for the simulation to bear anthropological fruit, it would behoove the aliens to think they really were Earthlings, complete with artificial memories. Only upon exiting the simulation would they remember their actual nature.

So maybe Earth as we know it is actually an alien virtual reality constructed as a sort of “Jurassic Park” in which to observe human society from the inside out. Or maybe, less glamorously, we’re all amnesiac participants in a vast nonhuman chat-room or first-person video game.

I go for the Boltzmann brain hypothesis myself and is just as valid IMO.

If we are simulations in VR with false memories, we could be Boltzmann brains with false memories too.

Or as my Christian friends Highwayman and James Essig would say, “Go for the enchilada and say a supernatural God willed the Earth into existence 6,000 years ago and created Mankind to be the center of Creation in order to be worshipped by angels, sinless ETs and the rest of the Universe.”

That is the ultimate tin-foil belief as HW is wont to say. If one is going to have false memories, have the biggest one there is!

The only thing I can say to that is “been there, done that, didn’t get a tee-shirt.”

And I don’t want my next set of false memories to be as grandiose as HW’s or Jim’s.

I just want a beach-house stocked with an infinite supply of Coronas!

Children of the Singularity

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