[ExI] fermi paradox

Kevin Freels kevin at kevinfreels.com
Mon Dec 10 18:01:42 UTC 2007

It can't be done. Because of that, it will always be possible. The 
probability can be reduced over time with more observations but it will 
never be zero. I'm well aware that at some point things become so 
improbable that they may as well be considered impossible because 
otherwise we go down the road where anything and everything is possible 
and that is just too difficult to manage. But our inability to 
comprehend a something does not mean it isn't real. I would at least 
wait to draw that line until we at least observed a single Earth-like 
planet in a different region towards the center of the galaxy and found 
life, no intelligence, and no evidence of tampering. At least we will 
have doubled the sample size. But I don't need that crutch. For the sake 
of ending this thread quickly, I will give it up and say that I agree - 
the universe is for a fact not engineered.

So now your job just became much easier. I dropped half of my argument. 
You no longer have to prove a negative. Now all you have to do is prove 
to me through observation that the Drake equations are an accurate 
representation of reality. That we have viewed enough of our galaxy to 
determine how many stars have planets. (the equations only apply to our 
galaxy and there is no reason to assume that they would apply elsewhere) 
That we have found enough planets that support life to accurately 
estimate how many are life supporting. That we can accurately estimate 
the number of planets that will support life that actually do (Drake 
used 100% - all planets that can have life will have life)  Prove to me 
that we have viewed enough of the galaxy to know that 1% is the odds 
that intelligence will develop on a planet. Show me that 1% is also an 
accurate measurement of the number that can communicate through long 
range, and then show me that the average communication period where 
something other than encrypted communication is used is 10,000 years.
That is ALL speculation. Any one of those numbers being wrong really 
messes things up. The sample size is just too small at the moment. You 
might as well believe in Jesus and the second coming since at least 
there's multiple sources verifying that the guy actually lived. It's not 
gospel, it's guess work. If each part of the Drake equation is off by a 
factor of 10, then the average number of aliens that should be out there 
would be reduced by 10^7. And to say that the only answer to the Fermi 
paradox is that either ALL die before consuming the galaxy, or that we 
are first and there are no other possibilities shows a lack of 
understanding of life. It's just not that neat. Life doesn't fit into 
nice little boxes like that. To get where you are you have to make even 
more assumptions. You assume intelligent life will think like us. (You 
assume you know how we will think in the future as well), you assume 
that intelligent life will progress at a rate similar to ours, you 
assume that life always fills it's container and expands out of it. 
Assumption upon assumption upon assumption.  Life is analog, not binary. 
I know there are some brilliant minds here and I just hate to see them 
box themselves in like evangelists. Belief in the absence of proof is 
called faith.

John K Clark wrote:
> "Kevin Freels" <kevin at kevinfreels.com>
>> Then you and I agree. The paradox is a religion, not science.
> We will agree when you tell me, as I have already done, what evidence would
> convince you that the Universe has not been engineered.
>   John K Clark
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