[ExI] simulation as an improvement over reality

Samantha Atkins sjatkins at mac.com
Tue Dec 28 18:00:52 UTC 2010

On Dec 28, 2010, at 5:00 AM, Eugen Leitl wrote:

> On Sat, Dec 25, 2010 at 08:55:59PM -0800, spike wrote:
>> If an alien civilization were sending signals they intended for us to
>> interpret, it would be easy to interpret.  If they intend for us to not
> But how do you supress your metabolism? Earth intercepts 
> only about 2 kg/s of solar flux, while the Sun total output
> is about 4 MT/s. Those 2 kg/s are about 10^4 in excess of
> our current needs. But that's just our *current* needs, and of
> course we're already altering up to one half of photosynthetic
> net primary productivity.
> http://sedac.ciesin.columbia.edu/es/hanpp.html 
> It is quite obvious that once terrestrial photovoltaics
> deployment will run into high 10% there *will* be SPS
> constellations (built in situ from lunar material), 
> and soon also telecommunication, computing,
> storage, quite literally becoming the cloud of nodes in
> Earth-Moon system (most of us should be able to see
> the beginning of this), and soon elsewhere.

That is not at all obvious.  The reason is that we don't have the robotics or huge (and expendable) human astronaut population to assemble and maintain such vast structures in space.

> This would alter the albedo of Earth-Moon, and 
> of course after a few 10 years of self-replication
> driven growth it will become observable over
> pretty large distances by dimming the Sun via
> a cloud of circumsolar nodes, and by shifting
> the spectrum into FIR, ultimatively turning
> the solar system into a few-AU sized ~300 K
> blackbody. Such systems are ordinarily not
> very visible, but we did look for them 
> specifically, and we've found none (or put
> the lower bound pretty close to zero).

Until and unless we have major space robotics this will not remotely happen.  I am very concerned in my focus with how exactly we get from the nitty gritty "here" to any sort of of interesting and fun to fantasize about "there".   Show me the path, especially how you are going to create the ability to mine, process, assemble and maintain all this infrastructure and in what steps.

- samantha

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