[ExI] SF - cyberspace and utopian narratives for meatless bodies

Eugen Leitl eugen at leitl.org
Tue Feb 14 13:13:09 UTC 2012


On Fri, Feb 10, 2012 at 11:43:37PM -0700, Keith Henson wrote:

> Per my recent posting, I no longer think it's practical to surround a
> star with computronium (speed of light problems).  Instead population

Of course it's practical. The speed of light is a hard limit
only for ~1 nm assemblies which must work by overlapped lightcones.
This is ~THz refresh rates in practice, so not cramping your
style too much. Power dissipation will be a much higher limit
in practice.

> centers will probably shrink to sizes in the few hundred meter range
> and sunk the the deep oceans for cooling.

The cosmic microwave heatsink is the largest and coldest heatsink
known to man. Anything in-between will only be an obstacle.
 
> I really don't see any way out of this.  Being smart is a prime goal
> for transhumanists.  Everyone wants to be smarter than average.  A
> substantial part of being smart is being able to think faster.  This
> leads to a runaway situation where we rapidly run into distance being
> time.  We hardly notice telephone communication delays unless they are
> going through satellites.  But speed us up a million fold and the
> maximum delay is (20,000 km/300,000 km/s) or 1/15 s.  At a million to
> one speed up, that would impose a subjective round trip delay of a day
> and a half from one side of the earth to the other.  Subjective round
> trip delay to the moon would be a month.
> 
> Maybe this isn't important.  People went around the earth when it took years.

Not only that, but you're living in that mythical country, founded
by people who didn't exist.

Perhaps I'm only imagining this conversation. Obviously I cannot
perceive anything much beyond my own nose. Even my neurons don't bother
talking to their neighbours, as they're Too Far Away! at mere 120 m/s
speed. 


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