Aboriginals believe in … [a] “dreamtime”, more real than reality itself. Whatever happens in the dreamtime establishes the values, symbols, and laws of Aboriginal society. … [It] is also often used to refer to an individual’s or group’s set of beliefs or spirituality. … It is a complex network of knowledge, faith, and practices that derive from stories of creation.
Hard to believe "experts" would be any less delusional than the collective mass of noise. They will always have their own agenda as long as they are human.
I think he actually meant that none of the arguments were qualified, which is audacious for predictions about the future. I don't see this as a prediction exactly, so much as a commentary on modern society.
Well out about the heterogeneity of fertility patterns. And subsistence off earth will require far more real wealth, in the economic sense, than what subsistence means someplace on earth like the Caribbean. As soon as we get established off-planet, the near instantaneous flow of data, info, misinfo and disinfo will begin to break up, as time to send messages to the Moon are measured in minutes, and to the outer planets, hours or days. Asynchronous communications will become more important and we'll see patterns more like the letter writing centuries than the texting world of today.
I'm not sure if this is an argumentum ad authoritas, or a parody of such. I hope it's the latter.
the moties are meta-stable (recurring cycles...)
when the oil is disrupted and they can't get enough food into the inner cities the paradigm shifts. Only the people in contact with nature will survive in any great numbers.
Ignore the "so confident" fellow, he's obsessed with how he's ever going to get Proof to marry him over the objections of her father, Trivial Formalism.
What an interesting architecture you've constructed, here. Even the badge wearing, dues paying Trekies nitpicking your thesis can't seem to contradict it without either referencing the fact that they read embarassing SciFi or that they worship sheepskins and an = sign.
Speaking for myself, I'm combing your socio-retroanthropoligical argument for holes. I will find them, if they're there. In the meantime, BRAV-O, sir! This is the most interesting thing I've read since Heidegger.
I agree, especially when you consider the possibility that our "descendants" may be mind uploads, or other forms of A.I. In that case one form of "reproduction" would be simply making a copy of one's own simulated brain and letting it run independently--surely such civilizations are going to place some restrictions on self-copying, and not allow a few deranged individuals to copy themselves exponentially and hog most of the computational resources of the entire civilization! And if there are restrictions on self-copying (perhaps involving limited "shares" of the computational resources of the whole civilization, so eventually you'll no longer own enough memory to make more copies of yourself), then it seems natural there would be restrictions on other forms of "reproduction" like creating new "infant" minds to raise up.
I wonder to what degree Robin's argument here is influenced by anthropic reasoning related to the "doomsday argument", as well as the related "simulation argument". The doomsday argument does present an interesting puzzle if you assume at least some fraction of civilizations in the multiverse manage to survive long enough to have technological singularities and spread throughout space, as these civilizations should be vastly more populous than those that fail, and thus it seems likely that the vast majority of sentient beings in the multiverse would living in such a mature galactic civilization, yet we don't seem to be. If you buy this sort of anthropic reasoning (and I do think it's plausible), one possible answer is that a large proportion of sentient beings in such mature civilizations will be part of "ancestor civilizations" simulating the pre-singularity days, so these beings think they're living in a much earlier and less populous era than they "really" are, and thus experiences like ours would actually not be so unusual. But in order for this argument to make sense you have to find some explanation as to why such advanced civilizations would want to spend such a disproportionate amount of time simulating early eras of their own history--and Robin's scenario above is one possible "story" as to why they might find our era particularly fascinating. If you don't buy into the sort of anthropic reasoning though, there's no longer any pressing reason to try to come up with an argument for why advanced galactic civilizations would be so interested in this era of history (and even if you do buy into it, one can think of other possible "stories" to rationalize this idea).
How on earth can you be so confident of all this?
No qualifications at all.
No; Vladimir has a point. Consider it "reproducing" vs. "growing". Evolution isn't so easy to analyze when people don't die of old age, and aren't individuals bounded by a skin, and aren't distinct from their goods. There is no real distinction between reproducing and acquiring goods in the future we're talking about.
"The standard simulation argument doesn’t have an explanation for why our present is likely to be simulated" - There's no need for an explanation, as long as you don't assume that we are re-enacting something that happened before (something that many people talking about world-is-a-simulation seem to assume).
Never listen to web designers! They recommend silly things, like limiting nesting to 3 levels, for the sake of prettiness.
I've been trying to think of an SF story that matches this scenario of a stable, high-tech subsistence civilization. "The Skinny People of Leptophlebo Street" by R. A. Lafferty (where absolutely everything gets recycled) might be the closest match.
Robin's premise is that, given freedom of fertility, resources will eventually be spread over a near-maximal number of near-subsistence lives, as opposed to a smaller number of richer lives.
But universal freedom of fertility does not seem a reasonable assumption to make. It seems more likely that reproduction will be free-er where the will to reproduce is not as strong. Conversely, reproduction will be more restricted where it begins to pose problems - especially if it poses problems to whomever is in charge.
Pockets of the universe may indeed be governed by an anarchy with subsistence-level high fertility, while other parts of the universe will be populated by creatures with no internal will to reproduce, or by creatures whose reproduction is held in check externally.
In these ways, it is unlikely that the distant universe will be much different than the world we have today.
....but then I would expect nothing less from someone with credentials as divergent as Robin's.
This is the most interesting, most diverse, and divergent blog ever posted. Just so you know...