Billy Brown wrote:
>> Wouldn't the fact that we're here so early account for us being rare?
>No, it just explains why we aren't surrounded by billion-year-old elder
>races. If Earth's evolution is exactly average, and life is fairly common,
>we would still expect there to be lots of other races that beat us out by a
>few tens of thousands of years. So, at least one of those assumptions must
Okay, here's a diagram:
BIG BANG! ------------------------------------------> Infinity ^ | We are here
See that vast infinite space to the right, as cool and unyielding to life as it may be there is a far better chance that life (that's us!) would be over there. Thus, finding life so close to the Big Bang is unlikely. However, two problems. Problem number one, as with the doomsday scenarios there's the question of identity (sorry) and all that "is a rock an observer" crap will persist. Problem number two, it seems to me that life would be unlikely anywhere along this line. I have a feeling there's a problem in my line of reasoning but my brains refusing to look for it, anyone?
Btw, Amir D. Aczel shows why we may be among the most advanced civilisations in the universe using the 'inspection paradox' in his new book _Probability 1_. Basically you're more likely to be in one of the long-lived races (and thus extraordinarily lucky) than a short lived one. (Could this also be a counter to the doomsday scenario?)