Great Filter: seeing Them, dirt

Steve Witham (
Thu, 17 Oct 1996 20:09:33 -0400

>From: Chris Hind <>
>Date: Wed, 16 Oct 1996 22:17:07 -0700
>Subject: Re: Great Filter, Low Profile, Cryptocosmology
>The better the compression, the more information looks like noise so this
>means that possibly we will never see civilizations more advanced than we
>and the only civilizations we will ever see will be less evolved because
>equal or higher means we're less likely to recognize them. Damn. [...]

Yes--if They don't *want* to talk to us. But we might be interesting in
some way. Btw, crypto is actually more effective at making "noise" than
compression, because what to compression is a tiny inefficiency is to crypto
a chink in the armor--the crypto guys are more intent on the noiselikeness.

>Shit, you're right. If you wished to get really bizarre, you could say that
>the dirt under your house is actually an uploaded civilization in statis
>with their molecular patterns stored in an organization of dirt molecules

Right, except they aren't in stasis. If you look
at the amount of *raw* information processing that's going on in that dirt,
and assume that processing is being *used*, it's more than the *useful*
processing going on in our civilizations' brains and computers, I think.
(I'm just not sure how many millimeters or miles you need to dig to make
this true.)


"See, you think you're on a cruise ship but someone's moving the ocean."
--Patricia S. Sullivan