Humpty Dumpty Sat on a Wall [was Re: Cold and Dark?]

Robert J. Bradbury (
Mon, 25 Oct 1999 08:43:06 -0700 (PDT)

On 25 Oct 1999, Anders (Humpty) Sandberg wrote:

> I read the Krauss and Starkman paper "Life, The Universe, and Nothing:
> Life and Death in an Ever-Expanding Universe" (astro-ph/9902189) and
> it is really bad news.

... Humpty Dumpty had a great fall.

> Their basic argument is that the positive
> cosmological constant that seems likely given current data will lead
> to accelerating expansion, and this will in turn make the de Sitter
> horizon creep inwards.

The guy from the JPL who viewed my Bioastronomy paper said the requirement for a CC was under question. I'm clearly on the fence since I've seen no evidence that the astronomers are factoring in any possibility for interstellar mining actvities by SIs. I believe the assumption is that Supernovas have the same brightness at all ages and that is very iffy IMO unless you can prove that the composition of the SNs is the same. Distant/Old SNs occur in an "unintelligent"/"virginal" universe, Recent/Near SNs occur (potentially) in an "intelligent"/"engineered" universe.

Unless someone shows me spectroscopic data on the SNs that show they all have the same composition, I'm a cosmological constant doubter.

... And all the Kings horses and All the Kings Men

> Currently it seems to be 18 billion lightyears away
> (given the estimates of density and the constant today), but in just
> 150 billion years everything outside our local supercluster will have
> been redshifted by a factor 5000.

... Couldn't put Humpty together again.

So, what's the problem? In 50 years we send out 200 billion AI nanoships to each galaxy at .99c. They reach all of the galaxies (in something around 18-20 billion light years), astroengineer them into Kardashev Type III galaxy-ships (take a billion years, we've got plenty of time), compute how much energy & matter must be expended to turn the ships around and get them back to the origin by CurrentEra+149 billion years. The matter and energy expended in the process is lost to the expanding universe (operating costs, what can you do?), but most of the matter and energy of any use gets returned to the starting point (presumably at sub-black-hole densities).

So now you have most of the M&E in the universe in one place. Construct a single-crystaline ultra-SI and spend the rest of the time (> 10^89 years until all the matter evaporates) throwing information bottles into subspace or building alternate universes and tunnels into them.

One thing is for sure the SCUSI (best voiced with an Italian accent), is going to have lots more resources at its disposal than we are to figure this out solutions for this problem.

Whenever we read papers regarding current perspectives on physics and astronomy, it is almost always done from the Occams Razor bias that "intelligence" is hard and rare. Flip the position!!! What if "intelligence" is easy and common? What if the universe is populated/dominated by entitites at the end points of the evolution of an Extropian philosophy? What if the **simplest** explanation for what we observe *has* to incorporate the evolution of intelligence to the allowable limits?

Are SIs going to worry about colonizing galaxies? Hell no. They are "immortal" within the limits of their environment. They see the universe "ship" as a f****** Titanic. They are going to devote every last ounce/erg of their M&E to getting off of that ship.

We shouldn't be studying negative energy, we should be looking for disappearing mass. We should be trying to figure out ways of standing on the shoulders of those who have had a lot more time to think about these problems than we have had.

> Perhaps the most optimistic thing about these two papers is not their
> conclusions, but the fact that physical eschatology and the effects
> intelligent life can have on the universe are not being increasingly
> studied by physicists. It is hardly a mainstream topic, but it is no
> longer utterly beyond the pale.

... Until the sub-SI-Robert showed them how to do it...