Re: The Great Filter

Robin Hanson (
Thu, 15 Aug 96 15:54:43 PDT

Twirlip of Greymist writes:
>The first race to evolve within a billion light years might have a
>highly conservationist culture. All younger races are either eliminated
>or not allowed off their homeworlds. I can imagine an ancient race
>which has a few Dyson cities per galaxy, which we haven't found yet, ...
>... They need strong social control, but perhaps
>they're all mentally descended from one source. Or we might see some
>odd astronomical explosion someday which is actually a police action. :)

This is a pretty good theory. But I have a problem with that "billion
light years" figure. All non-conservationist civilization which
reached an explosion point within our past light cone, and not in the
future light cone of conservationist explosion events, would have to
be beat by the conservationists. So you'd need a majority of
conservationists, and you'd need the failure to colonize to not be a
big military disadvantage. Unlikely, it seems to me, but possible.

Robin Hanson