[rc5] SETI

Eric Gindrup gindrup at okway.okstate.edu
Fri Oct 3 09:20:54 EDT 1997


     Well, there's a good argument that any alien species from which we 
     receive signals is more advanced than us.  It is predicated on one 
     pretty bad piece of data: we only have one data point of technological 
     species from which to extrapolate...
     
     Human's have had radio for ~150 years and commecial (i.e. powerful 
     enough to not be just a toy) for ~100 years.  (All these numbers are 
     severely rounded.)  Assuming that technological species tend to live 
     for an extended period after discovering commercial radio, then it is 
     not unreasonable to expect thousands of years to pass while that 
     species possesses radio technology.  Extrapolating from our one data 
     point, the likelihood of finding a radio-capable species of our own 
     technological sophistication is vanishingly small.  (How "vanishingly" 
     depends on how generous you are in pegging down the longevity of a 
     technological species.)
     
     Another way of saying this is that the length of time between the 
     development of commercial radio and our current technological level is 
     much shorter than the expected lifetime of a species possessing radio, 
     so the likelihood of finding another species in that short window of 
     time is very small.  (Note, however, that it is not zero.)
            -- Eric Gindrup ! gindrup at Okway.okstate.edu


______________________________ Reply Separator _________________________________
Subject: Re: [rc5] SETI 
Author:  <rc5 at llamas.net > at SMTP
Date:    10/2/97 10:00 PM


On Tue, 30 Sep 1997, Thompson, Christopher wrote: 
> >Date: Mon, 29 Sep 1997 15:54:47 -0700
> >From: lunaslide <lunaslyd at pacbell.net> 
> >Subject: Re: [rc5] SETI
> 
> I don't disbelieve that there are aliens out there, just that any form 
> of communication that they possess will be something that we cannot
> detect, just as people in the 15th century couldn't detect television 
> signals if we went back and beamed them at them.
     
What makes you think that we couldn't find sombody else's television 
signals?  No eveloutonary principle that I can think of would meen that a 
civisilation from another world would need to have superior tecnology then 
us! Then we could find out if Quziglug's clone-brother is going to marry 
Beezglurp's sister and kill Stepheno (Stepheno obviously is a bad character 
trancendent of species)! <G>
     
        -=- James Mastros
     
--- 
"Anybody who thinks that their compiler is smarter than they are 
probably disagrees with me." 
        -=- Linus Torvalds
     
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