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Submission + - We are the first, the only and thus the last (

wisebabo writes: In this Science Daily article: "Where is everybody? The Implications of Cosmic Silence", the retired astrophysicist Daniel Whitmire explains that using the principle of mediocracy (a statistical notion that says, in the absence of more data, that your one data point is likely to be "average"), that not only are we the first intelligent life on earth but that we will likely be the ONLY (and thus the last) intelligent life on this planet. (Please look at the article for details of his argument)

Unfortunately that isn't the worst of it

What this means, is that coupled with the "Great Silence", it implies that the reason we haven't heard from anyone is that intelligent life, when it happens anywhere else in the universe, doesn't last and when it does it flames out quickly and takes the biosphere with it (preventing any other intelligent life from reappearing. Sorry dolphins!). While this is depressing in a very deep sense both cosmically (no Star Trek/Wars/Valerian universes filled with alien civilizations) and locally (we're going to wipe ourselves out, and soon) it is perhaps understandable given our current progress towards reproducing the conditions of the greatest extinction event in earth's history:

So not only are we the first, only and last intelligent organisms on earth but intelligent life when it occurs in the universe will be short lived, will happen just once, and will thus will be utterly isolated (separated from any possible equals by the gulfs of cosmic space and time).

Just thought you'd enjoy some cheery thoughts for a relaxing Sunday

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We are the first, the only and thus the last

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