So, you support making contraception widely available.
So, you support making contraception widely available.
It's not about visiting us, it's about producing detectable signals. To date, none of the presumed-bazillions of extraterrestrial civilizations have (demonstrably) done this. We're speculating on which factors in the Drake Equation might explain this. These folks are arguing that n_e includes no factor for duration, but that maybe n_e is only n_e for a short time, and that therefore f_l and/or f_i are small because evolution takes time. Judging from the evidence, I'd say another plausible explanation is that the variable L is small, because
Then, again, maybe the rules for what constitutes intelligent life are a lot more open than we imagine, and the place is teeming with life we don't know how to detect. Does it always have to evolve? Does it always require "habitable" planets? (Does it always have to produce EM radiation? Do we just need more-sensitive instruments or more time?) Open questions.
What I find funny about this discussion is that our whole mathematical proof that extra-terrestrial life exists basically boils down to: "There's lots of places to look." Which is fine until we get to Fermi's Paradox, which reels that back in.
Fermi puts bounds on variables in Drake's equation. If L were infinite, then any such civilizations that had evolved long enough ago that their signals could have reached us by now would be in principle detectable. The fact that we haven't detected them would imply an upper limit on how many there might be. On the other hand, if all such civilizations die rapidly from a Malthusian collapse (as ours appears to be doing), then there could have been many many more such civilizations, without our necessarily being able to detect them.
Or, put another way, if you think detectable life could evolve easily, then Fermi implies L is small.
If free will is not an illusion, then where does it come from? Why do humans have it, but not chimps? Why do chimps have it, but not rabbits?
It remains an open philosphical question whether humans have free will -- whether "free will" is even a meaningful term.
If every physical mechanism in the universe is probabilistic and fuzzy, where does free will come from?
Oddly enough, the existence of quantum mechanics seems to make free will more likely, rather than less. In a fully Newtonian universe, you could argue that by knowing the position and vector of every atom you might predict the future, which sounds a lot like fate, where all future action is based on the past. However, the apparent fuzziness of our reality seems to leave the door open to much more complex probabilistic, entangled, and parallel behaviors.
How so? Being unpredictable doesn't make you "free".
Here's the problem: if you have a "will", then your actions follow from a principled mechanism, interacting with The World. Where's the freedom in that? If your will is not a principled mechanism, but something random, then how is it a will?
You're talking about the experience of "choosing" something in a given moment, as opposed to something else? Not much of a proof, is it? In any of those choices, have you ever chosen something other than the thing you chose? You could have chosen something else
Dennett is right: the fear about "free will" is that you would somehow be trapped if free will didn't exist. I think it goes beyond that: predictability is vulnerability, and we fear that if our choices are predictable then we could be anticipated by enemies. But, the fact that you are afraid of this is not a good argument against it (as a different philosopher said). And, anyhow, something might be predictable in principle without being predictable in practice.
Free will and determinism are not opposites.
In isolation, yes. On a big wet planet with lots of sources, sinks, and feedback mechanisms...it's not clear how much. Because real science with real predictive power is hard, but soundbytes and slogans are easy.
We know the sources outweigh the sinks. We know the system is accumulating energy, and we know roughly how much. The scientific consensus is driven by a convergenece of real science: changes in ocean chemistry, satellite radiance measurements, CO2 measures, thermometers, bouys, and, of course, simulations. We'd be fools not to devote a ton of effort to simulations. You want to know exactly how the weather in Des Moines will look in the afternoon 10 years from Tuesday? That's an interesting question, but not a good critique of the main conclusion. Seems like the soundbytes comes from your side. "AGW is a religion." Yeah? How so? "I'm more of a scientist thabn he is?" Really? 'Cause she sure *seems* like an bloviating gadfly.
You can't fill the atmosphere with CO2 and have it not act as a greenhouse.
There were forest fires before humans existed. Does that mean all forest fires are natural?
The way you answer the question is to look for forest fires that were caused by people. One way would be to use induction to imagine a scenario where huamns start fires, which would leave distinctive evidence that wouldn't happen in natural fires, then look for that, and follow-up. (e.g. fire starts near a campground, evidence of runaway campfire, progression of fire is away from campground, guy who camped there admits "okay, okay, yes, we fell asleep and when we woke up the trees were on fire, and we got scared and ran").
Okay, so, one forest fire, is that a big deal?
The way you answer that question is to become more familiar with forests and forest fires. Maybe a lot of them start near campgrounds? If you investigate and study and learn, maybe you get a sense of how many are caused by people, what the historical record shows about fire rates and scales in the past, etc. Computers might not tell you exactly which trees are going to burn in a new fire you've just discovered, but maybe you can refine the model enough that it can provide a good sense of where it's going to go, how quickly it might expand, where are sparks going to cause new fires, which of these 10 spots should we drop crews, etc.
The Great Filter hides a lot in "step 8". It sounds like the only remaining challenge is the physical difficultly of traveling interstellar distances. But consider the variable 'L', in the Drake equation. Maybe civilizations akin to ours evolve relatively frequently, but almost immediately go silent because they've gone the way of yeast. In fact, evolution is predicated on competition, which implies (as Darwin pointed out, after reading Malthus) that there must be an excess of generation, so to speak, which in turn implies that a "successful" species is an overpopulated one. The fact that we think interstellar colonization is the obvious next step isn't encouraging, in that regard.
What would it feel like, if the first words we hear from an extraterrestrial civilization are "Help! We live in an overpopulated world with a collapsing ecosystem! What can we do?"
The 3% figure is a canard. (Doesn't help to have a brain if you don't use your reference materials.) This figure pertains to an *annual* contribution, which is cumulative. We add 2ppm of unreabsorbed CO2 every year.
That's why, by now, the correct figure for human contribution to CO2 in the atmosphere is about 43%.
Ask not who the bullshit is called upon.
You're missing the optimization! "How about we cut $50 off your bill if you let us watch your biometrics while you surf the web or TV, including some ads?" "Did you hear about the guy whose life was saved because his diabetes app called 911?" "How about $100 off your insurance if you run an app to let your doctor collect heart data periodically?"
Active Directory [...] is nothing but a prepackaged LDAP database that is pretty much guaranteed to work.
works on any number of computers, up to one.
"After an adjustment"
I lol'd. That's not how you do science.
Yep, when you adjust your theories to match the data after the fact, you can hit the target every time.
I would never adjust *my* theories to fit the data.
Someone is destroying your entire ecosystem, and telling you "we can't stop doing that, because we would lose money." And someone else says, "well, maybe if we cause a corresponding rapid radical transformation in ocean ecology it will offset the other catastrophe". And your answer is "hmm, yeah, that might work."
Free will and self-awareness are unrelated concepts.
The soul is a myth.
You are confusing "soul" with popular myths about freedom of will. The soul, as a concept, doesn't depend on freedom from determinism. As with self-awareness, the two are unrelated concepts. There is no reason to presume that a deterministic universe can't include consciousness. (In fact, there's a pretty good reason to suppose that it can.)
Basically, the regular atomic structure of graphene means that you can create holes of any size
Any size you want
Time is an illusion perpetrated by the manufacturers of space.