As such, it makes sense that ancient and advanced civilizations would want to wait for cooler conditions to prevail.
Sandberg explained to Universe Today via email:. The reason is that the energy cost which will eventually limit how much computation you can do is proportional to temperature, and this means that the far future is vastly more hospitable than the hot present. If this were true, we have a nice explanation for the apparent absence of big old civilizations. It would also lead to observable consequences: a reduction in processes that waste resources they would want in the late eras. Timing is a key feature to this hypothesis. In this case, the aestivation period of early civilizations has coincided with the subsequent rise of humanity as an space-faring and technologically-adept species.
Herein lies another reason why ancient civilizations might want to take a cosmic nap. Given how long life needs in order to emerge — humanity took roughly 4.
I'm Sick of Not Having Been Abducted by Aliens
In addition, civilizations may want to go to the future if they want to meet other, independently evolved civilizations. If intelligence is rare in time and space but aestivates to the far future, then it will meet there. Of course, the aestiation hypothesis much like the Drake Equation and the Fermi Paradox is based on a few assumptions about what ETI would be capable of.
These include:. In other words, the hypothesis assumes the existence of civilizations that are more advanced than humanity which is based on the notion that they have had billions of years to develop elsewhere in the Universe. These civilizations would be higher on the Kardashev Scale between Level II and III by now, meaning that they had evolved to the point where they could harness the energy of entire star systems and perhaps even galaxies.
Also, it assumes that these civilizations would have become space-faring races that had expanded to occupy parts of the cosmos that lie well beyond their own star systems. Ultimately, those civilizations that have chosen to become dormant would therefore be invisible to us since they are not currently traveling between stars and galaxies, smashing up planets to create megastructures, or consuming entire stars for fuel.
You know, the kind of stuff we think mega-civilizations would do. Which naturally raises the question, how might we be able to detect such civilizations at rest? To this, Sandberg has a few possible suggestions, ones which ETI-hunters may want to heed:. Or, try launching a self-replicating space probe to pave the universe and see if somebody stops you.
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As with all things having to do with aliens and ETI, a measure of guess-work is required here. And some would naturally argue that it is also possible that advanced civilizations are not subject to the same limitations we humans are, which would limit our ability to speculate here. I would be incredibly surprised if were to see travelers from other planets.
It would mean that they are tremendously more technologically advanced than we are.
It is fun to contemplate such encounters but take our civilization for example. We have only recently had one of our primitive probes leave the confines of our small solar system, not to mention travel interstellar distances. At the very least I believe it will be several hundred years at a minimum until we have a maned mission that would leave our system. Why would we think other civilizations developed to that technological level much quicker than us.
Hopefully we find through research that Einstein was wrong and there is a way to travel faster than the speed of light and that we can find a way to harness such power, although I doubt that our Government would fund NASA to the level needed to do so. On the other hand, such recklessness would also be odd for any other country capable of producing such vessels.
Looks like that leaves only Zorgon. Even alien spacecraft must obey the fundamental laws of time and space, or so we assume, and so those looking to explain these latest vessels must turn to increasingly abstruse sources, far above the technical ken of mere political journalists.
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It might be time to give it a look. Perhaps these would be worth reading too. Some people speculate that the U. The second worry would be that they were. If China or Russia had developed a force-field propulsion technology, whatever that is, they could use their new power for ill, as they have in the past. On the other hand, if the United States had developed a force-field propulsion technology—well, our stretch as a lone superpower following the collapse of the Soviet Union was not characterized by excessive prudence.
Compared to earthly hegemons, alien Tic Tacs seem benign, apart from their erratic driving. We know that life is fragile and that it continues at the mercy of a universe on a little planet orbiting around a star that will eventually flame out. The odds of these supersonic ovals in our midst turning out to be a net plus for humanity are low. Worrying about Donald Trump is almost reassuringly small by comparison.
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Stephen Hawking left us bold predictions on AI, superhumans, and aliens
Sign up for our daily Hive newsletter and never miss a story. The Big Bitcoin Heist. By Mark Seal. By Abigail Tracy. By Katie Nicholl. Vincent while I wrote Mostly Dead Things! I connect with women who are working to create explosive art the same way that Jessa does throughout the novel with her taxidermy.
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