What's so great about Tuesday?

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jseah
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Re: What's so great about Tuesday?

Postby jseah » Fri Jul 10, 2015 1:35 pm UTC

We mightn't need to be truly alien to build something like that. Maybe humans solve the AI problem (not the building part, the control part) and send a robot factory to Alpha Centauri to disassemble all the planets / do some star lifting and eventually spit out a Ringworld.

Unaging humans might even join them in the trip.

After all, if you propose exponential reproduction rates, eventually we're going to need one. And then shortly after, more than one.
And robots that replicate faster than humans will, without the messy needs of humans like luxury items and hard to get things like organics and air, achieve the numbers required to build a Ring in deceptively short time as well. I'd say it might be achievable in a few centuries with controlled AI and a von Neumann replicator to do the work.

The sphere is harder because there isn't enough material in the solar system to do that unless you mine the sun itself (which coincidentally reduces the star's brightness, thus reducing the size of the sphere).

If you're relying on human power, you're probably never going to build one. Any megaconstruction like that is probably best done with self-replicating robots.
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Zamfir
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Re: What's so great about Tuesday?

Postby Zamfir » Fri Jul 10, 2015 2:12 pm UTC

We mightn't need to be truly alien to build something like that.

You're stretching the concept of "we build it"...The supermagic space robot swarms build it, and those surely count as "truly alien".

As a narrative, it would be a similar construct as the Ringworld novel. The Ringworld is build by true aliens out of sight, with close-to-humans who live on it. It's a common SF trick. The story can focus on the humans or understandable aliens who are really humans-in-a-mask, while the extreme aliens provide a background setting. Once writers pull "true aliens" too much into the story, the suspense of disbelief comes under strain.

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Re: What's so great about Tuesday?

Postby ucim » Fri Jul 10, 2015 3:28 pm UTC

Thesh wrote:Rockets, no, but space elevators? Possibly. 300,000 people a day isn't that unrealistic. You don't even need suitable planets; people can live entirely in space stations.
Fine, now you have to build space stations for 300,000 new people every day. Ain't gonna happen.

jseah wrote:Maybe humans solve the AI problem (not the building part, the control part) and send a robot factory to Alpha Centauri to disassemble all the planets / do some star lifting and eventually spit out a Ringworld.
Well, the Alpha Centaurians may object, forcefully enough to negate the population problem.

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Re: What's so great about Tuesday?

Postby morriswalters » Fri Jul 10, 2015 3:43 pm UTC

Chen wrote:
morriswalters wrote:If we are in to fantasy, why not a Ringworld? One space platform to rule them all.


We're talking about a situation whereby we've stopped dying from aging and disease, yet my talking about habitation on the ocean or better using what land masses we do have, is the fantasy part?
No, it's quite possible, in theory. In fact if we can't control our reproductive tendency we will have to do something like it. But if you're going to think big, think big.

jseah wrote:After all, if you propose exponential reproduction rates, eventually we're going to need one.
Maybe, Niven looked at the concept of uncontrolled population, when trapped in one system, in a novel called the "Mote in God's Eye". It is also interesting to note, and why I connected the dots on it, the protagonist in Ringworld take a drug called boosterspice and is effectively immortal, as is his alien antagonist.

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Re: What's so great about Tuesday?

Postby speising » Fri Jul 10, 2015 3:56 pm UTC

Why do ypu need space stations or similar? Don't forget we are dealing with immortals here. Just boost them to escape velocity and dump them, open space is big enough for a while.
It wouldn't be murder.

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Re: What's so great about Tuesday?

Postby elasto » Sat Jul 11, 2015 2:11 pm UTC

...this whole thread has been about the fact that there are worse crimes than murder, and fates worse than death

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Re: What's so great about Tuesday?

Postby Whizbang » Sat Jul 11, 2015 4:08 pm UTC

elasto wrote:...this whole thread has been about the fact that there are worse crimes than murder, and fates worse than death


I am not sure that has ever been in contention.

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Re: What's so great about Tuesday?

Postby PeteP » Sat Jul 11, 2015 4:57 pm UTC

Whizbang wrote:
elasto wrote:...this whole thread has been about the fact that there are worse crimes than murder, and fates worse than death


I am not sure that has ever been in contention.

speising suggested just dumping immortals into space since it wouldn't be murder.

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Re: What's so great about Tuesday?

Postby Whizbang » Sat Jul 11, 2015 5:13 pm UTC

Ah. I didn't read that as a serious suggestion.

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Re: What's so great about Tuesday?

Postby speising » Sat Jul 11, 2015 10:08 pm UTC

It would only hasten their inevitable fate by, what, 10^100 years or so?

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Re: What's so great about Tuesday?

Postby Yakk » Sun Jul 12, 2015 4:21 pm UTC

So I've reflected on the meat-planet and meat-star plans.

I don't think they work. See, entropy operates not only on scales of fundamental particles, but on composite meat-particles as well.

Decay of the meat-planets and meat-stars would occur through some mechanism that would scatter them into the lowest entropy state, I think, where the entropy state is on a larger scale. Yes, the revivification violates thermodynamic entropy, but entropy is about information not thermodynamics.

One might think that one could starve off entropic death via a revivification engine -- that stores entropy in bodies, kills them, then starts over with the revived one -- but I think that just moves the entropic decay up a scale? The system built to harness that entropy sink itself will decay?

I guess we could try to make a system that enters a steady state of infinite entropy recovery via revivification. Now, we could constantly increase the configuration space to prevent it from being an infinite loop. But then we run into the black hole problem, in that density has to go to zero as volume increases, don't we? So the density -- the number of meat bodies within a given volume -- has to go to zero as time goes to infinity in order to prevent a configuration space loop, while still regularly dumping entropy in human bodies, killing it, and reviving it. If we have colonies of humans, they'll effectively be in a configuration space loop -- so communication will have to get longer and longer apart. We'll probably want to slow down thought so that it doesn't **appear** infinitely boring to the humans involved.

Now, there may be a limit on how slow you can reduce human experience to: if proton decay occurs between each subjective nanosecond, things get tricky. I guess you don't let the human become conscious most of the time, just use their body as part of the engine. And every near-infinite period of time, you generate a nanosecond of conciousness and information transfer with other bodies, then repeat. This allows a conscious being to have a non-boring infinite length existence while their bodies are repeatedly killed to fuel the engine that keeps the universe warm, experiencing an unboundedly small amount of time over unboundedly long eras, but (hopefully) an amount that diverges as time goes to infinity.

This, of course, doesn't work with certain models of dark energy.
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Re: What's so great about Tuesday?

Postby quintopia » Sun Jul 12, 2015 6:01 pm UTC

Yakk: we might be able to deal with the density problem by cutting organisms in half, burning one half (for energy to power our entropy concentration scheme), and revivifying the other half. If we assume that the only way to make half-an-organism live is to make it whole (and this is a big if though I imagine there are ways to slice the organism so that it is true), then we can use the revivification process to generate mass as quickly as we increase volume.

We could also deal with the boredom problem by making memory deletion voluntary. "Eh, I've done it with those exact people (and every other combination of every living person) a hundred times already..." *delete* "Great! Sounds like fun!"

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Re: What's so great about Tuesday?

Postby morriswalters » Mon Jul 13, 2015 12:53 am UTC

That Wednesday is next.

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Re: What's so great about Tuesday?

Postby Yakk » Mon Jul 13, 2015 3:33 am UTC

Novelty requires an increasing state space -- basically, any finite number of beings in a fixed space with little information coming from outside will repeat. Infinitely often.

So we need growth, so the state space doesn't cycle, for immortality to be more than a fancy tape-loop.

But at a constant density, a growing volume of beings will generate a black hole. So as the state space grows, so must the surface area, and hence density must go down as well.

For the state space to be meaningful, we need communication, but as density plummets communication lag increases.

...

Now that I think about it, this only puts off the inevitable. A given volume (say, 10 m x 10 m x 10 m) can only enter into a finite number of states. And under some reasonable models, two volumes with the same state are the same volume. In a sense, the tape loop effect is basically unavoidable, at least so long as intelligence/consciousness itself is bounded to be within an immortal human. To live forever and it to mean something more than a long, finite loop, you need for the thing living forever to get infinitely big and infinitely sparse.
One of the painful things about our time is that those who feel certainty are stupid, and those with any imagination and understanding are filled with doubt and indecision - BR

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Re: What's so great about Tuesday?

Postby Zamfir » Mon Jul 13, 2015 6:17 am UTC

If you've managed to avoid all sources of boredeom except looping through the state-space of a human body (let alone the universe), I think you can cautiously declare victory. At that point, you won't be bored in the second run either.

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Re: What's so great about Tuesday?

Postby jseah » Mon Jul 13, 2015 2:03 pm UTC

Imagine an engine that works by reviving humans. (rather than chopping people in half and using one half, you could just kill them 50% of the time when they revive and get the same. *handwaves away implementation details*)

Anyway, the idea is simple. The humans live on some habitat structure. The engine "burns" some fuel to generate thrust (whether this by actual chemical burning or by something more magical like hawking evapouration of micro-black holes created from the fuel, it's the same anyway).

Excess mass is tossed behind the habitat together with engine exhaust into a growing black hole behind it. The habitat is accelerating such that the 'gravity' of the blackhole felt on the ship remains the same over time (although not 1G, that would be insane, it's adjustable using the initial distance from the blackhole anyway). If need be, the habitat can be orbiting the blackhole but that makes things even more complicated.

The density over space problem is fixed because you live on a fixed size habitat that is "suspended" on the edge of an increasingly larger sphere dominated by the growing blackhole. Density of human per surface area goes down, but the humans also get closer together (relatively speak). As long as the black hole never catches up with you, you're fine. Probably.

Possible? Not? I'm not certain the math would work out, but this is how I envision it working. You tell me if it will/won't work, but I suspect the answer will arrive in the form of a necessary exhaust velocity (average speed of stuff you throw out the back). If it's an imaginary number then you need to throw things out the back faster than the speed of light and thus you're screwed.
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Re: What's so great about Tuesday?

Postby Whizbang » Mon Jul 13, 2015 2:31 pm UTC

Ah, but is the universe finite? In a closed, finite universe, yes we'd have to resort to using the revival mechanism as a cheat against entropy to eke out a living. But, and correct me if I am wrong, the size of the universe is still in question. There are still models that allows for an infinite universe, just beyond the radiation of the Big Bang (assuming the Big Bang was a local event and beyond is just more universe with more or less the same stuff). Right? So, in such a universe, new things are always on the horizon.

Unless people are taking into account the speed of light limit and the expansion of the universe such that we would never be able to reach those distant places because they are receding at faster "speeds" than we could ever hope to acheive. In which case, yah, for sure we're doomed.

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Re: What's so great about Tuesday?

Postby gmalivuk » Tue Jul 14, 2015 12:31 pm UTC

No scientists assume the big bang was local, including all scientists who believe in an infinite universe.
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Re: What's so great about Tuesday?

Postby Whizbang » Tue Jul 14, 2015 12:58 pm UTC

Ah. Well, then. Nevermind.

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Re: What's so great about Tuesday?

Postby Yakk » Tue Jul 14, 2015 2:03 pm UTC

gmalivuk wrote:No scientists assume the big bang was local, including all scientists who believe in an infinite universe.

Really? That seems strong.

I swear I've seen models where the big bang was a local, large inter-brane impact.

Or where a cold, flat universe had a low-probability inflation event at a point, which inflated that point to something much larger than the visible universe. Elsewhere in the cold, flat universe it was still cold and flat.

I don't know if a nucleation into a truer vacuum "big bang" would qualify, in that the change in physics before/after breaks the arrow of time as I understand it.
One of the painful things about our time is that those who feel certainty are stupid, and those with any imagination and understanding are filled with doubt and indecision - BR

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Re: What's so great about Tuesday?

Postby morriswalters » Tue Jul 14, 2015 4:42 pm UTC

In the context of this thread,why does it matter? Reality, or whatever passes itself off as such, went out the back door when this thread started.


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