No B.S Friday: I’m not surprised aliens aren’t reaching out to me.
You know me. I like to ponder the big questions.
Like will football ever be the same now that Messi has left Barcelona, and who could possibly stop Paris Saint-Germain now?
The other question I've been thinking about lately is where are all the aliens?
This is the Ferme paradox. It's the idea that our Sun and our planet are relatively old in the scheme of the universe.
There have been millions and millions of suns for millions and millions of years and it's likely that at least a few of them would have created life and that some of those lifeforms would have figured out interstellar travel.
And they should've done that along long time ago. Long enough them to drop by earth and say hello.
The Ferme paradox is the idea that the universe should be full of aliens but it seems to be empty.
So I've got an idea about this.
And it's kind of just a numbers game. So of all the sun's out there, only some of them have planets of those planets only some of them are capable of sustaining life.
Of those planets, maybe only a small percentage would actually find that magic catalyst – that Starseed – that sets the whole caravan is evolutionary life in motion.
It keeps going. Of the life forms that emerge, only a small percentage would be cooperative.
I read somewhere the other day that only 3% of the species on earth could be called cooperative. It's primates, ants and bees and not much else. And even then I don't know if you say that most herd species were really cooperative.
I mean cows aren't getting together and pooling their resources to solve shared problems.
There's no chance in my mind that there’s an evolutionary line that runs through cows and somehow ends up with a species that conquers the universe.
Anyway, I think it's fair to say that that achieving the capability to transcend planetary limits probably requires cooperation – and complex cooperation at that. No lone wolf is going to do it.
But as I said, only a small percentage of species are cooperative.
But if any species that rises to the top of the food chain – that becomes the planet’s dominant species – it has probably done that in a way that has neutralised the threat coming from any other species.
Like, I'm imagining a species of super-bees. I'd imagine that once the super species of bees have taken over a planet, they just lock it in and keep doing their thing. The evolution of life sort of ends at that point.
They’d be dominant, harmonious, and happy.
So what I think you need, is a species that can become the dominant species on the planet while still having a capacity for war and competition within itself.
It's this competition that drives technological advancement. It's this competition that would create the curiosity and the hunger to explore space.
So not only do we have to find a cooperative species, we have to find a cooperative species that is capable of holding a dynamic competitive tension within itself.
Not only that, this species has to be able to play the war games of dynamic internal competition, without consuming all of the planets available resources, Or making the planet uninhabitable for itself.
This is the gate at which humanity currently stands. We have to find a way to put our internal competition on hold for long enough to give our precious little planet room to breathe.
And so I think when you look at all the ducks you have to get themselves in a row, I have to think it's not surprising that there are very few (if any) species with curiosity and the capacity for interstellar travel.
And I don't really know what to do with that, other than to reflect that life in general and humanity in particular might be even more miraculous than we think.
Wonder of wonders.