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Re: Shostak's Search Shift?

From: Stanton Friedman <fsphys.nul>
Date: Sat, 2 Oct 2010 09:58:48 -0700 (PDT)
Archived: Sun, 03 Oct 2010 08:54:38 -0400
Subject: Re: Shostak's Search Shift?

>Source: PhysOrg.Com


>October 1, 2010

>If we ever do receive a message from outer space, we'll want to
>know what kind of aliens sent it. SETI researcher Seth Shostak
>says we shouldn't expect them to be anything like us - in fact,
>they might not be biological at all, but instead,
>extraterrestrial machines.

>ET Machines Sought By Astronomer
>By Shaun McCormack, Astrobio.net

>People have always held a biased view of the world around them.
>It's an aspect of being human.

>It took until the 17th century for us to reject Aristotle's
>vision of a universe where our Sun and the stars revolved around
>the Earth. Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI)
>Senior Astronomer Seth Shostak points out that up until a
>century ago, the scientific community believed a vast
>engineering society was responsible for building an irrigation
>system on the surface of Mars. Discovering the Martians could,
>in principle, be done by simply turning an Earth-based telescope
>in the direction of the Red Planet. Now it seems that our best
>chance for finding Martian life is to dig deep into the surface
>in search of subterranean microbes.

>Our idea of extraterrestrial life has changed drastically in 100
>years, but our search strategies have not kept up. In his
>upcoming paper "What ET will look like and why should we care?"
>for the November-December issue of Acta Astronautica, Shostak
>argues that SETI might be more successful if it shifts the
>search away from biology and focuses squarely on artificial
>intelligence. Shostak sees a clear distinction between life and
>intelligence: he says we should be searching for
>extraterrestrial machines.

>"Continuing to hunt for our analogs - technically competent
>biological sentients - may be an enterprise with less than
>promising prospect, as it focuses on a highly transient prey,"
>Shostak says.

>Our own technological advances since World War II make a great
>case for his position. Medical advancements since the 1950s show
>human beings becoming more bionic as digital and mechanical
>breakthroughs have found their way into our bodies. The
>development of true Artificial intelligence (AI) is, by some
>estimates, just a few decades away. When considering Moore's
>Law=E2=80=94which shows a pattern of accelerating returns in
>technological improvement=E2=80=94Shostak is forced to believe
>humanity's main role in the universe might be the creation of
>its successor.

>"The continued exponential growth in computer power implies that
>even consumer-grade computers will have the processing power of
>a human brain by the year 2040," he says.

>If and when we do create true AI, it would surpass us quickly.
>An AI would have the power to self-direct its own evolution.

>"If we build a machine with the intellectual capability of one
>human, then within 5 years, its successor is more intelligent
>than all humanity combined," he says.

>The window between a society's technological birth and its shift
>to artificial intelligence is amazingly small.

>"Once any society invents the technology that could put them in
>touch with the cosmos, they are at most only a few hundred years
>away from changing their own paradigm of sentience to artificial
>intelligence," he says. Because artificial sentience would
>almost inevitably outlast and outperform its fleshy, needy
>predecessors, Shostak concludes that any aliens we detect will
>be machines.

>ET machines would be infinitely more intelligent and durable
>than the biological intelligence that invented them. Intelligent
>machines would in a sense be immortal, or at least indefinitely
>repairable, and would not need to exist in the biologically
>hospitable "Goldilocks Zone" most SETI searches focus on. An AI
>could self-direct its own evolution. Every new instance of an AI
>would be created with the sum total of its predecessor's
>knowledge preloaded.

>The machines would require two primary resources: energy to
>operate with and materials to maintain or advance their
>structure. Because of these requirements, Shostak thinks SETI
>ought to consider expanding its search to the energy- and
>matter-rich neighborhoods of hot stars, black holes and neutron

>Bok globules are another search target for sentient machines.
>These dense regions of dust and gas are notorious for producing
>multiple-star systems. At around negative 441 degrees
>Fahrenheit, they are about 160 degrees F colder than most of
>interstellar space.

>This climate could be a major draw because thermodynamics
>implies that machinery will be more efficient in cool regions
>that can function as a large "heat sink". A Bok globule's super-
>cooled environment might represent the Goldilocks Zone for the
>machines, says Shostak. But because black holes and Bok globules
>are not hospitable to life as we know it, they are not on SETI's

>"Machines have different needs," he says. "They have no obvious
>limits to the length of their existence, and consequently could
>easily dominate the intelligence of the cosmos. In particular,
>since they can evolve on timescales far, far shorter than
>biological evolution, it could very well be that the first
>machines on the scene thoroughly dominate the intelligence in
>the galaxy. It's a "winner take all" scenario."

>"While it's not easy trying to figure the best SETI strategy to
>uncover these super sentients, it seems worthwhile to spend at
>least some of our SETI efforts trying to establish their
>presence," he adds.

Obviously the SETI community is unwilling to spend any time
reviewing the enormous amount of evidence that aliens have
been visiting Earth for at least many decades if not millennia.

Super sentients: YES! Aliens: NO! is the motto here.

It is clear from their books (which I have read) and their
articles and lectures which I have reviewed, that they
essentially never review the UFO evidence such as the 5 large
scale scientific studies, the many multiple witness radar visual
cases, the physical trace cases involving reports not only of
flying saucers on the ground, but the 15% of those cases
involving reports of humanoids.They know nothing about national

They also are unwilling to review the evidence of abductions.
I can find no reason to accept proclamations from radio
astronomers about the behavior of aliens, no less earthlings.

Of course the reason is obvious.

There is no need for listening for primitive signals from out
there using technology compatible with ours.If aliens are
visiting, as they surely are, SETI which is looking for signals
not looking for aliens, is out of business. They are truly
getting desperate. The collective rule is "Don't bother us with
the facts,our minds are made up."

How pathetic and irrational.

Stan Friedman

Listen to 'Strange Days... Indeed' - The PodCast



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