Reply to post: I think (and hope) the Great Filter lies in our past

ALIENS are surely AMONG US: Average star has TWO potentially Earth-like worlds

Brangdon

I think (and hope) the Great Filter lies in our past

It took a billion years for prokaryotes (simple single-celled life) to evolve. Then another 1.6 billion for eukaryotes (more complex, but still single-celled). Then another billion years to get multi-cellular life, and another billion to get primates. We have no idea whether these steps always take that long, or whether we're unusually fast or unusually slow. I find it easy to believe that getting to multi-cellular life usually takes 4 times the 3.6 billion years it took us, in which case it is longer than the age of the universe. In other words, there could be lots of slime out there, but not much intelligent life.

There would still be some intelligent life, but if it's rare, it's probably too far away for us to detect it (or vice versa). I see no reason think whoever is first will have a drive to colonise the galaxy. It might make more sense to upload themselves to virtual reality instead, and have all the space they need. Especially if they've achieved zero population growth (arguably a pre-requisite for a civilisation to survive more than a million years).

Whatever: Fermi's Paradox isn't a paradox. Anyone who understands enough to see why it's an issue should have enough imagination to explain it away.

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