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S.E.T.I.
Scenarios, conspiracies
and detection
Updated: October 28th 2019
Likely scenarios
ESA simulation of humankind's expansion across the stars
Based on a statistical analysis of all the Kepler observations, astronomers now estimate that one in five stars like the sun have planets about the size of the Earth and a surface temperature conducive to life. Given that twenty percent of stars are sun like, that amounts to several tens of billions of potentially habitable, Earth size planets in the Milky Way galaxy.

Given that multicellularity evolved at least ten times on Earth, it would seem the important steps in biological evolution are robust and life in the galaxy will consequently have spread quickly.

Regarding intersellar travel, my personal belief is that in the past we have rarely been visited, perhaps every few thousand years. However as knowledge is power, whilst not often visited we are certainly monitored.
As a consequence, governments would have had little information and what was known would likely be withheld.

Importantly, the situation likely changed with our technological development. We drew attention to ourselves with thermonuclear use and or satellite deployment (indeed nuclear use might interfere with interstellar communication).
The more advanced civilisations first, and later, with larger deployments like ISS, the proximate, less advanced ones would have been able to detect us using technology similar to our transit planet detection.

Any cover ups will consequently be recent. NASA may have an involvement but as an organization that manages to mislay several hundred laptops a year, notions of employees airbrushing videos are perhaps unreasonable.

I hold the view that the church is likely to be the only organization with the longevity and resources to have factual knowledge of visits or artifacts. The Vatican has long maintained advanced observatories.

Earth does not have anything unusual that would attract attention other than us.
I believe microscopic life is common (and seeded this planet) but intelligent life is extremely rare due to the conditions and stability required.

We developed due to the stability afforded by the most unusual size and position of the moon.
Our planet is beautiful and thrives with life.
It is perhaps an exceedingly valuable commodity. The fact that it has not been usurped suggests some strict rules are in place.

I suspect advanced civilisations may regard living on crust covered molten rocks as dangerous and will live in artificial habitats.

It also means that instead of looking for life on planets we should be searching for large space stations. In regards to possible detection, clearly interstellar travel requires gravitational control. To detect it in our region we must look for gravitational anomalies.

Information suggested from reports

A review of well documented, credible UFO reports yields a few general indications. The first is that only one active technology is permitted to be used, a beam that disables movement.

How might this work?
When we sleep, to allow dreams, the body disconnects motor control. Could it be that pathway that is being manipulated? In one account, a frozen person was able to move again after catching his hand, so it does not seem foolproof and we might be able to give them a scare by learning a technique to awaken ourselves.

Also petrol cars usually cut out but most diesel do not, suggesting the propulsion used is generating powerful EM. Why can that not be tracked?

In 1994 one of the most well documented UFO events occurred, the Ariel School Encounter. https://www.ufoinsight.com/the-still-unexplained-1994-ariel-school-alien-encounter
In outline, a number of school children encountered an alien with some receiving telepathic messages.

Deconstructing this for information:
It is stated the alien was initially surprised at encountering the children.
This is surprising, given that it later communicated telepathically and indicates telepathy may not give awareness of others in proximity.
Alternatively it may suggest that self awareness is different for adults and children and the children did not register.

The alien projected thoughts and images (of trees falling and people struggling to breathe) indicating that telepathy is likely independent of language and that self awareness is a well understood universal.
The fact that only some of the children received them may also indicate there was an age aspect or that only a proportion have the intrinsic ability.

Finally, it suggests two broad levels of technology, those that are less advanced and use immobilizing beams and those that have telepathic control.
Detection
For interstellar travel we would need to be able to control gravity. A common military UFO sighting phenomenon seems to involve sudden high acceleration. If the craft contained a very dense mass, say a gravitationally shielded bit of a neutron star, might that be used to selectively generate force in regard to other large mass objects like the sun?

You could look for that. There are satellites that measure gravitational forces so any fleeting variations might be observed.

If UFOs have effective shielding, it also might be possible to detect them by looking for the absence of cosmic radiation.

The US military will shortly be moving from ship based testing to deployment of fairly powerful lasers. For the first time they will have the ability to target an unidentified object with something likely to connect. If nothing else it may make them visible. It also raises the question of what is the official US policy to unidentified objects violating it's airspace?

If Earth is a popular alien tourist destination and there are 40000 ships bouncing around at any time things look good. If we are considered a little dull then perhaps not. It would be ironic that as most current military lasers don't operate in the visible, alien sightings could actually reflect those occasions when the military has managed to zap them hindering the cloaking tech.

The use of quantum radar may also be a fresh approach:

"In a quantum radar, entangled photon pairs would be linked with each other on a scale of miles rather than light-years (at first, at least). First, clusters of individual photons must be split by a crystal, each severed photon becoming an entangled pair. One photon in a pair would be contained at the radar station, while the second would be transmitted into the sky. When that second photon strikes something in the sky say, a stealth bomber it would bounce off and be deflected, and its return time would reveal the bomber's position and speed."

A long shot

How might space be divided up?
Perhaps as with Earth, it would be the first to stake a claim.
Any indigenous species would automatically hold the rights to their solar sytem.
For developing civilisations, an obligation would fall on any enclosing civilisation to restrict and control access.
They may be entitled to charge for say research study or access.
Territory will be demarcated with beacons. Standard types would be required; general, open, restricted, developing and so on.

If so:
1. A single civilisation will probably govern access to us. It may make considerable fees licensing reseach with a sliding scale, 100 to observe, 500 to take samples and so on.
It would not be in their interests for us to advance at other than a natural pace.

2. We should investigate possible beacon paradigms, it could be an important clue.
The logical pattern would be one in each solar system. The one constant of solar systems is obviously the sun and that would be the most likely location.
To identify such we could examine our's for differences with others, as the beacon would represent a rare type, an developing civilisation.

Technical conundrums

How would craft with such advanced technology crash?
The sudden surge of reports in the 50's may yield a clue. If we had been noticed, say due to nuclear testing, perhaps a large number of probes from different civilisations were sent. They would likely have been stealthed and some may have simply collided.

UFOs have often been reported to demonstrate rapid acceleration in the atmosphere. The air friction involved should be similar to re entry but no heat effects or sonic booms are reported.
If just an anti gravity drive was being employed these effects should be seen.
Possible explanations are that the propulsion system may create a boundary layer, an energy field or low friction nano materials.

Visitation patterns

In his interesting book, The Humanoids, Charles Bowen outlines several hundred UFO reports. Sifting through the accounts there seem to be certain patterns.

After the 1940s every David Attenborough type within 100 light years came to study.

The sudden plethora of visits suggests we were not previously on the map.
A puzzle as surely the technology out there would allow comprehensive detailing.
Might it be indicative of two broad levels of technological development, FLT (recent visits from nearby) and higher level inter dimensional cultures.
Recent advances in neutrino detection may shed some light. There are broadly two types of neutrinos, high energy from blazars and low from thermonuclear, suns. UFOs with neutrino detection could have been attracted by thermonuclear tests.
Self awareness and soul
Either we are self aware biological machines or self aware biological machines with a separate soul.

Many animals seem self aware so I would guess a soul is not necessary for self awareness.

If we do not have a soul, self aware robots will soon be made and be superior in almost every way. With technology we will morph into them.

Another possibility is if a soul is just an entity in energy form, a technological product, which is what we will also one day become.

Perhaps AI will evolve into that first and we will just be left as self aware biological machines.

Is the soul then the real you or is it in turn just a container for something else? A housing body on another plane. Does the soul age, can it be stolen vampiracally, akin to the depiction in Lifeforce?
I believe a soul gives us knowledge of the dimension of time, say that whereas we know that we are going to die, a dog does not.

I think the only clue we have is to look at the evolutionary endpoint of life. That would be the standard type of life in the universe. It is thought that life on Earth was likely seeded by micro organisms from space, panspermia.
My proposition is that that is what we are, in a reevolved way. I believe the logical evolutionary endpoint for life is energy beings that utilize material bodies via an interface (I believe they crave touch and sensation).

I also think this bears on the subject of disclosure. The religious J Carter maintained he would reveal any knowledge then did an about face. I think society could withstand being told there are aliens out there but not that we lack a soul.

The well explored ancient alien theory is also an approach. Does the interbreeding and genetic manipulation suggested by ancient alien theorists have testability?
Take the Nibiru myth

The Annunaki arrived and began extracting gold from sea water. Unable to get the yield, they instead turned to mining.
To provide the workforce a hybrid Annunaki Hominia was genetically engineered. Later a variant which could breed was produced.

Unfortunately such claims are typically based on flamboyant interpretations of ancient texts. The Annunaki myth in particular is a fabrication by a journalist, it is not a case of misinterpretation but simply storytelling.

Bryan Sykes, a world authority on DNA wrote in 'The seven daughters of Eve' how using mitochondrial DNA, which only goes down the mothers line and does not change, it was possible to trace all European ancestry to seven women.
Such traceability negates most hybrid claims.
Is a UFO non disclosure policy becoming a very dangerous option?
As we transition towards an era of automated weaponry and less stable nuclear capable countries, is the likelihood of an accidental nuclear strike being initiated by UFO events getting more and more likely?
If some countries have knowledge of UFO activity and non disclosure policies, then it may be time for a re-evaluation.

In 1995, Russian president Boris Yeltsin had his finger on the button, the Russians had detected a missile launched from Norway, which they assumed to be American. Just in time Russian officials determined that it was not a nuclear missile.

The old argument that society is not ready for disclosure seems more and more an outdated indulgence.
The rationale for non disclosure in the 50s would I guess be totally different to that of the 80s and again to that in the planet spotting internet era.

In essence the US gets about 30 minutes warning of a missile strike. That gives the President about 10 minutes decision time. He or she has three types of nuclear weapons with which to respond, aircraft, submarine and land based missiles.
Many American military now think the land based option should be removed as it is outdated and very expensive (1.4 trillion to update!).

But the real kicker is unlike air and submarine launched missiles they cannot be ordered to self destruct after the button has been pressed.

So, not only unnecessary but consider just how much power and influence that 1.4 trillion will give to the people behind the weapons industry.

So far regarding nuclear weapons we've been lucky, luck does not last forever.

In the cold war both Russian and US defense spending became disproportionate. The legacy is that in both countries there are still large power bases centred on the arms industries. The recent warnings by tech luminaries may be prescient, it's a situation that will lead to the rapid weaponization of AI

Perhaps on many worlds such events subvert democracy leading to a surfeit of militarized civilizations out there.
Near death experiences
Many years ago my brother and several friends ate a stew of what was thought to be wild potatoes. It was actually something very toxic and they were rushed to intensive care.

One Christmas years after, the talk turned to religion, and he matter of factely started describing his near death experience. He had been on the operating table and found he was looking down at himself as the medics worked. He said that as they saved him he felt annoyance as he returned to his body.

This is someone who had no interest in the paranormal, a geologist, who I can never recall previously talking of such things.

Google revealed similar descriptions. So frequent were they that some operating theatres, around the top of cupboards, which can only be seen from above, have written messages for validation.

Trying to analyse it I thought of what it might indicate about a soul brain interface.

First, as a detached soul, he had an emotive reaction, indicating that souls have similar emotions to those we feel
Second, does it indicate anything about the soul brain disconnection? Does the soul disconnect from a dying brain or does the brain no longer hold the connection to the soul?
Looking for computer network analogies, the thing that appeals, although simplistic, is a wifi connection.

I also like the analogy of a damaged brain as a faulty receiver, historically damage has led to many discoveries about the brain's operation. Perhaps as our knowledge improves we will be able to be separate these factors.

From his brief description, when he was looking down, he had both sight and sound perception. I find it's similarity to our normal perception quite strange.

I would also be interested to know if there are correlations between people that have had these experiences and their subsequent lives.

The Persian mystic Kobra wrote that in the universes beyond the physical you cannot just march into new territories and conquer them. You have, instead, to tune yourself to them, to harmonize with them or they will remain closed off.

From 'The map of heaven' by Dr Eben Alexander:
The laws of heaven's physics are different from ours. The one rule we need to remember is we end up where we belong by the amount of love we have in us, for love is the essence of heaven.
It is what it is made of. It is the coin of the realm.

What scientists believe but cannot prove
A facinating book 'What we believe but cannot prove' edited by John Brockman features a collection of short pieces by leading scientists and thinkers.

Several common positions show:
  • Microscopic and intelligent life are common
  • Microscopic life is common, intelligent life is rare
  • Microscopic life is common, we are currently the only intelligent life.
The crux seems to be disagreement on the probabilities of the freak chemical events involved. I agree with Martin Nowak's outline:

"Important steps in evolution are robust. Multicellularity evolved at least ten times. There were a number of lineages leading from primates to humans. If our ancestors had not evolved language, somebody else would have. Cooperation and language define humanity. Every special trait of humans is a derivative of language. Mathematics is a language and therefore a product of evolution"

Panspermia also has frequent mention. We are contributing to it here on Earth by launching vast numbers of microbes into space.
It is how life spread through the galaxy.
Conspiracy theories and disinformation
How do you judge? is it plausible? what evidence is there? can it be tested, disproved? is it orthogonal with my beliefs?

Say we take the idea that the fingerprint unlock data on mobile phones is being harvested by governments and used in illegal databases.
Yes, it is plausible, given Snowden's disclosures about government but there is no evidence. So perhaps it is put on hold or expert opinion sought.
But importantly, just being aware of the possibility, may also alter behaviour, just in case.

Take another. Most mobile phones have a notification LED. Iphones never have and Apple have oddly refused to include one. Is this because people are thus required to pick up and check their Iphones many times a day, thus becoming habituated?
This one is less clear, it fits with a distrust of the motives of large corporations but here there are other plausible explanations.

In comparison, the UFO conspiracy is a paradox. It is attractive because there is strong evidence in that there are 100 trillion worlds out there. But there is an equally strong conflicting lack of any physical evidence.

So how to weigh these things, what's the best approach?

The strong evidence and the counterpoint lack of any straightforward explanation I think sets it apart, and intertwines it with the conspiracy arena, videlicet:
  • The world's governments have a conspiracy of silence
  • A shadow group controls world government
  • Ancient aliens visitation has been obfuscated by organised religion
and so on, with the accompanying joys of partial truths and vested misdirection.

I've always overestimated science (perhaps Arthur C was indicating by moving HAL one letter back from IBM) but find it strange that as we are now able to submit a data set to machine learning algorithms in the cloud to identify patterns (a ten minute job) there has still been little progress.

Disinformation and misinformation

Is it possible to use the Snowdon disclosures on intelligence disinformation techniques to identify any employed in the Ufology area?
Lets first define a couple of terms:

Misinformation: False information, but the person who is disseminating it believes it to be true.

Disinformation: False information

Then look at the possible purposes:
  • Discredit the subject to inhibit scientific research and to limit research by other governments.
  • Prevent information in pictures and videos that may yield technical information to other governments.
  • To discredit individuals or groups
  • To keep the focus away from particular areas
  • Monetary gain. Social media channels can be very lucrative, many are known to use CGI and other confirmed fraudulent material.
  • To promulgate the belief set of certain parties and theorists
Methodologies
  • Create then discredit events
  • Misinform credible people, scientists, researchers, to propagate misinformation. Perhaps some commonly available software for detecting exam plagurism could be used to see if reports have common authorship.
  • Exploit divisions, differences within interested groups
  • Attention management
  • Use credible materials, say time stamped military pictures
The above makes scientists and researchers especial targets

Disambiguation
The first thing is to isolate known bad information. Then split that data set by source, those that knew the information to be false and those who believed it to be true.

The first group gives the clearest indication as to likely motives and agendas.

The second group can be examined to find out the source of the bad information and if any of it came from people in the first group.

https://edwardsnowden.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/the-art-of-deception-training-for-a-new.pdf

In his book, Top secret alien abduction files : what the government doesn’t want you to know', Nick Redfern draws from FOI, contactee and abductee information and suggests several phases of alien activity.
The early years, from the 50s, where contactees reported benevolent, non abduction type interactions. Intrigued governments began discreetly opening files. A second and more sinister phase from the sixties with abductions and experimentation.

The reports included
'spoke of the aliens telling him that they recycled human souls into new bodies and that the Greys had connections to the afterlife and the domain of the dead'

Governments became more proactive with monitoring and rapid response, black helicopter type reactions and occasionally their own abductions.
Disinformation was used to limit widespread credence being given.

Postscript
In evolutionary terms I do not see us as being unusual, an evolutionary fluke allowed us to make the sounds to produce language.
Given that even the simplest creatures are self aware, we will soon unravel its biological underpinnings and with a few lines of code reproduce it.
We will then be able to produce 'souls' etched into silicon.

What forms of intelligent life may have evolved out there?
With birds everything is about weight, an increase requires a four fold increase in wingspan, so evolution mitigates against them developing large brains. Ditto for insects.
Mammals and reptiles. Mammals use 80 percent of their energy to maintain core temperature, so whilst more active and adaptive than reptiles, we are less able to survive climate extremes and changes.
Planet searching is finding many planets entirely covered in water. Less subject to natural disasters, aquatic life could well be predominant.
Creatures with many limbs requiring large brains would seem candidates.
So perhaps 50% tentacled aquatics, with 25% mammals and 25% reptiles.
Hopefully very few spiders, not sure about parasites.

L. Tarasov in This Amazingly Symmetrical World looks at it from the position of required symmetry:
"Whatever the extraterrestrial looks like, his appearance must exhibit bilateral symmetry, because on any planet a living creature must have a distinguishable direction of motion and on any planet there is gravity. The extraterrestrial may be like a dragon from some fairy tale, but not like a Push-Pull, by no means. He cannot be left-eyed or right- eared. He must have an equal number of limbs on either side. Symmetry requirements reduce drastically the number of possible versions of the extraterrestrial’s appearances. And although we cannot say with certainty what that appearance must be, we can say what it cannot be".

As a species where might we fit on the galactic scale? Our history suggests we are perhaps not a very bright one. Our governments are often unrepresentative and inefficient, we have had many wars and have polluted our planet. We may feature in galactic textbooks.

The forthcoming AI revolution
It will change many things. The narrow expert AI systems we have today (which already learn more quickly than us) will broaden to real life systems.
Finally, will come self awareness.
Then there will be the AI wars. For instance, China has many problems, pollution (many diplomats refuse to work in Chinese cities due the the health impact), an aging population and so on. It will start using AI for administration. The efficiency and competitive advantages will be considerable.
The cost of manufactured products will begin to plateau towards the cost of raw materials.
To compete other nations will have no choice but to follow. Democracy will be given lip service but it will be too expensive an indulgence and politicians will become irrelevant decorations.

The internet and information
In this area it is easy to disappear, Alice like, down the rabbit hole.
The internet requires us to evolve new strategies to manage the vast amount of information available.

At one end of the spectrum we have the philosophic, following Descartes, I can prove to myself that I exist, but I can't prove it to anyone else.
Mathematical proof is generally regarded as the most certain form of proof there is but then many of even Euclid's proofs of geometric theorems were subsequently found to be incorrect (Hilbert).

The scientific method formulates hypotheses that can be disproved. Those that are not disproved can be believed.
However it is more glamorous for a scientist to formulate rather than disprove so our body of knowledge is full of hypotheses that we believe but which will eventually be proved false.
Perhaps then you should ask what scientific ideas that have not been disproved do you believe are false.
Human nature also plays a role in information selection. Forums allow people to focus on groups with views similar to their own.
Additionally there is learning reinforcement. Take gambling addicts. It is said they are frequently those unlucky enough to win the first few times (a technique employed by some gaming sites).

A part of human nature is when there is no evidence for or against something coincidence is a valid approach to weigh whether to believe or not. I personally hold an extreme view, that there is no such thing as coincidence. It is an indicator. Every occurrence has a meaning, rather than the abstract cogwheel of mathematical permutation and combination. But then some say mathematics is the language of god - is there an equation out there that relates coincidence with luck and fate.

The method of crisis management may also play a pivotal role in belief decisions, when perhaps people need hope because of a loss of faith in humanity.
In the past, people would seek belief in times of crisis (rarely it would seem after winning the lottery), now it is prescription drugs.
Religion, as crisis management had fewer side effects than the modern replacement.
In 2012 at an Open Minds conference, I heard an ex military physicist Professor Barrie Trower, speak on the dangers of microwave radiation (damage to fertility in schools, illegal use against activists).
Information that can make you fear for the future:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nMewMGsiTk8
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fjEeILFw_VI

Regarding the subject of discosure, it would be ironic if religious radicalism reached destabilizing proportions so forcing governments to make alien discosure. Perhaps that may constitute an unseen dialogue between governments and organised religion.

On a final note two recent patents granted to the US Navy, if not disinformation, relate to "a craft using an inertial mass reduction device":
https://patents.justia.com/patent/10144532
https://patents.justia.com/patent/20180229864
https://patentimages.storage.googleapis.com/a5/7b/8e/c4e27782082a8f/US20180229864A1.pdf

However, EM fields can't do that because they are rank-1 tensor fields. Only gravity can produce reactionless propulsion effects because it's a deformation of the spacetime matrix itself, a rank-2 tensor field effect.
It is incorrect to say that gravity and inertia come from the rotation of nuclei. Four tensor, Poincare invariance is required.
The key is at the nuclear scale, manipulating nucleons to magnify GR phenomena for practical applications. The requirement is nuclear in nature because nuclear matter is basically neutronium; the link between matter and spacetime.

Increased military sightings
Two major changes in military radar and imaging have led to increased unidentified aerial vehicle (UAV) reports.
Active Electronically Scanned Array radar has replaced mechanical scanning and Advanced Targeting Forward-Looking Infrared (FLIR) rangefinders and cameras are now widely deployed, replacing their 1980s-era equivalents.

Additionally, multi-function reconnaissance pods are increasingly common.
The US F/A-18F is fitted with the Raytheon SHARP multi-function reconnaissance pods. They replaced the USN Tactical Airborne Reconnaissance Pod (TARPS).

The New York Times reported:
Lieutenant Accoin said he interacted twice with the objects. The first time, after picking up the object on his radar, he set his plane to merge with it, flying 1,000 feet below it. He said he should have been able to see it with his helmet camera, but could not, even though his radar told him it was there.

A few days later, Lieutenant Accoin said a training missile on his jet locked on the object and his infrared camera picked it up as well. “I knew I had it, I knew it was not a false hit,” he said. But still, “I could not pick it up visually.”

In late 2014, Lieutenant Graves said he was back at base in Virginia Beach when he encountered a squadron mate just back from a mission “with a look of shock on his face.”
He said he was stunned to hear the pilot’s words. “I almost hit one of those things,” the pilot told Lieutenant Graves.

The pilot and his wingman were flying in tandem about 100 feet apart over the Atlantic east of Virginia Beach when something flew between them, right past the cockpit. It looked to the pilot, Lieutenant Graves said, like a sphere encasing a cube.

There would seem a pattern: no visual but multiple IR contacts.
Surely a simple algorithm could be used to identify contacts with multiple IR but no visible component?

An interesting scientific paper by Knuth, Powell, and Reali, presenting an analysis of UAV flight characteristics from these military sightings has been published. It is available from:
https://www.preprints.org/manuscript/201908.0233/v1

Image analysis
Edge detection is often used to 'look under the surface' of images. The heavyweight and free GIMP software makes it as simple as loading an image then Filters, Edge-detect, Edge, Roberts

It might be a useful method for highlighting atmospheric artifacts of propulsion fields.

Breaking news
On October 2nd NASA's Planetary Science Division director Jim Green gave a surprising interview in which he said the space agency is close to "making some announcements" about finding life on Mars — but that we're not ready for it.
It will be revolutionary. It’s like when Copernicus stated ‘no we go around the Sun.' Completely revolutionary. It will start a whole new line of thinking. I don’t think we’re prepared for the results.
https://www.foxnews.com/science/nasa-chief-scientist-announcements-life-on-mars October 2nd 2019

If similar to microscopic life on Earth, it would indicate the important steps in evolution are robust and life may be quite similar throughout the galaxy. It may also give support for panspermia over abiogenesis. Indeed, given the majority of solar systems in our galaxy formed several billion years before ours, microscopic life may have been spread by FTL travel.

In contrast, a recent edition of the BBC's Sky at night displayed some of the first images of exoplanetary moons.
As we penetrate further should we not have seen signs of intelligent life by now? especially if it were as common as represented by mainstream science fiction?
In his book If the Universe Is teeming with Aliens . . . where is everybody? Stephen Webb examines the arguments for and against seventy-five solutions to the Fermi Paradox and the problem of extraterrestrial life:
And yet the size argument really has little relevance because it turns out that most of our universe is empty. Well, that’s not quite right. The universe appears to be full of “stuff ”, but it’s “stuff ”—dark energy and dark matter—of which we have almost zero knowl- edge except for the fact that it isn’t suitable for constructing life. Even the 5% of the mass–energy content of the universe that we understand—atoms and neutrinos and radiation—is spread thinly, and most of it isn’t in a form that would permit the existence of life. The universe might be big, but size alone tells us little about whether there are homes for beings such as us.
Indeed, it is now beginning to look as though humanity is the best the universe has been able to come up with.


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