Monday, July 10, 2017

Sending Humans to the Stars on Beams of Light Part V #Science #Physics #Fantasy

The ideas behind this series of article are that it's possible to go to the stars via beams of light (i.e. lasers) and that it's possible to encode a digital human for transmission in this manner.  Since there's been no refutation of the foundation science for this, maybe either you're going along with the rambling of an old crank or you're will to suspend disbelief for the sake of whatever ideas may come out of it.  You were willing to believe Indiana Jones could save the world with no more kit than a lion tamer (i.e. a hat and a whip) so we have a chance.

Ithaka:  Sending Humans to the Stars on Beams of Light #Science #Physics #Fantasy
Initial premise regarding defeating the Time Dilation Effect of traveling near light speed.

Ithaka:  Sending Humans to the Stars on Beams of Light Part II #Science #Physics #Fantasy
Proposal of encoding digital humans for transmission with light.

Ithaka:  Sending Humans to the Stars on Beams of Light Part III #Science #Physics #Fantasy
More detailed mechanics regarding going to the stars without ever actually setting foot on one.

Ithaka:  Sending Humans to the Stars on Beams of Light Part IV #Science #Physics #Fantasy
Exploring a little bit of sure your AI is nice but does it have a soul.

It wasn't difficult to track down the articles since three of them are in What's Hot for the Week.  That shows me surprising interest and possibly sufficient to enjoy playing with the ideas some more.

Sci fi works generally in two ways.  The writer may have irrefutable science to back whatever premise but that's usually not particularly interesting.  The writer may have acceptable science which is sufficient to warrant the suspension of disbelief so you can discover what else comes behind it.  There's a third alternative for which science floats in or out and that's generally the way with sci fi fantasy in which genre magic or whatever you like is ok.

The Rockhouse preference is for sci fi with enough science behind it to give me sufficient reason to believe it's possible or might be.  That looks like the same approach you're taking with the series so, cool, we have a foundation.

Part IV left with the idea if there's a human soul then it better also be in your digital clone or that clone isn't truly cloned at all.  We make no statement about whether a soul exists or it doesn't but it better be present in the copy if it's present in the source if that copy will be a truly digital human.  The general premise in Part IV is you have nothing to lose by trying it since our physical bodies will die anyway.  That doesn't answer where it's possible to copy one's soul but there's probably no more clear answer to that than whether the soul exists in the first place.

The Rockhouse has no particular religion but we strongly believe logic and the more basic view of things is to question what logic shows a soul exist but we can ping pong that right back to ask what logic is there to show it doesn't.

But you and I
we've been through that
and we didn't come for ping pong

Bob Dylan:  you better stop that poem right now before I get mad.

Hat tip, Bob.

We can't validate whether future robos will have souls but the acceptance by future people will be the measure of that.  Now you've got some exceptional strangeness if the robo comes up with a new soul which was not cloned from a human but that spins out to a Mechano Heaven and that's more strangeness than we need in the series.  There is tremendous potential for being gratuitously disrespectful in such a telling and we have no more interest in that than we do in playing ping pong.

The biggest variance from expectations from star travel is that we won't ever travel to the stars, at least not before there's some credible faster-than-light propulsion which truly does defeat the Time Dilation Effect but there's no evidence such technology will get here any time soon and the Rockhouse therefore relegates that thinking to sci fi fantasy rather than actual sci fi.

The general concept remains that we will send out a starship freighter which carries all the robos and our laser beam will catch up with it a year later such that we get positive acknowledgement the robo base on the target exoplanet is functional.  Therefore, in about twenty one years, we should know on Earth the starship has arrived and the digital human payload we sent with laser has been received.

That last comes up to the point at which the colony on the exoplanet is established with some varying number of robos being inhabited by digital humans.  A secondary premise is this way is better since humans won't get dead by going to the stars.  At worst we may lose some robos but, wtf, make more.

The departure from the previous articles is there's no reason to believe your digital self can be duplicated just once since that's an arbitrary constraint and we have all seen the one thing you know for sure about sending anything to the digital world: it will be copied.

We're not interested in nefarious theft of your digital persona but we are interested in duplicating it so you can go to more than one star and why not since those who dig such exploration will probably want as much as they can get of it.  Keep in mind this is not the same as the technology we have seen for swarming drone robos and things of that nature since those typically operate within tight frameworks and they usually communicate with other.  In the case of these cloned digital humans, they're autonomous.  Your original digital self is doing whatever magical things it does while your autonomous digital self goes off to do whatever magic things it does, possibly on another star, and the primary point is they're operating independently.

The squishy part of that is what happens if you want to merge your digital selves back down to a single digital entity and that takes multiplexing into a realm of dementia we leave it to future space travelers to explore.  However, we ask what need could there be for remixing digital selves back down to one since that only serves a vague sense of individualism which the existence of the clones proves isn't real.

Besides, imagine sitting about in your room just now with a robo whose persona is a precise digital representation of your own.  The Rockhouse submits you would hate it worse than sleeping with fire ants.  You would know the answer to every question before you asked it, etc, etc.  In NASA terminology, it would be fuckin' horrible.

That's the part we don't believe will happen.  However, what we do believe is this approach will so much reduce the cost and time required for travel to the stars that we will be shooting off starships like they're bottle rockets.

The Rockhouse further submits you will get a better experience in your star travel even without actually going since robos will inevitably end up better than us.  They have better vision, more sensitive touch, and, best of all, they don't get dead in hostile environments; they don't care about the atmosphere ... they don't breathe it.  We will experience all of those things through the robo so that will give us capabilities we do not have now.

How about one more aspect since how about if we do some engineering or whatever is required to improve the empathic response of robos.  We don't need to itemize the way humans forget about empathy since we all know that happens so instead we ask what if robos aren't like that.

There's one dynamic which may set us up for a Part VI since I've read many, many articles regarding the development of individual AI constructs for robos but I've seen nary a murmur regarding any type of dynamics in terms of what happens when many such AI constructs are operating independently in close proximity with one other.  We know there are large changes in human behavior due to crowd dynamics (e.g. we get incredibly stupid) so what happens when we do that with robos.

I'm really not interested in working up a horror story behind that but we easily could.

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