Re: poly: Malign Probes

From: Peter C. McCluskey <>
Date: Mon Dec 22 1997 - 14:21:11 PST (Robin Hanson) writes:
>I challenge anyone to write down a specific model and show that this behavior
>is the ESS of it. It just doesn't seem like equilibrium behavior to me.

>You suffer chances of being destroyed naturally in flight, or being noticed
>and destroyed by malign probes from non-friends. So you need to reproduce
>once in a while to preserve your numbers. But then the question arises:
>why not reproduce a LOT?

 Because there is a reproduction rate above which the marginal cost of
reproducing again (cost being mainly risk of detection by enemies) exceeds
the benefits of reproduction. This could be because of some threshold for
detection (enemies look for the kind of temperature change or matter
rearrangement that would imply a cancer-like growth, but can't afford
to detect the level of reproduction needed to maintain a steady state),
and/or because the probability of a child finding an oasis declines as
the number of children increases.

 This hypothesis strikes me as improbable (especially since we haven't
been destroyed by the probes yet), but so does any other answer to the
Fermi paradox.

Peter McCluskey          | caffeine   O   CH3            |            ||  | |      H3C   C   N
                         |         \ / \ / \
                         |          N   C   C
                                    |   ||  ||
                                    C   C---N
                                  // \ /
                                  O   N
Received on Mon Dec 22 22:13:34 1997

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.8 : Tue Mar 07 2006 - 14:45:29 PST