Re: poly: Malign Probes

From: Peter C. McCluskey <>
Date: Sun Jan 18 1998 - 12:33:59 PST (Robin Hanson) writes:
>Peter M. responded:
>> If the expected number of new oases your probes will find exceeds one,
>>then this strategy works and is inconsistent with the malign probe
>>hypothesis. But a universe with lots of malign probes around isn't going
>>to have a lot of undefended oases, which makes it quite possible for the
>>expected number of new oases to be less than one, in which case probes
>>which abandon existing oases before finding new ones tend towards
>It seems to me that the standard malign probe scenario has life being
>sparse. If life is very dense, then there is no point in trying to hide.
>Everyone knows that your system probably harbors life.

 The knowledge that system probably contains (non-spreading) life
doesn't need to trigger any reaction by the malign probes. I'm
hypothesizing that probes detect and destroy lifeforms that show
signs of expanding beyond their current system, and ignore lifeforms
that appear static. As long as the density of probes exceeds some
minimum needed for the detection to work reliably, it appears to
be stable.

Peter McCluskey          | caffeine   O   CH3            |            ||  | |      H3C   C   N
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Received on Sun Jan 18 20:35:41 1998

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