Ask A Genius 325 – The Feynman Thing (2)
October 19, 2017
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Rick Rosner: Now it’s possible we could reach a limit to three hundred years from now where the earth is wrapped up in a big ball of information processing entities that are coming together and bubbling apart like a lava lamp and that might be the pinnacle of what a civilization can achieve but I doubt that too, I think in some ways civilization keeps going and becoming more powerful.
On the other hand that’s hard to conceive because in a universe that is it least fourteen billion years old and possibly according to our theory like a gazillion times older than that, yes you’ll have, you should have the civilization that is tens of millions of years old and more and I don’t know how you have civilizations that just keep getting more sophisticated on a ten million years scale, so it may be that yeah that civilizations reach a point where they require some stability and don’t continue to rejigger themselves, that’s highly possible but I find it highly not possible that the stopping point is at anything like the world we have now. We haven’t reached any of the limits of, we’re still making big strides in understanding the brain which I think means that we’re eventually going to understand consciousness and computation and an information-based universe and we’re not at the limits of the worst laws in any of its form.
We will hit the limits of Moore’s Law in some of its forms within the next ten or fifteen years that we will probably be stymied when it comes to, you can’t go smaller than atoms for instance as information storage device or you may be can if you go quantum but still you’re going to run into some fairly daunting physical limits in terms of miniaturization for that aspect of Moore’s Law, but even so we’re still, there will be ways to dance around the limitations of the various Moore’s laws and.
We’re nowhere near having the computational power that we’ll have when we do start hitting those fairly hard limits. So we’re going to be rejigged. How long the rejiggering goes on it is an open question but let’s say that we have a future of celebrating the change that will go for thousands of years at least.
So you can, some people speculate about a future of inside a Dyson’s sphere which is a completely built out solar system where all the planets have been dismantled and turned into the shell that rides or surrounds a star to absorb all the rate of solar heat the solar radiation are using computation and then releases it as wasting and that maybe some, probably won’t be what happens because we’re trying to imagine the future from a very ignorant point in time but I can imagine that there will be a fairly built out completely built out future sometimes thousands of years in the future that may be stable for a long time. But I don’t think we reach that point for many, many, for at least several tens of centuries. That’s it.
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American Television Writer
Scott Douglas Jacobsen
Editor-in-Chief, In-Sight Publishing
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