The Nightshirt Sightings, Portents, Forebodings, Suspicions

Category “The Future”

Psychic Astronauts: Remote Viewing, Space Exploration, and UFOs

Tuesday, 19 November, 2013

The emptiness of Fermi’s Paradox as an argument against ETs rests, I think, on the unlikelihood that advanced technological civilizations would ever explore or colonize their universe in the flesh. I’ve suggested here that the “reach” of ETs through space, and that of our own human or machine descendents, will be via Von Neumann probes […]

Mysterianism and the Question of Machine Sentience

Monday, 4 November, 2013

We are within perhaps a decade of creating computers that match and perhaps even dwarf the human brain in computing power, and that are capable of complex computations that may include something like reasoning and even a notion of self—what many would therefore consider to be autonomous, conscious machines. When we contemplate this, most of […]

Humans Everywhere (the REALLY Anthropic Cosmos)

Thursday, 24 October, 2013

There is the important, often-heard argument that in our attempts to think about extraterrestrials and extraterrestrial intelligence we should not be anthropocentric—that aliens will be alien, maybe so alien that we have already encountered them and cannot even recognize that fact. This is one of the arguments against the extraterrestrial hypothesis for UFO encounters—that our […]

The Noömass Hypothesis: Is Dark Matter Made of Knowledge?

Tuesday, 15 October, 2013

. . . In that Empire, the Art of Cartography attained such Perfection that the map of a single Province occupied the entirety of a City, and the map of the Empire, the entirety of a Province. In time, those Unconscionable Maps no longer satisfied, and the Cartographers Guilds struck a Map of the Empire […]

Existential Futurology (A Few Thoughts on the Unlikelihood of Interstellar Colonization)

Monday, 14 October, 2013

According to various estimates, including a mathematical model published a couple years ago by Thomas W. Hair and Andrew D. Hedman, the galaxy (let’s limit ourselves to our galaxy for purposes of discussion) should already have long been colonized by a spacefaring civilization. That our solar system appears to be untouched can only mean (according […]

Anti-Anti-ETH: Big Data, Deep Anthropology, and Von Neumann Probes

Friday, 11 October, 2013

The recent NSA domestic spying scandal that shocked everyone is not really so shocking if you are the sort of person who likes to think about the possibilities (and pitfalls) of knowledge. We are now in the era of “big data,” which is changing the landscape not only of state surveillance but also science and […]

The Space Jockey and Our Endosymbiotic Destiny

Wednesday, 12 September, 2012

There is an interesting tradition in science fiction of examining the idea of a symbiosis between the ship and its crew, specifically its pilot. The once-human Spacing Guild navigators in Dune, whose drug-induced trance folds space for the heighliners’ faster-than-light passage, leaps immediately to mind. And there are hints of this idea in Norman Spinrad’s […]

The Martians’ Horrific Geometry

Tuesday, 28 December, 2010

“He talked of his dreams in a strangely poetic fashion; making me see with terrible vividness the damp Cyclopean city of slimy green stone—whose geometry, he oddly said, was all wrong…” H.P. Lovecraft, “The Call of Cthulhu” A surprising number of features on Mars show qualities at least somewhat suggestive of having been sculpted not […]

WWKD?

Friday, 3 December, 2010

All this talk of nonhumans, transhumans, post-humans. The coming Disclosure. The Singularity. We’re all focused beyond humanity to something else, some future state of being, some other species, something that transforms us and raises us to some new quantum state. The more I think about this stuff, the more I think about Star Trek. The […]

The Singularity (Thoughts on Bifurcation, pt. 1)

Saturday, 20 November, 2010

“Who wants to live forever?” – Queen Transhumanists plan for the coming Singularity, the threshold of transcendence of biological mortality and of flesh-enslaved consciousness—i.e., posthumanity. Ray Kurzweil for example clasps his hands together and squeals that the first person to be immortal is already alive, and that we can right now (through diet and exercise) […]