I have vague recollections of someone telling me of a paradox many moons ago, it went thusly: There's no point in launching a spaceship on a deep space mission, because as technology advances so rapidly (e.g. Moore's law) that any ship you build in the future will be faster/more efficient and hence overtake any craft that you launch now, inferring that one should always put off launching a deep space mission.
The same person told me it was called 'Clarke's Paradox' (I think?) but I can't find any reference to it, save Clarke's Laws (i.e. "Any technology sufficiently advanced will be indistinguishable from magic" etc). Can anyone help put a name to this paradox?
posted by Rufus T. Firefly
on Apr 26, 2013 -
If an alien located on a planet 100 light years from here was to switch on a big, multi-frequency radio receiver, and record all the noises coming from outer space for the next hundred years, on all frequencies, how many soap operas, advertisements and new broadcasts would they pick up from Earth? Would a mass-market radio, similar to our Earthly equivalents, pick up anything? Over time, as the number of Earth transmissions increases exponentially, would the alien pick up a cacophony or a damp fizzle? [more inside]
posted by 0bvious
on Feb 23, 2012 -