Re: tautology

From: Christopher Maloney <>
Date: Thu, 07 Oct 1999 22:54:28 -0400

I believe that we can predict that among all possible races of sentient
beings (in any possible universe), humans have a measure that is among
the largest. That doesn't mean that there are more humans than any other
race, just as (from my perspective) there aren't more Americans than any
other nationality. But there are no other races that outnumber humans
by any "order of infinity".

This harkens back to a thread I started some time ago about our universe
being the one, or among the ones, that admit the most SASs. Clearly the
number of observer-moments among the human race is vast, if you assume the
MWI. Most people replied that they thought it was of the order aleph-0
(countable) or C (the continuum). If you assume comp, and that any two
implementations of the same Turing machine are identical (which I would)
then the number must be aleph-0, right?

If that's the case, then I don't think there's much else you can predict.
You couldn't say that there's no other sentient alien race that vastly
outnumbers humans - because we are randomly selected from among *all*
the sentient races. And perhaps the number of races that have a number
of beings close to the number of humans outweighs the few that have a
greater number. I.e. perhaps the distribution is like this:


Even though there are vastly more aliens (As) than humans (Hs), there
are more beings of low-number races (C through Z) than high-number
races (As or Bs). wrote:
> Closely tied to the self selection assumption is the Doomsday argument,
> which says that we are probably about halfway along in the lifetime of
> the human race, hence (if you count by observers or observer-moments)
> the human race should go extinct within a few thousand years.
> Can we also predict, based on the self selection assumption, that there
> are probably no sentient alien races which vastly outnumber humans?
> Otherwise it would be overwhelmingly more probable that we would be an
> alien than human, right?
> Could we also predict that the total number of sentient aliens in the
> universe is probably no more than, say, 100 times the population of
> the human race? This one seems more questionable because if all aliens
> are no more populous than humans, then no matter who you are you will
> see a race which is no more numerous than our own.
> Hal

Chris Maloney
"Donuts are so sweet and tasty."
-- Homer Simpson
Received on Thu Oct 07 1999 - 20:04:09 PDT

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