The Second Apocalypse

Miscellaneous Chatter => The Forum of Interesting Things => Topic started by: Madness on November 09, 2017, 03:21:11 pm

Title: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: Madness on November 09, 2017, 03:21:11 pm
What Happens If China Makes First Contact? (https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2017/12/what-happens-if-china-makes-first-contact/544131/) - with commentary by Liu Cixin, the author of The Three-Body Problem.
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: TaoHorror on November 09, 2017, 05:59:51 pm
It's screwing with us Americans big time, but it's time to accept there's another power who will make massive contributions to civilization beyond our country. Of course, many other countries are contributing awesome stuff every day, but Americans feel we're the overall leader of world progress. It simply is not a big deal ( in the sense it's a detriment to America ) if China "hears" first and whats more, it's a contribution to humanity that they've built this thing. Its high time for America to recede our paranoia of others encroaching on our self-perceived world dominance and welcome and cherish other nations' contributions
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: Madness on November 10, 2017, 04:35:30 pm
You had your high ground. It was a good 243 years.
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: BeardFisher-King on November 11, 2017, 12:51:41 pm
Liu's "dark-forest" strategy for optimizing civilizational survival is beyond interesting. "Hide well, cleanse well." It's the opposite of shouting "Hey, we're here!" to the universe.
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: jamesA01 on November 11, 2017, 04:46:34 pm
The problem is that it wouldn't be enough to wake the west up from its senility. People in the west have convinced themselves that China is about to have a liberal democratic revolution, anyday now, because people always chose FREEDOM! over material prosperity. That's the kind of delusion winning on the level that the west won from 89-2000 gets you.


https://www.unz.com/article/how-can-western-capitalism-beat-this/?highlight=china (https://www.unz.com/article/how-can-western-capitalism-beat-this/?highlight=china)

"In June, 2017, an instructive meeting took place between California Governor Jerry Brown and Chinese President Xi Jinping. While talking about climate change, the topic of high speed trains (HST) came up. Governor Brown supposedly lamented that his state has not been able to build even one puny HST line, since his governor-father began pushing for it back in the 1950s.

▲▼Why? While China is zeroing in on 30,000km of HST track, more than the rest of the world combined, along with hundreds of architecturally inspiring train stations to serve them, California has 2,000 lawsuits fighting its proposal. Why? Greedy capitalists and their purchased government employees and representatives are fighting each other for the loot, like cannibals in a kill pit of corruption, while selfish citizens are putting their individual interests ahead of the greater good. The latter is called NIMBY, Not in My Backyard."


No matter how biased and hyperbolic that essay is, the basic reality its referring to is legit.

Let them have it. If Trump was our ambassador they'd genocide our species out of mercy.
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: BeardFisher-King on November 11, 2017, 08:00:18 pm

No matter how biased and hyperbolic that essay is, the basic reality its referring to is legit.


Glad you recognize the bias and hyperbole. The author credits Mao, btw, for laying the "bedrock" for this wondrous society.

It's all about breaking eggs and making omelettes.
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: jamesA01 on November 12, 2017, 04:26:00 am
Morality has nothing to do with it, and America has its own history of genocide and mass slaughter.
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: BeardFisher-King on November 12, 2017, 07:02:38 pm
Morality has nothing to do with it, and America has its own history of genocide and mass slaughter.
If "morality has nothing to do with it", then why bring up America's moral failings?
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: TaoHorror on November 12, 2017, 07:13:13 pm
Morality has nothing to do with it, and America has its own history of genocide and mass slaughter.
If "morality has nothing to do with it", then why bring up America's moral failings?

You're being kind there, Beard - more like America's criminal history. And I love America, some great things about living here, but our violent/criminal history is awful
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: BeardFisher-King on November 12, 2017, 07:23:08 pm
Morality has nothing to do with it, and America has its own history of genocide and mass slaughter.
If "morality has nothing to do with it", then why bring up America's moral failings?

You're being kind there, Beard - more like America's criminal history. And I love America, some great things about living here, but our violent/criminal history is awful

As is every nation's. I don't think America's history is uniquely evil. It was settled by colonists, who conflicted with the natives, who undoubtedly conflicted with those on the scene before them.

Mao's revolution, on the other hand, was "more", as Kellhus might have said.

To repeat, Liu's theory of "dark-forest strategy" puts an extremely interesting spin on first-contact issues.
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: Frankly Bucked on November 12, 2017, 08:03:23 pm
Oooh this is awesome. Three-Body Problem rivals Blindsight as one of my favorite SF novels ever and also one of the most enlightening/frightening explorations of how alien contact could go south in ways totally unexpected and unrelated to "aliens are bad and just wanna kill everybody". In fact Three-Body Problem maybe even more-so than Blindsight, as the issues potentially stemming from relativity are ones that are basically inevitable if mankind is ever to colonize interstellar space. Don't even need the aliens for shit to get real hairy right off the bat.
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: BeardFisher-King on November 13, 2017, 12:14:16 am
Oooh this is awesome. Three-Body Problem rivals Blindsight as one of my favorite SF novels ever and also one of the most enlightening/frightening explorations of how alien contact could go south in ways totally unexpected and unrelated to "aliens are bad and just wanna kill everybody". In fact Three-Body Problem maybe even more-so than Blindsight, as the issues potentially stemming from relativity are ones that are basically inevitable if mankind is ever to colonize interstellar space. Don't even need the aliens for shit to get real hairy right off the bat.

Hey, FB, how's it going? Have you read the entire Three Body trilogy?
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: TLEILAXU on November 13, 2017, 12:49:49 am
Isn't the premise in that series something like "guys our own solar system sucks so we invade yours, gl hf phaggots lol we also hijacked your technological development" ? Is it worth reading?
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: BeardFisher-King on November 13, 2017, 01:11:46 am
Isn't the premise in that series something like "guys our own solar system sucks so we invade yours, gl hf phaggots lol we also hijacked your technological development" ? Is it worth reading?
It's worth reading, yes:

1) For the wild speculative physics.
2) For the "dark-forest strategy" of multiple interstellar civilizations.
3) There are also some great characters. 
"Da Shi", a Chinese detective, is awesome.
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: MSJ on November 13, 2017, 01:14:51 am
Quote from: Tleilaxu
Isn't the premise in that series something like "guys our own solar system sucks so we invade yours, gl hf phaggots lol we also hijacked your technological development" ? Is it worth reading?

No, its more like our planet is dying and dude, we want yours. The first book is good, but imho, has a lot of pacing issues. I haven't got to Dark Forest, but I will. I'm intrigued enough to finish the series. After Malazan, and reading it straight through, I have a hard time reading a series all at once. I tend to read a few series at a time.

[EDIT Madness: Quote tag.]
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: Wilshire on November 14, 2017, 01:16:53 pm
Very interesting. I'd like to get around to three-body problem now, and the dark-forest idea is fascinating.

lol MSJ: Malazan had the same affect on me.
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: Srancy on November 16, 2017, 02:07:19 pm
Assuming First Contact will ever happen
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: Wilshire on November 16, 2017, 04:35:31 pm
Assuming First Contact will ever happen
I mean, I think the question says "if" lol. the whole thing is a hypothetical, so yeah, we're assuming that the hypothetical hypothetically happens, in this hypothetical scenario.

Another hypothetical entirely might be "what if no first contact is made" - but that's a whole different topic ;).
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: TLEILAXU on November 16, 2017, 05:54:07 pm
Assuming First Contact will ever happen
Maybe it's not that far off... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/KIC_8462852
Anyway, if first contact happens I hope this is what the aliens will see
Quote
http://i.imgur.com/7x44VOd.jpg
Also, broadcasting our location to the cosmos is fucking stupid.
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: Wilshire on November 16, 2017, 06:20:45 pm
Assuming First Contact will ever happen
Maybe it's not that far off... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/KIC_8462852
Anyway, if first contact happens I hope this is what the aliens will see
Quote
http://i.imgur.com/7x44VOd.jpg
Also, broadcasting our location to the cosmos is fucking stupid.

Lol, classic humanity.
Also, way to late for broadcasting location. But hey, it was a simpler time back then and we thought that any intelligent interstellar super-civilizations were going to be as friendly to animals as we are - not to mention friendly among themselves as we are.... Oh, oh my god, we've made a horrible error!
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: Madness on November 18, 2017, 05:07:40 pm
I liked how Sagan dealt with communication in Contact. Otherwise, while there are a number of hypotheses, obviously, it's easy to think that communication/recognition between species would be impossible.

I suppose that would make an interesting thread, in and of itself.
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: H on November 21, 2017, 12:50:15 pm
I liked how Sagan dealt with communication in Contact. Otherwise, while there are a number of hypotheses, obviously, it's easy to think that communication/recognition between species would be impossible.

I suppose that would make an interesting thread, in and of itself.

Don't forget, more recently, Arrival and the issue of communication presented there, as it relates to a fundamentally different ways of conceptualizing language and time.
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: Wilshire on November 21, 2017, 03:10:28 pm
I liked how Sagan dealt with communication in Contact. Otherwise, while there are a number of hypotheses, obviously, it's easy to think that communication/recognition between species would be impossible.

I suppose that would make an interesting thread, in and of itself.

Don't forget, more recently, Arrival and the issue of communication presented there, as it relates to a fundamentally different ways of conceptualizing language and time.

Not sure about those examples, but Watts make an interesting case in Blindsight. Capture two, torture one of them and make the other solves puzzles to make the torture stop. Eventually you'll learn how to communicate with them.

Maybe you need three so you can figure out how to properly torture the first one (likely a casualty as you discover the limits of pain and survival thresholds )
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: Madness on November 21, 2017, 03:37:12 pm
I liked how Sagan dealt with communication in Contact. Otherwise, while there are a number of hypotheses, obviously, it's easy to think that communication/recognition between species would be impossible.

I suppose that would make an interesting thread, in and of itself.

Don't forget, more recently, Arrival and the issue of communication presented there, as it relates to a fundamentally different ways of conceptualizing language and time.

Decent adaptation, though I still find Story of Your Life a much better suited medium.

Even there though, some hypotheses suggest that it is comically unlikely that anything resembling recognizable communication might possibly occur between interstellar species.

Blindsight...

(click to show/hide)
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: TLEILAXU on November 21, 2017, 08:03:29 pm
I liked how Sagan dealt with communication in Contact. Otherwise, while there are a number of hypotheses, obviously, it's easy to think that communication/recognition between species would be impossible.

I suppose that would make an interesting thread, in and of itself.

Don't forget, more recently, Arrival and the issue of communication presented there, as it relates to a fundamentally different ways of conceptualizing language and time.

Decent adaptation, though I still find Story of Your Life a much better suited medium.

Even there though, some hypotheses suggest that it is comically unlikely that anything resembling recognizable communication might possibly occur between interstellar species.

Blindsight...

(click to show/hide)
Arrival, while conceptually interesting, was still sci-fi.
It's hard to envision how we might communicate with a truly alien race since we cannot envision such a race. Even Peter Watts' Blindsight, which I love, has one particularly cringey part for the biochemically inclined.
Hint: It's related to scrambler physiology.
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: Madness on November 24, 2017, 12:42:27 pm
It's hard to envision how we might communicate with a truly alien race since we cannot envision such a race.

+1
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: Madness on November 30, 2017, 11:33:30 pm
Only peripherally related but for BFK (https://www.tor.com/2017/11/30/barack-obama-liu-cixin-next-book), based on a conversation he and Wilshire were having in Quorum:

Quote
Liu Cixin’s next U.S. release is Ball Lightning, a Tesla-evoking cautionary novel of what happens when the beauty of scientific inquiry runs up against a push to harness new discoveries with no consideration of their possible consequences.
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: BeardFisher-King on December 01, 2017, 12:32:54 am
Only peripherally related but for BFK (https://www.tor.com/2017/11/30/barack-obama-liu-cixin-next-book), based on a conversation he and Wilshire were having in Quorum:

Quote
Liu Cixin’s next U.S. release is Ball Lightning, a Tesla-evoking cautionary novel of what happens when the beauty of scientific inquiry runs up against a push to harness new discoveries with no consideration of their possible consequences.
Very cool, Madness! August 2018 release date, so a bit of a wait.

I am very curious as to what President Obama thinks about dark-forest strategy, if he got that far in the trilogy. It's the polar opposite of the optimistic view familiar from Star Trek. Hide well, cleanse well......
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: TLEILAXU on December 01, 2017, 01:21:32 am
Only peripherally related but for BFK (https://www.tor.com/2017/11/30/barack-obama-liu-cixin-next-book), based on a conversation he and Wilshire were having in Quorum:

Quote
Liu Cixin’s next U.S. release is Ball Lightning, a Tesla-evoking cautionary novel of what happens when the beauty of scientific inquiry runs up against a push to harness new discoveries with no consideration of their possible consequences.
Very cool, Madness! August 2018 release date, so a bit of a wait.

I am very curious as to what President Obama thinks about dark-forest strategy, if he got that far in the trilogy. It's the polar opposite of the optimistic view familiar from Star Trek. Hide well, cleanse well......
I haven't read the books but hasn't Stephen Hawking said pretty much the same thing for years?
Also, Ball Lightning sounds like a very cool title. Sounds like an electricity themed book.
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: Madness on December 08, 2017, 02:06:49 pm
I haven't read the books but hasn't Stephen Hawking said pretty much the same thing for years?

Yup.
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: Madness on December 30, 2017, 12:06:13 am
The aliens are coming, and no one cares (https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/post-partisan/wp/2017/12/19/the-aliens-are-coming-and-no-one-cares/?utm_term=.67f0b4ba976b).

Is this the thread for this now ;)?
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: MSJ on December 30, 2017, 12:35:14 am
You say, " We don't care!", well that's true. Why do you think that for that last 10-20 years we have been flooded with alien shows, movies and the like? To desensitize us. So, when the government finally shows us the truth, that we won't care. It won't be as shocking, because over half the world already believes we've made contact with aliens and visit this place we call Earth. Might (probably) are what we call God. They probably run or work with most governments on Earth. So, when the veil is lifted, WE WONT CARE.
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: TaoHorror on December 30, 2017, 03:44:48 pm
I care!
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: themerchant on January 01, 2018, 12:46:37 pm
You had your high ground. It was a good 243 years.

Same we had our time before that.
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: Wilshire on January 04, 2018, 04:28:53 pm
It's screwing with us Americans big time, but it's time to accept there's another power who will make massive contributions to civilization beyond our country. Of course, many other countries are contributing awesome stuff every day, but Americans feel we're the overall leader of world progress. It simply is not a big deal ( in the sense it's a detriment to America ) if China "hears" first and whats more, it's a contribution to humanity that they've built this thing. Its high time for America to recede our paranoia of others encroaching on our self-perceived world dominance and welcome and cherish other nations' contributions

I mean that, or we Americans can collectively use our fear of global inadequacy (ours really IS bigger, I swear!) to actually contribute more to whatever field it is that we are being surpassed in. Granted, by almost any measure we're way down into middling territory except for military might and economic power, which makes it doubly depressing ... but at least we still have the resources to pivot to something useful.

It'd be so cool if there was an education race,  or a clean energy race, like there was the space race of old. Or a 'find the alien' race. Whatever, something that focused the collective will on for 10 years. So much could be accomplished.
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: Madness on January 09, 2018, 05:13:05 pm
You had your high ground. It was a good 243 years.

Same we had our time before that.

Did Scotland ever really have "its time" ;)?

It'd be so cool if there was an education race,  or a clean energy race, like there was the space race of old. Or a 'find the alien' race. Whatever, something that focused the collective will on for 10 years. So much could be accomplished.

A Great Ordeal even? We are capable of so much more. Not that I have to regale you again with my optimistic nonsense.
Title: Re: What Happens If China Makes First Contact?
Post by: MSJ on January 09, 2018, 05:15:17 pm
Quote from:  Madness
Did Scotland ever really have "its time" ;)?

William Wallace?