Before We Destroy Ourselves….

January 30, 2014


2014-01-19_16-32-28I was never terribly good at Calculus in college. I managed to get through three semesters of it was a grade of C+ or better but I never really understood its basic foundation. If it is not calculus, the equation above is very calculus like. So, why am I even showing it here? It is called the Drake equation after its creator, Frank Drake. He was one of the founder of the SETI organization. For those of you who don’t know that is the “Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence”. The big question is are we alone in the universe.

This equation is basically a mathematically determined equation of the possibility of life on another planet. The purpose of the post is not to go through this equation in detail, that would be incredibly boring, but to concentrate on the last element. L is the amount to time that a civilization releases detectable signals in space.  You might think that like for us, would be staring in the 1930s and continuing from that point on. But in reality while the starting point is fairly discrete the ending point is not.

As we, as a world, have progressed and gained advanced technology we have also advanced the likelihood that we will eventually destroy ourselves in the process. The more advanced you become the more likely you will cause your own demise.  We still have thousands of ICBMs with multiple nuclear weapons pointed at each other. About all it would take to end our world is if just a couple of them were to be launched. Armageddon would surely follow.

The more advanced a world becomes the more means it has to destroy itself. That is a sobering thought.  Why do we continue to keep these weapons of self-destruction aimed at each other when the usefulness, if there ever was any, has long passed?

Then of course there are all the rogue nations that are trying to obtain their own nuclear weapons…

I wonder how long we will continue to send out detectable signals into space? How long is “our” L…..