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tgoyetteHow will humanity end?2014-03-24 07:50:30
tgoyetteBack in the 50s, 60,s and 70s it was thought humanity would die out in a nuclear war. At other times the greatest threat seems to be a plague. Now the greatest buzz is in global warming. In scifi there is generally the belief that we will develop faster than light travel and expand out into the universe. What do you think will be the final fate of man? An unremarkable death on our spaceship earth or spreading beyond our little corner of the galaxy? How and why?2014-03-24 07:50:49
rdottornellounless there is an outside force that pushes the human race, and that can be anything from advanced alien civilizations to who knows what, we are going to keep shitting in our own home until we, as the master predators (see Scietific American,)wipe everything out and through overpopulation, rising sea levels and all that that will bring (see open discussions on these very subjects from INTEL agencies), wipe ourselves off the planet, or devolve back into pre-18th century living conditions and might as well be gone. There may be pockets of "modern civilization" here and there, but for the general populations, they might as well be zombies. 2014-03-24 08:11:50
IronspiderI think it'll either be a devastating series of conflicts over resources or a pandemic that we can't halt due to its rapid spread through over-populated urban areas. Or maybe the Earth will be destroyed to make way for an inter-galactic bypass...2014-03-25 00:56:58
r.tornelloDon't forget your blanket.2014-03-27 04:53:34
Michele dutcherDon't forget your blanket? - A reference perhaps to the hyperspace bypass 42 from Hitchhiker's guide, or a nod to the inevitable death of the universe as a vast collection of hard-frozen clumps of star waste. I'd like to think that by the time that happens, we'd be able to jump to another universe or jump back into a time slot of our choosing. 2014-03-27 05:44:14
r.tornelloBTW my wife reminded me it's a towel not a blanket. A babble fish wouldn't hurt to have either. RT2014-03-27 05:52:46
Pippin91Every species has its run, then something changes, or a new predator emerges, and the species dies out, usually spawning a better-adapted species as it dies out. I think we'll be no different. Humans like to feel like they're outside nature, but massive climate change (no worse than a return to the ice age conditions of 20,000 years ago) could be enough of a trigger for a massive die-off followed by rapid evolutionary change. And what we're doing to the atmosphere is no different than what the anerobic bacteria did to it a couple billion years ago when they produced this toxic (to them) waste product known as oxygen. We may be creating the poisons that will kill us, but those same gases could create an entirely new ecosystem. In that sense, everything we're doing is "natural" as nature always finds a way to adapt - with or without us.2014-03-27 15:44:05
micheledutcherPippin91 - Interesting comments. Therein lies a scifi story about the next step, the next creature, to profit from what was left behind by those who came before. A heat loving, dry seeking creature. 2014-03-28 10:00:22
Michael BHow about lasting until entropy finishs the universe. Once we start first planet hopping and then star hopping we can spread out so that the loss of humans in one place won't end our species. Unlike Michele I doubt that we will hop back in time, but going to another universe, all I can say is may be.2014-04-01 10:50:04
mark211In the same way we still have birds, sharks and alligators, I'm not altogether sure that humanity will end at least not until the planet becomes totally hostile environment to all but the hardiest of extremophiles. In the relatively nearer future (say between now and the 2214), my guess is that humanity's current overreach (in terms of population vs resources) will lead to a serious depletion of the total population whether by starvation or communicable disease is hard to say, though the given that an estimated 70% of the world's population will be living in urban environments (most of which will be shanty town slums) it will likely be the latter aided by the former. And after that I think humanity will split off into two groups. The first group will be transnational and consist of sealed-off urban hubs of advanced technology studding the surface of the planet from Nigeria to Argentina to France to Australia. For the rest as someone (Richard, I think) said above there will be a slide into tiny rural populations scratching a bare and unpredictable living under 17th/18th century conditions (or perhaps even more backward still). No doubt there will be contact between the two in the way of Wells's Morlocks and Eloi, though much less extreme something more like what was seen in the movie 'Zardoz' or in the novel/movie 'Cloud Atlas' i.e. those in the civic urban hubs will surely need to import outsiders for various purposes (labour, reproduction / revitalizing the gene pool, academic study, entertainment even). Whichever you look at it, I doubt we'll be colonizing the stars any time soon or ever, but for our imaginations.2014-04-12 05:29:52
rdottornelloIf, as it is speculated, that the big bang will lead to a big crunch, and yet another big bang, for eternity, then reincarnation is in a strange manifestation, true. And as a given set of matter we can only organize in a given set of existences. Given eternity, in the full sense of the word, to keep at it, then we as matter have a chance to do it all over again. The only thing the reincarnation folks have wrong is the time element. They are stuck within this time-universe when in supposed-possible-fact (my definition) that reincarnation actually exists, modified of course, within the expansion and crunch/expansion cycles as expressed by Hindu cosmology. It is one of the only earth based concepts of time that seems to follow or lead current scientific thought. Does that make any sense? RT 2014-04-23 09:33:09
r.tornelloI have another idea that just hit me. If you read my essay on Independence day you know some of my ideas. However take Independence day, take the salvation of the planet and its people as a given. BUT then assume that the alien mother ship disturbed the Oort cloud and knocked some real big ones out of their orbit which some how followed the mother ship toward earth, though not at the same speed. Then some time in the near future within the spectrum of the movie the earth is blindsided and kaboom all gone! 2014-04-24 12:15:08
mark211"If, as it is speculated, that the big bang will lead to a big crunch, and yet another big bang, for eternity, then reincarnation is in a strange manifestation, true." Heh, if you haven't already come across it, I cannot recommend highly enough the absolutely brilliant novel 'Red Earth and Pouring Rain' by Vikram Chandra - it's seriously awesome in it's own right but coincidentally it also addresses some of the things you discuss in the previous two messages - http://www.amazon.com/Red-Earth-Pouring-Rain-Novel/dp/0316132934/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1398609168&sr=8-1&keywords=Red+Earth+and+Pouring+Rain2014-04-27 07:33:03
jessbaumI always love this discussion. Why is it that every civilization is obsessed with the apocalypse? We romanticize the end of the world, especially when we assume that it won't be long now, because people love to think that their society will be the last. That being said, I I've stopped caring how the world will end and just want to go out and live as much as I can right now while doing my best to not screw things up too much. But I'm hoping that the Earth really is just a marble on a giant turtle shell, when that bad boy wakes up it would be a much more fun way to go that nuclear holocaust or being crunched in another big bang. haha2014-04-28 10:47:10
jessbaumthan a nuclear holocaust not that. teehee2014-04-28 10:47:57
mark211Heh - now that's something you don't see every day: the words 'nuclear holocaust' and 'teehee' in the same sentence ; - )2014-04-28 11:47:28
mark211"Why is it that every civilization is obsessed with the apocalypse?" That's actually a really intriguing question at least one answer to which is 'power' - when political debate meets a stalemate, one side or the other can get some pretty powerful leverage out of a threat of the end of the world. Take the Greens - that human industrial activity has an impact on the environment is beyond serious question (any fool must realise that dumping a poison like mercury into a clean fresh water lake is a bad idea) - however, what is arguable is the extent to which human activity is driving climate change. That being so, there are plenty of 'prophets' of the coming 'Ecopalypse' pushing agendas that have literally nothing to do with the science of climate change and everything to do with anti-capitalist communitarian/socialist inspired philosophies. Whether such prophets are right or wrong is not the point - the main thing is that they can gain a great deal of influence in the here and now using the 'Ecopalypse' backing them up. 2014-04-28 11:58:53

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