The Fermi Paradox is, in it’s elementary explanation, a simple question; “Where is everyone?”. If the universe is capable of developing life independently on planets in habitable zones (where liquid water can form;which is the basic building block of life) around their respective stars, then why isn’t there evidence of the universe teeming with life? Why isn’t the universe filled with aliens we can see everywhere we look? Enrico Fermi posited the question “Where is everyone?” as a simple question at a lunch with colleagues one day, and it has stuck with us since. It’s become a paradox. It’s a paradox because all the elements for life are out there in the universe trillions upon trillions of times and we should see evidence of other life out there. But it’s silent. WE see no evidence life exists elsewhere in the universe…yet. No life outside earth has ever been found/verified by science thus far. Microbes left on a camera on the Moon from one of the Apollo missions survived a couple years in space is evidence that at least microbes can survive, at least for a little while. But where are all the technologically advanced civilizations?
I think it’s a combination of two main things that will answer Fermi’s question nicely.
First. We’re looking for biological life and I think that biological life is NOT the pinnacle of life. I think biological life/technologically advanced civilizations evolve and merge with technology and we are looking for the wrong kind of life.
Second. I subscribe to the Dark Forest hypothesis that most everything out there is quiet because they are hiding from other civilizations. It’s dangerous out there. Especially for biological life.
I think biological life merges with technology, and artificial intelligence, and becomes a Type I civilization, then Type II, then Type III according to the Kardashev scale.
So while we’re looking for radio signals and biosignatures in exoplanetary atmospheres, I think any sufficiently advanced technology superior civilizations will have long since evolved into machines. Biological life merges with technology. I think it’s that simple. And Moore’s Law supports that hypothesis. The advancement of AI supports it. And logic supports it considering how fragile and inefficient and UNEVOLVED for space travel biological life is.
I think technologically advanced civilizations, if they do not destroy themselves first (some likely do; but some likely survive; which by the way I would factor that into the Drake Equation) merge with technology out of necessity for survival (because AI) and interstellar travel, because biological life is too fragile and not evolved for space travel. It makes logical sense for biological life to evolve into technological life because then Special relativity would have no consequence, time dilation is solved because slower than light speed interstellar travel is makes FTL irrelevant.
I think there are 3 stages of evolution and evolution is infinite.
I call this the Quantum Life Hypothesis,
STAGE 1 – Biological life/carbon-based
STAGE 2 – Technological life/silicon-based
STAGE 3 – Quantum life/energy-based
and I think this is how it works throughout the universe.
I also don’t think we should be announcing our presence in the universe as that could prove dangerous to humans on a species level.
If aliens do exist out there and some of them (likely billions of civilizations) do exist out there, it’s probably smart not to tell them we’re here.
This is also why I think the Dark Forest hypothesis is true to an extent and could help answer Fermi’s paradox. It’s quiet out there because those civilizations have surpassed the need for radio communications and perhaps communicate on the quantum level. And/or some civilizations are hiding because there are civilizations of hunter/killers that seek out civilizations and destroy them for whatever reason.
Not to be doom and gloom, but that’s how life works on earth. Why would it not work that way out there in the vast cosmos?
I invite anyone to challenge my Quantum Life Hypothesis. It makes logical sense. I think the universe is teeming with life, mostly microbial in nature, but some civilizations destroy themselves with technology, and some survive. Those that survive go on to continue to evolve themselves and take control of their own evolution. In essence they become sentient/sapient machines.
Aliens are machines. Not all. Because evolution is relative to the species and time and space relative to the star system said species evolved in.
I don’t think it’s wise to advertise our position to anything out there. Perhaps it’s too late. Perhaps they already know we’re here and are sending an invasion force. Or perhaps they’re so far advanced they look upon us as microbes, useless and insignificant. Or perhaps they would view us as a virus, infecting our own planet. Or perhaps…they simply don’t care or are protecting us through some intergalactic peace treaty and we’re in a cosmic nature preserve. Who knows?
I find it fascinating and scary simultaneously.
I also think the universe is cyclical. Big Bang and Big Crunch happen as new universes are formed, and those as all energy and matter in the known universe gets consumed by life until it collapses into a singularity, then is reborn again in another Big Bang. The whole thing is one giant infinitely cyclic system that happens over and over and over again.