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The Future Is Far

future evolution far future future civilization 1 billion AD

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#1
Ericthetrekkie

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https://specevo.jcin...howtopic=8&st=0
About a week ago, I found this future history/speculative evolution timeline project called “The Future Is Far”, which also recently got a massive update around that same time. It is a very ambitious story if you ask me, because it aims to tell the story of the evolution of humanity - and life on Earth - over the next one billion years. No, that’s not an exaggeration; he specifies in the first post of the thread that this is literally his goal. Currently, it’s only up to 1-2 million years AD, but that will probably change soon. I’d love to hear your opinions on this story so far because it impressed me quite a bit when I first read it, even despite various grammatical errors. Also of note is that the author frequently answers questions about his timeline that people on that forum ask him. Thoughts?

#2
Cyber_Rebel

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The further out one attempts to predict, the less effective one's accuracy may be IMO. 

 

If you had told me what the geopolitical, technological, and social landscape would be even 10-15 years ago I likely would have thought you insane. Yet alone millions.

 

Seems like an interesting story with solid writer though, so I plan to read through it further.  :) Kinda reminds me a little of how ambitious Orion's Arm is with that website's far extrapolation of the future.



#3
Jakob

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The problem with trying to predict millions or (Elon forbid) billions of years into the future is that you're inevitably forced into one of three unpalatable options.

  • Keep knocking down human civilization over and over again: cyclic apocalypses don't have any precedent and break the suspension of disbelief unless there's a good extrinsic reason why they just keep happening. You can buy some time this way, but we're talking tens of thousands of years, not millions.
  • Drastically slow down/stagnate the rate of technological advancement: it's unclear why this would happen, but the bigger problem is that it gets very repetitive very fast unless you're really good at writing interesting sociopolitics. The later part of Orion's Arm suffers from this.
  • Accept that runaway technological progress will lead to incomprehensible transcendent gods: almost impossible to write well, and will force the timeline to get extremely vague and thin in the far future.

It's therefore good that Orion's Arm stops at 10,000 years from now. In recent times I haven't written anything past AD 4000-5000 or so for similar reasons.



#4
Ericthetrekkie

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Short update for TFIF that got posted a few days ago.

https://www.devianta...risis-831877493

#5
PhoenixRu2020

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The problem with trying to predict millions or (Elon forbid) billions of years into the future is that you're inevitably forced into one of three unpalatable options.

 

The first two options are quite plausible (or, at least, can be plausibly explained by sci-fi author):

 

Keep knocking down human civilization over and over again: cyclic apocalypses don't have any precedent and break the suspension of disbelief unless there's a good extrinsic reason why they just keep happening.

 

The simplest possible explanation is such: growing civilization becomes more and more complex and interconnected while reasons for collapse becoming more and more numerous and harder to predict. Eventually, the collapse becoming the matter of time and chance. Say, 99% chance of civilization to survive through the each next century will also mean:

 

0,99 ^ 10 = 90% chance to survive through the next millenia.

0,99 ^ 100 = 37% chance to survive through the next 10 millenia.

0,99 ^ 1000 = the tiny 0,004% chance to survive through the next 100 millenia.

 

Drastically slow down/stagnate the rate of technological advancement: it's unclear why this would happen

 

The possible explanation: the price* of new discoveries is growing exponentially while profit* becoming less and less obvious. Therefore, after some point, any rational civilization reaches the cozy and comfortable equilibrium and ceases to fund* the further researches.

 

price, profit, fund - should not be taken literally (as money), these rather the measurable ammounts of resources, time, efforts, and outcome.

 

Accept that runaway technological progress will lead to incomprehensible transcendent gods: almost impossible to write well, and will force the timeline to get extremely vague and thin in the far future.

 

Yes, the most difficult (actually impossible) task is to create / describe the protagonist qualitatively smarter than author himself. And this is exactly the task sci-fi author will face describing the thoughts and deeds of hyper-advanced extraterrestrials or our own distant descendants.







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