Interstellar Archaeology

Ancient History, Lost Civilizations and related topics

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Re: Interstellar Archaeology

Postby longhaircowboy » Tue May 04, 2010 9:24 pm

Could DARPA be looking to build a Dyson structure? Read this and see.

DARPA wants someone to (plug and) play in space
http://defensesystems.com/articles/2010 ... TC_DEFENSE
DARPA’s vision is to construct a satellite system in which modular spacecraft that are launched independently can rendezvous autonomously then orbit together in loose formation while sharing resources via wireless links. New modules would be launched to expand, repair or upgrade the cluster while it orbits.

Am I reading too much into this?
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Re: Interstellar Archaeology

Postby Access Denied » Wed May 05, 2010 7:32 am

longhaircowboy wrote:Am I reading too much into this?

I think so, Dyson structures are about colonizing the space around the Sun once we start needing more energy from it than the Earth alone receives. This is about networking a “swarm” of smaller spacecraft together so that they can act like a larger one and be more robust. From the RFI…

The planned on-orbit experiments include:

• Relocation of spacecraft control functions to a remote network node;
• Efficient, semi-autonomous cluster reconfiguration;
• Sharing of on-orbit F6 infrastructure capabilities across the spacecraft cluster and
with the ground;
• Defensive scatter and re-gather maneuver


Now if you had asked could this be a precursor to Skynet… :)
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Re: Interstellar Archaeology

Postby You Can Call Me Ray » Wed May 05, 2010 3:11 pm

Access Denied wrote: This is about networking a “swarm” of smaller spacecraft together


Bingo. "Swarm technology" is high on the list of both DARPA and AFRL these days. I am working two projects that are trying to wrestle with this for small unmanned air vehicles. One of the biggest problems is in getting people to understand that you don't want a "swarm" to be composed of a bunch of indivdual members who are all deterministic in their "thought and action". Because in doing so you will never unleash the true power of a swarm, which are really its "emergent properties". That is what you want to tap into.

However, of course, the issue we always grapple with is "how do you verify and validate a system that is non-deterministic?" There are highly novel and very effective answers to that question, which I am also working on, but I cannot talk about it. :(

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Re: Interstellar Archaeology

Postby Luck » Tue Feb 01, 2011 4:35 am

longhaircowboy wrote:Here's an interesting article I found at FAS.
http://www.fas.org/spp/eprint/starry.pdf" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
It discusses possible alternate avenues to search for other life in the universe. Here's the summary.


I know I am coming to the party a little late here, but I find this interesting because Jill Tarter discussed this very topic in a podcast through The Long Now Foundation that I listened to about a year ago.
http://longnow.org/seminars/02004/jul/09/the-search-for-extra-terrestrial-intelligence-necessarily-a-long-term-strategy/
I think the surest sign that there is intelligent life out there in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us." (Calvin and Hobbes/Bill Waterson)
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