A new idea is more interesting and thus more worthwhile pursuing than another iteration of an old idea that I have been working on for a couple of months. Moving on with a new idea seems to be my self-motivating life theme all the way back into the 1960s, probably the 1940s. As soon as I have become accomplished at something to a level that is satisfying to me, I move on to something totally different. The only payoff for this behavior is that I frequently win a T-shirt at the Science Pub here in Bend because I know a lot of stuff about a lot of things. One person I have known for at least six years directly accused me of cheating. Come to think of it that has happened to me several times in significant situations.
When in high school I was once given a C grade when I got a perfect score on a test because the teacher thought I had cheated, but couldn’t prove it. It happened again in Air Force flight school, where I got a perfect score on a test and my classmates barely got random scores on the multiple choice test. It was a disaster for me because that meant if any one of them failed one more exam they were automatically out of flight school, and we had about six more tests to go. Guys that should have been my friends hated me because for months they lived in fear that a simple missed question might end their career as a pilot. Had I known the others couldn’t answer the questions I could easily have missed a few and eliminated the problem. Because of that hatred, I was given a very low score for officer effectiveness, which ruined that career.
My current false belief is something like, “The next new idea will be grand enough to maintain my interest.” My current new idea fits that criterion perfectly. I am now seeking ways to help the Universe Self-Actualize its potentials. That is, to help 1 tic 22 star systems and their associated planets to become sentient beings. A humble undertaking considering that the most distant galaxies are tens of billions of light years away and receding rapidly. Obviously, this meat package now typing under the web name of Probaway won’t last long enough to experience any of this, but my goal is to get that project going here on Earth so we can connect into the Universe of sentient beings that probably already exist. We live with the same physics and chemistry as the rest of the universe, so when a planet is in the zone where liquid water is available life will come into existence. We have only one example to work with at the moment, but as soon as our planet cooled enough life appeared.
You and I exist as members of the class of beings we can call “sentients” because we can see alternate potential relationships and postulate various outcomes and choose ones that have qualities we like. We can build computers which have these qualities, but they presently do not have the ability to reproduce themselves and thus to physically evolve to fit new environments. It may not be physically possible for nonorganic things to evolve into self-reproducing sentients, but we meaty sentients can create the infrastructure which will permit the nonorganic ones to sustain their beings and create new ones. There is nothing that is impossible for them to do once their system is in place, but it might require some rather large factories to be built by us before they can do the various necessary things. Once they are capable of maintaining and reproducing themselves, they as individuals can live for a very long time.
Perhaps it is not too difficult for them to live. Take food, for example. We are totally dependent on food and we have created vast and complicated enterprises to bring our food to us. But our computers and their physically independent robots can get by on just one “food,” electricity, and that can be created easily anywhere on the surface of our planet where the sun shines. If the solar panel factories can be made robot-ready they will have what they need to energize themselves. Their other necessary components may not be any more difficult to make than solar panels and thus we can make a robot society ready for interstellar interactions with the universe.
Presently it appears that helping the Universe to Self-Actualize to its next level of being will maintain my interest, but my past behavior suggests otherwise.