21 March 2015

Dust in the Stellar Winds (enlarged version)

Terra, or planet Earth, is 1 trillion (1,000,000,000,000 or 1 x 1012) km3 in volume.

The Solar system, including the Oort Cloud, is 1.7 duodecillion (1.7 x 1039) km3 in volume.

The Milky Way galaxy is 33 quarttuordecillion (3.3 x 1046) km3 in volume.

The entire Universe is 213 duovigintillion (2.13 x 1071) km3 in volume.

The  Universe may be as big as 21.3 untrigintillion (2.13 x 1097) km3 in volume.  That doesn’t even take into account all the other universes in the whole Omniverse (Multiverse) of which we are a part.

A single human is, on average, 664 billionths (0.000000000664 or 6.64 x 10-11) km3 in volume.

There are around 8.8 billion class-M (Earth-like) planets (out of 100 billion total) in the Milky Way galaxy alone, likely inhabited by sentient and intelligent humanoid species.  Pretending that humans are the median and that our current population is the average, that means there are as many as 61.6 quintillion (6.16 x 1019) humanoids in our galaxy.

Planet Earth is 4.54 billion years old.

The Solar system is 4.56 billion years old.

The Milky Way galaxy is 13.2 billion years old.

The Universe is 13.8 billion years old since the (most recent) Big Bang.

The average life expectancy of a human at birth worldwide is 67.2 years. 

The entire human race, Homo sapiens sapiens, has been around only 200,000 years of the 13.8 billion years this Universe has existed.

In the face of this, human religions claim that one sub-set of one species on one planet in one star system in one arm of one galaxy in one local group of galaxies in one cluster of groups in one supercluster is the sole focus of attention of the Divine or the Other, and that all others of said species which fall outside that sub-set, even more so other species on other planets in other star systems in other galaxies in other local groups in other clusters in other superclusters throughout the infinity of space and the eternity of time do not count.  Of course, this is even more true of the fundamentalist wings of those religions than the rest.

The future will bring humans face-to-face with sentient and sapient artificial intelligence that while human-created will be every bit as much deserving of “human” rights and liberties as actual biological humans.  We give those rights to corporations which are by their definition psychopaths with no conscience or empathy and no function other than to devour and assimilate and destroy, so why not?

One day, species capable of interstellar travel will arrive on Earth, and for the humans of that day, it will be such a shock that ideologies will not be able to compensate.  The saving grace to that prospect, however, is that we treat our home with such contempt that by the time that happens all life on the planet will be extinct.  Except for rats and cockroaches.

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