Fairly Recently: Must- and Should-Reads, and Writings... (March 1, 2019)

I have to think about this: Yes, distributions have lower tails. but it still seems to me that the absence of clearly visible life out there is powerful evidence that there is a "Great Filter": that one of the parameters (or more than one of the parameters) in the Drake Equation is near zero. Sandberg et al. seem to me to be arguing not so much that the absence of visible life out there is likely even if none of the parameters are near zero, but that our uncertainty is so great that it is not surprising that the universe we live in has one or more parameters near zero even though the average value of each parameter across all universes we might live in is larger: Anders Sandberg, Eric Drexler and Toby Ord (): Dissolving the Fermi Paradox: "The Fermi question is not a paradox, it just looks like one if one is overconfident in how well we know the Drake equation parameters. Doing a distribution model shows that even existing literature allows for a substantial probability of very little life, and a more cautious prior gives a significant probability for rare life. The Fermi observation makes the most uncertain priors move strongly, reinforcing the 'rare life' guess and an early 'Great Filter'...