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What is the most horrifying scientific theory that many people do not know about?

有关黑暗森林理论的讨论——许多人不知道的最可怕的科学理论(一)



这是一篇有关Quora上“许多人不知道的最可怕的科学理论是什么?”问题的回答和评论的翻译。其主题是关于大刘的黑暗森林理论的讨论,内容比较有意思,篇幅也很长,将分多篇发布。

答案一:
Steve Brennan, Enjoys Science Fiction, Futurism, and Space Theories
The Dark Forest Theory. Before I explain it, I’ll give a little bit of background information to put it into perspective:

黑暗森林理论。在我解释它之前,我将提供一些背景信息,以使内容更加全面:

The Dark Forest is one of many theories that may explain the Fermi Paradox. If you aren’t aware, the Fermi Paradox is the apparent contradiction between the lack of evidence and high probability for the existence of extraterrestrial civilizations elsewhere in this vast, unending Universe.

黑暗森林理论是解释费米悖论的众多理论之一。如果你还不知道的话,费米悖论说的就是在这个浩瀚无垠的宇宙中,外星文明存在的高概率与缺乏证据之间的明显矛盾。

There are hundreds of billions of galaxies in the known universe. The Milky Way Galaxy alone has at least 100 Billion stars; each star more or less like our own (which we call the Sun, or “Sol”). Each of these stars potentially has several planets in orbit around them.

在已知的宇宙中有数千亿个星系。仅银河系就有至少1000亿颗恒星;每颗恒星或多或少都与我们自己的恒星(我们称之为太阳)相似。每一颗恒星周围都可能有几颗行星。

Even if only the tiniest fraction of these planets held life, and only the tiniest fraction of life-bearing planets held intelligent life, we are still looking at thousands of extraterrestrial civilizations out there in just the Milky Way Galaxy alone. And that’s not even including the other hundreds of billions of galaxies!

即使这些行星中只有最微小的一部分拥有生命,只有最微小的一部分有生命的行星拥有智慧生命,我们仍然能够银河系中看到数以千计的外星文明。这还不包括其他数千亿个星系!

But we have absolutely ZERO evidence for extraterrestrial civilizations! Hence, the Fermi Paradox.

但是我们没有任何证据能够证明外星文明的存在!这就是费米悖论。



The universe could potentially be akin to a Dark Forest. Every civilization could potentially represent an armed soldier stalking through the trees. Each soldier must be silent and careful, because everywhere in the Dark Forest are stealthy, silent soldiers like himself. Each breath must be silent… each footstep must be silent. If he finds another life- he either risks his own life by trusting it, or he opens fire to eliminate them before they can eliminate him.

宇宙可能类似于一片黑暗的森林。每一种文明都有可能代表一名潜伏在树林中的武装士兵。每个士兵都必须保持沉默,小心翼翼,因为在黑暗的森林里,到处都是像他一样悄无声息的士兵。每一次呼吸都必须静悄悄地进行……每一步都必须保持安静。如果他找到了另一个人——他要么冒着生命危险去相信他,要么在他们能消灭他之前就开火消灭他们。

So why exactly is this theory so terrifying to us, right now? Because we have unwittingly broadcast our existence to the Universe for 100 years now! Ever since radio was invented! Every TV Broadcast, every Radio signal, every WiFi connection! Every potential civilization within 100 light years of us could be silently monitoring us, seeing what moves we make, and thinking about how incredibly stupid we are!

那么,为什么现在这个理论对我们而言如此可怕呢?因为在过去一百年里,我们已经不知不觉地向宇宙进行着广播!自从收音机被发明以来!每一次的电视广播,每一次的无线电信号,每一次的无线网络连接!距离我们100光年以内的每一个潜在文明都可能在默默地监视着我们,看着我们的一举一动,想着我们是多么的愚蠢!



Update: I’ve thoroughly enjoyed reading all of the comments, both in support of and in rebuttal to the Dark Forest. I know it’s cliché to say this, but when I wrote this answer I didn’t think it would get so much attention. I appreciate everyone who has taken the time to read my answer and speculate on it! I encourage you to look up The Dark Forest on YouTube or read the Science Fiction trilogy “Remembrance of Earth’s Past” by Cixin Liu.

更新:我非常喜欢阅读所有的评论,无论是支持还是反驳“黑暗森林”的。我知道这么说有点陈词滥调,但当我写下这个答案时,我没想到它会得到这么多关注。我感谢每一个花时间阅读我的答案并思考它的人!我推荐你们在油管上搜索黑暗森林,或者阅读刘慈欣的科幻小说三部曲《地球往事》。