logo Welcome, Guest. Please Login or Register.
2019-07-19 21:36:34 CoV Wiki
Learn more about the Church of Virus
Home Help Search Login Register
News: Everyone into the pool! Now online... the VirusWiki.

  Church of Virus BBS
  General
  Creative Endeavors

  Revelation
previous next
Pages: [1] Reply Notify of replies Send the topic Print 
   Author  Topic: Revelation  (Read 2883 times)
David Lucifer
Archon
*****

Posts: 2626
Reputation: 8.96
Rate David Lucifer



Enlighten me.

View Profile WWW E-Mail
Revelation
« on: 2006-12-09 04:24:41 »
Reply with quote

This short, short story was motivated by the current backlash against Dawkins, Harris, and the other so-called "new atheists" who are repeatedly accused of being fundamentalists, i.e. no better than the religious people they are criticizing. The accusation in unfounded. It appears that many can't tell the difference between confidence and faith. The difference, of course, is that scientists may be very confident in there assumptions due to overwhelming corroborative evidence, but they will theoretically change their mind given new inarguable contradictory evidence. To demonstrate that you have no faith in your beliefs you have to articulate what sort of evidence would cause you to "switch sides". I've given it some thought and the following story about two old college buddies illustrates a scenario that would lead me to re-evaluate everything I think I know.

[JField] Hey Grant, you busy?
[phobos88] Duude, long time. Are you back in the states?
[JField] No, still in Turkey. I'm at an internet cafe in Diyarbakir
[phobos88] No kidding? What time is it there?
[JField] Just after 3am
[phobos88] Huh, this must be important.
[JField] Could be. I need your help with something.
[phobos88] Sure man. I owe you one anyway.
[JField] Excellent. The team here unearthed some tablets a couple weeks ago
dating back to the Uruk IV period over 5000 years ago.
[phobos88] Holy
[JField] Heh, yeah. They're sacred texts recording the proclamations of
this guy named Argandea, supposedly an avatar of the god Enki, "Lord
of the Earth".
[phobos88] interesting...
[JField] Let me quote the passage I just translated tonight...

The people gathered and Argandea said unto them:
I made the world and I am the world.
My name can be found by dividing my horizon by my breadth.
I have a beginning but no end.
My beginning is day, day, night, night, day, night, night, day, night, night.
You will know me and my truth if you search my name
for ten thousand generations, each one ten thousand days.

[phobos88] You're joking.
[JField] I am not making this up. Really.
[phobos88] Whatever dude.
[JField] Humor me. For old times sake, k?
[phobos88] k
[JField] So what does that look like to you?
[phobos88] Looks like Enki is telling his people how to calculate pi. Horizon
(circumference) divided by breadth (diameter).
[JField] That's what I thought. And the "day, day, night, night, etc"?
[phobos88] pi in binary code I'd guess. Just a sec....
[JField] k
[phobos88] Yep, confirmed. The first few digits of pi in binary are 11.00100100
[JField] Ha! I knew you could help. So how would you interpret the rest?
[phobos88] Well.. since he was using 'day' as a digit I'd say he is suggesting
we take a look at Pi starting at the 100 millionth binary digit.
[JField] Can we do that?
[phobos88] I think so. Normally it would take forever generating that many
decimal digits but I remember reading that someone found an algorithm
for generating digits of pi in hex starting at any arbitrary location.
[JField] So we can do that?
[phobos88] Um, yeah. Let me get back to you.
[JField] Thanks
[phobos88] You're not punking me, right?
[JField] I promise.
[phobos88] Alrighty. I'll get back to you tomorrow.

...18 hours later...

[phobos88] You there?
[JField] Hey, any luck?
[phobos88] Anyone looking over your shoulder?
[JField] No, I'm the only one here. Why?
[phobos88] Check this out:

YOUWILLKNOWMEANDMYTRUTHIFYOUSEARCHMYNAME

[JField] Yes?
[phobos88] Those are the binary digits of pi starting at 10 million
interpreted as ASCII characters.
[JField] shut up!
[phobos88] Whoever your bud Argandea was channeling 5000 years ago had the
ability to encode an english message into the digits of pi at the
predicted location. WTF is going on?!!
[JField] OMG!!
[phobos88] OMG indeed



In the attribution please credit David Lucifer and include this link
« Last Edit: 2012-05-05 14:11:50 by David Lucifer » Report to moderator   Logged
Blunderov
Archon
*****

Gender: Male
Posts: 3160
Reputation: 8.94
Rate Blunderov



"We think in generalities, we live in details"

View Profile WWW E-Mail
Re:Revelation
« Reply #1 on: 2006-12-09 13:46:50 »
Reply with quote

[Blunderov] Not convinced. Could Argandea not be a time traveller who discovered the ASCII sequence (pure coincidence) and went back in time so establish a record of having predicted it at a time when he could not have been expected to know ASCII?

Jung vf gur ohfvarjj nobhg sbr - cyntvnevjz?
Report to moderator   Logged
David Lucifer
Archon
*****

Posts: 2626
Reputation: 8.96
Rate David Lucifer



Enlighten me.

View Profile WWW E-Mail
Re:Revelation
« Reply #2 on: 2006-12-09 15:04:23 »
Reply with quote


Quote from: Blunderov on 2006-12-09 13:46:50   

[Blunderov] Not convinced. Could Argandea not be a time traveller who discovered the ASCII sequence (pure coincidence) and went back in time so establish a record of having predicted it at a time when he could not have been expected to know ASCII?

It is possible but astronomically unlikely that such a sequence would be found in the first few billion digits of pi (though of course the probability that any given sequence appears somewhere in pi approaches unity).
Report to moderator   Logged
David Lucifer
Archon
*****

Posts: 2626
Reputation: 8.96
Rate David Lucifer



Enlighten me.

View Profile WWW E-Mail
Re:Revelation
« Reply #3 on: 2006-12-09 20:53:05 »
Reply with quote

Apologies Blunderov, your message was accidently deleted (mea culpa). I hope most of it is captured in my replies below.

Quote:
[Blunderov] It could also be that the binary code was arbitrary too, couldn't it? I mean, you could take that binary to indicate a hex base, or any other base you liked, in order to increase the chances of detecting the desired sequence of ASCII, or something very like one, inside the first billion or so digits of pi?


Not really. Your only degree of freedom here is whether to group the bits into groups of 7 or 8 to interpret it as ASCII.

Quote:
Also, "YOUWILLKNOWMEANDMYTRUTHIFYOUSEARCHMYNAME" can be written in a number of slightly different ways and yet convey much the same meaning. Eg, "You will know me and THE truth if you FIND my name etc. Argandea would have quite a lot of latitude here.


How many sensible english messages of that length (40 characters) do you think there are in the first billion binary digits of pi? I'd wager zero. If you allow for any human language (living or dead) with any punctuation I'd still bet on zero.

Let alone one that provides a recipe for finding itself.  Even though any given string is likely in pi somewhere the number of strings that contain their starting location is probably zero simply because the larger numbers require more bits to encode making the strings increasingly improbable.

Quote:
He might even be able to find a sequence which included a credible proper name which he could then take back with him in time to claim as his own. He wouldn't have the burden of finding a sequence which included his own actual name, once again he would have the luxury of taking the first available instance and nobody the wiser.


Perhaps, but the message contains no proper names so that is a non-starter.


« Last Edit: 2006-12-09 20:54:28 by David Lucifer » Report to moderator   Logged
David Lucifer
Archon
*****

Posts: 2626
Reputation: 8.96
Rate David Lucifer



Enlighten me.

View Profile WWW E-Mail
Re:Revelation
« Reply #4 on: 2006-12-16 12:25:49 »
Reply with quote

I came across this xkcd comic after my story but my real inspiration was likely Sagan's Contact.



Some questions about the story:

What would you do if you found yourself in the situation of the protagonists?
What does their discovery actually imply?
Assuming the discovery if verified to your satisfaction what would you do differently?

Report to moderator   Logged
David Lucifer
Archon
*****

Posts: 2626
Reputation: 8.96
Rate David Lucifer



Enlighten me.

View Profile WWW E-Mail
Re:Revelation
« Reply #5 on: 2006-12-25 14:45:28 »
Reply with quote


Quote from: David Lucifer on 2006-12-09 20:53:05   

How many sensible english messages of that length (40 characters) do you think there are in the first billion binary digits of pi? I'd wager zero. If you allow for any human language (living or dead) with any punctuation I'd still bet on zero.

I derived some equations and did a few calculations yesterday. I estimate that the probability of finding a given 5-character string (such as "David") encoded in the first billion bits of pi as 0.00090908120.

The number of bits of pi you would have to search to make it likely (>50% probability) to find Enki's 40-character message is 1.5 * 1096. So the probability of finding that message in the first billion bits of pi is about 6.75 * 10-88.

But any bible-like verse will do. Imagine a trillion entirely different bibles, each the size of the old and new testament combined (6 MB). Each contains about 20,000 verses (assuming 40 character average per verse). So 20 quadrillion possible verses. The probability of finding any one of those in the first billion bits of pi is 1.35 * 10-71.

Subtract that number from 1 to find the probability that the message was encoded by an intelligent being and you will get a probability so close to 100% it almost defies description.
Report to moderator   Logged
David Lucifer
Archon
*****

Posts: 2626
Reputation: 8.96
Rate David Lucifer



Enlighten me.

View Profile WWW E-Mail
Re:Revelation
« Reply #6 on: 2006-12-30 17:06:56 »
Reply with quote

For those interested I posted the derivation of the equations I used.
Report to moderator   Logged
David Lucifer
Archon
*****

Posts: 2626
Reputation: 8.96
Rate David Lucifer



Enlighten me.

View Profile WWW E-Mail
Re:Revelation
« Reply #7 on: 2012-05-05 14:11:25 »
Reply with quote


Quote from: David Lucifer on 2006-12-09 04:24:41   

This short, short story was motivated by the current backlash against Dawkins, Harris, and the other so-called "new atheists" who are repeatedly accused of being fundamentalists, i.e. no better than the religious people they are criticizing. The accusation in unfounded. It appears that many can't tell the difference between confidence and faith. The difference, of course, is that scientists may be very confident in there assumptions due to overwhelming corroborative evidence, but they will theoretically change their mind given new inarguable contradictory evidence. To demonstrate that you have no faith in your beliefs you have to articulate what sort of evidence would cause you to "switch sides". I've given it some thought and the following story about two old college buddies illustrates a scenario that would lead me to re-evaluate everything I think I know.

[JField] Hey Grant, you busy?
[phobos88] Duude, long time. Are you back in the states?
[JField] No, still in Turkey. I'm at an internet cafe in Diyarbakir
[phobos88] No kidding? What time is it there?
[JField] Just after 3am
[phobos88] Huh, this must be important.
[JField] Could be. I need your help with something.
[phobos88] Sure man. I owe you one anyway.
[JField] Excellent. The team here unearthed some tablets a couple weeks ago
dating back to the Uruk IV period over 5000 years ago.
[phobos88] Holy
[JField] Heh, yeah. They're sacred texts recording the proclamations of
this guy named Argandea, supposedly an avatar of the god Enki, "Lord
of the Earth".
[phobos88] interesting...
[JField] Let me quote the passage I just translated tonight...

The people gathered and Argandea said unto them:
I made the world and I am the world.
My name can be found by dividing my horizon by my breadth.
I have a beginning but no end.
My beginning is day, day, night, night, day, night, night, day, night, night.
You will know me and my truth if you search my name
for ten thousand generations, each one ten thousand days.

[phobos88] You're joking.
[JField] I am not making this up. Really.
[phobos88] Whatever dude.
[JField] Humor me. For old times sake, k?
[phobos88] k
[JField] So what does that look like to you?
[phobos88] Looks like Enki is telling his people how to calculate pi. Horizon
(circumference) divided by breadth (diameter).
[JField] That's what I thought. And the "day, day, night, night, etc"?
[phobos88] pi in binary code I'd guess. Just a sec....
[JField] k
[phobos88] Yep, confirmed. The first few digits of pi in binary are 11.00100100
[JField] Ha! I knew you could help. So how would you interpret the rest?
[phobos88] Well.. since he was using 'day' as a digit I'd say he is suggesting
we take a look at Pi starting at the 100 millionth binary digit.
[JField] Can we do that?
[phobos88] I think so. Normally it would take forever generating that many
decimal digits but I remember reading that someone found an algorithm
for generating digits of pi in hex starting at any arbitrary location.
[JField] So we can do that?
[phobos88] Um, yeah. Let me get back to you.
[JField] Thanks
[phobos88] You're not punking me, right?
[JField] I promise.
[phobos88] Alrighty. I'll get back to you tomorrow.

...18 hours later...

[phobos88] You there?
[JField] Hey, any luck?
[phobos88] Anyone looking over your shoulder?
[JField] No, I'm the only one here. Why?
[phobos88] Check this out:

YOUWILLKNOWMEANDMYTRUTHIFYOUSEARCHMYNAME

[JField] Yes?
[phobos88] Those are the binary digits of pi starting at 10 million
interpreted as ASCII characters.
[JField] shut up!
[phobos88] Whoever your bud Argandea was channeling 5000 years ago had the
ability to encode an english message into the digits of pi at the
predicted location. WTF is going on?!!
[JField] OMG!!
[phobos88] OMG indeed



In the attribution please credit David Lucifer and include this link
Report to moderator   Logged
Pages: [1] Reply Notify of replies Send the topic Print 
Jump to:


Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Church of Virus BBS | Powered by YaBB SE
© 2001-2002, YaBB SE Dev Team. All Rights Reserved.

Please support the CoV.
Valid HTML 4.01! Valid CSS! RSS feed