|Escher Dyson Sphere|
The idea makes a change from the "if we don't stop burning so much oil we'll all die an 'orrible death from global warming" argument for the Global Soviet Socialist Republic, but seems hardly more convincing.
Of interest, though, is the argument in an article to which the author links, which states:
No matter what the technology, a sustained 2.3% energy growth rate would require us to produce as much energy as the entire sun within 1400 years.In other words, so we are to assume, our present course of ever increasing energy use is totally unsustainable.
But wait, is it really inconceivable that we could harness the sun's entire output of energy?
Not to the visionaries:
When we physicists look at outer space for alien life," says Michio Kaku, Professor of Theoretical Physics at City of New York University, "we don't look for little green men, we look for Type I, Type II and Type III civilizations. A Type I civilization has harnessed it's planetary power ... A Type II civilization is stellar ... they get their energy directly from their mother star. Eventually, they exhaust the power of a star and they go galactic" (i.e., become Type III)So could we evolve in a mere 1400 years to the point of going galactic, of evolving from a Type I to a mature Type II civilization?
A Dyson sphere (or shell as it appeared in the original paper) is a hypothetical megastructure originally described by Freeman Dyson. Such a "sphere" would be a system of orbiting solar power satellites meant to completely encompass a star and capture most or all of its energy output. Dyson speculated that such structures would be the logical consequence of the long-term survival and escalating energy needs of a technological civilization, and proposed that searching for evidence of the existence of such structures might lead to the detection of advanced intelligent extraterrestrial life. (Maveric Universe Wiki)So why not?
Let us abhore global governance, but instead "boldly go where no man has gone before": each small group in its own independent, self-governing, hollowed-out solar-powered asteroid.