Matrioshka brain

A Matrioshka brain[1][2] is a hypothetical megastructure proposed by Robert J. Bradbury (1956–2011[3]), based on the Dyson sphere, of immense computational capacity. It is an example of a Class B stellar engine, employing the entire energy output of a star to drive computer systems.[4] This concept derives its name from the nesting Russian Matryoshka dolls.[5] The concept was deployed by its inventor, Robert Bradbury, in the anthology Year Million: Science at the Far Edge of Knowledge.[6][7]

ConceptEdit

The concept of a Matrioshka brain comes from the idea of using Dyson spheres to power an enormous, star-sized computer. The term "Matrioshka brain" originates from Matryoshka dolls, which are wooden Russian nesting dolls. Matrioshka brains are composed of several Dyson spheres nested inside one another, the same way that Matryoshka dolls are composed of multiple nested doll components.

 
Matryoshka dolls set in a row

The innermost Dyson sphere of the Matrioshka brain would draw energy directly from the star it surrounds and give off large amounts of waste heat while computing at a high temperature. The next surrounding Dyson sphere would absorb this waste heat and use it for its computational purposes, all while giving off waste heat of its own. This heat would be absorbed by the next sphere, and so on, with each sphere radiating at a lower temperature than the one before it. For this reason, Matrioshka brains with more nested Dyson spheres would tend to be more efficient, as they would waste less heat energy. The inner shells could run at nearly the same temperature as the star itself, while the outer ones would be close to the temperature of interstellar space. The engineering requirements and resources needed for this would be enormous.

The term "Matrioshka brain" was invented by Robert Bradbury as an alternative to the Jupiter brain[8]—a concept similar to the Matrioshka brain, but on a smaller planetary scale and optimized for minimal signal propagation delay. A Matrioshka brain design is concentrated on sheer capacity and the maximum amount of energy extracted from its source star, while a Jupiter brain is optimized for computational speed.[9]

Possible usesEdit

Some possible uses of such an immense computational resource have been proposed.

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Bradbury, Robert J. (July 21, 1999). "Matrioshka Brains" (PDF). www.gwern.net.
  2. ^ "Matrioshka Brain: How advanced civilizations could reshape reality - Big Think".
  3. ^ Remembering Robert Bradbury, March 6, 2011, by George Dvorsky, Sentient Developments, 2011, issue 3.
  4. ^ Bradbury, Robert J. "Matrioshka Brain Home Page". Archived from the original on February 23, 2009. Retrieved August 28, 2009.
  5. ^ "Matrioshka Brains – Some Intermediate Stages in the Evolution of Life" (PDF). Department of Astronomy, University of Virginia. Retrieved August 28, 2009.
  6. ^ Levy, Brett (August 26, 2008). "Book Review: 'Year Million: Science at the Far Edge of Knowledge,' edited by Damien Broderick". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved August 28, 2009.
  7. ^ Horgan, John (June 13, 2008). "The Shape of Things to Come (review of Year Million)". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved August 28, 2009.
  8. ^ "Brains2.dvi" (PDF). Retrieved April 2, 2018.
  9. ^ "Jupiter & Matrioshka Brains: History & References". Robert Bradbury. Archived from the original on September 7, 2010. Retrieved August 28, 2009.
  10. ^ Stross, Charles (2006). Accelerando. Ace Books. ISBN 0-441-01415-1.
  11. ^ Broderick, Damien (2005). Godplayers. Thunder's Mouth. ISBN 1-56025-670-2.
  12. ^ Sandberg, Anders (December 22, 1999). "The physics of information processing superobjects: Daily life among the Jupiter brain" (PDF). Journal of Evolution & Technology. Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies. 5 (1). Retrieved August 28, 2009.

External linksEdit