The Instigator
dylancatlow
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
LaL36
Con (against)
Winning
9 Points

Most likely, the human race will not last much longer

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 3 votes the winner is...
LaL36
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/13/2013 Category: Society
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 2,600 times Debate No: 29136
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (16)
Votes (3)

 

dylancatlow

Pro

most likely = more than 50% chance
much longer= much less time than we have up until now (2013)
^ much in this argument is not specifically defined but can be argued on within the debate (however, it's not very important) I want to debate people who would like to debate the topic at hand, NOT try to debate the definitions of words.
last= continue as a species in roughly its current state. Not viable for semantics.

No semantic arguments.

By accepting this debate, you agree to these terms.
LaL36

Con

I accept. Good luck.
Debate Round No. 1
dylancatlow

Pro

I thank my opponent for partaking in this debate with me and wish him luck!
My argument is probably like nothing you've seen before. It's an experimental theory that I've been wanting to share for quite some time and I hope I do a good job of expressing it.

One does not choose when to be born, correct? A person is born into their consciousness when a baby is born. Think about the span of the human race. We started out with very low population and slowly progressed to where we are now (seven-billion people). Your place in society (i.e. when you are born) is directly related to how many people are born during certain times. For instance, it's quite unlikely that you would be born in the first one percent of humans to have ever lived. It's more likely than not that a human is born somewhere relatively close to the very middle of all humans to ever exist. If the human race is to continue on for millions of years, and has hundreds of billions of people yet to be born, it's quite extraordinary that we are living in a world that has only existed as it is now (lots of people) for a few hundred years. I argue that because of how many babies we are having today and how many will be born in the next few hundred years, that the time it takes to reach the second half of all humans to ever have existed is far less than the previous half. Therefore, it is mathematically likely that the human race is more than half over (time-wise), and mathematically likely that the human race is about half way through all the people to ever be born. When we think about the possible threats that face humanity, (for me, nuclear war comes to mind), it's not impossible to see how the human race COULD end. It is nearly mathematically impossible for the human race to progress more than 100,000 years because it's statiscally unlikely that we'd be in such early stages of development and population. I hope you can understand my argument.

LaL36

Con

Thank you for your response. The BOP is on my opponent to prove that the human race will not last much longer. "My argument is probably like nothing you've seen before. It's an experimental theory"
As we agreed, my opponent believes that most likely the human race will not last much longer. Based on this statement, my opponent seems to contradict himself and this could be interpreted as a forfeit. How could an "experimental theory" be the same as a legitimate assumption or in other words "most likely"?

"If the human race is to continue on for millions of years, and has hundreds of billions of people yet to be born, it's quite extraordinary that we are living in a world that has only existed as it is now (lots of people) for a few hundred years."
You do realize how long it will take for the world to start getting crammed? Have you felt that there were too many people on Earth? Even if there were, have you ever felt that it has affected you to the extent that you would die? Have you ever felt that it is too big that all of those billions of people you mentioned will die also?

"Therefore, it is mathematically likely that the human race is more than half over (time-wise), and mathematically likely that the human race is about half way through all the people to ever be born"

Unestablished and unproven point.

"When we think about the possible threats that face humanity, (for me, nuclear war comes to mind), it's not impossible to see how the human race COULD end."
I don't think a nuclear weapon exists that can destroy every human. And anyway, wouldn't the person who launched the nuclear weapon be alive(Unless he committed suicide and wanted to eradicate the Earth and everyone which is highly unlikely as opposed to "most likely")?

"It is nearly mathematically impossible for the human race to progress more than 100,000 years because it's statiscally unlikely that we'd be in such early stages of development and population"

You cannot know for sure. Just think back to 1456 (random). Do you think, if I were to go back there and tell them that there is a flying contraption called a plane that can take you anywhere, do you think they will believe that is possible? They will probably laugh in my face.

My arguments and conclusion: I have short points I would like to add. Development: If you look at how much science, technology, medicine etc. has developed, it is unpredictable how many more improvements will come in the future. Based on my opponent's argument which is basically saying that there will be too many people and everyone would die, that is a bad argument. If the Earth got too crowded, and everyone started killing each other, they will eventually stop once the Earth is not too crowded anymore (Again I am responding to a very unlikely scenario and my opponent is suppose to provide a "most likely" scenario).
Debate Round No. 2
dylancatlow

Pro

The BOP is on my opponent to prove that the human race will not last much longer. "My argument is probably like nothing you've seen before. It's an experimental theory"
As we agreed, my opponent believes that most likely the human race will not last much longer. Based on this statement, my opponent seems to contradict himself and this could be interpreted as a forfeit.


I gave my case, however, I'm not sure if it's correct. I posted it in this debate to see if you could poke any holes in its logic. However, it's not up to me to help you out in this debate. Just because this is an experimental theory does not mean it's false. I have given my reasoning and I believe it leads to my resolution. You have to give a reason why it's false.


How could an "experimental theory" be the same as a legitimate assumption or in other words "most likely"?

'Most likely' refers to the human race not lasting much longer. It's unproductive to include the 'oh, this theory might be false' into the argument and mix it up with the thing I'm arguing. If you don't understand your fallacy here, I'm afraid I will have to find another person to debate with. This theory is quite complex and I really want someone who understands it to take a look at it.



You do realize how long it will take for the world to start getting crammed? Have you felt that there were too many people on Earth? Even if there were, have you ever felt that it has affected you to the extent that you would die? Have you ever felt that it is too big that all of those billions of people you mentioned will die also?


From this, I can tell you don't understand my argument. The human race could consist of five people and it wouldn't make my theory any less credible.





"Therefore, it is mathematically likely that the human race is more than half over (time-wise), and mathematically likely that the human race is about half way through all the people to ever be born"

Unestablished and unproven point.

No it's not. Why would you be any less likely to be born somewhere in the middle of all humans to exist than to be born with an IQ of around 100? You need to provide an argument against this. I have provided my case for why this is correct.



I don't think a nuclear weapon exists that can destroy every human. And anyway, wouldn't the person who launched the nuclear weapon be alive(Unless he committed suicide and wanted to eradicate the Earth and everyone which is highly unlikely as opposed to "most likely")?

The human race has to end someway. Otherwise, there would be an infinite amount of humans to have existed and it would be nearly mathematically impossible (actually impossible) to have been born so close to the beginning of the first human.



My arguments and conclusion: I have short points I would like to add. Development: If you look at how much science, technology, medicine etc. has developed, it is unpredictable how many more improvements will come in the future. Based on my opponent's argument which is basically saying that there will be too many people and everyone would die, that is a bad argument. If the Earth got too crowded, and everyone started killing each other, they will eventually stop once the Earth is not too crowded anymore (Again I am responding to a very unlikely scenario and my opponent is suppose to provide a "most likely" scenario).

From reading your conclusion, I can tell you have no idea what my argument even is.




" my opponent's argument which is basically saying that there will be too many people and everyone would die, that is a bad "
This is not at all what I am arguing. Please actually read my idea. It has absolutely nothing to do with overpopulation.
LaL36

Con

"Just because this is an experimental theory does not mean it's false."

Of course not. You are correct. Your theory maybe even correct but that is not the argument. The argument is "most likely". By saying most likely you are giving a legitimate assumption. By giving a theory it is not a good way to prove an assumption. For example, most likely the Sun will shine tommorow even though I cannot prove it. A theory is more like the emperor of Rome was to blame for the great fire of Rome because he wanted more room in his palace. Bottom line is, you are supposed to provide a most likely argument while you are giving a theory automatically not fulfilling the BOP.

"The human race has to end someway"
First of all the human race does not have to end you have not proved your claim.

"This is not at all what I am arguing. Please actually read my idea. It has absolutely nothing to do with overpopulation."

I am sorry if I misinterpreted your argument but I think you hinted to overpopulation here:

"If the human race is to continue on for millions of years, and has hundreds of billions of people yet to be born, it's quite extraordinary that we are living in a world that has only existed as it is now (lots of people) for a few hundred years"

My opponent used the words "lots of people" which is basically the definition Overpopulation- the condition of having a population so dense as to cause environmental deterioration, an impaired quality of life, or a population crash. Meriamwebsterdictionary.com
To have that dense population you need lots of people.
Consider me using my opponents argument as a source.

I thank my opponent for debating but I appologize if I mistinterpreted your argument. I also thank the voters for reading :)
Debate Round No. 3
16 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by dylancatlow 4 years ago
dylancatlow
" 'This could have been argued 10,000 yrs ago!' "
It's less likely we would be around 10,000 years ago to even been there to discuss it because barely anyone was alive. Notice how we are alive today, in the time of many many many humans. Not in the time of tribes.
Posted by dylancatlow 4 years ago
dylancatlow
likespeace, I didn't say you were wrong; in fact, you're probably right. I don't really want to start a debate just to discuss something. If you could just explain your argument more clearly that would be better.
Posted by likespeace 4 years ago
likespeace
Better yet, focus the new debate entirely on the soundness of your argument.
Posted by likespeace 4 years ago
likespeace
Feel free to cut + paste your previous round one and round two into the new debate's round one. This way we can get right to the meat of the debate that much faster.
Posted by likespeace 4 years ago
likespeace
dylan, if you'd like to formally debate this, simply challenge me with identical terms to this one.
Posted by dylancatlow 4 years ago
dylancatlow
"And your argument does not establish that in any way, shape, or form. Meditate on this--if you're in the first 0%-1% of all people ever to live, what does that say about how long humanity will endure? Now, since the formula to calculate the EV of humanity's lifespan will involve adding the term 0.01 x THAT VALUE, are we half way through or course or not"

How am arguing how long the human race will last? I said myself we COULD be in the first once percent of humans to exist, or we COULD be in the last percent. With this argument, I can only argue likelihood. My argument is simply that "us being half way into all humans to exist" is the most correct for all possible scenarios. The likelihood that we are exactly half way is no more likely than us being in the first percent. However, it's very very very very unlikely we are in the extreme in either direction. We don't need to know how long the human race will last to know how long it will last. By our very existence, we can surmise that it's unlikely there will be too many more opportunities in the future where we COULD have been born. My argument may be false, I admit that. But so far, you have not convinced me.
Posted by LaL36 4 years ago
LaL36
You guys should have a debate.
Posted by likespeace 4 years ago
likespeace
> Second, your argument doesn't make sense to me. Could you explain it in a way that doesn't resemble proofs in geometry? It's way too complicated as it is now.

If it's a subject of importance to you, put some effort into understanding the math. You might look for YouTube videos that explain the concept of Expected Value. While Probability is typically taught at the college level, a strong understanding of algebra is all it requires to learn.

> I'm not debating how long I think the human race with last. I'm simply stating that it is more than likely it is more than half over (time-wise).

And your argument does not establish that in any way, shape, or form. Meditate on this--if you're in the first 0%-1% of all people ever to live, what does that say about how long humanity will endure? Now, since the formula to calculate the EV of humanity's lifespan will involve adding the term 0.01 x THAT VALUE, are we half way through or course or not?

The answer to the first question is undefined, so the answer to the second question is, as well.
Posted by dylancatlow 4 years ago
dylancatlow
First of all, the numbers you are using are faulty. You assume equal population across the span of humans existing by saying if we are in the 99th percentile we have 1,500 years left (this is actually important when considering my argument). Second, your argument doesn't make sense to me. Could you explain it in a way that doesn't resemble proofs in geometry? It's way too complicated as it is now.

"You would have to assume a value for the length of human existance in years in order for the formula to tell you the expected length of human existence." I'm not debating how long I think the human race with last. I'm simply stating that it is more than likely it is more than half over (time-wise).
Posted by likespeace 4 years ago
likespeace
I've corrected the formula--

If we've lived 99-100% of our lifespan, our total lifespan = 150,000 * (100/99) = upto 151,500
If we've lived 98-99% of our lifespan, out total lifespan = 150,000 * (100/98) = upto 153,000
...
If we've lived 1-2% of our lifespan, our total lifespan = 150,000 * (100/1) = upto 1,500,000

Since the formula is, "If we've lived k% to k+1% of our lifespan, our total lifespan = 150,000 * (100/k)", it should be even clearer from a mathematical perspective why, as k approaches 0, the total lifespan of human existance becomes very large and eventually infinite.
3 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Vote Placed by likespeace 4 years ago
likespeace
dylancatlowLaL36Tied
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Reasons for voting decision: Con didn't quite grasp Pro's argument and so wasn't able to refute it. He did, however, latch onto Pro's own doubts about it and point out the debate topic was about what was most likely. Doubts such as, "This could have been argued 10,000 yrs ago!" also jumped out. It's a close call. I will simply vote Tie and thank Pro for sharing. In future debates, if you want to focus the debate on one argument, I'd call out that the debate is over *this particular argument* for the lifespan of mankind. I did exactly that in my recent ET debate!
Vote Placed by GarretKadeDupre 4 years ago
GarretKadeDupre
dylancatlowLaL36Tied
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Reasons for voting decision: Pro's theory was very interesting and fun because I have never seen someone play with mathematics and probability in such a way, but honestly, his theory makes no sense and has got to be based on some type of fallacy that I don't know the name of. Even according to himself, his theory could be applied to an earlier time period and would prove that the human race wouldn't last much longer regardless of the time period! So arguments to Con. I want to give conduct to Con because Pro was mildly insulting, but I feel for him because I used to be in his place. Oh well, forget it, I've got to be impartial as I can be. Sorry Pro! Conduct to Con. S&G to Con because Pro didn't use proper punctuation and capitalization. Nobody used sources. Please vote on my debate: http://debate.org/debates/The-Phrase-Under-God-Should-Remain-In-The-Pledge-Of-Allegiance Thank you!
Vote Placed by Deadlykris 4 years ago
Deadlykris
dylancatlowLaL36Tied
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Reasons for voting decision: Pro had no real argument to speak of, and the logic he used showed a remarkable lack of understanding of probability.