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Review: The Prospect of Astro-Palaeontology, by John Armitage

Journal of the British Interplanetary Society, vol. 30, pp. 466-9, 1976. After it was published this paper seems to have fallen into utter obscurity. It was pure serendipity that led me to stumble across it. All that I can determine about John Armitage is that he became a Fellow of the Royal Astronomical Society on 10 December 1976[1], and that the paper was also presented at the Second British Interplanetary Society Conference on Interstellar Travel and Communication, 4-5 April 1977. In it the author argues, as I have, that it seems likely that the number of galactic extinct civilizations is greater than the number of galactic extant civilizations. Armitage makes the distinction that detectable civilizations are only apparently extant, given the relativistic gap between signal transmission and detection. … Read entire article »

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