@Bruce Stewart at WUWT asks: “How is it conceivable that climate could be forecast years ahead?”
Oh, I am certain that it will be. Look at so much that we have done with computers in each of the last 5-year periods since 1977. Not once in any of those would we have known what was coming in the next 5-year period. Certainly not in the 2nd one ahead.
How to do climate ahead?
First we need to nail down the individual factors until they are repeatable. This will be done. But not by the dodos currently ‘running’ climatology. There are a lot of those factors, so it will be some time before that is accomplished. But it will happen.
Secondly, someone will develop some deterministic-Monte-Carlo math at a level we don’t know now. A math that handles truly complex problems. A new type of computer may even need to be developed to handle the complexity – it may not be just more HP or speed that is needed. That will be the day.
As a general rule, modernity sees itself as an apex. In reality it is a point along a continuum. Seen as an apex, there is nothing but void all around. When seen as a continuum, one sees that the present works with the past and the future. The ties to the future can be seen, but not from our present bottom-up scientific mindset, from which the apex-thinking derives. It can only be seen from the continuum mindset, if any.
That is what I see. It is amusing to see the floundering at present. But it won’t always be that way.
Rupert Sheldrake has a peek at all this, and so does Freeman Dyson have a glimmer. Sheldrake is a bit of a flake. No one has ever accuse Dyson of that! But the math – that will come from someone like Mr Butterfly himself, Kerry Mullis, and his PCR — out of left field or riding in on a surfboard.
I can’t wait to see it happen.
Except it might be 125 years from now. But I don’t think so.
But I also look forward to what just the next 5-yaer period will bring – what surprises, what interfacing capacity we don’t see right around the corner. The last 5-year period left me in its dust, and the next one will be light years ahead of me – but I want to see it change the world anyway.
Perhaps something like this will lead to it: Robots that Fly and Cooperate
What they do may be strikingly similar to what molecules do in the atmosphere. What can be done with a few dozen can be done with gigundabillions. Each one only needs to interact with its neighbors. And isn’t that what the atmosphere is doing?