science daily: "We would be the dumbest guys in the galaxy by the numbers." via University of Arkansas, Fayetteville
'By applying a statistical concept called the principle of mediocrity -- the idea that in the absence of any evidence to the contrary we should consider ourselves typical, rather than atypical -- Whitmire has concluded that instead of lagging behind, our species may be average. That's not good news.
'In a paper published Aug. 3 in the International Journal of Astrobiology, Whitmire argues that if we are typical, it follows that species such as ours go extinct soon after attaining technological knowledge.
'The argument is based on two observations: We are the first technological species to evolve on Earth, and we are early in our technological development. (He defines "technological" as a biological species that has developed electronic devices and can significantly alter the planet.)'