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Alien Life

Do you think life exists outside of Earth?


  • Total voters
    40

Encap

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I think that's exactly why we're not finding anything. Even with out best radio telescopes, like the Very Large Array, we would be unable to detect a civilization equal to us any farther than 5-10 light years at best if we are just listening for incidental radio leakage.

Only way we'd detect them is if we got REALLY lucky and one of our radio telescopes was aimed at them just at the right time to pick up a signal they deliberately aimed at us. If we happen to find anyone with today's technology, it either means we got VERY lucky or they are significantly more advanced than us.

Probably our best bet in terms of near term technologies is to invest in increasingly bigger and better orbiting optical telescopes. It may then be possible to detect at great distances if a extra-solar planet has life or not just through spectral analysis of it's atmospheric composition. Wouldn't tell us if the life is intelligent or just some algae, but would certainly narrow the search by orders of magnitude and give a target for our radio telescopes.

Apparently 72.73% of LPF members responding to you poll believe "yes, intelligent life with technology and civilizations" without any shred evidence of same so --problem solved--they exist -why the need to go any further?

Why waste the money on daydreams of maybe.
Even if true it make it is pretty much meaningless anyway.
Would be much better spent doing something positive for people already on earth.
Maybe detecting and communicating with people here on earth is a better choice,
 
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Bacon

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I'm in the same boat as Razako; no idea. I have spent many nights wondering why there is something rather than nothing. Why does energy and forces even exist? We will never know; just get to live with it and explore it. I believe there is a reason to explore as "new" beneficial tech and understandings is often a result. It wouldn't surprise me to discover there is something out there also capable of conciseness if you believe the universe is infinitely large. the last two variables is what sucks; by the time they could release a detectable signal we might be too far apart to ever receive it.

The thought of the earth being engulfed by the sun or getting struck by something sucks; as it will likely happen, and all of mans greatest achievements and thoughts will be null. Thats why I try to be decent person to others because we only got about 70-90yrs to experience things, and it might as well be pleasant if I can help it. We might get detected one day, but there may be nothing left. :undecided:

Its also fun to think about the extreme "bat shit crazy" theories, like the Boltzmann brain. Its a very silly concept, but I love thinking about stuff like that.
 
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Benm

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Apparently 72.73% of LPF members responding to you poll believe "yes, intelligent life with technology and civilizations" without any shred evidence of same so --problem solved--they exist -why the need to go any further?

Why waste the money on daydreams of maybe.
Even if true it make it is pretty much meaningless anyway.

Why would it be meaningless?

Personally i believe in this option: intelligent life does exist in other places than earth. Given the size of the universe this makes perfect sense to me.

If we can detect this alien intelligent life or even make contact is a totally different question, and one i'd probably answer "not likely" to.

The problem is that the universe is actually quite large, and even the observable part of it to us is limited. Even if you could prove that no other intelligent life exists in the -observable- universe that would not mean there is none in the much larger not-observable part.

Observing life (intelligent or primordial) outside of earth would however be something very meaningful: if we find only one other place where life evolved independent of earth that would change a lot about creation myths, religion and such.

One interesting thing is that there are several moons in our solar system that could in theory have primitive life, but we have not sent the probes to verify or disprove that yet. If we ever do find evidence of life in our solar system that evolved independent of that on earth we will know that life is -very- common in the universe. The same would be true if we picked up radio signals from something as close as 1000 light years, which would make it likely that the universe is full of intelligent life as it evolved at least twice in such a tiny part of the universe.

As for the earth getting destroyed by the sun: this will certainly happen, in a few billion years. We might have some time to build vessels to escape that event... it's only been 60 years since humanity launched anything into space. Considering the time scale humanity as such has existed only for a fraction of that timeframe.
 

CurtisOliver

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That has always intrigued me at how it possible for an supersonic object to circumvent the sonic boom. Yet it is reported very regularly with UAP's. I can't wait for governments to be honest with us about this subject.
 

paul1598419

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When I was still young my father was still in the US Army. I was treated to sonic booms on a near daily basis. Haven't heard one in many years now, though.
 

skijohn

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When I was still young my father was still in the US Army. I was treated to sonic booms on a near daily basis. Haven't heard one in many years now, though.
I was very young but I still remember those days, BA BOOM! and the windows all rattled...
 

Mathewe

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I'm of the belief that we would be foolish to think that we are the only specimens of intelligent life existing in the universe. I also believe that if such intelligent life does exist, elsewhere, well. The distance required to travel from there, to here would be too vast for even an extremely advanced civilization to accomplish in either a reasonable, or efficient amount of time... unless something like a 'Star-Trek' sort of 'Warp Drive' has actually been developed by those folks. The physics of such a thing being possible, in the manner that we currently understand physics, makes it highly unlikely that advanced beings, from so far away, would even consider making such a long journey, just to 'see the sights' of this planet and observe our lacking technology, even if they could. It would be a waste of their time! Then again... Who knows, after all. Our current civilized world seems to be fascinated, and quite willing to go to great lengths in studying the uncivilized tribes, and peoples of under-developed regions, on our own planet... just for the sake of doing so. Who's to say that some of our UFO's aren't just interplanetary archeologists, geologists, etc. having their expeditions funded by their distant governments, colleges, and entrepreneurs? Perhaps we humans simply like to entertain ourselves with such notions of alien visitors because it is fun to think about, makes for entertaining movies, and gives us a brief escape from reality...???
 

bostjan

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If an extraterrestrial being exists on the other side of the galaxy, and you never communicate with it, does it even matter?

The Drake equation is kind of silly to me.

For one, we don't know how many different ways life could exist. We are carbon/water based, but there are an unknown number of other ways that might also eventually lead to intelligent life. But we know nothing about it. So, the equation itself is kind of too narrow to be useful.

Aside from that, look at the coefficients of the equation:

R - We have no idea, plus, a star suitable for life, based on what? Temperature, mass, size, metallicity?
fp - We have no idea
ne - We have no idea
fl - We have no idea
fi - We have no idea
fc - We have no idea
L - We have no idea

In fact, other than R and fp, if we even think that we will ever know the values of any of the variables to even one significant figure, we would be extremely self-important and overly optimistic.

Also, what about the possibility of life on a moon? Seems more likely to me that there would be life on a moon than a planet anyway. A star might have a dozen planets, and each planet probably has more than one moon, possibly dozens of moons. If we're looking for life that looks like what we know, then we'll be looking for life on a rocky planet with an atmosphere. Moons are rocky and can potentially have atmospheres. Planets can be either rocky or gaseous and may or may not have atmospheres, so hmm, focusing on planets alone is probably missing the majority of the potential. What about artificial satellites, if a civilization is so advanced, I don't think that's too far fetched to mess up the equation...

So the equation, as interesting as it may look from a sci-fi perspective, in real life, is absolutely useless.

All we do know is empirical data. We've visited exactly one star system, we've visited (with probes), what, four planets? One of those four has life. And one of those one planets with any signs of life have had intelligent life. And one of those one has had a civilization, which we have no idea how long will last...

So N = (possibly 1000/year) * (possibly 100%) * (25%) * (100%) * (100%) * (100%) * (at least 100 years) = 250. Obviously, our empirical data is garbage, because, not counting ourselves, N is empirically zero. Since 250 =/= 0, we are clueless, either because the equation is broken or because our data is negligibly sparse or maybe our assumptions are just wrong.

I think we want there to be other intelligent life out there and we want it to look like us, think like us, etc., but, if you think about it philosophically, there's no reason why this completely undefined thing should be any particular way we expect, just because we want it to. Maybe there's extraterrestrial life that's Germanium based, maybe it's gas-based, maybe it lives off of something other than solar power, and, maybe, just maybe, it doesn't care to contact us.

It's all Russell's teapot at this point. We can predict nothing; we can prove nothing; we can disprove nothing. Whatever information is in our dreams about ET life is going to remain in our dreams, probably forever.
 

wolfram

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If we are so intelligent, then why do we continue to look for life elsewhere? The creator wants us to realize what we are not seeing, yes him. Think......God is a being without form......but his existance is viewed everywhere. For he said let there be light, and from the light came the existance of everything else. God is energy......The pure and simple truth. An intelligent unseen being. Think about it.
 

paul1598419

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If we are so intelligent, then why do we continue to look for life elsewhere? The creator wants us to realize what we are not seeing, yes him. Think......God is a being without form......but his existance is viewed everywhere. For he said let there be light, and from the light came the existance of everything else. God is energy......The pure and simple truth. An intelligent unseen being. Think about it.

I have and though I respect your reasons for believing, I respectfully disagree.
 




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