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Do you believe in Extraterrestial Life?

Discussion in 'The Philosopher' started by Iron Chef Sakai, Jan 24, 2007.

  1. Έρεβος

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    Guess what, it has already been shower that on planets other than earth, and solar systems other than earth's (that are nearby, btw), the "transition of chemistry into biology" has already been completed. What does that say about the odds? It says Hoyle was quite foolish, and spoke of something of which he had no real knowledge.

    And even if he is correct in his assumption (it wasn't a true theory, as it wasn't based in real observation or relating knowledge), the odds would still be quite in the favor of their being other life. You don't seem to understand the extent of just our one galaxy, do you? And our galaxy is just one of thousands, possibly millions, or more. There isn't anything to say that galaxies aren't tiny pieces of mega-galaxies (or whatever), either; and then millions of such mega-galaxies; or maybe those mega-galaxies are just tiny parts of even greater structures. It is quite a likelyhood that our universe is infinite. This would mean 99.9(with 9 repeating infinitely)% chance of infinite forms of life.
     
  2. judas69

    judas69 god is in the radio

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    At some point I'll read through this thread ..but I want get your opinion on the SETI project (http://setiathome.berkeley.edu/) if it hasn't already been raised. I personally think it's a clear waste of time more on the side of method.

    On the topic of extra-terrestrial life, I glanced at moogle's post on bacteria found on mars and from what I've read, NASA apparently has not made considerations for the possibility of cross contamination for what it's worth. As far as terrestrial life goes, an incalculable number of things had to gel perfectly with the precision of design for life to flourish as it does and thus, we mustn't overlook this when considering the numbers with respect to the vastness of our Universe.

    To Norsemaiden's post, I found this doing a quick search you might want to check out: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Silicon#Silicon-based_life
     
  3. Έρεβος

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    Not just bacteria on mars, but foreign organic matter found in a meteor. The meteor was dated to before our own solar system, hence the organic matter could not have been from earth or mars.
     
  4. Norsemaiden

    Norsemaiden barbarian

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  5. Uladyne

    Uladyne Greg

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    You bring up an excellent point, my friend, and while I agree that some of the stars we see now may have gone nova thousands of years ago, to believe that no stars have taken their place, one must accept the notion that stars are not reforming, only dying, as you seem to accept.

    I for one, tend to agree with the mojority of the scientific community (we could be wrong, of course) that new stars do form, and while entropy must increase and all stars die out eventually (heat death), I think most agree that there is still far to much energy still abundant in the universe to bring about the end any time soon. While I think its a bit of a long-shot assumption, most astronomers believe the the universe to be in the earlier half of its lifespan.

    You mention "post Big-Bang star formation" as if the Big-Bang created all stars at once in an instant, yet if I understand correctly, the Big-Bang would've been far too violent for the creation of stars and the commonly held belief is that stars didn't begin to form until millions of years after the Big-Bang. Also, if all stars were created at the same time, they would all have to be the same age, and according to the vast majority of astronomers (All of them?) this is far from the case.
     
  6. Uladyne

    Uladyne Greg

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    As for my opinion on the SETI program, as far as transmitting and listening for radio signals, I think its a complete waste of time and money. The mere chance of intelligent life existing aside, we would also have to assume that they are using radio technology at the time our signals reach them, however many hundreds or thousands of years from now that may be.

    Not only that, but we also have to assume that they're listening for them. When you take into account the fact that we've only been using radio for what, less than 100 years, and its quickly moving towards obsolesence on this planet, you're talking about some extremely small chances of getting an answer from anyone out there. If anyone does get it and decides to respond, will we still be around and/or using radio technology when their answer reaches us, perhaps thousands of years from now?
     
  7. judas69

    judas69 god is in the radio

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    It's sort of difficult to reply to a signal you haven't received. A good question to ask is, how often are we sending these things out? Someone should check on this, but I don't think we've sent anything in decades.

    If there is intelligent life out there, you have to wonder how they could even reach our planet in any timely fashion either by message or craft, should they receive our primitive signal 900 million years from now. If they're that technologically capable, you have to wonder how much interest a bunch of monkeys would be.
     
  8. Uladyne

    Uladyne Greg

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    We've actually been sending signals constantly since radio technology was put into service. Not it terms of actual messages to aliens, but every radio signal transmitted with resonable power is racing outward from our planet at the speed of, well, radio waves, I guess (light speed?).

    It's funny because this morning before I left for work there was a show on the Science Channel about this thread's very subject. I only got to watch about 10 minutes of it, but right before I turned off the tv they were talking about how right now, near the star Arcturus a wooden puppet is "announcing our presence to universe." It then showed a clip of an old black and white tv program featuring a ventriloquist and his dummy from (I'm assuming) the 30's or 40's. Pretty interesting. Let's hope someone out there near Arcturus has a TV and its tuned to the right frequency. Also hopefully they haven't switched to cable. Otherwise they won't be able to see how intelligent we are.
     
  9. SatanicBunny

    SatanicBunny The Dark Herald

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    I think there has to be some sort of life somewhere in this universe, but it is impossible to know if this life is bacteria or very intelligent. Funny thing is that the probability of two intelligent lifeforms existing at the same time so that they would be able to meet each other is very small indeed.

    This is due to the vast size of space. Think of it; it could easily take thousands, tens of thousands even hundreds of thousands of years (even if traveling at the speed of light) from some alien race to travel to us.

    Let's say that the fictional alien race began the journey when humans invented the wheel (about 5000 years BC.) and have therefore travelled about 7000 years for now. Now if we look at the situation of this planet with wars, nuclear weapons and stuff like that, we will realize that we can't be sure if human race survives the next 100 years.

    Let's assume that the aliens come from somewhere "close" and only have 5000 years of travelling left. If they even survive the journey, we still can't guarantee that there would be any humans left on Earth once they get here.
     
  10. Magrathean

    Magrathean worldbuilder

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    This is wrong, too-wrong. Stars have been forming ever since the big bang (if the big bang even existed; i'm having more and more doubts about its existence lately) and still do. Their birthplaces are called nebulae (yes, i'm aware that those are also huge clouds of dust and whatnot, but stars are "born" there). Second, i'm sure there are many planets that are the "right" distance from their sun (and that distance would also vary with the sun's heat and size, so there are many "right" distances). Third, i highly-doubt you have a right sense of proportion (this isn't personal; i don't believe anybody does, since the universe is bigger than anything we can possibly comprehend or imagine); there are many-more stars and planets out there than you think there are (i'm not mindlessly repeating the whole "there's billions of planets blah blah blah" thing you so despise, i'm implying that if there are so many then there must be more than one with characteristics similar to those on this planet (and they don't necessarily have to be similar, as stated before and mentioned somewhere below)). Fourth, see below.

    Edit: Blowtus beat me to the star-formation thing, shit...


    Life is overrated. A living being is nothing but a chemical system which is a) stable under certain conditions, b) able to multiply itself provided it has the necessary elements (and this goes as far as photons, subatomic particles and temperature, not just your standard organic molecules), and c) in a state of constant matter/energy exchange with its environment. You can throw in "d) is formed by proteins which are coded by either dna or rna" in there if you want, but that's just life as we know it and possibly not all life in the universe.

    That said, i'm sure there are many stable chemical systems that constantly exchange energy and matter with their environment (easy: everything is constantly being bombarded by subatomic particles, photons and so on, and, as everything that happens has a consequence, molecules change or atoms move or particles split into different particles; now you just have to make sure the system doesn't consume completely as in combustion or change considerably as in simple chemical reactions (what we know as "life" is more-or-less-constant in that an organism retains at least some of its characteristics throughout its "life")). The hard part is the self-replicating one, but i'm sure rna/dna-based cells as we know them aren't the only possible ones.

    Now, given that there are all kinds of planets and that there's a vast multitude of them "out there", i can easily think of a scenario in which several atoms join into a molecule which then joins with other (different or similar (or, more-likely, a combination of both)) molecules to eventually form more-or-less-complex self-replicating systems (a strong theory about the origin of life on Earth suggests that this happened many times and that for one or other reason some of them "died" or were consumed or reacted with something else and one (or more) of those systems was/were enclosed in a lipid sphere and became the first cell(s), so if it happened many times on Earth why can't it happen on other planets?). They don't even have to be carbon-based. And if one survives and finds that it is fit to multiply and keep surviving in its environment for long-enough without consuming it too-quickly then the logical consequence is evolution/speciation.

    Edit: a moogle beat me to the not–carbon-based thing, SHIT...


    As everybody has probably realized by now, i believe that the possibility that there is "life" (read: relatively-stable relatively-constant self-replicating chemical systems) in other parts of the universe is a huge one. As for the possibilities of finding them, no, i don't believe in Alien or StarCraft or Independence day.


    Edit: That was going to be my post originally, but reading more of Arthryon's stuff (which reeks of mindless anthropocentrism and even contradicts itself) moved me to write further:


    You just shot yourself in the foot: if that bacterium/bacteria (whichever the correct term is) came from a meteor or comet or something, then it means that life exists at least in one other place (the meteor couldn't have come from Earth for many reasons), which instantly makes you wonder why two and not a million. Mars or another solar system, it doesn't matter, what matters is that there's life outside Earth (and i don't mean astronauts).


    The only data the ancient egyptians had (note how i'm not saying "ancient greeks") indicated that Earth was flat, but, last i heard, it was a spheroid blue-green object that was orbiting the sun between Mars and Venus, not a giant rectangle.


    Why not, in a more–open-minded attitude, be inclined to believe that we do not have the necessary information (not counting the Mars meteorite that was mentioned earlier) to make any respectable assertions as to whether life exists elsewhere in the universe or not? Just to avoid misunderstandings: i never said "i'm sure that life exists in other planets because there's evidence of it", i merely suggested that it's likely that it does and that i think (but am not sure) that it does. As infoterror said:
    And no, it's not the same as believing, it's being open to the possibility.



    I'm sure everybody here would agree that the appearance of life was / is / will_be a "natural phenomenon". That said, the appearance of something cannot possibly be spontaneous because it cannot possibly be dependent only on "internal agencies" (need i say why?).


    Just write it as a percentage and it won't go above 100. ;)


    This made me think of another thing: If our calculations are correct, the universe is fifteen-thousand-million years old, Earth is some five-thousand-million years old or so and life on Earth is a little less than four-thousand-million-years old. Taking into account that scale of time (thousands of millions of years) and not our everyday one (barely a hundred years), 1x10^9 years isn't that much, it's only one-fifth of Earth's life. So if "life" was that quick to appear here (take into account that the early conditions of Earth weren't the same as the current ones, so we could say that it was "another planet") and has survived for all this time (throughout the whole transition from burning planet with unbreathable atmosphere and zero liquid water to nice comfy planet with blue sky and 70%water-30%land, so we could say that we live in a "different planet" than the one terran life appeared on) then it doesn't look like it's all that unlikely, does it?


    Wrong. It could and it most-likely is. It could have gotten there when somebody started dating or examining the meteor (or it could have just bloody gotten there on its own; some bacteria do move, you know).

    Furthermore, what the hell does it matter whether the meteor comes from Mars or from another solar system? Since we haven't set foot on Mars, it's not like if the bacteria was already there before it fell down on Earth then we could still have contaminated it but if it came from another system then we didn't, duh...


    I agree that it's a waste of time. Intelligent life does not exist in our solar system, and we are light-years away from the nearest system and, if the expanding-universe theory is true, getting farther all the time at great speeds. Considering that the force we'd need to accelerate something to an important fraction of the speed of light (say, a speed greater than the one we're getting farther from other systems at) would exceed the whole production of every country on Earth put together BY FAR (the words 'by' and 'far' are there so that nobody starts going "oh, but maybe aliens have more-effective machines and/or more countries"; it is simply TOO MUCH FORCE), we'll never be able to get to another system, let alone find a system with intelligent life. So, while i believe in and am in favor of the colonization of all of the rocky bodies in this system and the terraformation of some, i don't believe we'll ever set foot on anything outside the Oort cloud. As the same holds true for the other systems (if we can't build something fast-enough to reach another system, the beings in that system can't build something fast-enough to reach ours), nobody will ever find us either.

    Furthermore, how likely is it that, supposing an alien civilization received our signals and whatnot, they would a) have the necessary technology to capture the information in it, b) not be tricked by some stupid fanaticism into believing that it's a message from God(dess(es)), c) interpret the information and make some sense out of it, d) have developed space travel (and i'm forgetting my previous paragraph here) and e) be able to track down exactly where the signal comes from?

    I take back what i said: it's not a waste of time, it's a waste of time, resources, credibility and interest-in-space (i.e. they could use the time, the resources, the propaganda and whatever credibility they still have in the scientific community to support the colonizations of Mars, Phobos, Deimos, the moon and Venus, not to mention the moons of the outer planets and the dark side of Mercury, instead of wasting it all on futile attempts at establishing communication with a presumed alien civilization.

    Edit: I hadn't thought of what Uladyne said about the aliens responding. They'd have to respond, and we'd have to be here when the signal gets here, be looking out for the response and have the technology to understand / track_down / etc the signal.

    We are alone in the universe not because of lack of aliens but because of our impossibility to reach or be reached by them if they exist.
     
  11. 13th Nightmare

    13th Nightmare BATTLE METAL NUT!

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    I do believe that aliens exist. The way I see it is, there are who knows how many planets out there in the universe, and I feel it's rather unlikely that only one planet in the entire universe will have life on it.
    I know that scientists say that planets such as Mars or Venus can't have life on them. I say maybe they can. I mean if life was to be on those two planets, they would have evolved so that they can live there. I use the movie Pitch Black as an example. In that movie, the main threat were aliens who had evolved to live in complete darkness. Because the planet would go into total darkness for a amount of time unknown. I know the aliens in the movie were not real, but who is to say there is no such alien life like that out in the universe?
    Plus a few months back I kind of figured this out while I was on the bus back home from work: Everyone on Earth is alien. Think about, life on another planet would consider this planet alien, so that would make us alien as well.
     
  12. Slaindreamer

    Slaindreamer Mindfreak

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    I started a discussion thread on Aliens and UFO's about a year ago here but someone moved it into the Conspiracy thread where it sadly got lost amongst all the other posts. Shame really, as this could have reached epic proportion by now :headbang: ....hehe. Anyway after that point I wasn't exactly positive about discussing it here......also there was at the time a cetain amount of stupid (yes here amazingly) skepticism against the idea that aliens could have visited us. Although to be honest, I'm used to dealing with this from some parts of society for a long time now.....
    So a big thanks to this person above for starting was has turned into a fair a intelligent discussion. I love to see these.....it restores my faith in human beings.
    Also some particularly excellent posts.......take a bow Seditious and Eρεβος

    Oh dear....
    and I was just saying how hopeful this discussion was :lol:

    Oh my God. I think this person has infiltrated my mind. Seriously. Some of the points he raises basically mirror things I've been talking about for 13 years aog when I started researching Ufology. If only more people accepted those ideas.....

     
  13. Norsemaiden

    Norsemaiden barbarian

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    The idea of intelligent aliens with large heads and spindly bodies is nonsense. The main factor holding back the evolution of head size (which has now been scientifically accepted to correlate strongly with intelligence) is the pelvic size of the female. She would not be able to give birth naturally were the headsize too large and would die (in nature) thus preventing the genes for this characteristic from progressing.

    http://williamcalvin.com/bk5/bk5ch7.htm

    http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNe...ze_intelligence_20051223/20051223?hub=SciTech (Head size and intelligence).

    This might be relevant
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?cmd=Retrieve&db=PubMed&list_uids=7949753&dopt=Abstract
     
  14. Slaindreamer

    Slaindreamer Mindfreak

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    I will have a look at those links when I get some more free time.......however in the meantime,

    What you said above is very logical.......and it would make sense.......if they give birth that way. So it's not exactly nonsense..
    ;)
     
  15. rrjii2000

    rrjii2000 Member

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    That's the thing most people overlook, the vastness of space.

    In our galaxy alone, there are 100 billion (100,000,000,000) stars. Couple that with the existance of other galaxies (~200 billion) and you've got in the neighborhood of 2x10^22 stars in our visible universe.

    Now there are many conditions that must be met before life can arise, but with such a huge sample of stars, there's got to be life out there. A scientist by the name of Frank Drake studied this and came up with an equation for calculating the posibility of life. You can read more here

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Drake_equation

    Another area of thought is: Is our earth unique? Does it take an earth like planet to sustain life? Does water create life?

    Our Earth *is* unique to us. We couldn't imagine living on a planet that didn't resemble the Earth. This would be the same case for any alien civilization. They might hold their planet in high reguard and think of it as unique. Only to find out that they're probably many types of planets capable of sustaining life.

    In the past 10 years the SETI program has really been exciting. Over 200 extrasolar planets have been found. These are actual planets orbiting other stars in our galaxy. So far mostly Giant Gas Planets, have been found. A few large rocky worlds in the mix though.

    Life is very robust and if givin even a small chance, it will arise. Probably not as humans or even huminoid. Anything from Covenant to Combine. lol just joking there.

    I have been studing astronomy most of my life and the posibilities that exist are almost endless. We are living in exciting times.

    Wonder what their Music must sound like?


    Rob
     
  16. Spikeshade

    Spikeshade Anarchy is for Anarchists

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    exactly! we honestly cannot even begin to fathom how deep space is, for every other galaxy we find and every solar system in those galaxies there could be another planet like earth.
     
  17. Spikeshade

    Spikeshade Anarchy is for Anarchists

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    really we are probably not the only life in the universe that is like us... i wonder if they have Metal music
     
  18. Spikeshade

    Spikeshade Anarchy is for Anarchists

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    haha I fugured as much :heh: but what would it sound like? is a much better question..:headbang:
    theere has to be life out there, for all the fools who say they've been "abducted" there has to be at least one of them that really was. I mean really... all the stuff that happens that we can't explain we say that it is unexplainable but there are logical explanations for the supernatural, like Bigfoot or the Loch Ness Monster...but really calling extraterrestrials, "little :ill: green men", is down right derogitory and frankly it upsets me...
     
  19. Spikeshade

    Spikeshade Anarchy is for Anarchists

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    sounds like a good idea Mistress
     
  20. Spikeshade

    Spikeshade Anarchy is for Anarchists

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    random thought...just throwing it out there, no real relevance.
    Book of 4chan, 13:37
    And Raptor Jesus did leap from the tree, connecting His foot with the jibbering fool's neck. When He landed, the fool was dead and motionless. Our Saviour, Raptor Jesus, who is both carnivorous and merciful, then turned to his disciples and said: "Ninja'd!"
     

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