Is There Intelligent Life Out There Given It Is Here?

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    Aug 19, 2014 1:48 AM GMT
    NYT: Almost 20 years ago, in the pages of an obscure publication called Bioastronomy News, two giants in the world of science argued over whether SETI — the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence — had a chance of succeeding. Carl Sagan, as eloquent as ever, gave his standard answer. With billions of stars in our galaxy, there must be other civilizations capable of transmitting electromagnetic waves. By scouring the sky with radio telescopes, we just might intercept a signal.

    But Sagan’s opponent, the great evolutionary biologist Ernst Mayr, thought the chances were close to zero. Against Sagan’s stellar billions, he posed his own astronomical numbers: Of the billions of species that have lived and died since life began, only one — Homo sapiens — had developed a science, a technology, and the curiosity to explore the stars. And that took about 3.5 billion years of evolution. High intelligence, Mayr concluded, must be extremely rare, here or anywhere. Earth’s most abundant life form is unicellular slime.

    Since the debate with Sagan, more than about 40 billion potential habitats are discovered. But Mayr, who died in 2005 at the age of 100, probably wouldn’t have been impressed. By his reckoning, the odds would still be very low for anything much beyond slime worlds. No evidence has yet emerged to prove him wrong.

    Maybe we’re just not looking hard enough.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2014/08/19/science/in-search-for-intelligent-life-consider-the-lottery.html
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    Aug 19, 2014 1:53 AM GMT
    Is There Intelligent Life Out There Given It Is Here?
    "Here" where?
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    Aug 19, 2014 2:20 AM GMT
    Art_Deco said"Here" where?
    You stole my question. icon_lol.gif
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    Aug 19, 2014 2:56 AM GMT
    LOL, Art!
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    Aug 20, 2014 4:58 PM GMT
    Here? As in RJ forums? The internet?

    I hope there is MORE intelligent life "out there."
  • Aleco_Graves

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    Aug 21, 2014 2:10 AM GMT
    Judging by the lack of intelligent life on Earth, I Pray there's more intelligent life out there
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    Aug 21, 2014 3:55 AM GMT
    SETI is a waste of time and money.

    Sagan had his head up his ass.
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    Aug 21, 2014 4:00 AM GMT
    Aleco_Graves saidJudging by the lack of intelligent life on Earth, I Pray there's more intelligent life out there


    Funny! Recently Neil Tyson was on Chris Hayes's show (called All Up In Chris Hayes, I think). Tyson (recall him, he runs the projector at the Hayden, and sweeps up each and every night) told this "joke," something about intelligent life avoiding Earth cuz they couldn't find any intelligent life here. Charles Cooke noted that "Hayes laughed as though he had just tried marijuana for the first time."

    Chris rides his bike from Brooklyn, every day, no matter the weather or radiation levels, to his gig at msnbc, that network which is obsessed with race. Yes, he wears a helmet.

    Good times, bitches.
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    Aug 21, 2014 4:15 AM GMT
    Jack_NNJ said
    Aleco_Graves saidJudging by the lack of intelligent life on Earth, I Pray there's more intelligent life out there

    Funny! Recently Neil Tyson was on Chris Hayes's show (called All Up In Chris Hayes, I think). Tyson (recall him, he runs the projector at the Hayden, and sweeps up each and every night)...

    You mean the Black astrophysicist at the Hayden with a PhD, who also has about 20 additional honorary Doctorates, and has won multiple national awards for his science work? Who's had a TV show about astronomy? THAT Neil Tyson?

    Are you writing this with your pointy white cone hat on, squinting through the eyeholes? icon_rolleyes.gif
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    Aug 21, 2014 5:04 AM GMT
    The fact is, that if one is defining intelligent life as "the ability to operate an interstellar radio beacon," we don't actually qualify.
  • Shark100

    Posts: 234

    Aug 21, 2014 9:52 AM GMT
    Carl Sagan was and is and will be my inspiration, he saw the universe like nobody else... I believe we are privileged to be in this tiny planet, with the most perfect conditions to develop life, however if we think life as we know it , probably will be discouraged to know that it's not likely to find life in other planets, however if we see life as Carl saw it ....the possibility is big, and as the universe with its billions and billions of stars and planets I think it will be a waste of space if there is not life out there!!!!! And so selfish of us to think that we are the only ones
  • fitartistsf

    Posts: 638

    Aug 21, 2014 10:02 PM GMT
    There has to be...
    With the universe so unquantifiably vast, with so many galaxies, there HAS to be life elsewhere in the universe... To think we are the only life in the universe is to be supremely arrogant.... Just because we have not yet found life elsewhere, and with the vast distances between galaxies and stars, the chances of us ever finding life out there will probably never happen... But I believe there is life elsewhere in the universe... It may not be a bi-pedal hominid, or iron/copper/carbon based, oxygen breathing lifeform, but more like primordial lichen clinging to the side of an alien "tree", or one-celled zygotes oozing in a prehistoric "sea"... but it is life... But, if it is similar to us, and even if it is more advanced than us, even having warp speed or hyper-drive capability, "they" would still face the insurmountable problems of time and distance to discover us, and we, them...
  • jaroslav123

    Posts: 600

    Aug 21, 2014 10:57 PM GMT
    No. There are republicans on this planet, thus from the logic of your statement, there will be republicans in outer space. This not only means that the universe is stupid, but also pretty terrifying as well.
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    Aug 21, 2014 11:23 PM GMT
    Life elsewhere in the universe is very unlikely. Wha makes yu think that the eaxct conditions of Earth's genesis can be replicated multiple times? Intelligent life is even more unlikely.
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    Aug 22, 2014 3:09 AM GMT
    woodsmenIs There Intelligent Life Out There Given It Is Here?


    define "intelligent"
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    Aug 22, 2014 8:21 AM GMT
    fitartistsf saidThere has to be...
    With the universe so unquantifiably vast, with so many galaxies, there HAS to be life elsewhere in the universe... To think we are the only life in the universe is to be supremely arrogant.... Just because we have not yet found life elsewhere, and with the vast distances between galaxies and stars, the chances of us ever finding life out there will probably never happen... But I believe there is life elsewhere in the universe... It may not be a bi-pedal hominid, or iron/copper/carbon based, oxygen breathing lifeform, but more like primordial lichen clinging to the side of an alien "tree", or one-celled zygotes oozing in a prehistoric "sea"... but it is life... But, if it is similar to us, and even if it is more advanced than us, even having warp speed or hyper-drive capability, "they" would still face the insurmountable problems of time and distance to discover us, and we, them...


    That's an argument from incredulity.

    Also, if we think we are the only intelligent life in the universe based on a thoughtful assessment of the possibilities (per Mayr et al.), then this is not "arrogance."

    Sagan, on the other hand, was quite arrogant and a crank besides. His "Pale Blue Dot" routine is mind-numbingly stupid, and quite arrogant.