10.05.2011

Are There Aliens?


By on 5:37 AM

Maybe:

Drake, using the Drake equation in 1961, hypothesized there were 10 detected alien civilizations in the Milky Way. Current estimates range from 2.31 communicative species (and 200 that aren’t interested in, or capable of, reaching others) to 0.000065 on the low side and 20,000 on the high side.

There’s a bit of a disparity, but the biggest and most well-explained section in Wikipedia points to the 2.31 estimate, so there we go.

Another interesting way to go about hypothesizing is to look at the number of planets that could house Earth-like life: Glise 581 d (about 20.5 light years from Earth) is one of the first known Goldilocks – conditions are just right – planets, and University of California Santa Cruz’s astronomy professor Steven Vogt is putting the probability of life at 100%. Maybe not life the exploring the galaxy, but life.

Probably Not (Or, At Least Not Practically):

The Fermi Paradox, in a nutshell, says that if there were intelligent alien life, at our level or above, we would’ve heard about it by now (this is a fair point: if aliens saw the Pioneer plaque, they’d have joined the debate about how appropriate it was to use an arrow symbol). The paradox tacitly agrees with the theoretical possibility of extraterrestrials, but finds the lack of corroborating evidence fairly damning.

Not to throw in an anthropic bias, but a technologically advanced alien race is likely to begin colonization, or at least exploration. Ian Crawford in a 2000 Scientific American article gives even lackadaisical interstellar travel as taking 5 to 50 million years to cover the Milky Way – considering the abundance of stars far more than 50 million years older than our star, there’s a pretty decent window for aliens to set out on their own galactic Lewis and Clark expedition. Since they haven’t (or we can’t observe it), chances are good there’s no one to do so. Of course, we exist, and our newly downsized practically canceled space program brings up the point that there could be limitless numbers of multi-cellular intelligent life, it’s just blocked by bureaucracy and bad budgeting.

Supporters of and contributors to the Fermi Paradox hypothesize a number of reasons why we have no contact with aliens. For one, there aren’t any. Two, they blew themselves up. This particular input is brought about by the thinking that increased technology equals more chances to screw up, and bigger ways to do it, ranging from nuclear catastrophes, chemical contamination, a Brainiac-like super-intelligence that’s more bent on destroying civilization than possessing Lex Luthor, or some sort of other terrible occurrence they brought on themselves (kind of like our ongoing inability to realize that nuclear weapons are bad, and so is destroying the environment). Subtheory #3 is nature-based destruction: tidal waves, gamma rays, eruptions, giant meteorites with no Bruce Willis to save them – things like that.

Even these theoretically extinct civilizations haven’t been found. Some sort of broadcasting, energy output, or any sort of waves, really, would have noticeable, even if the species was wiped out or the planet self-destructed.

But there’s nothing, so chances are there is nothing.

…Until you get to some pretty cool theories as to why aliens might be hiding from us, at least.

Probably, But I Really Hope Not:

Stephen Hawking says aliens are entirely possible, and, if they do exist, they’re probably coming straight for us. And not in the friendly, let’s-spread-the-love intergalactic council sort of way but the ‘oh, cool, free labor and resources’ kind of way, complete with big ships, unimaginably advanced technology, and the kind of tolerance for humans that European imperialists had for natives.

Rachel is the co-founder of How To Survive Alien Invasion Novels, and spends her time writing, studying, and reading what would probably considered far too many books. Connect with her and Rusty on Twitter and Facebook, and click here to read more of her articles about alien theories and how to survive alien invasion novels.

About Syed Faizan Ali

Faizan is a 17 year old young guy who is blessed with the art of Blogging,He love to Blog day in and day out,He is a Website Designer and a Certified Graphics Designer.

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