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Forums > Social Chat > Fact or Fitction: Is there life out there?

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Location: Australia
Member Since: 12th Mar 2003
Total posts: 254
Posted:I personally believe that earth is not the only planet with intelligent life in the Universe. Yes they have found organisms on Mars however i want to know other peoples thoughts and feelings on intelligent life outside our solar system

If life was a ball of fire...i would be the poi sustaining it

Posted:Hmmmm,,, is there intelligent life within our solar system?

Location: Bath, UK
Member Since: 5th Sep 2002
Total posts: 279
Posted:Did you ever look up at the stars in the night sky? Well in between any two of those stars are as many stars again as you can see in the entire sky, and in between any two of those stars are as many again, and in between those... and I could repeat this for about ten pages and still not have even begun to start to approach reaching the number of stars that are out there.

Some of them we know are like our sun, and some of them are likely to have planets like ours in orbit around them. And it would only take one.

What is LIFE, in this sense, anyway? It's an arrangement of molecules that grow and reproduce. Through trial and error and evolution, it finds a way to survive and thrive.

From this perspective, life on other planets isn't a wishful leap in logic, it's an inevitable conclusion.

I think many people just like the idea that mankind is somehow special and unique. But to me the idea of life on other planets means we are not alone. I'd rather have a friend than be unique any day.

Magnus... pay it forward

Location: Dorking, Surrey
Member Since: 23rd Jul 2002
Total posts: 217
Posted:Personally I think that it's impossible that we're the only intelligent life form and besides it'd be an awful waste of space if we are!

Dilbert's Words of Wisdom -
I can please only one person per day. Today is not your day. Tomorrow is not looking good either!
You are slower than a herd of turtles stampedeing through peanut butter!

Oh yeah.... Don't tell the ants


Oolering Man
Location: Farnborough, Hampshire
Member Since: 12th Jan 2002
Total posts: 729
Posted:what about the trees?

Location: Nova Scotia, Canada.
Member Since: 8th Nov 2002
Total posts: 1591
Posted:I don't think this has anything to do with facts.

Maybe it should be "theory or fiction" or something.

I do believe there is life out there because of the ridicilous odds agaisnt there not being life but im not going to pass that off of fact since there is really no other evidence

I think the biggest quustion is will we ever contact this life? I personally doubt it.

our life on this planet and the end of our life (I don't think the human race will last forever) Is just a incomprehensibly small sliver out of the time line of the universe. What are the chances that life elsewhere (close enough to us so we could possibly make contact with them) is at the same stage of development as we are right now? Millions of types of life could have formed on neighbouring solar systems and died off or atleast regressed out of a sentient state where they are of equal or greater intellectual and technological level of us inorder to make contact possible.


Classically British
Location: Epsom, Surrey, England
Member Since: 23rd Sep 2001
Total posts: 5687
Posted:I have to agree with the:
The universe is so fantastically huge that the chances of us being the only sentient lifeforms is miniscule - and somewhat egotistical

As for contacting these "things" I'm not so sure.
We can barely get outside our own solar system, we can't get a person to Mars really (or rather we can, be getting them backs the tricky part) and it still takes years to get there. So getting to another system is a very long way off and the chances of it being inhabited are tiny.

I don't really have an opinion as to whether we've been contacted by them or not.

BTW - I watched a fascinating program a while back about "Measuring the Universe" and it concluded that whilst it is quite big (ok, very big) it's not as large as they once thought. They based their previous estimate on the number of stars they could see, but after some clever science things they discovered that - I think this is right - about 85% of the stars they were looking at were "reflections" caused by gravity wells and gas nebulas.

It's still big though - the juries still out on it being infinite...
It's possible it's self looping - i.e. you set off in a straight line and you'll always get back to where you started.

My brain hurts

Burner of Toast
Spinner of poi
Slacker of enormous magnitude


Location: London
Member Since: 11th Oct 2002
Total posts: 3149
Posted:We really don't have any basis for determining how 'probable' the development of sentient life is. We only have one case to judge by, and thats the carbon based life thats evolved on Earth. It could be that given the right conditions sentient life is inevitable. Its also possible that we struck it really really really lucky, and nothing similar to us has developed anywhere else.

Similar to us being a sticking point.
Even assuming you mean 'intelligent life in any form, not necessarily carbon based or corporeal' its still quite dodgy terminology.
Intelligence is a very fuzzy concept created by humans. What would some gas cloud/crystal/complex pattern of energy have to do before you decided they were 'intelligent'. All our ideas about 'intelligence' are based on the concepts, actions and motivations of Earth Mammals.

"Switching between different kinds of chuu chuu sometimes gives this "urgh wtf?" effect because it's giving people the phi phenomenon."


Diamond In The Rough
Location: Richmond, Virginia
Member Since: 30th Jun 2002
Total posts: 459
Posted:"Sometimes I think the surest sign that intelligent life exists elsewhere in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us." - Calvin & Hobbes

Dance like it hurts; Love like you need money; Work like someone is watching.

Never criticize someone until you've walked a mile in their shoes. That way, when you DO criticize them, you are a mile away, and you have their shoes.


Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: Warwickshire
Member Since: 27th Aug 2002
Total posts: 3136
Posted:As an amateur astronomer (yes I'm that sad) there is almost absolutely no chance in my mind that we are the only planet with life in the universe. There are trillions of stars visible from earth, if 1 in a billion has a planet with life on it orbitting it then thats still a LOT of life. In our galaxy alone there's over 400 billion stars, and our galaxy is one of billions. The numbers are just too huge.

If you still need convincing, type "Drake Equation" in google

the mind gap.
the mind gap.

old hand
Location: Brigadoon
Member Since: 31st May 2002
Total posts: 829
Posted:of course there is - haven't you ever seen star trek?

wherever you go, there you are.

Location: Rochester, NY, USA
Member Since: 19th Jun 2001
Total posts: 442
Posted:I've always like a quote from the movie Contact:
Ellie Arroway: Dad, do you think there's people on other planets?
Ted Arroway: I don't know, Sparks. But I guess I'd say if it is just us... seems like an awful waste of space.
(But Chorin mentioned this first.)

FYI: I am not Pele. If you wish to reply to me and use a short version of my name, use: PWB.

English? Who needs that? I'm never going to England. - Homer Jay Simpson