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nunoAfonso's avatar

Do you believe in life besides our own?

Asked by nunoAfonso (342 points ) October 28th, 2009

Do you believe in life besides our own? That there are other forms of life that we don´t yet know about? That some people, someone that saw something is being held shut just for knowing more than they should know? That the Roswell incident was far from the truth released to the public? ”... sometimes i found myself facing towards the sky, and just knowing that we are not alone.”

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22 Answers

Sabotage82's avatar

Why should we?

wenn's avatar

yes. with the insane number of galaxies and even more insane number of potential planets i think its silly to not at least think its possible.

ragingloli's avatar

Do you believe in life besides our own?
I assume that you mean outside this planet. It is next to impossible that we are the only life bearing planet in this universe.

SpatzieLover's avatar

I believe in Angels and Santa, too.

The universe is infinite, as is life.

CMaz's avatar

Nope, it is all about us.

We just do not like it.

sarahny's avatar

I think wenn said it perfectly!

oratio's avatar

Life on other planets is quite probable I think. I have a hard time believing that anything in the universe is very unique.

But life in two places, both developing high intelligence and the technology to visit each other at the same point in time in the same galaxy? I don’t know. Feels pretty far fetched. No I don’t believe that.

I think that the only life on other planets in the our galaxy that will have life, will be us sporing off.

RedPowerLady's avatar

I sure do! And in more forms that one :)

Sarcasm's avatar

I’m a strong believer of life on other planets (however far away they may be). I’m shaky on the idea of life on different planes of existence.

FireMadeFlesh's avatar

I believe in animals. Apart from that, I think extraterrestrial life is a result of people’s imaginations because humans are social beings. It may well exist, but humans will never interact with them simply because the distances are too large. The probability of life in this galaxy is not high, and Andromeda is 2.5 million light years away – which means given an infinitely powerful telescope and our precise location, life in Andromeda would see the end of the Paleogene era and not see any intelligent life.

Fred931's avatar

Yes. No, yes. Yes, no, I mean no. (CIA edited)

ragingloli's avatar

@FireMadeFlesh
“The probability of life in this galaxy is not high, ”
I disagree. Chances are there are several life bearing planets in our galaxy alone.

“which means given an infinitely powerful telescope and our precise location, life in Andromeda would see the end of the Paleogene era and not see any intelligent life.”

enough to make them interested and fire up their warp drives and be here in less than a week.

FireMadeFlesh's avatar

@ragingloli I am yet to figure out how every stable or meta-stable element is present in the Earth’s crust, so I don’t know if this is likely in other planets or not. I think if there are such planets then life is only a matter of time, although not necessarily intelligent life. Water is the biggest problem though; we know of a handful of planets with the right composition (rocky rather than gaseous), gravitational field and orbital radius, but none of these have been confirmed to have water.

As for warp drives, the only way to be here in less than a week is to shorten the distance between here and there by approaching the speed of light, which would take several kilograms of antimatter for an antimatter drive – and this doesn’t cover braking.

ragingloli's avatar

“the only way to be here in less than a week is to shorten the distance between here and there by approaching the speed of light,”
you don’t have to approach the speed of light at all. you could move at 20 km/h or even stand still, doesn’t matter. Warp drive means you move and warp space around the vessel, which means the vessel itself does not even have to move in its reference frame to move in relation to our reference frame, as the reference frame of the vessel itself moves.

“and this doesn’t cover braking.”
with warp drive, breaking really is a non-issue.

“Water is the biggest problem though; we know of a handful of planets with the right composition (rocky rather than gaseous), gravitational field and orbital radius, but none of these have been confirmed to have water.”
the jupiter moon europa is covered with ice and observations suggest that underneath the ice crust is liquid water.
besides, the farthest known planet is 17000 light years away, but our galaxy has a 100000 light year diameter which means our observational range for planets is rather small. not to mention that the discovered planet is a gas giant. our telescopes simply are not strong enough to detect rocky planets at that kind of distance. what we know about our galaxy really is minimal.

FireMadeFlesh's avatar

@ragingloli True, we know very little of our galaxy, we don’t even know enough to be able to draw an observable pattern as far as planets are concerned. However we do know that life cannot exist within a substantial radius of the core of the galaxy because it is far too hot. It also cannot exist particularly far from our own galactic orbital radius because its neighbourhood would be changing too frequently and cause substantial temperature fluctuations.

From the way you describe warp drive, it still requires huge amounts of energy. I’m not convinced it would work either, as physicists have proven that wormholes are naturally unstable and would collapse if a spacecraft were to pass through.

ragingloli's avatar

@FireMadeFlesh
“we don’t even know enough to be able to draw an observable pattern as far as planets are concerned.”
we do know there is water on Europa. There is very likely Water on Mars, and even the Moon. Together with earth that makes 4 objects with water in our solar system alone. together with the fact that there are 4 rocky planets (Mercury, Venus, Earth, and Mars) in our solar system alone, it seems to me that rocky planets with water should be pretty abundant in our galaxy.

“I’m not convinced it would work either, as physicists have proven that wormholes are naturally unstable and would collapse if a spacecraft were to pass through.”
well at the beginning of the space race, scientists were also pretty convinced that a rocket could never produce enough thrust to over come the earth’s gravity field and make it into or beyond orbit.
and now the sky is full of satellites.

Christian95's avatar

I’m 100% sure that life exists beyond earth.
I’m 99.(9)% sure that all those people who say that they saw little green E.Ts are just lying to attract attention.
If aliens have the technologies to travel billions of light years to visit us why would they stay hidden and not come to speak with us?

ragingloli's avatar

@Christian95
Why are humans so anthropocentric to assume that an alien visitor has to say hello?
Do we say hello to the animals we study? Do animal researchers say “hello” to the gorillas and chimps they study? No they don’t. they observe, and try to not be seen.

the only reasons i have seen “skeptics” come up with are either “contact” or “invasion”. that there aer a myriad of other possibilities for visitation, they conveniently ignore.

To quote nuclear physicist Stanton Friedman:
“Think of all the people going through O’Hare Airport in a year and the huge variety of reasons for travel. To get the ball rolling, here are some reasons for coming here. I am sure the reader can think of more.

A. Graduate students doing their thesis work on the development of a primitive society, on a planet where, amazingly, there is no planetary government, and where there are many different languages; on various strange biological specimens, or on genetic variations of the intelligent beings.

B. Broadcasters with weekly shows such as “Idiocy in the Boondocks.”

C. Mining engineers similar to those who went to California and the Klondike and Australia for gold, or to Texas and the Middle East for oil. As it happens, the earth is the densest planet in the solar system, so would be expected to have more of the rare but very important very heavy metals such as gold, uranium, rhenium, platinum, tungsten, osmium, etc. These are all much denser than lead. We know from studying star spectra that they are rare. They also have very special properties.

D. Mining engineers extracting more common metals from the nodules on the bottom of the ocean and from the asteroids between Mars and Jupiter. We have been talking about doing this. Obviously war is much more important than ocean mining to us, so we build nuclear submarines to stay in the depths of the ocean carrying their multitude of nuclear tipped missiles. There are also abundant supplies of so-called rare earths, many used in the electronics and nuclear industries. It should not be forgotten that a century ago the primary use for uranium was to prepare yellow glazes for pottery. Zirconium and titanium were essentially worthless. Now nuclear navies use zirconium based alloys because of their splendid nuclear and anticorrosion properties. Titanium is used in aircraft like the SR-71 because of its high strength and low density.

E. Operators of refueling and rest and relaxation centers on the back side of the moon or in the depths of the ocean or in the asteroid belt.

F. Visitors checking on old colonies established by their ancestors. Perhaps there were many different ones which might explain why we have black, brown, red, yellow and white races.

G. Jailers. This may be a penal colony on which aliens dropped off their bad boys and girls and that is why we are so nasty to each other. Georgia and Australia were first settled by convicts. Letting the convicts go bother other civilizations who, unlike us, have learned to live peacefully, may be a no-no in the galactic rule book.

H. Vacationers. This may be a recreation center. Notice how many people visit Hawaii and Las Vegas and Orlando. If the travel wasn’t easy, how many would venture forth to see Mickey Mouse or gaming tables or surfing beaches?

I. Specimen gathererers for ET zoos and aquariums. We are still finding new specimens.

J. Local galactic horticultural societies collecting specimens for their displays and genetic cross breeding.

K. Medical researchers. They may have to evaluate the genetic material of loads of specimens to find genetic defects or super-special genes. There are a number of conditions whose frequency in the population is quite small (for example, only one person in 14,000 has hemophilia) so many specimens must be checked.

L. Honymooners. Perhaps this is the honeymoon capital for this corner of the neighborhood. Special rates for a week on Earth… side trips to the moon and Mars…

M. Cartographers. Local neighborhood maps may describe, for example, the equivalent of English coaling stations in the 19th century.

N. Sports enthusiasts. There may be special excursions to observe various such events. Don’t forget that a World Championship Chess match was held in Iceland.

O. Scouts seeking the best site for a new amusement park in the solar system.

P. Weapons inspectors. If we make the eminently reasonable assumption that every advanced civilization is concerned about its own survival and security, than we would expect that our development of Weapons of Mass Destruction and the means for delivering them in the local neighborhood would be of great concern. Clearly after World War II it should take less than a century for us to master fission and fusion and other new technologies to allow us to take our brand of friendship/hostility… out there. Thus, a logical reason to visit is to quarantine us until we develop a technique for learning to live at peace with each other. No galactic federation new-member committee would allow us to join. Too primitive.I suspect that the SETI cultists think they would be welcome guests. Not very likely.

Q. Producers. Having worked on a lot of motion picture documentaries at many locations, I would suggest perhaps some visitors are planning epic fiction and factual movies for film companies at home… shooting on location hither and yon.

IchtheosaurusRex's avatar

Life, yes. Roswell – no, but yes. There was a coverup there. It wasn’t an alien craft, it was an experimental aircraft, possibly one carrying a nuclear weapon. They were building a lot of odd-looking aircraft back then, and were somewhat indiscreet about what they did with the nukes.

Sabotage82's avatar

@ragingloli Glad you have all the answers. Now if you could explain to me why that damn chicken crossed the road?

Russell_D_SpacePoet's avatar

If you go with the odds, the odds are that there is life in other galaxies. Just look at the sheer numbers of stars.

wundayatta's avatar

I happen to know for a fact that THEY are hiding extraterrestrial life forms. But not at Roswell. Everyone knows about Roswell. It’s somewhere else. I’d tell you, but when they kicked me out, they did something to my head, and now I’m different. I know I knew.

I have to warn you, though. People do not like hearing this message. They are very afraid. They make lots of jokes. Horror movies. It’s just crazy! It’s all part of the effort to hide the truth through misdirection. Alien abductions? Pfff. There are no alien abductions. But there are aliens.

I wish I could tell you what they looked like. They used to be so clear in my head. But now all I have is a memory of a memory. Smells, sounds. I hear this voice that is almost the sound of diamond on ice—a hissing kind of thing. And a kind of earthy, mushroomy smell. But no idea what they looked like. THEY took that from me.

Anyway, it’s the wrong message at the wrong time. People think they can handle it, but the…. whatever the name of that group is…. they don’t think we can handle it. Maybe they have other reasons to keep it hidden. I can’t remember. So there’s no point in talking about it. No one really listens. No one really cares. Not normal people, anyway. Just kooks and space cases. But there’s a there there. Wherever it is.

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