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Old 05-11-2017, 08:44 AM   #51
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Join Date: May 2013
Location: Dub Side of the Moon
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Originally Posted by ProactiveMan View Post
Iím not sure if there are aliens or not. I suspect that if there are, we will probably never meet them. To paraphrase the Fermi Paradox: If interstellar travel is possible, probability suggests that a more advanced intelligences would have already figured it out. We havenít seen any, so maybe itís not possible, or maybe there are no advanced intelligences.

If advanced alien life does exist however, there could be a lot of reasons why we donít know about it. We take it for granted that an alien intelligence would resemble our paradigm of intelligence. Maybe they donít think in a way that would lead them to interstellar travel in the first place.

Also, a lot of the models we use to predict the existence of alien life donít factor in the shear improbability of life existing on our planet. They basically take it as granted that if it happened once, it can happen again, but that isnít a certainty.
I got really interested in the Fermi paradox a while back. Kurzgesagt (a YouTube channel) did a couple good videos on it

The Drake Equation is commonly used weigh all the factors that would go into estimating the probability of alien life.

where N = the number of civilizations in our galaxy with which communication might be possible (i.e. which are on our current past light cone)


R* = the average rate of star formation in our galaxy
fp = the fraction of those stars that have planets
ne = the average number of planets that can potentially support life per star that has planets
fl = the fraction of planets that could support life that actually develop life at some point
fi = the fraction of planets with life that actually go on to develop intelligent life (civilizations)
fc = the fraction of civilizations that develop a technology that releases detectable signs of their existence into space
L = the length of time for which such civilizations release detectable signals into space

So yeah, pretty astronomical odds, and with the universe being comprised of potentially infinite spacetime, its hard to say definitively that we will ever make contact with another intelligent alien species.

but of course, this is all conjecture based on our most current understanding
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