Re: Fermi Paradox in the news

From: Michael S. Lorrey (
Date: Mon Oct 23 2000 - 16:26:57 MDT

Jason Joel Thompson wrote:
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Doug Skrecky" <>
> > This is the same sort of argument fanatics give to prove the existance
> > of god. Since there is absolutely no positive evidence in favour of either
> > ETs or god, the simplest and most plausible explanation of this fact is
> > that neither ETs nor god exist. This is a brutally obviously argument to
> > any rational individual.
> Except for the brutally obvious fact that intelligence does in fact exist,
> and is a product of natural processes of the universe.
> Can't we, Doug, at the very least, attach probabilties to the likelihood of
> intelligence spontaneously arising at other spatial coordinates in our
> existence matrix?

Despite what some people may say, if we are to use our own existence as evidence
for intelligent ET life, then we can only accept those conditions under which
our own intelligence evolved:

G3 sol-type stable yellow dwarf star
terrestrial planet w/ ~1 G surface gravity
oxygen nitrogen atmosphere of ~1 bar sea level pressure
abundant water
active plate tectonic system
large moon to generate magnetic field and tectonic system
average surface temp ~20 C
planetary orbital eccentricity not to be more than .90 (i.e. roughly circular or
additional planets to inspire astronomical and mathematical sciences via
x light years from any supernova, GRB, or other catastrophic interstellar

We cannot simply try to imagine various other 'possible' ecosytems under which
life would have developed, because we have absolutely no evidence that such
schemes could evolve intelligence, while we know our local one can.

Now, we currently have no idea how many such planets are out there. Given that
we find that many jovian and superjovian planets seem to inhabit inner system
orbits for so many sol type stars, we may go so far as to posit that moons of
such planets may fit the bill (and the tidal influence of the parent planet
satisfy tidal, magnetic, and tectonic requirements.) We have found a few earth
sized planets orbiting white dwarfs/netron stars, it seems, but whether such
planets would be inhabited or merely burned out cinders remains to be seen, but
they DO give a good idea of the population of such terrestrial sized planets MAY
be for the stars they evolved from (i.e. when their star was in the yellow dwarf
range of the main sequence), so we may extrapolate from this the probability of
terrestrial sized planets around current sol type stars that are to active for
us to detect their smaller planets at this time.

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