Friday, December 18, 2009

How photosynthesis developed and how Jodie Foster would know that she’s listening to ETI

Welcome! "Alien Life" tracks the latest discoveries and thoughts in the various elements of the famous Drake Equation. Here's today's news:
g Abodes - Astronomers have discovered as many as six low-mass planets around two nearby, sun-like stars. The findings indicate that low-mass planets could be common around nearby stars. See article.
g Life - Many scientists believe that photosynthesis is responsible for oxygenating Earth's atmosphere and, ultimately, allowing for the evolution of complex organisms. New research is beginning to help scientists understand just how photosynthesis developed by studying extremophiles that perform the process in harsh environments. See article.
g Message - Picture Jodie Foster, her eyes closed and a mildly bored look on her face. She’s wearing earphones and listening to the dull roar of the cosmos. Now imagine Jodie 20 seconds later, when she hears something sounding like an unpleasant accident in the Boston Pops’ percussion section. Jodie knows she’s scored big: The aliens are on the air. Still, how can she be sure she’s picked up intelligence, and not just the cosmic gurgle of a completely natural object? How can she know she’s not merely harkening to the ticking beat of a pulsar, the whoosh of a quasar, or perhaps the lasing bray of a molecular gas cloud? See article.
g Aftermath - Quote of the Day: "We would be foolish and negligent if we did not try to anticipate such reactions (of first contact) and make careful preparations." — Albert Harrison

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Johany DeMarco said...

Hi Rob,
Your post on Jodie Foster got the gears in my head working a bit and I started thinking of something quite similar that occurred to one of my favorite scientists of all time: Nikola Tesla.

What do you think of the following quoted from a site on Nikola Tesla

Nikola Tesla built a laboratory in Colorado Springs, Colorado, in 1899, to experiment with high frequency electricity and other phenomena. In that laboratory he received and recorded on his sensitive instruments, cosmic radio waves. He announced that he received extraterrestrial radio signals. The scientific community in 1899 did not believe him, because knowledge of cosmic radio signals did not exist at that time.

But for decades now, observatory laboratories all over the world, have been registering cosmic radio waves emitted from hydroxyl molecules of interstellar gas clouds and the envelopes of Red Giant Stars.

Those faint radio waves with high penetrating potential have frequencies between 1610.6 - 1613.8 Mega Hertz. They are emitted from every cosmic material with temperatures above absolute zero (minus 459.67 degrees Fahrenheit).

Tesla’s historic announcement of the existence of extraterrestrial radio signals in 1899 was met by the scientific community at that time with resistance and disbelief. But it was not the first time in history.

In a newspaper interview Nikola Tesla said, "Years ago I recorded the fact that in 1899 I received faint extraplanetary signals in my laboratory in Colorado Springs."

Do you believe he really did receive or make contact with an alien race or world???

Rob Bignell said...

Tesla truly is one of the greats. Of course, his quote states he received "extraplanetary" signals, which doesn't necessarily mean signals from an "extraterrestrial intelligence" (though that's probably what he meant at the time). Most likely he received cosmic radio waves emitted from the hydroxyl molecules of interstellar gas clouds and the envelopes of red giant stars. Observatory all over the world have received such radio emissions for several decades. However, it would be a neat alternate history or sci-fi story if Tesla had received signals from ETI!