Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Particle accelerator sets energy record (and we’re still here) and a slow diplomatic pouch 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 Stars - Our Milky Way Galaxy is unusual in that it is one of the most massive galaxies in the nearby universe. Our Solar System also seems to have qualities that make it rather unique. According to astronomy professor Guillermo Gonzalez, these qualities make the Sun one of the few stars in the Galaxy capable of supporting complex life. See article. Note: This article is from 2001.
g Abodes - Quote of the Day: “The modern Earth may be the worst template we could use in searching for life elsewhere.” – Caleb Scharf
g Message - Chances are, there is life beyond Earth. But if anyone makes contact, the messages may be thousands of years old and indecipherable. See article. Note: This article is from 2005.
g Cosmicus - This weekend the CERN tweeted that the LHC had reached an energy of 1.18TeV, a record for Earth-bound particle accelerators — and we are all still here. So, when are we going to see some physics? See article.
g Learning - Hopefully you received (or gave!) some great astronomy gifts this holiday season. Astronomy.com offers a nice collection of articles introducing newcomers to the field, such as how to read star maps and how to use that new telescope. See article.
g Aftermath - For the last million years or so, mankind's principal diplomatic interest has been to handle social intercourse on his own planet. Interaction with other worlds’ societies was the province of science fiction. That soon may change. Modern science and technology suggest that a transmutation of past fiction to present reality could be imminent. If so, the dynamics of interaction will surely be far different than the alien encounters routinely portrayed in the cinema and on television. The ideas developed more than a century ago by European novelists such as Jules Verne and H. G. Wells, while imaginative, were not prescient. The aliens won't come here, and we won't go there. Our interaction will be a distant one, conducted by the electronic equivalent of very slow diplomatic pouch. See article.

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