Thursday, August 19, 2010

Pros and cons of reaching out to ETI and animal evolution pushed back 70 million years

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 - Before they can be sent out to explore planets or moons, rovers first need to be tested in the field. While there is no perfect analog for Jupiter’s icy moon Europa, there are various spots on Earth and elsewhere that are similar enough to conduct trial runs. See article.
g Life - Scientists may have discovered the oldest fossils of animal bodies, pushing back the clock on when animal life appeared on Earth. The finding could yield new clues about the evolution of life on our planet. See article.
g Message - Could galactic civilizations be pulsing our planet with high-powered lasers? The idea of communicating with flashes of light may sound archaic, conjuring up visions of cowboys signaling with hand-held mirrors or sailors wielding ship-to-ship telegraphs. And indeed, schemes for using bright lights to establish cosmic contact date back a while. In the mid-nineteenth century, both Karl F. Gauss, the famous German mathematician, and the French polymath, Charles Cros, suggested projects for getting the attention of Martians using lanterns and mirrors. See article.
g Cosmicus - To spread our descendants among the nearby worlds of our solar system is more than our destiny: it's an imperative for our future. See article.
g Aftermath - Even if humanity could reach out to an intelligent alien civilization, scientists are polarized over whether we should. See article.

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