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Author Topic: There's no one out there!  (Read 57867 times)

justboatonic

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There's no one out there!
« on: December 12, 2009, 01:05:16 AM »

I've always been a believer that we are not the only intelligent (ahem!) lifeform in the Galaxy and centainly the Universe. I even subscribed to the SETI at home programme for a number of years.

But recently I've been doing some reading about Fermi's Paradox. This lead me to read up on the Rare Earth hypothesis, von Nuemann and Bracewell probes. Wish I hadnt now! If you start reading up on these subjects, your faith (if that's the right word) in ET being out there somewhere must surely take a hammering.

If the Galaxy is teeming with intelligent life, where are they all? If there are civilisations thousand's or hundreds of thousands of years older than us, we should be able to see some sign of them? We should be able to pick up their radio chatter, they should have sent out the said von Nuemann or Bracewell probes. If there are that many other civilisations out there, there must be at least one or two who want to talk to us?

No, Im beginning to be convinced that while microbial life may be common either there are not many intelligent lifeforms in the Galaxy (perhaps less than 10?) or, we are the oldest and most technologically advanced lifeform in the Galaxy at present.

Now isnt that depressing!?  :((

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dodgy geezer

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Re: There's no one out there!
« Reply #1 on: December 12, 2009, 01:41:24 AM »

If you were the representative of a reasonably intelligent alien race, would you want to make contact with our civilisation?

I want to keep it at arm's length, and I'm part of it...
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cadman17_36

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Re: There's no one out there!
« Reply #2 on: December 12, 2009, 07:47:14 AM »

If you were the representative of a reasonably intelligent alien race, would you want to make contact with our civilisation?

I want to keep it at arm's length, and I'm part of it...

HERE HERE I'm with you mate the longer I live the less hope I have for our world. But, as for there being life out there, well I think there has to be some somewhere there is just to much out there for there not to be. It would be an awful waste of space if we are it.
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boatmadman

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Re: There's no one out there!
« Reply #3 on: December 12, 2009, 08:23:07 AM »

I think there must be some sort of life (but not as we know it, Jim) out there, as space is supposed to be infinitely large.

Trouble is, I actually struggle with the concept of space being never ending, everything has to have a start and an end, so.......... %%

Ian
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Bugsy

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Re: There's no one out there!
« Reply #4 on: December 12, 2009, 08:52:52 AM »


No, Im beginning to be convinced that while microbial life may be common either there are not many intelligent lifeforms in the Galaxy


As confirmed by recent events I don't think there's much sign of intelligent life on this planet either.

.
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ajb68

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Re: There's no one out there!
« Reply #5 on: December 12, 2009, 08:54:52 AM »

This is a bit deep and meaningful for mayhem isnt it ?  %% %%

Regards Andy
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sheerline

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Re: There's no one out there!
« Reply #6 on: December 12, 2009, 10:10:24 AM »

I expect somewhere out there in the wilderness of space there is another planet simiar to ours but without some form of intelligent life on it. A proverbial garden of Eden, green, lush, clean flowing rivers and perfect to sustain human life..... lets hope for that planets sake we don't find it!
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malcolmfrary

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Re: There's no one out there!
« Reply #7 on: December 12, 2009, 11:59:52 AM »

Consider the number of billion to one coincidences that have got the Earth and us to where we are.
The planet is at exactly the right distance from the right kind of star.
Early in the planets existence we gained a very large satellite.
This has given us a tilted, stable rotation.
Thus there is liquid water.  There are seasons.  There are marginal conditions because we have tides and weather.  This has not only allowed life to start, but the changing marginal conditions have allowed and encouraged evolution. 
Along the way, there have been various planetary catastrophes that have rearranged evolution by changing conditions radically.
Humans, as such, have only been around for the last million or so years out of the two and a half or so billion since lifeforms existed.  We have had radio communication for just over 100 of those several million years.
So, if you figure that a radio signal takes about 100,000 years to cross just our galaxy, and if someone over there notices it and replies by return, it would be between 50 and 200,000 years before the reply turned up, depending on distance, so the chances of anybody noticing anybody else are slender, bearing in mind that we don't know how long we can keep our present technological age going.  If chance has allowed another planet with life forms capable of compatible technology to exist, what are the chances of ours and theirs existing in a matching time frame that would allow any form of actual communication?

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BarryM

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Re: There's no one out there!
« Reply #8 on: December 12, 2009, 12:10:32 PM »

That is deep! I would just like to know who lit the blue touch paper and set off the Big Bang?

Barry M
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cbr900

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Re: There's no one out there!
« Reply #9 on: December 12, 2009, 12:18:14 PM »

Was not me Barry was not born then mate........... {-) {-)


Roy
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sheerline

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Re: There's no one out there!
« Reply #10 on: December 12, 2009, 12:20:17 PM »

Right on the money there Malcolm! I never understood why anyone got enthusiastic of finding or being found by another intelligent life form since the possibility is so remote as to be non existant. Iif we did pick up some message from deep space, it would be so old that the origin probably blinked out eons ago... forget it chaps, it ain't happening. I think we truly need to get our house in order at this end first before we could even consider moving out inhabiting anywhere else in any case, this little globe is in a bit of a state.
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bigH

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Re: There's no one out there!
« Reply #11 on: December 12, 2009, 12:28:18 PM »

Will you lot stop wishing for summat to happen,  you may have it come true.
In the form of aliens who would consider us as insects, food, experimental lab
rats, or (more likely) lunatics or just a nuisance and brush us aside with a
Dyson electro- motor lazer beam.    I know this is true because I've been
to Venus and seen what the aliens done there...   Nurse, Nurse, tell them
I'm not mad and give me a coat, the arms on this one are much too long.
bigH. ward 3,  Big Asylum, Outside.
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justboatonic

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Re: There's no one out there!
« Reply #12 on: December 12, 2009, 01:07:13 PM »

If you were the representative of a reasonably intelligent alien race, would you want to make contact with our civilisation?

I want to keep it at arm's length, and I'm part of it...

Perhaps but a major flaw with your reasoning is that any other intelligent lifeform out there is peaceful. But, given the size of the Galaxy and number of potential intelligent civilisation expected to be out there, there are bound to be a comensurate number of aggressive expansionist civilisation.

So, even though the peace lovers out there may want to keep us at arms length, the aggressive ones would most certainly want to square up to us.

But even ignoring that hypothesis, even if all the intelligent lifeforms were peaceful, if there are many of them out there, surely one of them would think 'we could teach these being how to be more civilised and become part of the Galactic family.'

I believe this is known as the Zoo Hypothesis in that our civilisation is ket at arms length and observed by any intelligence.  The drawback with this belief is that some form of agreement between these other intelligences would need to be in place and policed to prevent contact.

And as we know, intelligence is inquisitive so one would surely break ranks?

No, I dont think the 'arms length' option works if there are many intelligent lifeforms out there. Everything is starting to point to us either being the only current intelligent lifeform in the Galaxy or we are the first. Either way it points to us being alone!
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justboatonic

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Re: There's no one out there!
« Reply #13 on: December 12, 2009, 01:24:09 PM »

Consider the number of billion to one coincidences that have got the Earth and us to where we are.
The planet is at exactly the right distance from the right kind of star.
Early in the planets existence we gained a very large satellite.
This has given us a tilted, stable rotation.
Thus there is liquid water.  There are seasons.  There are marginal conditions because we have tides and weather.  This has not only allowed life to start, but the changing marginal conditions have allowed and encouraged evolution. 
Along the way, there have been various planetary catastrophes that have rearranged evolution by changing conditions radically.
Humans, as such, have only been around for the last million or so years out of the two and a half or so billion since lifeforms existed.  We have had radio communication for just over 100 of those several million years.
So, if you figure that a radio signal takes about 100,000 years to cross just our galaxy, and if someone over there notices it and replies by return, it would be between 50 and 200,000 years before the reply turned up, depending on distance, so the chances of anybody noticing anybody else are slender, bearing in mind that we don't know how long we can keep our present technological age going.  If chance has allowed another planet with life forms capable of compatible technology to exist, what are the chances of ours and theirs existing in a matching time frame that would allow any form of actual communication?



Yep, a lot of that complies with the rare earth hypothesis. But again Malcolm, you are coming from the angle of our signal reaching a civilisation out there and them replying to us.

However, when you start researching further it becomes clear the test of finding intelligent lifeform isnt one of listening for their signal but looking for things such as Dyson spheres, von Nuemann and Bracewell probes that an intelligent lifeform would create.

Given the age of the Galaxy, approximately 10 billion years, it can be seen life and therefore intelligent life, should have appeared somewhere in the Galaxy long before it appeared here on Earth. Earth is roughly 4.5 billion years old. Intelligent life appeared here in the last 500,000 years or so. If this timescale is transferred to the start of the Galaxy, intelligence should have appeared long before the earth was formed ie over 4.5 billion years ago. That intelligence would also be more advanced than us given the timescales.

In that time even if there was only one intelligent lifeform, it could colonise the entire galaxy even travelling at sub light speed in approximately 50 million years tops. They could send out von nuemann or bracewell probes if they didnt want to go themselves. We've already sent a kind of von Nuemann probe out in the Pioneer and Voyager crafts.

We dont see evidence of Dyson Spheres, von Nuemann or Bracewell probes, evidence to confirm other intelligence. We dont hear or see their signals, either radio or light signals that probably wouldnt be directed to us anyway.

We dont see or hear them because there's no one sending them.
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justboatonic

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Re: There's no one out there!
« Reply #14 on: December 12, 2009, 01:32:04 PM »

Right on the money there Malcolm! I never understood why anyone got enthusiastic of finding or being found by another intelligent life form since the possibility is so remote as to be non existant. Iif we did pick up some message from deep space, it would be so old that the origin probably blinked out eons ago... forget it chaps, it ain't happening. I think we truly need to get our house in order at this end first before we could even consider moving out inhabiting anywhere else in any case, this little globe is in a bit of a state.

This is virtually what Fermi's Paradox means ie if the Galaxy was teeming with intelligent life, why do we not see evidence of it such as alien artefacts, radio or light signals? We dont see that evidence ergo we are alone.
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boatmadman

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Re: There's no one out there!
« Reply #15 on: December 12, 2009, 01:47:27 PM »

Hmmmm

I'm off to the restaurant at the end of the universe! :-))
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steamboatmodel

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Re: There's no one out there!
« Reply #16 on: December 12, 2009, 05:31:45 PM »

Hmmmm

I'm off to the restaurant at the end of the universe! :-))
Order the Beef its a good talker.
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dodgy geezer

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Re: There's no one out there!
« Reply #17 on: December 12, 2009, 05:44:25 PM »

If this timescale is transferred to the start of the Galaxy, intelligence should have appeared long before the earth was formed ie over 4.5 billion years ago. That intelligence would also be more advanced than us given the timescales.

In that time even if there was only one intelligent lifeform, it could colonise the entire galaxy even travelling at sub light speed in approximately 50 million years tops. They could send out von nuemann or bracewell probes if they didnt want to go themselves. We've already sent a kind of von Nuemann probe out in the Pioneer and Voyager crafts.

We dont see evidence of Dyson Spheres, von Nuemann or Bracewell probes, evidence to confirm other intelligence.
We dont see or hear them because there's no one sending them.

One huge problem with your argument is the timescale. True, we don't see evidence of other intelligences probing and reporting on us. But you're talking over a 4.5b year timescale for this planet, and we're a very short-lived life form on those timescales. If you wanted to keep tabs on a planet forming you might check it once every 0.5m years. Close investigation might be once every 100,000 years. Why should we expect to see something in the time we have been looking - about 100 years? Or, if you only count the SETI monitoring, about 30 years...
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Bryan Young

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Re: There's no one out there!
« Reply #18 on: December 12, 2009, 06:05:16 PM »

But what if we are "seedlings" of these older and more advanced planets? Why is the "homo-sapien" so different from the rest of Earths species? It could, possibly, be that "we" did get here from "elsewhere". Prove or disprove. No way of knowing. BY.
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Dreadstar

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Re: There's no one out there!
« Reply #19 on: December 12, 2009, 06:15:26 PM »

As regards the time scale /distances involved,remember that the voyager probe only left our solar system in the last couple of years. It won't even reach Alpha Centauri for another 250 years,(conservative estimate),and that's our nearest neighbour. %%
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ajb68

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Re: There's no one out there!
« Reply #20 on: December 12, 2009, 06:16:50 PM »

Lets face it we havent had much luck finding intelligent life here have we !!!

Take a look at the human race for a moment when we are not trying to kill each other we pollute the air we breath , mans biggest predator is man and we spend billions upon billions on space exploration instead of sorting out the problems we have on this planet first!

lets face it IF there is other life out there do you really think they will pop out and say hi or hide from the nutters who kill each other and pollute there own world to the point of no return or would they do the intelligent thing and hide and hope to whatever they prey to that we never find them

Andy
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Jimmy James

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Re: There's no one out there!
« Reply #21 on: December 12, 2009, 06:30:05 PM »

Maybe the nearest lifeform to us is not something we would recognise ... they are so different a lifeform that even if they recognise us as intelligent they can't be botherded to get in touch..... I think it would be pretty stupid of us to think we are the only intelligent race in existence :o :o :} :-))
Freebooter

I also think that if other advanced races happend to look for intelligence on Earth in White Hall , The Kremlin or the White House they could be forgiven for thinking we are a lot of paranoid lunatic's and want nothing to do with us
JIMMY
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DickyD

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Re: There's no one out there!
« Reply #22 on: December 12, 2009, 06:42:58 PM »

But what if we are "seedlings" of these older and more advanced planets? Why is the "homo-sapien" so different from the rest of Earths species? It could, possibly, be that "we" did get here from "elsewhere". Prove or disprove. No way of knowing. BY.

Quite right Brian, where do Geordies come from ?  {:-{
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Netleyned

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Re: There's no one out there!
« Reply #23 on: December 12, 2009, 06:53:38 PM »

George Stephenson miners safety lamp
As opposed to The Davy lamp that was used over
the rest of UK


Yours Aye

Ned
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DickyD

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Re: There's no one out there!
« Reply #24 on: December 12, 2009, 07:48:36 PM »

George Stephenson miners safety lamp
As opposed to The Davy lamp that was used over
the rest of UK


Yours Aye

Ned
{:-{ {:-{
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