Posts Tagged 'Carl Sagan'

Life in our Solar System – Jupiter

In a previous post I talked about the possibility of life existing on, or in, some of the moons of Jupiter, with Europa being the best candidate.

But how about life existing within Jupiter itself?

Continue reading ‘Life in our Solar System – Jupiter’


Nick Bostrom on the Fermi Paradox

The Fermi Paradox is an idea that complements the Drake Equation. Enrico Fermi asked the question, if there are so many stars in our Galaxy, and therefore probably many Earth-like planets, then there should be lots of alien civilizations in the Milky Way, but why haven’t we found evidence of them? Why not?

Nick Bostrom talks about the Fermi paradox, and some possible solutions, in the video below. It’s not as smooth as the Carl Sagan clip I just posted, but he has some interesting ideas. Nick Bostrom is a philosopher from Oxford University, and has some interesting ideas on human enhancement, the survivability of advanced civilizations and the nature of reality by the way, his website is full of interesting stuff.

What do you think is the answer? Are we alone? Is there alien life in our Galaxy, but just simple life? Or are advanced alien civilizations doomed to wipe themselves out as they become more technologically advanced?

If you like to read more about the Fermi Paradox, I’ve written a short post here, and a couple of posts on possible solutions here and here.

Carl Sagan on the Drake Equation

Carl Sagan was awesome, he was an American scientist, his interests were pretty broad, he was an astronomer, astrophysicist, cosmologist and astrobiologist, and he was also passionate about teaching science to the general public; he wrote a number of science books and had an award winning TV series called Cosmos: A Personal Voyage. Sadly he died in 1996 aged only 62.

In this video he’s talking about the Drake Equation, the equation used to estimate the number of advanced civilizations in our Galaxy. It’s an awesome concept, and Carl explains it beautifully.

We don’t know the values of most of the variables in the equation yet, particularly the ones towards the end, as Carl demonstrates by calculating an answer between 10 and millions of advanced civilizations, but the Drake Equation is a great way to help us organise our thinking about astrobiology and the search for extraterrestrial life (SETI).

It’s also fun to work out your own answer to the equation based on what you belief the value for each variable should be.

If you want to read more about the Drake Equation I’ve written a short post here.

Phat astrobiology jam – why not?

A bloke rapping about astrobiology, because, well why not? Its better than ‘dropping rhyme bombs’ about bling, gats and ho’s. Plus he’s got some great samples from Carl Sagan

Listen and like

He’s also got the same text book as me, so he’s defo legit

Astrobiology – Oortkuiper

PS. Check me out putting videos in my blog, whatever

The Drake Equation: The coolest equation you’ll ever understand?

Science is full of equations, some relatively simple, lots of them not so simple. I suspect most of coolest equations require a PhD in quantum physics to understand. The Drake Equation is not one of these though. It’s only a freakin’ equation for predicting the number of intelligent alien civilizations in our Galaxy! Put that in your pipe and smoke it Dr Quantum Physics PhD.
Continue reading ‘The Drake Equation: The coolest equation you’ll ever understand?’

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