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Could Life Be Older Than Earth Itself? [merged]

panspermia life space

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29 replies to this topic

#16    sepulchrave

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Posted 18 April 2013 - 09:28 PM

The actual paper can be found here: http://arxiv.org/pdf/1304.3381v1.pdf

For the technically minded, they apply Moore's law based on five data points to give a ``genetic doubling time'' of 376 million years.

It is an interesting idea, but in my opinion very speculative.


#17    Sundew

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Posted 18 April 2013 - 09:46 PM

While this may be an interesting exercise in mathematics, there are such an unlimited number of variables that I would not bet the farm that this is remotely correct. Panspermia is a popular sci-fi idea (Prometheus being the latest example) but proof of same is another matter, and this would suggest life came from elsewhere and then seeded the earth. If they find a single living cell in any meteorite then you might have something.


#18    ChewiesArmy

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Posted 18 April 2013 - 11:21 PM

I guess I have just always assumed this. Chances are that there have been many extinctions universally before Earth was even formed. The Universe is supposed to be 13.7 billion years, and the Earth 4.5 billion. A lot could happen in 9.2 billion years. 9.2 billion years is incomprehensable to us.

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#19    Zaphod222

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Posted 18 April 2013 - 11:39 PM

Of course it could. It is absolutely not inconceivable that the seeds for life came flying in from somewhere else. The earth gets bombarded with things every day.


#20    shrooma

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Posted 19 April 2013 - 04:39 AM

"Contamination with
bacterial spores from space
appears the most plausible
hypothesis''
.
really?
bacteria?
in space....?
.
then that would be classed as an 'extraterrestrial life-form', and it would be the biggest news story since moses got down from Mt sinai and said, 'ere, have a read of these'.


#21    shrooma

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Posted 19 April 2013 - 04:46 AM

View PostSundew, on 18 April 2013 - 09:46 PM, said:

If they find a single living cell in any meteorite then you might have something.
.
you don't need to find living cells for panspermia to work, just amino acids, time does the rest, and just about everything that comes through our atmosphere has them!

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#22    Ad hoc

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Posted 19 April 2013 - 03:37 PM

fun idea.

Although, I shudder to think how you can feel on solid ground applying moores law to the very complex and not so well understood history of the complexity of biology, and all it's evolutionary stalls and cul-de-sacs. But, apparently they feel they've got an element that acts in a somewhat reliable way over time.
Cool idea in any case.

this thing-

Quote

For one, "life before earth" debunks the long-held science-fiction trope of the scientifically advanced alien species. If genetic complexity progresses at a steady rate, then the social and scientific development of any other alien life form in the Milky Way galaxy would be roughly equivalent to those of humans.

I don't think that's true. Up until this point, an important question has been the likelihood of life to arising out of the primordial soup from scratch. That question doesn't just disappear because you managed to prove one lineage had undergone panspermia.


#23    Gatofeo

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Posted 19 April 2013 - 07:02 PM

Could life be older than Earth itself?
I dunno, let's ask Joan Rivers.
Taken a look at her lately? She's so old, she probably had pet trilobites!


#24    Hawkin

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Posted 20 April 2013 - 07:48 AM

Over the years science has had to rewrite their books by finding new discoveries and new techniques that changes everything. What is told today could be outdated in a few decades.


#25    White Crane Feather

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Posted 20 April 2013 - 11:14 AM

View Postkeithisco, on 18 April 2013 - 01:34 PM, said:

Moore's law relates to the number of Transistors that can be built into an IC. This doe not actually relate to complexity (in Biological terms) as such, because complexity in Biology refers more usually to evolutionary processes.

Latest estimates for the number of Gates than can be fitted into an IC show the trend levelling out by end of 2013 to a doubling every 3 years instead of 2.  This will become even slower based on current technology as the abilty to manipulate storage on the nanometre scale becomes increasingly difficult.
Tell that to Ray Kurzweil

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#26    Bob57

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Posted 20 April 2013 - 02:52 PM

Nothing I can add to this other than my agreement with most of your replies.We are the alien life forms we search for in outer space.


#27    Yes_Man

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Posted 20 April 2013 - 08:29 PM

Well if Bacteria is the oldest living organism in the world, then there has to be life older than the Earth


#28    Psychic51

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Posted 21 April 2013 - 02:36 PM

Seems likely that life pre-dates the Earth. Far as I know, the Earth wasn't very friendly to life in its early years. The first inhabitants ( Eukaryote & Prokaryote ) came from a classification known as Extremophiles.Simple yet surprisingly sturdy forms of life that is capable of living in extreme conditions.

The most important thing they did was emit Oxygen. Without which more complex life such as our own would be impossible.

To me, this suggests something more...


#29    freetoroam

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Posted 21 April 2013 - 03:02 PM

The top of the food chain today are at it again. One day something will come along and show us, yes us "man" who has not even been on this planet longer than dinosaurs, that Earth is still very much a baby in Universe times. But hey! thats only my opinion.Posted Image

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#30    shrooma

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Posted 21 April 2013 - 03:12 PM

View Postfreetoroam, on 21 April 2013 - 03:02 PM, said:

The top of the food chain today are at it again. One day something will come along and show us, yes us "man" who has not even been on this planet longer than dinosaurs, that Earth is still very much a baby in Universe times. But hey! thats only my opinion.Posted Image
.
very much a baby indeed freet, and we're not gonna hit toddlin' stage if we don't learn to stop throwing our rattle outt'n the pram!

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