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# Is proof of alien life a risk to society ?

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..That means something MUST make adjustments to the velocity of light. That much is not in question

I'm sorry, but that is completely wrong. You really, *really*, need to find a good book or website for beginners on relativity. Nothing 'makes adjustments' to light speed - it is constant in a vacuum, slightly slower in other media. This is quite well understood and proven, and the concept is used in so many applications (even day-to-day ones like GPS) and in so many mathematical constructs (ones that you clearly accept by other content you have posted), that you can't make such a claim.

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There are significant velocities between Earth and many objects that it receives light from. Some of those objects are moving toward the Earth at significant velocities, and some away from it. Yet the light from all of those objects is found to impact this planet and the few other places humans have been able to test at the same velocity relative to this planet. That means something MUST make adjustments to the velocity of light. That much is not in question, and in fact that is the starting line. If you can't get that far, then you can't get to the starting line. If you can, then maybe you can at some point comprehend that if light moves much faster than we think outside of the adjustment area, that could explain how even light from objects moving away from us still arrives at the same velocity relative to Earth, so it is still slowed down instead of speeded up as it seems it might need to be, when it enters the adjustment area.

Okay, first of all, the speed of light being a measured constant from any give source should tell you that it is because of the very properties of light itself, not some outside agency. Second, and more in keeping with the topic, you still have not given any hypothesis or even idea of what that has to do with alien life.

Edit: clarification.

Edited by Slave2Fate

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So what FTL ship do a hitch a ride on in that case ? If I hop on one going away from me will I be late to dinner at Millieways ?

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Who's Lilly?

A very lovely, intelligent, and witty moderator.

When I suggested that beings who could travel between star systems would most likely NOT bring their only way of existing down to a planet like this but instead send remotely controlled probably bioligical beings of some sort so they wouldn't be likely to get killed here you accused me of plagiarising some movie. Then later I mentioned some other likely possibility I forget which one it was and you accused me of plagiarising it from a movie I've never seen.

That has nothing to do with what Abe and I were discussing. Some bad blood here, we both know that, no need to carry on. I am trying to meet you halfway and understand your concept. Your description of light being slowed according to varying mediums is certainly an idea I think is worthy of discussion. Perhaps we should stick to that.

A solar system is nothing. It's a lot when that's all you're capable of since it's as much as you can do, but in reality it's nothing and certainly not even close to a great distance, and it's a gross distortion of reality to try pretending that it is.

It is a lot to us, and our pool of one. I agree that distance is a pittance compared to space as a whole, but we have left the solar system. It might be a small step, but in any perspective, the first steps are significant. It has taught us that space is big, dangerous, and given us a good idea of what we are likely to encounter as our journey into space gains momentum. I feel it is an achievement, and one to be proud of.

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I don't believe that space or time exist, and of course also not any sort of fabric of spacetime or anything like that. People used to call it the ether, and I believe that idea is what some people think of as dark matter. To me dark matter is just matter that doesn't either give off enough electromagnetic radiation that we can detect it, or reflect enough that we can detect it. That being the case I certainly have no problem at all believing there's a lot more dark matter than visible, and it doesn't involve any fabric or ether or whatever...

It seems most likely to me that whatever makes the adjustment is influencing our local area and however far away. Maybe the influence of magnetospheres. I wouldn't be surprised if it's something else, but that's all I've been able to think of so far that might do it.

Would not stronger influences that warp light now perhaps be more likely to influence the speed of a photon? Maybe a Magnetar, or massive suns like VY Canis Major? We have star clusters, could some type of Magnetar or black hole cluster exist that creates a field such as you suggest to alter the speed of light but if so, when the photon returns to normal space and has been warped from it's path, I would suspect that determining the direction of the photon without knowing the nature of the field would make it near impossible to determine the source to begin with. How would one test this?

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psyche tends to think small, from my past experiences with him. A dozen lightyears is nothing, even if no beings in the universe have ever been more than 2 lightyears away from home. I don't have any trouble believing there are beings who can get around a lot more than that though. From my pov reaching ftl velocities wouldn't be the biggest problem. The biggest problem would be preventing obliteration from contact with even pebble or smaller sized objects when moving at such high impact velocities, imo.

You might thikn I think small, but I think you have a tendency to overreach. Just like this stupid dig, totally unnecessary, however, why do you think attaining FTL is so easy? I agree that even hydrogen molecules at such speeds would be considered a dangerous object, but so is creating a warp field. If you do that too close to a planet, you will obliterate the planet you have come to visit. If we have to come out of warped space far enough away to be safe, we still have a decent journey to the destination.

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So what FTL ship do a hitch a ride on in that case ? If I hop on one going away from me will I be late to dinner at Millieways ?

Late for the End of the Universe? Now wouldn't that be embarrassing!

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At least theres a few people in here that know what the number 42 is !

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Six times seven is the answer, but I forgot the question!

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At least theres a few people in here that know what the number 42 is !

It's the Answer to the ultimate Question of Life,the Universe and everything.Just love Hitchhikers guide to the Galaxy,especially the original BBC version.

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Too bad *that* answer to *that* question never made much sense! Just Mr. Adams' way of telling us the universe is and always will remain a mystery? I like the BBC radio version the best, too.

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Humans are more resilient than some "experts" think. I doubt that most people's belief systems would be destroyed or devastated by the discovery of life on some moon or planet. Your faith is extremely weak if you abandon it due to the disclosure of alien life. We can handle the truth.

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compared to the vastness of space, the part we have observed yet (including the voyager travel) is so tiny, we just don't know what's out there and what's not.

But here's what we do know: life required a series of extremely unlikely occurrences to happen here on Earth. It continues to require conditions that very favorable to continue. The odds of that happening to another planet could be an extremely large number, larger than the mere 100-400 billion stars we have in our galaxy. Astrophysicists regularly deal with these kinds of probabilities.

And not only this, but lately, the possible existence of multiple universes is not a topic left to fringe scientists alone anymore.

Only for the desperate.

In my opinion, there IS life out there, other civilisations or just microbes. Wether we find it or not is a whole different story though...

In my opinion you really really really want life to exist someplace else for some reason, but typing in capital letters won't change anything. The more I learn about life on Earth, the more I realize how incredibly special Earth is and how less likely someplace else was as fortunate. I think science fiction has promoted the idea that there are Earth-like planets everywhere. No wonder people are trashing this one.

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There are significant velocities between Earth and many objects that it receives light from. Some of those objects are moving toward the Earth at significant velocities, and some away from it. Yet the light from all of those objects is found to impact this planet and the few other places humans have been able to test at the same velocity relative to this planet. That means something MUST make adjustments to the velocity of light. That much is not in question, and in fact that is the starting line. If you can't get that far, then you can't get to the starting line. If you can, then maybe you can at some point comprehend that if light moves much faster than we think outside of the adjustment area, that could explain how even light from objects moving away from us still arrives at the same velocity relative to Earth, so it is still slowed down instead of speeded up as it seems it might need to be, when it enters the adjustment area.

Ehhh? Don't think so. there are no Adjustments. Some difference in media. The conductivity of space dosnt change. Why? well... No one knows, but it probably has something to with the rules governing infomation transfer between virtual particles on the planck level. Just a guess though.

Edited by Seeker79

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In my opinion you really really really want life to exist someplace else for some reason,....

Seriously, there are things that i really, really want, but that's not one of them. In the last years, we found places here on earth of which nobody thought life could be possible before. In MY opinion, it just makes more sense for life to be spread everywhere than to be limited to this planet. You don't have to agree with that. And i type in capitals sometimes because i DAMN like it!

Edited by Jacques Terreur

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compared to the vastness of space, the part we have observed yet (including the voyager travel) is so tiny, we just don't know what's out there and what's not. And not only this, but lately, the possible existence of multiple universes is not a topic left to fringe scientists alone anymore. In my opinion, there IS life out there, other civilisations or just microbes. Wether we find it or not is a whole different story though...

No matter how far we go it will remain tiny.
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No matter how far we go it will remain tiny.

Well said Frank!!! Exactly!! It is a notable distance indeed, but in a Universe that is ever expanding with a 13.5 billion years head start on us, we have our work cut out here.

Still, leaving the solar system, and heading out into Interstellar space I feel is a notable achievement. We will soon have a first hand account of Interstellar Space. As such, scowl was right to say "We've done it". Much more to go, but we have taken that first, and I feel, very important step.

Some private company should send out a spaceship with webcams on it. I'd pay to log in when it approaches a planet or any celestial body for a birds eye view. Long term investment, but I reckon it might pay off done right.

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But here's what we do know: life required a series of extremely unlikely occurrences to happen here on Earth. It continues to require conditions that very favorable to continue. The odds of that happening to another planet could be an extremely large number, larger than the mere 100-400 billion stars we have in our galaxy. Astrophysicists regularly deal with these kinds of probabilities.

Indeed. And I would add something..

- we know, quite well, the chemicals and compounds involved in living organisms - not just the makeup of the chemicals/compounds, but the likely amounts..

- we know, reasonably well, the conditions that Earth went through at the time when life appears to have sprung into being - in terms of temperature and pressure..

- but despite our best efforts to date, we have not managed to create life or even anything very close to it - the best being some complex amino acids - and that is far short of a living cell...

Now given that the only things we aren't pretty sure about are the amount & types of radiation (and perhaps throw in lightning..), and also whether large time scales/varying conditions are somehow needed.. So why can't we create life, if it is supposedly so common/ inevitable?

Plus, as far as we can tell, life began only at one particular time in Earth's history, and (arguably) in just one location - hence the evolutionary tree where pretty much everything can be traced back to a single organism. As the unquestionable source of Wiki states :

The similarities between all present-day organisms indicate the presence of a common ancestor from which all known species have diverged through the process of evolution.

So in all of earth's history it appears that just ONE little 'thing' capable of reproducing itself ever sprang into being - and luckily, before it got killed, managed to reproduce itself and started to spread..

Again, this seems to point to the likely conclusion that life doesn't just spring up inevitably, and may be incredibly rare. And as stated, astronomers and astrophysicists have no problem with incredible rarity or seemingly impossibly long odds - I can point to several things in the detectable visible universe that appear to be one-offs..

Now, *despite* all of that, it would delight me greatly if we find life on Mars, but I'll bet it won't be intelligent... And I'd be even more delighted if we do get visited/contacted by the real thing in my lifetime - but I'm not holding my breath.

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We need to be careful using deductive logic to answer scientific questions, such as how common life may be in the universe. The ancients deduced that heavier objects fall faster than lighter ones and that "up" and "down" are intrinsic aspects of nature.

The problem is that the results depend on a long chain of deductions and assumptions, and if any of them are wrong, the entire chain of reasoning fails.

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Duplicate

Edited by Frank Merton

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We need to be careful using deductive logic to answer scientific questions, such as how common life may be in the universe. The ancients deduced that heavier objects fall faster than lighter ones and that "up" and "down" are intrinsic aspects of nature.

Actually they presumed it because none of them had bothered to test such an obvious fact. Just like how people presume the universe must be crawling with life because their backyard is full of weeds.

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Seriously, there are things that i really, really want, but that's not one of them. In the last years, we found places here on earth of which nobody thought life could be possible before.

You're misinterpreting what that means. It doesn't mean that life can spontaneously appear in extreme conditions. It means that existing life can evolve and adapt to extreme conditions given enough time. And the most extreme conditions we've found life here on Earth are positively pleasant conditions compared to absolutely anywhere on every other planet in our solar system which would destroy that hardy life in a fraction of a second.

In MY opinion, it just makes more sense for life to be spread everywhere than to be limited to this planet.

We have no evidence that life can "spread" through outer space nor any reason to believe it can. The universe is not your backyard.

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You're misinterpreting what that means. It doesn't mean that life can spontaneously appear in extreme conditions. It means that existing life can evolve and adapt to extreme conditions given enough time. And the most extreme conditions we've found life here on Earth are positively pleasant conditions compared to absolutely anywhere on every other planet in our solar system which would destroy that hardy life in a fraction of a second.

We have no evidence that life can "spread" through outer space nor any reason to believe it can. The universe is not your backyard.

But my backyard is in the universe! That's exactly why i can't imagine earth being the only planet that ever produced life! We can by no means wrap our heads around how ginormous the dimensions out there are. Other solar systems, other galaxies, other galaxy clusters, super clusters......it just won't stop! Ahh, but I guess we can go on like that forever, you seeing us all alone out there, me imagining life spread throughout the vastness of space. Since neither of us has proof for his standpoint, it doesn't really make sense.

...you really like that backyard metaphor, do you?

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But my backyard is in the universe!

I'll just assume this was a joke...

That's exactly why i can't imagine earth being the only planet that ever produced life! We can by no means wrap our heads around how ginormous the dimensions out there are. Other solar systems, other galaxies, other galaxy clusters, super clusters......it just won't stop! Ahh, but I guess we can go on like that forever, you seeing us all alone out there, me imagining life spread throughout the vastness of space. Since neither of us has proof for his standpoint, it doesn't really make sense.

The biggest problem is that we just have no idea what the "odds" of life developing are. They may be so extremely poor that it's more likely that there would be no life anywhere in the universe, but through luck our Earth became the only planet in the universe to beat these terrible odds. There's no natural reason for globs of molecules to reproduce themselves so why expect it to happen?

Here's another way to look at terrible odds. Earth has a moon. If Earth has a moon, will it someday have a second moon? If you say "no, that's ridiculous" then why not? After all, the existence of our moon proves it's possible and we don't know the odds of our planet somehow managing to capture another another body. Sure it's unlikely but who can say what will happen in the next few millions of years in this gigantic amazing universe? Now I'm convinced that someday our sky will feature a second moon. I can't imagine it not happening.

...you really like that backyard metaphor, do you?

Ugh, you should see my backyard right now.]

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...'course that backyard-universe thing was at least meant to be a joke! And regarding your moon-example: i say it's TOTALLY possible! Given enough time. (Or having not just one, but multiple universes out there, for example. But that is a whole different story.....)

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