Alien Life: How Close Are We To Finding It?

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What are scientists looking for when searching for alien life? A lot, it turns out: the search for extraterrestrials requires the help from astronomers, planetary scientists, chemists, computer scientists, and geneticists, just to name a few. But are we barking up the wrong carbon-based tree? Could alien life develop in ways we haven’t dreamed of here on Earth? Hear Paul Davies, Sara Seager, Jack Szostak, and other experts give updates on the search for life outside our planet in “Alien Life: Will We Know It When We See It?” part of the Big Ideas series at the 2014 World Science Festival.

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Date: Saturday May 31, 2014
Time: 08:00 PM-09:30 PM
Venue: NYU Skirball Center for the Performing Arts
Moderator: John Hockenberry
Participants: Jack W. Szostak, Paul Davies, Sara Seager, Dimitar Sasselov

Are we alone in the universe? Scientists haven’t found aliens yet, but by scanning the sky they've shown that our galaxy harbors billions of planets, many of which likely have conditions similar to those on Earth. Which brings new questions into sharp relief: When searching for life beyond our home planet, how do we know what to look for? What human prejudices might cause us to overlook intelligent life forms very different from what we expect? Learn how scientists across disciplines—astronomers, chemists and microbiologists—are intensely studying the...[Read more]

8 comments
Neil Dickinson
Neil Dickinson

Happy Birthday Carl Sagan He looked up at the vastness of space And how all the stars interlace In a massive expanse By design or by chance And it put a big smile on his face Carl Sagan was born on this date Long ago in the Empire State At a time of depression And Nazi oppression Inspired by malice and hate As a child he was thoughtful and curious Checking out both both the valid and spurious While hoping to see What the future might be And whether or not it should worry us He went to museums a lot When his friends were all out smoking pot He asked questions galore Then came back and asked more With much wonder and joy he was fraught Carl taught at Cornell while he wrote More than 600 papers of note And best sellers as well Made his bank balance swell He could always be good for a quote He wrote Contact, which Hollywood took From a clever, provocative book To the silvery screen Rated PG Thirteen Moving faster than light was its hook With Cosmos he changed how mankind Observes how the stars are aligned And how much isn't known And what’s carved in to stone With the use of his wonderful mind Sagan died in his 63rd year On a day when we all shed a tear But his spirit remains In our souls and our brains As he travels his final frontier

Greg Brockway
Greg Brockway

So stop waiting for Superman and do something on your own, for starters join Greenpeace, then continue with Amazon Watch. Those were my first two, and I'm very glad I did. If everyone was a member of some conservation group, maybe things would actually get conserved.

Om M
Om M

Distant galaxies ~ Far off Suns ~