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PostPosted: Sat Apr 14, 2018 1:56 pm 
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457 years ago today:

1561 celestial phenomenon over Nuremberg

The 1561 celestial phenomenon over Nuremberg was a mass sighting of celestial phenomena or unidentified flying objects (UFO) above Nuremberg, Germany. The phenomenon has been interpreted by some modern UFO enthusiasts as an aerial battle of extraterrestrial origin.


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 26, 2018 2:17 am 
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Liquid water 'lake' revealed on Mars

By Mary Halton Science reporter, BBC News

Researchers have found evidence of an existing body of liquid water on Mars.

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What they believe to be a lake sits under the planet's south polar ice cap, and is about 20 km (12 miles) across.

Previous research found possible signs of intermittent liquid water flowing on the martian surface, but this is the first sign of a persistent body of water on the planet in the present day.

Lake beds like those explored by Nasa's Curiosity rover show water was present on the surface of Mars in the past.

However, the planet's climate has since cooled due to its thin atmosphere, leaving most of its water locked up in ice.

The result is exciting because scientists have long searched for signs of present-day liquid water on Mars, but these have come up empty or yielded ambiguous findings. It will also interest those studying the possibilities for life beyond Earth - though it does not yet raise the stakes in the search for biology.

The discovery was made using Marsis, a radar instrument on board the European Space Agency's (Esa) Mars Express orbiter.

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The proposed lake sits beneath ice near the south pole of Mars

"It's probably not a very large lake," said Prof Roberto Orosei from the Italian National Institute for Astrophysics, who led the study.

Marsis wasn't able to determine how thick the layer of water might be, but the research team estimate that it is a minimum of one metre.

"This really qualifies this as a body of water. A lake, not some kind of meltwater filling some space between rock and ice, as happens in certain glaciers on Earth," Prof Orosei added.

How was it found?

Radar instruments like Marsis examine the surface and immediate subsurface of the planet by sending out a signal and examining what is bounced back.

The continuous white line at the top of the radar results above marks the beginning of the South Polar Layered Deposit; a filo pastry-like accumulation of water ice and dust.

Beneath this, researchers spotted something unusual 1.5km under the ice.

"In light blue you can see where the reflections from the bottom are stronger than surface reflection. This is something that is to us the tell tale sign of the presence of water," says Prof Orosei.

What does this mean for life?

Nothing definitive. Yet.

Dr Manish Patel from the Open University explained: "We have long since known that the surface of Mars is inhospitable to life as we know it, so the search for life on Mars is now in the subsurface.

"This is where we get sufficient protection from harmful radiation, and the pressure and temperature rise to more favourable levels. Most importantly, this allows liquid water, essential for life."

This principle of following the water is key to astrobiology - the study of potential life beyond Earth.

So while the findings suggest water is present, they don't confirm anything further.

"We are not closer to actually detecting life," Dr Patel told BBC News, "but what this finding does is give us the location of where to look on Mars. It is like a treasure map - except in this case, there will be lots of 'X's marking the spots."

The water's temperature and chemistry could also pose a problem for any potential martian organisms.

In order to remain liquid in such cold conditions (the research team estimate between -10 and -30 Celsius where it meets the ice above), the water likely has a great many salts dissolved in it.

"It's plausible that the water may be an extremely cold, concentrated brine, which would be pretty challenging for life," explained Dr Claire Cousins, an astrobiologist from the University of St Andrews, UK.
What next?

While its existence provides a tantalising prospect for those interested in the possibility of past or present life on Mars, the lake's characteristics must first be verified by further research.

"What needs to be done now," explained Dr Matt Balme from the Open University, "is for the measurements to be repeated elsewhere to look for similar signals, and, if possible, for all other explanation to be examined and - hopefully - ruled out.

"Maybe this could even be the trigger for an ambitious new Mars mission to drill into this buried water-pocket - like has been done for sub-glacial lakes in Antarctica on Earth," he added.

Scientists have previously claimed to find bacterial life in the buried depths of Antarctica's Lake Vostok, but drilling on Mars would make for an ambitious project indeed.

"Getting there and acquiring the final evidence that this is indeed a lake will not be an easy task," said Prof Orosei.

"It will require flying a robot there which is capable of drilling through 1.5km of ice. This will certainly require some technological developments that at the moment are not available."

The findings were reported in Science.

https://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-44952710

...don't touch that dial, coming next: Life on Mars...

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 26, 2018 3:38 pm 
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 26, 2018 4:18 pm 
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Good stuff GG keep it coming!


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 06, 2018 2:39 pm 
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Harvard Researchers: ‘Oumuamua Could Be an Alien Probe After All

Our first confirmed interstellar visitor was a tough nut to crack. Scientists puzzled over ‘Oumuamua when it appeared in the sky last year. The classification flipped back and forth a few times before eventually landing on “comet,” but it’s a weird comet. Now, researchers from the Harvard Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics have revived the idea that ‘Oumuamua could be an alien spacecraft.

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While we’ve recategorized ‘Oumuamua a few times, we can say with utmost certainty that it came from another solar system. It has an orbital eccentricity of 1.20, which is far past the sun’s escape velocity. Nothing in the solar system could reach that speed naturally without a cataclysmic release of energy that we would have noticed.

‘Oumuamua was already on its way out of the solar system and moving at high speed when we spotted it, so there was no time to build and launch a mission to intercept it. We haven’t even gotten a very good look at the object. Scientists believe ‘Oumuamua is cigar-shaped and up to 120 meters in length. That’s an unusual shape for an asteroid (at least in this solar system) so the discoverers initially categorized it as a comet. Then, scientists looked closer and saw no coma, the cloud of dust and gas that surround a comet when it nears the sun. So, an asteroid? Upon even closer examination, researchers found ‘Oumuamua’s orbit was being nudged by a force consistent with gas release. Currently, ‘Oumuamua is considered a low-activity comet.

The newly released paper (which hasn’t been peer-reviewed yet) suggests another option. What if the small force acting on ‘Oumuamua is not from gas release? The study suggests that ‘Oumuamua could have an odd orbit because it’s an alien space probe with a solar sail. A solar sail is a concept for a low-power propulsion system currently in testing at a number of companies and space agencies around the world. The sail would use the pressure of the solar radiation to propel a craft forward continuously. Over time, a solar sail could reach high speeds, possibly even leaving the solar system.

The researcher making this proposal are not presenting evidence that ‘Oumuamua actually has a solar sail — there’s no way to know that with current technology. Instead, they seek to demonstrate that it is possible based on what we know of the physics of solar sails and the orbit of ‘Oumuamua. The study concludes that it’s possible that ‘Oumuamua is being dragged along by a solar sail, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s an active alien probe.

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Researchers scanned ‘Oumuamua back in 2017 to look for any electromagnetic emissions, finding nothing. At that point, they deemed it not an alien ship. The new study suggests ‘Oumuamua could be non-functional debris with a bit of light sail material clinging on. Alternatively, it could be a probe in a low-power mode that we cannot characterize. Unfortunately, we’ll probably never know for sure what ‘Oumuamua is — it’s already long gone.

https://www.extremetech.com/extreme/280217-researchers-suggest-oumuamua-could-be-an-alien-probe-after-all

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 13, 2018 12:02 am 
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Several pilots spot UFOs off Irish coast
13:49, Nov 13 2018

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Was it a UFO that the pilots saw? (file photo)

An investigation has been launched after several pilots spotted mysterious lights off the south-west coast of Ireland.

The incident happened on November 9 as the pilot from British Airways flight BA94 from Montreal to London, and a Virgin Airlines pilot of VS76 from Orlando to Manchester noticed the objects. Other unidentified pilots also saw the lights.

The pilot from BA94 queried air traffic controllers in Shannon if military exercises were taking place.

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AIRLIVE
The Virgin flight was heading to Manchester when a pilot saw the lights.

They said no, and that nothing was showing on the radar.
"OK. It was moving so fast," said the BA pilot.


She said it came along the left-hand side of the plane before veering rapidly north.

"It was a bright light and then just disappeared at very high speed."

The pilot on VS76, who also witnessed two bright lights, offered a possible explanation.

"Meteor or another object making some kind of re-entry - multiple objects following the same sort of trajectory – very bright from where we were."

Both planes were said to be in high-level airspace - which is an altitude between 28,500ft and 42,000ft.

Airlive reports that the Irish Aviation Authority is "investigated under the normal confidential occurrence investigation process".

Stuff

https://www.stuff.co.nz/travel/news/108 ... land-coast


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 13, 2018 12:50 am 
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Nice. Would a "meteor or another object" be shown on radar?

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 13, 2018 9:44 am 
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Mr_Green_Genes wrote:
Nice. Would a "meteor or another object" be shown on radar?


It would be obvious from trajectory and speed that it was, my Dad was one of the first Radar Operators and did between 2 and 3 years in the South Pacific during WWII...back in the 60's and 70's when they would say that a radar hit was a weather inversion layer, or some other thing or object he would say that was bullshit because any radar operator who knows what he is doing can tell the difference, his life depended on knowing they were stationed behind enemy lines on an island during the war... :idea:


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 18, 2019 1:32 pm 
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How could aliens find us?

We've been sending signals into the universe for decades but what if we stopped - could aliens still find us?


https://www.bbc.com/ideas/videos/how-could-aliens-find-us/p073jvp0

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PostPosted: Sat May 18, 2019 8:00 am 
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Frank Zappa round table discussion on John Barbour's 'Friday Night Live Talk Show' Throwback
Frank Zappa in a wonderful round table discussion which includes Paul Krasner..Editor of The Realist..the funniest counterculture news magazine of the 60's and 70's, and Bill Moore, an author and former UFO researcher, prominent from the late 1970s to the late 1980s.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o0o6S-hqTzA

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PostPosted: Sat May 18, 2019 1:24 pm 
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^^^^^ nice ^^^^^


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 01, 2019 6:10 pm 
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‘Wow, What Is That?’ Navy Pilots Report Unexplained Flying Objects

By Helene Cooper, Ralph Blumenthal and Leslie Kean


https://nyti.ms/2YNjY3N <=Video

WASHINGTON — The strange objects, one of them like a spinning top moving against the wind, appeared almost daily from the summer of 2014 to March 2015, high in the skies over the East Coast. Navy pilots reported to their superiors that the objects had no visible engine or infrared exhaust plumes, but that they could reach 30,000 feet and hypersonic speeds.

“These things would be out there all day,” said Lt. Ryan Graves, an F/A-18 Super Hornet pilot who has been with the Navy for 10 years, and who reported his sightings to the Pentagon and Congress. “Keeping an aircraft in the air requires a significant amount of energy. With the speeds we observed, 12 hours in the air is 11 hours longer than we’d expect.”

In late 2014, a Super Hornet pilot had a near collision with one of the objects, and an official mishap report was filed. Some of the incidents were videotaped, including one taken by a plane’s camera in early 2015 that shows an object zooming over the ocean waves as pilots question what they are watching.

“Wow, what is that, man?” one exclaims. “Look at it fly!”

No one in the Defense Department is saying that the objects were extraterrestrial, and experts emphasize that earthly explanations can generally be found for such incidents. Lieutenant Graves and four other Navy pilots, who said in interviews with The New York Times that they saw the objects in 2014 and 2015 in training maneuvers from Virginia to Florida off the aircraft carrier Theodore Roosevelt, make no assertions of their provenance.
...
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/05/26/us/politics/ufo-sightings-navy-pilots.html

Nick Pope on UFO sightings, the Navy and Pentagon | New York Post
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uaSY2Zc0goQ


In the first episode of "The Basement Office", host Steven Greenstreet discusses recent bombshell reports that have thrust UFOs into the mainstream. These include ongoing revelations coming out of the Pentagon regarding "unidentified aerial phenomena", the Navy's encounters with unidentified craft that "defy physics", and commercial air pilots having close encounters. This episode features Nick Pope, the "real-life Fox Mulder", who secretly investigated UFOs for the British government during the 1990s while running the "UFO Office" at the UK's Ministry of Defence. UFOs: “A Threat to the Homeland” | The Basement Office - Ep. 1 |

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 13, 2019 12:50 pm 
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UFOs | The Flying Saucer | Best sightings and analysis of evidence | New York Post
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z25NfZ0Ea9c


Episode 2: In 1947, Kenneth Arnold’s UFO sighting and a flying saucer crash in Roswell, New Mexico started a wave. Soon, thousands of eerily similar sightings were being reported across the globe. Nick Pope joins us for this episode of “The Basement Office” to discuss the history of the flying saucer, analyze the most credible reports and discuss how recent UFO sightings have evolved.

Recent UFO sightings | The Black Triangle | Department of Defense cover-ups | New York Post
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tDUF4NtYtxU


In episode 3 of “The Basement Office” the New York Post’s Steven Greenstreet sits down with Nick Pope to discuss the latest UFO sightings and the frightening modern day craft, the black triangle. Is there a Department of Defense cover-up? We speak with witnesses of mass sightings in various locations across the country including the Hudson Valley, New York, and Phoenix, Arizona. Nick reveals why the government downplays such events and offers his take as to whether or not another big wave of UFO sightings is on the horizon.

The New York Post is your source for breaking news, news about New York, sports, business, entertainment, opinion, real estate, culture, fashion, and more.

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 20, 2019 9:16 am 
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Senators get classified briefing on UFO sightings

Washington - Three more U.S. senators received a classified Pentagon briefing on Wednesday about a series of reported encounters by the Navy with unidentified aircraft, according to congressional and government officials — part of a growing number of requests from members of key oversight committees.

One of them was Sen. Mark Warner (D-Virginia), the vice chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, whose office confirmed the briefing to POLITICO.

https://www.politico.com/story/2019/06/19/warner-classified-briefing-ufos-1544273

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 21, 2019 1:17 am 
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^^ Thanks

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 22, 2019 9:28 am 
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Joe Heller
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 12, 2019 6:53 pm 
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'They Can’t Stop All of Us.' Thousands Sign Petition to Invade Area 51 to Find Those Aliens

By Melissa Locker July 12, 2019


If you watch enough science fiction movies (Close Encounters) or TV shows (The X-Files), one thing might become abundantly clear: The government is possibly lying to civilians about aliens. Now, people are taking matters into their own hands.

More than 400,000 people have signed on to a Facebook event pledging to raid Nevada’s Area 51, a site long believed to be a secret alien holding site, on a mission to finally “see them aliens.”

As reported by Newsweek, the event, which was given the name “Storm Area 51, They Can’t Stop All of Us,” suggests that people from around the world gather in the Nevada desert to invade the site, located about 88 miles by road northwest of Las Vegas. The method of invasion that the site suggests is a frenzied “Naruto run”, inspired by Naruto Uzumaki the Japanese manga character who runs with head down and arms stretched behind. “We can move faster than their bullets,” the event page reads.

While there’s a chance that the Area 51 invasion is just all in good fun, because as ComicBook.com notes, it was created by a user best known for posting memes and streaming content on Twitch, the event comes in the wake of some official UFO news. Specifically, that the U.S. Pentagon is launching a new program for the military to report encounters with UFOs and after government-funded investigations into an unidentified aircraft.

To find out if the event is real and the government has been holding back on the existence of alien life, the only way to find out for sure is to show up in the Nevada desert on September 20th. If enough people show up and they make a run for Area 51, perhaps they can finally blow open the doors on the government’s secret alien warehouse and share the findings with the world.

https://time.com/5625420/area-51-petition/

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PostPosted: Sat Aug 10, 2019 11:42 am 
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Is Physical Law an Alien Intelligence?
Alien life could be so advanced it becomes indistinguishable from physics.
Caleb Scharf

https://getpocket.com/explore/item/is-physical-law-an-alien-intelligence?utm_source=pocket-newtab

Perhaps Arthur C. Clarke was being uncharacteristically unambitious. He once pointed out that any sufficiently advanced technology is going to be indistinguishable from magic. If you dropped in on a bunch of Paleolithic farmers with your iPhone and a pair of sneakers, you’d undoubtedly seem pretty magical. But the contrast is only middling: The farmers would still recognize you as basically like them, and before long they’d be taking selfies. But what if life has moved so far on that it doesn’t just appear magical, but appears like physics?

After all, if the cosmos holds other life, and if some of that life has evolved beyond our own waypoints of complexity and technology, we should be considering some very extreme possibilities. Today’s futurists and believers in a machine “singularity” predict that life and its technological baggage might end up so beyond our ken that we wouldn’t even realize we were staring at it. That’s quite a claim, yet it would neatly explain why we have yet to see advanced intelligence in the cosmos around us, despite the sheer number of planets it could have arisen on—the so-called Fermi Paradox.

For example, if machines continue to grow exponentially in speed and sophistication, they will one day be able to decode the staggering complexity of the living world, from its atoms and molecules all the way up to entire planetary biomes. Presumably life doesn’t have to be made of atoms and molecules, but could be assembled from any set of building blocks with the requisite complexity. If so, a civilization could then transcribe itself and its entire physical realm into new forms. Indeed, perhaps our universe is one of the new forms into which some other civilization transcribed its world.

These possibilities might seem wholly untestable, because part of the conceit is that sufficiently advanced life will not just be unrecognizable as such, but will blend completely into the fabric of what we’ve thought of as nature. But viewed through the warped bottom of a beer glass, we can pick out a few cosmic phenomena that—at crazy as it sounds—might fit the requirements.

For example, only about 5 percent of the mass-energy of the universe consists of ordinary matter: the protons, neutrons, and electrons that we’re composed of. A much larger 27 percent is thought to be unseen, still mysterious stuff. Astronomical evidence for this dark, gravitating matter is convincing, albeit still not without question. Vast halos of dark matter seem to lurk around galaxies, providing mass that helps hold things together via gravity. On even larger scales, the web-like topography traced by luminous gas and stars also hints at unseen mass.

Cosmologists usually assume that dark matter has no microstructure. They think it consists of subatomic particles that interact only via gravity and the weak nuclear force and therefore slump into tenuous, featureless swathes. They have arguments to support this point of view, but of course we don’t really know for sure. Some astronomers, noting subtle mismatches between observations and models, have suggested that dark matter has a richer inner life. At least some component may comprise particles that interact with one another via long-range forces. It may seem dark to us, but have its own version of light that our eyes cannot see.

In that case, dark matter could contain real complexity, and perhaps it is where all technologically advanced life ends up or where most life has always been. What better way to escape the nasty vagaries of supernova and gamma-ray bursts than to adopt a form that is immune to electromagnetic radiation? Upload your world to the huge amount of real estate on the dark side and be done with it.

If you’re a civilization that has learned how to encode living systems in different substrates, all you need to do is build a normal-matter-to-dark-matter data-transfer system: a dark-matter 3D printer. Perhaps the mismatch of astronomical models and observations is evidence not just of self-interacting dark matter, but of dark matter that is being artificially manipulated.

Or to take this a step further, perhaps the behavior of normal cosmic matter that we attribute to dark matter is brought on by something else altogether: a living state that manipulates luminous matter for its own purposes. Consider that at present we have neither identified the dark-matter particles nor come up with a compelling alternative to our laws of physics that would account for the behavior of galaxies and clusters of galaxies. Would an explanation in terms of life be any less plausible than a failure of established laws?

Part of the fabric of the universe is a product of intelligence.

The universe does other funky and unexpected stuff. Notably, it began to expand at an accelerated rate about 5 billion years ago. This acceleration is conventionally chalked up to dark energy. But cosmologists don’t know why the cosmic acceleration began when it did. In fact, one explanation with a modicum of traction is that the timing has to do with life—an anthropic argument. The dark energy didn’t become significant until enough time had gone by for life to take hold on Earth. For many cosmologists, that means our universe must be part of a vast multiverse where the strength of dark energy varies from place to place. We live in one of the places suitable for life like us. Elsewhere, dark energy is stronger and blows the universe apart too quickly for cosmic structures to form and life to take root.

But perhaps there is another reason for the timing coincidence: that dark energy is related to the activities of living things. After all, any very early life in the universe would have already experienced 8 billion years of evolutionary time by the time expansion began to accelerate. It’s a stretch, but maybe there’s something about life itself that affects the cosmos, or maybe those well-evolved denizens decided to tinker with the expansion.

There are even possible motivations for that action. Life absorbs low-entropy energy (such as visible light from the sun), does useful work with that energy, and dumps higher-entropy energy back into the universe as waste heat. But if the surrounding universe ever got too warm—too filled with thermal refuse—things would stagnate. Luckily we live in an expanding and constantly cooling cosmos. What better long-term investment by some hypothetical life 5 billion years ago than to get the universe to cool even faster? To be sure, it may come to rue its decision: Hundreds of billions of years later the accelerating expansion would dilute matter so quickly that civilizations would run out of fresh sources of energy. Also, an accelerating universe does not cool forever, but eventually approaches a floor in temperature.

One idea for the mechanism of an accelerating cosmic expansion is called quintessence, a relative of the Higgs field that permeates the cosmos. Perhaps some clever life 5 billion years ago figured out how to activate that field. How? Beats me, but it’s a thought-provoking idea, and it echoes some of the thinking of cosmologist Freeman Dyson’s famous 1979 paper “Time Without End,” where he looked at life’s ability in the far, far future to act on an astrophysical scale.

Once we start proposing that life could be part of the solution to cosmic mysteries, there’s no end to the fun possibilities. Although dark-matter life is a pretty exotic idea, it’s still conceivable that we might recognize what it is, even capturing it in our labs one day (or being captured by it). We can take a tumble down a different rabbit hole by considering that we don’t recognize advanced life because it forms an integral and unsuspicious part of what we’ve considered to be the natural world.

Life’s desire to avoid trouble points to some options. If it has a choice, life always looks for ways to lower its existential risk. You don’t build your nest on the weakest branch or produce trillions of single-celled clones unless you build in some variation and backup.

Maybe there’s something about life itself that affects the cosmos.

A species can mitigate risk by spreading, decentralizing, and seeding as much real estate as possible. In this context, hyper-advanced life is going to look for ways to get rid of physical locality and to maximize redundancy and flexibility. The quantum realm offers good options. The cosmos is already packed with electromagnetic energy. Today, at any instant, about 400 photons of cosmic microwave radiation are streaming through any cubic centimeter of free space. They collectively have less energy than ordinary particles such as protons and electrons, but vastly outnumber them. That’s a lot of potential data carriers. Furthermore, we could imagine that these photons are cleverly quantum-mechanically entangled to help with error control.

By storing its essential data in photons, life could give itself a distributed backup system. And it could go further, manipulating new photons emitted by stars to dictate how they interact with matter. Fronts of electromagnetic radiation could be reaching across the cosmos to set in motion chains of interstellar or planetary chemistry with exquisite timing, exploiting wave interference and excitation energies in atoms and molecules. The science-fiction writer Stanisław Lem put forward a similar idea, involving neutrinos rather than photons, in the novel His Master’s Voice.

That’s one way that life could disappear into ordinary physics. But even these ideas skirt the most disquieting extrapolations.

Toward the end of Carl Sagan’s 1985 science-fiction novel Contact, the protagonist follows the suggestion of an extraterrestrial to study transcendental numbers. After computing to 1020 places, she finds a clearly artificial message embedded in the digits of this fundamental number. In other words, part of the fabric of the universe is a product of intelligence or is perhaps even life itself.

It’s a great mind-bending twist for a book. Perhaps hyper-advanced life isn’t just external. Perhaps it’s already all around. It is embedded in what we perceive to be physics itself, from the root behavior of particles and fields to the phenomena of complexity and emergence.

In other words, life might not just be in the equations. It might be the equations.

Caleb Scharf is an astrophysicist, the Director of Astrobiology at Columbia University in New York, and a founder of yhousenyc.org, an institute that studies human and machine consciousness. His latest book is The Copernicus Complex: Our Cosmic Significance in a Universe of Planets and Probabilities.


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 01, 2019 6:55 am 
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NASA astronaut Michael Collins drops major alien confession: 'Yes' to life outside Earth
By Sebastian Kettley
PUBLISHED: 07:58, Fri, Aug 30, 2019 | UPDATED: 07:59, Fri, Aug 30, 2019
https://www.express.co.uk/news/science/1170935/NASA-astronaut-Michael-Collins-alien-life-outside-Earth-extraterrestrial-life-NASA-news

NASA astronaut Michael Collins who flew the Command Module on Apollo 11 in 1969, has just confirmed his belief in alien life outside of Earth.

The NASA veteran played a critical role in the first manned Moon landing alongside colleagues Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin. After retiring from NASA in 1970, the astronaut has been a vocal supporter of establishing a human presence on Mars. Now, astronaut Michael Collins, 88, has opened up about the ultimate question of are we alone in the universe. In an online question and answer session on Twitter, Mr Collins’ 56,600 Twitter followers were given a chance to submit any burning queries they have.

One Twitter follower asked the astronaut if he believes in “life outside of Earth” under the hashtag #AskMichaelCollins.

In a blunt but revealing answer, Mr Collins simply said: “Yes.”

The answer excited a storm of tweets from followers who are similarly convinced extraterrestrial life has evolved on some alien planet far from Earth.

Twitter user Gulshan Kumar said: “Probably… but no evidence…”

Fernando Leon said: “I believe too but there is no evidence to support my belief.”

Angela Byrne said: “Yes, definitely… it would be crazy not to… and very scary.”

And Betty Cozatt said: “Given the literally billions of planets where life might be yes is the only possible answer.

“But has that life evolved into a species that has developed interstellar travel. Probably but no definitive answer yet.”

However, the next big question is whether life outside of Earth has developed enough to form intelligent civilisations.

NASA’s scientists believe the planet Mars may hold evidence of past microbial life but not developed species.

In other cosmic queries, regarding his time in space, Mr Collins was asked about eating bacon in space, his favourite moments from Apollo 11 and why he grew a moustache during the Moon landing.

In regards to enjoying the bacon, the astronaut said: “No. Bacon should not be cubed!”

Mr Collins is a former American test pilot who served in the United States Air Force before joining NASA.

As a test pilot, Mr Collins has logged more than 4,200 hours in flight.

Through is work in the US Air Force, Mr Collins retired with the rank of major general.


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