Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Plenty of Earths, older galaxies -- so where are the little green men?

The BBC has two science articles that update terms in the Drake Equation.

BBC NEWS | Science/Nature | Plenty of Earths await discovery
These scenarios of past extinction and future birth increase to about two-thirds the proportion of the known exoplanetary systems that are potentially habitable at some time during the main-sequence lifetime of their central star.
and BBC NEWS | Science/Nature | Telescope catches early starlight
Astronomers have seen the light coming from what could be some of the very first stars to shine in the Universe.

These ancient objects burst into life probably no more than 600 million years or so after the Big Bang itself.

The discovery, announced at the UK National Astronomy Meeting, suggests the evolution of galaxies got under way much earlier than previously believed.
Together these articles seem to reduce the likelihood of the "rare earth" resolution of the Fermi Paradox. By implication they strengthen the case for other hypotheses, such as short-lived civilizations.

Personally, I like the singularity version of the short-lived civilization hypothesis. I must note, however, that the Designer Hypothesis, of which Genesis is one version, is likewise strengthened.

PS. Wikipedia is most impressive.

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