Reality is a figmentnewton of your imagination
Chris Small telescopes, some medium size, a smattering of eyepieces and filters. The human brain-a 3 pound, 30 watt, self-programming supercomputer that can be mass produced by unskilled labor. Member IDA
Quote:If life develops easily why do all lifeforms that have been inspected belong to our tree? Wouldn't you expect other trees to have been established in the billions of years of the earths existence?....or did we eat all of the others?Bill
Quote:I believe with all my heart...
"Scientists aren't perfect, just peer reviewed.""Eye of Sauron Observatory", featuring "Sauron's Other Eye", 16" dob, conical Royce mirror.
Quote:Quote:I believe with all my heart...I think we're going to have to be a little more specific here.The "evolution finds a way" approach really isn't valid for the origin of life, because darwinian processes don't kick in until after life has begun replicating.I personally hope it turns out that life IS common, (well, maybe not, as that would put a damper on our expansion possibilities), but my believing it with all my heart isn't going to make it so.
Quote:Quote:Quote:I believe with all my heart...I think we're going to have to be a little more specific here.The "evolution finds a way" approach really isn't valid for the origin of life, because darwinian processes don't kick in until after life has begun replicating.I personally hope it turns out that life IS common, (well, maybe not, as that would put a damper on our expansion possibilities), but my believing it with all my heart isn't going to make it so. I strongly disagree.I think everything evolves. Let's take AI for instance.Computers are becoming more and more complex and are 'selected' for increased complexity by consumers. (When was the last time you bought a Timex Sinclair?)Now, of course, this is un-natural selection but a selection pressure nonetheless. Computers now design their offspring (with human help) and manufacture their descendants (again with considerable human help).No modern computer today could be designed without computer assistance nor built by hand (older species of computers, yes but not newer ones)As time goes on and humans continue to 'select' (read 'buy') more complex computers...more and more of the design work will be done BY computers and more and more fabrication will be done BY computers.Eventually computers will be complex enough to think, design and fabricate (read 'reproduce' here) all on their own and a new species will arise.Naturally selection and evolutionary processes don't care about life. Life is just one by product of these processes. Pesse (...insert something glib here...) Mist
Quote:There are two information carrying schemes that we currently know of. One is the DNA we are all familiar with and the other is RNA which RNA is very similar to DNA in many ways; it can be copied by the same base-pairing and formation of complementary strands as DNA, but it does require special enzymes (called RNA-dependent RNA polymerases). My feeling is that DNA & RNA are so superior in the temperature ranges, aqueous solutions common to Earth niches that it just dominates. However, if we start getting into extreme environments (relative to Earth) we may find all new chemistries with a totally different information carrying molecules better suited to this conditions.For example, can silicon replace carbon in other environments? Can ammonia replace water as a solvent for life?DNA denatures at temperatures above about 70 deg, yet we have living species that can thrive quite well in boiling water and as low as -15deg (or even freeze solid if they shut down their metabolism for awhile).This is because evolution came up with solutions. Could life on Earth evolve in molten lava? Perhaps, but the trouble is molten lava is not a persistent, stable niche. But underwater vents are. So life thrives in one and not in the other.Whose to say what evolution might come up with in an environment far removed from Earth. As for man, I am firmly convinced that the next major step in our evolution will be able to create our successor: Once an AI unit is created and given free will man will take his place on the evolutionary junk pile as the inefficient bags of mostly water we truly are.I think that is why aliens are not in a hurry to announce themselves to us. They are all AI units and view the Earth as we would view a roach infested planet. Would we actually land or wait for the roaches to evolve a bit yet?Besides, if you 'live' a million years then space travel becomes relatively brief. Everything is relative. A housefly born in Utah will never see Moscow because he doesn't live long enough to make the journey.Pesse (Prepare to meet King R2D2) Mist
Quote: .... Life simply cannot appear anywhere -- there are too many sterile bodies that attest to that limitation.
Quote:At least those three. And persistence is kind of ambiguous.And the energy source may have to be narrowly constrained -- we don't really know.
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At the Gym... Spudtastic! Joined 11/26 2003Posts 25,542