Tag: extraterrestrial

Aliens May Actually Be Billion-Year-Old Robots

This could ruin a lot of good science fiction movies … and create interesting plots for the next generation of them, not to mention influencing how humans deal with space aliens when they first encounter each other.

A timely article by The Daily Galaxy reviews the study “Alien Minds” by Susan Schneider where the professor and author discusses her theory that our first meeting with an extraterrestrial will be with a billion-year-old robot. Wait, what?

“I do not believe that most advanced alien civilizations will be biological. The most sophisticated civilizations will be postbiological, forms of artificial intelligence or alien superintelligence.”

Susan Schneider is an associate Professor in the Department of Philosophy Cognitive Science Program at the University of Connecticut.

Alien Minds” has been presented at NASA and the 2016 IdeaFestival in Kentucky and was published in The Impact of Discovering Life Beyond Earth.




It is her response to the question: “How would intelligent aliens think? Would they have conscious experiences? Would it feel a certain way to be an alien?

“I actually think the first discovery of life on other planets will probably involve microbial life; I am concentrating on intelligent life in my work on this topic though. I only claim that the most advanced civilizations will likely be post biological.”

Schneider’s theory is based on three components or “observations.”

In her “short window observation,” she presents the idea that a civilization or species that can conquer long-distance space travel is already very close to moving from biological to artificially-intelligent beings.

An example of this “short window” is the relatively brief 120 years it took humans to go from the first radio signals to cell phones.

Some of those species will be much older than us, which is Schneider’s “the greater age of alien civilizations” observation – one accepted by many.

And not just a few generations older but billions of years beyond us, making them far more advanced and intelligent. How much more?

Schneider’s last observation is that any species that can travel to Earth will be intelligent enough to develop robots that they can upload their brains

to. The robots would probably be silicon-based for speed of ‘thinking’ and durability, making them nearly immortal.

Please like, share and tweet this article.

Pass it on: Popular Science

NASA Scientists Believe We Will Find Alien Life Within The Next 20 Years

It’s not exactly the Hollywood fantasy of flying saucers beaming down big-headed, wide-eyed aliens to Earth, but top NASA scientists have announced that they think we are tantalizingly close to discovering some form of extraterrestrial life.

In fact, our search tools have become so sophisticated that space researchers believe we will have gathered convincing data for the presence of alien life, most likely microbial, by 2025.

I think we’re going to have strong indications of life beyond Earth within a decade, and I think we’re going to have definitive evidence within 20 to 30 years,” NASA chief scientist Ellen Stofan said this week at a public panel discussion in Washington.

We know where to look. We know how to look. In most cases, we have the technology, and we’re on a path to implementing it.”

This optimism was promoted by recent discoveries that suggest that potentially habitable worlds are much more common than once believed.




Almost every star is now thought to host planets, and one study even suggested that those within our galaxy possess an average of two planets within the habitable range, or “Goldilocks zone,” which is the area where liquid water can exist.

But it’s not just stars that can host these regions; discoveries much closer to home suggest that even giant planets could have habitable zones, which could greatly expand scientists’ search for life.

Jupiter’s icy moon Europa, for example, has a vast and deep subsurface ocean despite residing some 400 million miles away from the sun.

The water within this ocean resists completely freezing over due to strong tidal forces resulting from Jupiter’s gravitational pull.

Jupiter is also home to another interesting satellite, Ganymede, which is also thought to possess a subsurface saltwater ocean.

Although Europa has received the most attention, Saturn’s moon Enceladus also recently became a top candidate for extraterrestrial life following the discovery of a liquid water ocean below its icy surface.

Furthermore, this satellite was also found to possess geysers that spurt out sandy plumes of water and ice, suggesting the presence of hydrothermal activity within the subsurface ocean.

And let’s not forget about Mars; this now parched and barren planet was once a watery world complete with enduring lakes, oceans and flowing rivers, some of which could have lingered long enough for life to have had a chance to evolve.

Not only that, but scientists also recently found evidence of useful nitrogen compounds, which are a crucial source of this element for life on Earth.

While our present set of powerful observatories are obviously capable of churning out exciting data on the subject, things are only set to get more exciting as technology develops.

A mission to Europa is already on the cards, for example, which NASA hopes to launch by 2022.

And before that, the agency hopes to send up their James Webb Space Telescope, which will probe the atmospheres of nearby “super-Earths,” or exoplanets with masses higher than our own planet, with the hope of identifying gases that could have been created by life forms.

Certainly, we have got a lot to look forward to in the coming years.

Please like, share and tweet this article.

Pass it on: Popular Science

Scientists Send Secret Message To Aliens In New Search For Intelligent Life

If the “truth is out there,” scientists are determined to find it – so much so that they’ve spent a message into space trying to contact aliens.

But a response could take 25 years – if it comes at all.

Messaging Extraterrestrial Intelligence (METI) International sent an encoded message into space using radio waves known as “Sonar Calling GJ273b,” which the organization’s president and founder Doug Vakoch, believes could be received by intelligent life.

[The message is] distinctive because it’s designed with extraterrestrial SETI scientists in mind. We sent the sort of signal we’d want to receive here on Earth,” he said in an interview with CNET.




METI’s purpose, along with the well-known Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI), has a number of missions, including understanding and communicating “the societal implications and relevance of searching for life beyond Earth, even before detection of extraterrestrial life.

It also conducts programs to “foster increased awareness of the challenges facing our civilization’s longevity” among other directives.

The San Francisco-based METI sent its message toward the red dwarf star GJ 273 (also known as Luyten’s Star), 12 light-years away from Earth.

The message was sent in October from the Eiscat transmitter in Tromsø, Norway and included details such as basic math and science, as well as information on mankind’s understanding of time.

In a statement obtained by CNET, METI said it wanted to know if intelligent life understood the message and then go from there.

While some luminaries, such as Stephen Hawking, have warned against trying to contact extraterrestrials, Vakoch said contact is already being endorsed by many people.

Vakoch added that once news of the initial contact has appeared, it would become almost impossible to stop anyone from trying to contact them on their own.

Once the news gets out that we’ve detected extraterrestrials, anyone with a transmitter can say whatever they want.

Any response probably would be forthcoming in at least 25 years due to the distance the message has to travel between Earth and GJ273b.

The exoplanet was chosen because of its visibility from Earth’s northern hemisphere, even if it is not the closest potentially inhabited exoplanet to Earth. That distinction belongs to Proxima b, which is just 4 light-years away.

Please like, share and tweet this article.

Pass it on: New Scientist