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6 Reasons We're Closer To Discovering Aliens Than You Think

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Kristen Kroll
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« on: May 17, 2015, 05:34:52 pm »

6 Reasons We're Closer To Discovering Aliens Than You Think

By Ivan Farkas May 15, 2015 674,598 views



According to a woman named Ellen Stofan, we'll have definite proof of alien life within 30 years -- and nope, she's not a TV psychic or a National Enquirer writer; she's the chief scientist of NASA, so she probably knows what she's talking about. After telling us for decades that the prospect of finding life on other planets is about as realistic as the plot of Mork & Mindy, science has slowly started changing its tune in light of recent discoveries, like ...
#6. NASA Just Proved That Life Can Begin In Deep-Space Conditions


Despite what the fungus growing on your bathroom wall seems to indicate, life can't just pop up anywhere. Deep space, for example, is so inhospitable that not even the most basic components of life could survive there. So you can jerk off into the vacuum all you want, John Glenn: There's no chance it could cross the cosmic divide to your extraterrestrial soulmate (who, for the purposes of our narrative, looks like Lady ALF).

fStop Images - Caspar Benson/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images

"Time to remove a glove, let my hand freeze, and give myself a 'space stranger.'"
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Kristen Kroll
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« Reply #1 on: May 17, 2015, 05:35:50 pm »

Or at least that's what we thought until recently, when NASA scientists reproduced the building blocks of life and precursors to genetic material in motherfucking space. And by space, we mean a simulated outer-space environment at the Ames Research Center in Silicon Valley, which is the next best thing. The point is, the experiment showed that the cosmos could be teeming with all sorts of biological goodies that can rain down upon planets and seed life.

See, our dumb caveman forefathers (read: us, like five months ago) used to think that the first terrestrial organisms could have been crafted only within the roiling ****-stew that was early Earth, when a combination of hydrothermal vents and solar radiation gang-banged the constituents of life into existence. But NASA's fiddling shows that you don't even need a planet, much less a serendipitous turn of ecological events, to form genetic bases. They plugged organic compounds that can be found throughout the cosmos into their cosmic Easy Bake Oven and zapped it with UV radiation until out popped uracil, cytosine, and thymine -- key components of RNA and DNA. It's very appropriate, perhaps even poetic, that this procedure was carried out by a state-of-the-art vacuum chamber that looks like a laser-based **** pump.
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Kristen Kroll
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« Reply #2 on: May 17, 2015, 05:36:30 pm »



Or a prop from Star Trek. Either way, this thing has witnessed some freaky sex.

Most importantly, this is a scenario that's very likely to occur throughout the universe. All you need are some readily available compounds plus some solar radiation, and boom -- you've got yourself potentially life-bearing molecules. Just remember to wash your hands afterward.
#5. Turns Out There Are Shitloads Of Habitable Planets
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Kristen Kroll
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« Reply #3 on: May 17, 2015, 05:37:09 pm »



Of course, you can create all the molecules you want in space, but they won't do **** if they don't land on a planet where life can survive -- and everyone knows Earth is the only one of those, right? Yeah, they do, and everyone is also dead **** wrong.

Let's begin with our own Milky Way -- a 100,000-light-year-wide spiral that apparently houses a single, bloated species. Or not, because in 2013 astronomers from UC Berkeley and the University Of Hawaii determined that the amount of potentially habitable real estate in just this one galaxy is mind-boggling: It's believed that 20 billion Earth-like planets orbit their stars. At least one of which has to host a race of three-boobed alien women like in Total Recall, because come on.
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Kristen Kroll
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« Reply #4 on: May 17, 2015, 05:37:43 pm »



"Attempt 21,023,381,002: another planet of Wattos. Goddammit."

The astronomers extrapolated that number from data supplied by the Kepler Observatory (they couldn't get funding for an intra-galactic door-to-door census like they wanted, because Obama). The orbiting, battle-damaged space telescope detects planets by fixing upon a given star and waiting to see a shadow as any potential planets cross its path. By doing this, the Kepler has, over the past five years, tracked 150,000 stars and discovered more than 4,000 extra-solar planet candidates, plus an undisclosed number of Death Stars and wandering Galactuses.
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Kristen Kroll
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« Reply #5 on: May 17, 2015, 05:38:37 pm »




Sadly, they found considerably fewer planets when they remembered to clean the lens.

Sifting through data from Kepler, it became apparent that about 20 percent of the stars in our galactic neighborhood are suckling baby planets of their own. The nearest Earth doppelganger resides only about 12 light years away and is quite visible with the naked eye. They probably think we're extremely rude for being over here this whole time and not even saying hi.

But what does this translate to on a universal scale? Well, there are at least several hundred billion galaxies, so that leaves us with a potential billion trillion Earth-like planets -- and that's only Sun-like stars. Furthermore, the figure doesn't even account for exomoons, which, as we've seen in our own solar playpen, can be just as habitable as the planets. If the most advanced life form in all those places is the one that buys millions of Pitbull records every year, then we have to say we're very unimpressed with this universe.
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Kristen Kroll
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« Reply #6 on: May 17, 2015, 05:38:50 pm »

#4. Life On Earth Started A Billion Years Earlier Than We Though
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Kristen Kroll
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« Reply #7 on: May 17, 2015, 05:39:26 pm »




Of course, in order to host life, a planet doesn't just need to be in the perfect place -- it also has to be the perfect age. Remember, the Earth is 4 billion-and-change years old, but life only popped up halfway through that. Back then, the Earth was a steaming garbage heap with a toxic atmosphere whose only upside was not yet having any Pitbull in it. If even habitable planets go through billions of years of hostile barrenness, then the chances of finding life on them are pretty slim, right?

Not really, because (and you might be starting to notice a pattern in this article) everything we knew was wrong. This February, scientists announced that they found evidence suggesting that life bubbled from the primeval muck over a billion years earlier then previously thought, making the first organisms 3.2 billion years old. They determined this by analyzing some extremely old rocks in Australia and finding ancient evidence of nitrogen conversion, and nitrogen which was like catnip to the earliest organisms.
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Kristen Kroll
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« Reply #8 on: May 17, 2015, 05:40:40 pm »



Roger Buick / University of Washington

"Wow! We're alive! Wow! We are so **** high right now!" -the earliest organisms
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Kristen Kroll
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« Reply #9 on: May 17, 2015, 05:41:04 pm »

These embarrassingly simple creatures, the theory goes, migrated from their watery abodes and spread out over land, forming a living, cell-thick film that covered surfaces and mooched off the Earth's tasty nitrogen -- hence the traces found in the rocks, like an athlete's foot infection that won't go away. These living shower mats fed ravenously from the copious terrestrial nitrogen supply, getting fat off the Earth's dime and crashing on its couch without even throwing down money for late-night munchies. But it wasn't all bad, because they belched out oxygen and, through their poor table manners, transformed the atmosphere for the more dignified, multi-cellular organisms of the future.

The fact that complex, creature-produced enzymes existed on the shithole that was our planet 3.2 billion years ago means that such phenomena may occur more easily and more frequently than we thought. Like, you know, on other planets. Hopefully they're more hospitable than Australia, though.
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Kristen Kroll
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« Reply #10 on: May 17, 2015, 05:41:32 pm »

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« Reply #11 on: May 17, 2015, 05:41:45 pm »

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« Reply #12 on: May 17, 2015, 05:42:19 pm »

http://www.cracked.com/article_22338_6-reasons-were-closer-to-discovering-aliens-than-you-think.html?utm_source=huffingtonpost.com&utm_medium=referral&utm_campaign=pubexchange
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« Reply #13 on: May 17, 2015, 05:47:06 pm »

#3. We've Found Examples Of Life Existing In Extreme Conditions, Right Here On Earth



Oceanlab / University of Aberdeen

Evidence for extraterrestrial life can arguably be found here on Earth, where even the most extreme environments are home sweet home to a variety of species, ranging from the ugly to the HOLY **** WHAT IS THIS THING?

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Kristen Kroll
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« Reply #14 on: May 17, 2015, 05:47:51 pm »



Paul Yancey/Whitman College/Schmidt Ocean Initiative


We're not sure if we should run away or catch 'em all.

That hunk of rotting dick skin right there is the deepest-dwelling fish ever discovered, a type of snailfish -- it hasn't been more specifically categorized because scientists can't look at it for too long without weeping. Going about its ugly way at 26,700 feet (or a decidedly less-impressive-sounding 1.7 leagues) under the sea, it looks right at home as garnish for Cthulhu's hellish salad. Its delicate body belies the fact that it lives underneath five oceans worth of crushing water, and its translucent, paper-thin skin reveals its liver and unmentionables, because this far under, no one can see your shame.

The further we delve, the freakier life gets. At depths of over six miles, researchers have found gigantic, horrible, albino (there's no need for pigment in their pitch-black world) "shrimp" that look like a buffet entree served only in H.R. Giger's nightmares. Incidentally, scientists think they can go about a year without eating, which is fortunate, because human faces are expensive these days.

Oceanlab / University of Aberdeen

In the meantime, it feeds on fear.

Scientists have even found an active ecosystem at the bottom of the ocean. The Mariana Trench, or Earth's ass-crack, penetrates almost seven miles into the crust, but landers scouring the bottom have found a veritable hotbed of bacteria and other tiny beings. So, yes, the sea floor is very much alive, because when things die, they sink to the bottom and create a rotting buffet not dissimilar to your local Golden Corral.

Equally hardy specimens have been found in other extremes: Scientists have recently extracted a 30,000-year-old virus from its ancient, Antarctic tomb. Even though it's been frozen solid for a majority of Betty White's acting career, it became instantly infectious the second it thawed. Oh, and it's **** gigantic: a throwback to the humongo-viruses of yore. Luckily, it only infects amoeba, but still, if "unfreezing giant, ancient viruses" is a thing we're doing now, we might need to find that habitable planet sooner than we thought.
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