The Eerie Silence

The Eerie SilenceAre We Alone In The Cosmos This Is One Of The Big Questions, Yet It Remains Unanswered This Book Explains Why The Search For Intelligent Life Beyond Earth Ought Be Expanded How It Can Be Done 50 Years Ago, Astronomer Frank Drake 1st Pointed A Radio Telescope At Nearby Stars, Hoping For A Signal From An Alien Civilization Thus Began One Of The Boldest Scientific Projects, The Search For Extraterrestrial Intelligence After A Half Century Of Scanning Astronomers Have Little To Report But An Eerie Silence Eerie Because Many Believe The Cosmos Teems With Life Could It Be, Wonders Physicist Astrobiologist Davies, That We Re Looking In The Wrong Place, At The Wrong Time, In The Wrong Way Davies Has Been Closely Involved With SETI For Three Decades Chairs The SETI Post Detection Taskgroup, Charged With Deciding What To Do If We Re Confronted With Evidence Of Alien Intelligence He Believes The Search Has Fallen Into An Anthropocentric Trap Assuming Alien Species Will Look, Think Behave Like Us His Book Refocuses The Search, Challenging Existing Ideas Of What Forms Alien Intelligence Might Take, How It Might Try To Communicate How We Ought Respond If It Does.List Of IllustrationsPrefaceIs Anybody Out There Life Freak Side Show Or Cosmic Imperative Shadow Biosphere How Much Intelligence Is Out There New SETI Widening The Search Evidence For A Galactic DiasporaAlien Magic Post Biological Intelligence First Contact Who Speaks For Earth Appendix Brief History Of SETIBibliographyNotesIndex Are we alone in the great big fat universe It s presented as if it s a real lonesome thing Just us nine billion, no one to talk to but each other And true, when you put it like that who would want to spend their life with no one except human beings You d have to be a psycho Human beings Eww Give em a planet and what do they do with it Only thing they re good at is making human beings But anyway I don t get why people cudgel their brains about this question are we alone in the universe Here are the facts 1 The universe is big It could be bigger than we think it is It might turn out to be the biggest thing there is Imagine that or don t, you might hurt yourself And and and could be this is only one of a million universes Cool Could be new universes are popping into existence all the time Pop There goes one.2 Everything is a really long way from everything else Nothing is near There are no corner shops in space, no local Sainsburys There s sod all Deep space facilities, in that respect, are poor It would take centuries to get to anywhere You d have to have a massive ipod When you look at the universe, you just think nah Let s stay in.3 So just imagine along with me that means that if life started in a gazillion places apart from Earth imagine, imagine we re never going to find out because in order to discover each other then one of the civilisations has to have invented Warp Factor Five or whatever and then they have to happen to be living in the same galaxy
Paul Davies does a really good job here of illustrating the issues of SETI s lack of success, and Fermi s Paradox He goes into the science and philosophy of it in depth, explaining all the terms and generally making it crystal clear What amazes me is that he s still somewhat optimistic about finding intelligent life elsewhere in the universe, given all the things he says in this book I m now almost completely sure that even if intelligent life has arisen elsewhere and that s still a big if that we ll have trouble finding it because of the issue of the sheer amount of time and space involved.Not that I don t think the search is worth doing Even if we ll ne
This was a good book on how and why we need to think out of the box while keeping the search ongoing for ETs Extra Terrestrials Paul Davies does a good job of mentioning the various ways in which we can do this, or what to look out for, where do we as intelligent beings need to think anew, and stay away from anthropomorphism and our mindsets based upon the past and present dogmas.A pretty delightful read for people who always have questions a
There are but very few instances where you pick a gem that many mistook for just a dusty rock How could this book be so unpopular Maybe thats the most compelling evidence for the eerie silence The intellectual orgasm was quite similar to that from the movie Interstellar Its like a thousand classic science fictions distilled to just over 200 pages The shadow biosphere, the great filter, neutrino beacons, nanoprobes Oh baby, it s Christmas And it reaches its pinnacle when Paul convinces you almost certainly why biological intelligence is to quantum processers as apes are to humans The stepping stone in evolution Phew. And to end it all consider three choices to reason the eerie silence Either we, as earthlings, are really special to hold life, Or really really special to hold intelligent life, Or are just the next iteration in an
Paul Davies is an astrobiologist who at the time of this book at least was the chair of SETI s Post Detection Taskgroup, so if you re interested in the question of Are we alone this book offers a number of unique and necessary insights.For most of the book, Davies carefully avoids offering his opinion on whether or not there is other intelligent life in the universe, giving instead numerous possibilities of what non Terrestrial life might look like, or why it might not even be there He goes back and forth between optimistic and pessimistic about the chances of life existing elsewhere, but one thing he says for certain is that if intelligent life does exist out there, SETI currently is very unlikely to find signs of it.One of the big questions, he says, comes down to whether life is common in the universe or life is rare in the universe, and with our sample size of 1 we have no way of really answering that question yet But he does put forth various reasons why he believes it is either very common or very rare he does not believe there is a middle ground in this case He suggests that if the genesis of life is common, it may well have
Paul Davies, the chair of SETI s Post Detection Science and Technology Taskgroup, wrote The Eerie Silence in 2010, a short time after the Kepler space telescope launched Back then a handful of exoplanets planets outside our solar system had been discovered Since then Kepler alone has confirmed over 2,300 exoplanets and estimates for the observable universe go as high as 5.3 trillion.That s a lot of planets.And yet seven years later, the eerie silence Davies wrote about persists You might think that over 50 years of observation by SETI failing to yield any tangible results would be disheartening and indeed, Davies does admit it can be a little depressing when you focus solely on the lack of any clear signal that we are not alone in the universe But he remains hopeful that life here is not a one time fluke among the billions of star systems That hope is tempered by his adherence to the scientific method, of observation and testing, with minimal speculation.It is that speculation, though, that forms the heart of the book Davies presents com
I can t imagine there is anyone else in the world this world who knows about this subject than Paul Davies A fascinating and comprehensive survey of what the eerie silence might or might not mean E.g., either we haven t looked in the right places ways or they h
The eerie silence is mostly a primer in the the search for extraterrestrial intelligence SETI focused around the US program formerly run by NASA In addition Davies, who is part of that program, adds a fair amount of his own opinions and
As intimately involved with the SETI project as Paul Davies is, you might well imagine this book to be a cheerleading campaign for the program in general Well not so much He is unexpectedly candid about the many shortcomings he sees in how the search is currently being conducted By succinctly explaining just how narrow the search parameters are and how limited the scope, Davies shows that it is hardly surprising that 50 years of listening to the stars has yet to yield any positive result Upon this premise he then frames a rather compelling argument for broadening the search beyond radio astronomy by employing myriad technological advances to seek out tell tale physical signs of intelligent alien activity While searching for signs such as the relative distribution of magnetic monopoles isn t nearly as sexy as intercepting an ET radio broadcast, the chance of success is much greater and will begin to populate the SETI database with something other than the dearth of interstellar communication signals Davies arguments are stated in a fairly straight forward and not overly technical manner He can be a bit preachy at ti
This is a fantastic book for anybody interested in the SETI project and Fermi s Paradox The biggest take home point I got out of reading this book is the question of what side of the Great Filter we are on read the wiki article on the Great Filter for further info and what profound implications it has whether the filter is already behind us or if the filter is in our future If the filter is behind us and the rare earth hypothesis is correct, the future looks bright for our descendants and the possibility of our descendents whether biological or machines being able to make it to a neighboring star system in the millions of years to come before the sun swallows the Earth is somewhat hopeful On the other hand, if the filter is ahead of us, it is possible that there may be many technological civilizations scattered throug

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  • Hardcover
  • 256 pages
  • The Eerie Silence
  • Paul Davies
  • English
  • 14 December 2019
  • 9781846141423