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Beyond the expected

Why are we only interested in aliens we can have sex with?

By johnboy - 27 April 2012 18

ANU’s published their thoughts on the finding of “habitable planets” in other solar systems:

“Determining whether these planets are habitable has become the new holy grail of astronomy,” said planetary scientist Dr Charley Lineweaver, lead author of the study.

“The new-found abundance of planets, combined with the much larger range of inhabited terrestrial environments suggests that habitable planets are common. This increases the probability of finding some kind of extraterrestrial life,” he said.

Fellow researcher and PhD student Aditya Chopra said our best estimates of habitability come from the planet we know best: Earth.

“By comparing the inhabited and uninhabited regions of Earth, we can identify the most important factors that determine habitability. For terrestrial life, those factors are liquid water, a narrow range of temperature, and an energy source,” he said.

Dr Lineweaver added: “Habitability is not just a question of abiotic environmental conditions – the presence of life may be required to maintain the habitability of a planet over billions of years. The study of the habitability of other Earths is the major focus of astrobiology – and increasingly planetary science and astronomy.

So we’re only interested in aliens with similar physiologies to ourselves?

No planets with liquid methane or liquid sulfur just because the life there can’t be eaten or copulated with?

leila

What’s Your opinion?


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18 Responses to
Why are we only interested in aliens we can have sex with?
phototext 9:20 pm 27 Apr 12

“Also the idea that every living thing on other planets would communicate through sound/word based “languages” was improbable to me.”

It being television, sound/word communication made things a bit easier for the audience to work out what was happening but not all alien races communicated though sound/ word based languages.

I’m guessing you didn’t watch much Star Trek, it is a pretty well rounded universe they created.

phototext 9:08 pm 27 Apr 12

“Actually that’s what offended me most about star trek – the premise that all the aliens were basically humanoid.”

Well apart from it being easier to get a human actor to play a humanoid race, Star Trek didn’t follow that premise.

There was a respectable number of non humanoid races in the Star Trek universe. Maybe around a quarter where non humanoid.

p1 8:40 pm 27 Apr 12

Narrow temp, liquid water and energy source doesn’t limit it too one head, two eyes etc. There are life forms in the deep ocean trenches who fit the same criteria.

bigfeet 7:38 pm 27 Apr 12

HenryBG said :

devils_advocate said :

Actually that’s what offended me most about star trek – the premise that all the aliens were basically humanoid.

Agreed. Star Trek was really, really dumb. Not much imagination being shown there.

Oh come on..give them a break…Star Trek was a reasonably mediocre budgeted series that ran for three series almost half a century ago. For its time it actually dealt with many relevant social issues. They did the best with what they had.

It reached cult status well after it was axed and subsequent movies and spin offs have been stuck trying to live within the limitations set by that series, at the risk of offfending and alienating millions of their fan base.

Deref 6:48 pm 27 Apr 12

HenryBG said :

devils_advocate said :

Actually that’s what offended me most about star trek – the premise that all the aliens were basically humanoid.

Agreed. Star Trek was really, really dumb. Not much imagination being shown there.

+1 Along with Star Wars – achingly stupid.

HenryBG 5:29 pm 27 Apr 12

devils_advocate said :

Actually that’s what offended me most about star trek – the premise that all the aliens were basically humanoid.

Agreed. Star Trek was really, really dumb. Not much imagination being shown there.

HenryBG 5:27 pm 27 Apr 12

BokChoi said :

I think the issue here is that it is an incredibly complex and time-consuming process to find this type of planet around another star. In fact, it’s kind of miraculous we can do it at all. Given that, it is only logical to let the one known example of a life-bearing system guide the work. Exotic possibilities will come later.

Yes, and I think Johnboy might be taking their comments out of context: it is a fact that terrestrial life is abundant in many places and absent in others. This planet with abundant life on it that still has uninhabited places is good pointer to what could be habitable elsewhere.

As they say, the temperature range is very narrow, liquid water is fairly important and an energy source is a must.

These scientists push the boundaries of what is habitable by putting a lot of work into discovering extremophiles, as these species pretty much define the boundaries of habitability.

devils_advocate 4:56 pm 27 Apr 12

Velveteen Rabbit said :

I think it has a lot to do with the fact that on Earth, an awful lot of the animals we see most, that exist on land, are um, I don’t know the technical biological term – but have one head, an equal number of limbs, one eye on each side of the head/face, one nose and one mouth. There aren’t an awful lot of creatures we can readily recognise or come into regular contact with that have three eyes, two heads, 17 tentacles and 4 noses or exist in liquid form, so it’s hard for (most) humans to imagine anything of the sort may exist on another planet. It’s easiest to just think that “well they would resemble what we are familiar with”. .Am happy to be proved wrong however!! 🙂

Actually that’s what offended me most about star trek – the premise that all the aliens were basically humanoid.

Star wars was a little better – eg jabba – but not by much. Also the idea that every living thing on other planets would communicate through sound/word based “languages” was improbable to me.

This is why I was never able to be a nerd. Also these shows were kind of boring.

Velveteen Rabbit 3:43 pm 27 Apr 12

I think it has a lot to do with the fact that on Earth, an awful lot of the animals we see most, that exist on land, are um, I don’t know the technical biological term – but have one head, an equal number of limbs, one eye on each side of the head/face, one nose and one mouth. There aren’t an awful lot of creatures we can readily recognise or come into regular contact with that have three eyes, two heads, 17 tentacles and 4 noses or exist in liquid form, so it’s hard for (most) humans to imagine anything of the sort may exist on another planet. It’s easiest to just think that “well they would resemble what we are familiar with”. .Am happy to be proved wrong however!! 🙂

Deref 3:10 pm 27 Apr 12

poetix said :

Aliens from liquid sulphur planets are really hot.

Yeah – and trying to have sex with the crystalline inhabitants of Betelgeuse 9 is really painful – not just because it pisses them off.

Ben_Dover 3:06 pm 27 Apr 12

They want to anal probe us, we want to bone them, sounds fair.

phototext 3:01 pm 27 Apr 12

“We have failed to uphold Brannigan’s Law. However I did make it with a hot alien babe. And in the end, is that not what man has dreamt of since first he looked up at the stars?”

Zapp Brannigan

BokChoi 2:56 pm 27 Apr 12

I think the issue here is that it is an incredibly complex and time-consuming process to find this type of planet around another star. In fact, it’s kind of miraculous we can do it at all. Given that, it is only logical to let the one known example of a life-bearing system guide the work. Exotic possibilities will come later.

poetix 2:50 pm 27 Apr 12

Aliens from liquid sulphur planets are really hot.

MERC600 2:22 pm 27 Apr 12

Billy Connelly put it rather good about early explorer stoneage types who were starting to wander a little. When they came across sumthin they didn’t recognise their first thoughts were ” can I eat it, can it eat me , can I shag it “.

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