Could there really be alien lifeforms out in other parts of space?

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Kieran asked the Naked Scientists:
Could there really be Alien lifeforms out in other parts of space?

What do you think?
« Last Edit: 24/05/2010 20:30:02 by _system »


Offline chris

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I would say almost certainly!

I never forget a face, but in your case I'll make an exception - Groucho Marx


Offline LeeE

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Looking at the question from a slightly different angle...

It would be very surprising if lifeforms out in other parts of space were not alien (although what is alien and what is not may be open to debate).

Although a number of Sci-Fi stories have used the premise that the human race on Earth is actually a detached colony that has lost touch with its wider interstellar traveling parent civilisation, this doesn't really fit with the fossil record that strongly indicates we developed and evolved here, all the way up, from a much lower order of organism than the Hom line, so if life on Earth is the result of 'seeding' from outer space then those 'seeds' would have been a very primitive form of life.

Due to the random nature of evolution, the species that have evolved here on Earth from any common ancestor 'seed' organisms will be different from the species that might have evolved from those same seed organisms elsewhere in the galaxy, at least at higher levels, but there could be commonalities at the very lowest levels i.e. they might contain DNA that we would recognise, and as such, might not be quite so alien after all.
...And its claws are as big as cups, and for some reason it's got a tremendous fear of stamps! And Mrs Doyle was telling me it's got magnets on its tail, so if you're made out of metal it can attach itself to you! And instead of a mouth it's got four arses!