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Thread: "Russian Astronaut Says 'Alien Life' Found on Space Station Did Not Come From Earth"

  1. #1

    "Russian Astronaut Says 'Alien Life' Found on Space Station Did Not Come From Earth"

    From Newsweek:
    Russian Astronaut Says 'Alien Life' Found on Space Station Did Not Come From Earth
    If the microbes really are alien life and not from Earth how exactly would they go about proving it?
    My inner Mulder wants to believe, but my inner Scully remains skeptical.

  2. #2
    Lead Moderator calikid's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wally View Post
    From Newsweek:
    Russian Astronaut Says 'Alien Life' Found on Space Station Did Not Come From Earth
    If the microbes really are alien life and not from Earth how exactly would they go about proving it?
    After gross physical examination, DNA sequencing and chemical composition testing would be a good start.

    Followed by comparison to known life forms, for deductive reasoning. Determine where the microbes did NOT originate would provide a good clue.
    The aim of an argument or discussion should not be victory, but
    progress. -- Joseph Joubert
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    Lead Moderator calikid's Avatar
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    A follow up story to the one about ISS organisms.

    How will humanity react to alien life? Psychologists have some predictions.
    By Ben Guarino. In the Washington Post.com.

    Germs stuck to the outside of the International Space Station are not from around here, cosmonaut Anton Shkaplerov said in an interview last week with Russian state-owned news service Tass. Microbes “have come from outer space and settled along the external surface,” Shkaplerov said. “They are being studied so far, and it seems that they pose no danger.” Russia's space agency, Roscosmos, has not weighed in on this extraordinary claim.

    The odds are not on the side of aliens. If microorganisms are tucked away within the space station hull's crannies, as Shkaplerov says, they probably hitchhiked the 250 miles from our planet's surface.

    But imagine if scientists found alien microbes. How would humanity react to the news?

    Michael Varnum, a psychologist at Arizona State University and a member of its new Interplanetary Initiative, is trying to anticipate this response. “One of the initial questions [of the initiative] that we're curious about is how might we respond if we discover evidence of extraterrestrial life,” he said.

    The moment when humans meet E.T. is a staple of fiction and speculation, as well as armchair science and conspiracy YouTube. No one has predicted the psychological reactions to extraterrestrial microorganisms in a “systematic, careful way,” Varnum said.

    Varnum teamed up with planetary scientists and conducted three experiments. The study, published online in November on a preprint server, is still under review, Varnum said. Two psychologists not involved with this research told The Washington Post that the study's methods were robust.

    The psychologist and his co-authors “make a critical distinction between reactions to the discovery of extraterrestrial intelligence and finding evidence for microbial life beyond Earth,” said Douglas Vakoch, president of the nonprofit group Messaging Extraterrestrial Intelligence, who was not part of the study. This work is unusual, he said, as studies past have focused on intelligent life.

    In the first experiment in the study, Varnum and his co-authors analyzed how the media covers extraterrestrial discoveries. They looked at five events: the discovery of pulsars in 1967, which were not immediately recognized as natural; Ohio astronomer Jerry Ehman's detection of the “Wow!” radio signal in 1977 (the signal's source remains disputed); the 1996 announcement of fossilized microbes in a Martian meteorite; the strange behavior of Tabby's Star reported in 2015; and 2017's discoveries of exoplanets that exist within distant habitable zones.

    The psychologists fed 15 articles — by the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, The Post and others — through a program that analyzes written content for positive or negative words. Journalists described these events using words with “positive affect” significantly more frequently.

    “The reaction seemed to be much more positive than negative,” Varnum said.
    Story Continues
    The aim of an argument or discussion should not be victory, but
    progress. -- Joseph Joubert
    Attachment 1008

  4. #4
    I never under estimate humanities ability to make "much ado about nothing," what I mean by that is that statistically a lot of people have taken it for granted there must be life out there. I personally feel that no matter what form that life might take if it is from out side our own biosphere it would have little ability to effect us if it is microbial. If it is sentient, well that would be another matter, if, they had the ability to cross interstellar space and, if, they were hostile I think it would be all over. All things being considered IMHO we should be concentrating on the threat we pose to our selves for the time being instead of tilting at windmills.

    Get your cans of Sterno out folks.

    Last edited by whoknows; 12-04-2017 at 07:14 PM.

  5. #5
    REAL contact with intelligent ETs IMO, would only make us (humans) better as a species.

    I think we all know the BIGGEST danger to humanity is ourselves . . .

    Sad but true!!!

  6. #6
    Lead Moderator calikid's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by epo333 View Post
    REAL contact with intelligent ETs IMO, would only make us (humans) better as a species.

    I think we all know the BIGGEST danger to humanity is ourselves . . .

    Sad but true!!!
    President Ronald Reagan (speech) seemed to think ET contact would unite humanity as a defensive force against hostile invaders.

    "I occasionally think how quickly our differences worldwide would vanish if we were facing an alien threat from outside this world" RR.

    Not to get to far OT epo333, but how do YOU see contact making "us (humans) better"?
    The aim of an argument or discussion should not be victory, but
    progress. -- Joseph Joubert
    Attachment 1008

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