2 votes
Apr 21, 2015

Statistically it is almost certain that there is other life on other planets somewhere in the Universe. What is less certain is whether or not there is any intelligent life. We only have a sample size of one when it comes to planets that support life, so we have no idea how likely it is that self-awareness will develop at some point in the evolutionary history of a planet. It only took 500 million years or so for life to appear on earth after it solidified, but multicellular life didn't evolve for another few billion years, and the development of high intelligence happened only yesterday in evolutionary time. For this reason it's reasonable to assume that the development of intelligent life is much less likely than the development of life in general. However there is obviously much uncertainty here.

Regardless of how likely there is to be intelligent life out there, it's very, very unlikely that that life will ever visit us due to the universal speed limit of 300 000 km/s

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