I have been thinking about the Fermi Paradox for some time so I really enjoyed this blog post. Tim Urban does a much better job than I think I could do in discussing the issue of why we have not had contact with other intelligent life (I am including all things intelligent and not just carbon based creatures).
You have all heard that there are billions of stars in each galaxy, and there are billions of galaxies. Many stars, it is believed, would have planets that would be suitable for life forms such as us not to mention life forms based on other structures. So why have we not seen evidence of other life forms especially when you consider that the universe is a lot older than our planet?
The blog post discusses “filters”. For instance, maybe it is extremely hard for life to form in the first place. Or even if simple forms of life form, it is very difficult to get to multi-cell life forms that can evolve. Or even if this happens, it is very unlikely that intelligent life forms such as us (excluding the USA congress) would evolve. Or even if intelligent life forms evolve perhaps they are only around a for a brief amount of time before they blow themselves up or destroy their planets (as we are trying our best to do). Maybe all these filters are in effect so it is one very improbable event multiplied by another multiplied by another. There is also the possibility that the kind of life form we represent transitions rapidly into something we are not capable of recognizing and it is intact all around us.
My own point of view is that the kind of life form we are seeking last less than a thousand years and maybe much less. I am talking about life forms capable of sending electromagnetic energy into space. We have been doing that less than 200 years and our planet is about four billion years old. I don’t think we will be doing it more than another 100 years, myself. There are children that are born now may actually witness the end of the Human Race as we know it or better said, the transition of the human race.
Of course, there are those that think we were created by a divine force who only create us. Frankly, I find that one hard to buy into.
So please read this excellent blog post. As I said, it is better than anything I would have written.