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Old 12-03-2010, 12:02 PM
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kevin kevin is offline
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Originally Posted by Akula2ssn View Post
It's pretty much what I expected. Despite it's name, much of the science done in astrobiology is here on earth. In fact you see a lot of people from my own field of oceanography in astrobiology and like oceanography, astobiology is a highly interdisciplinary field.

The field is still in it's infancy and it's nowhere near the stage that many of us who grew up with Star Trek would like. In its entirety, astrobiology or exobiology as it's sometimes called, is really a study about the origins of like in the universe and as such it hypothesizes about the possibility of life elsewhere in the universe based on existing science. From a life science perspective the find is huge, but from a publicity standpoint it's not all that remarkable and not nearly as explosive as say finding silicone base life here on earth but it is what it is.

The major contribution that this find does for astrobiology is that it allows scientists who work in that field to consider a wider range of places in the universe to look for life as well as perhaps open the door for more hypotheses on the origins of life. So yeah...if you're not into the academic side of science, it's pretty dry stuff. Or more specifically if you aren't into the life science side of academic science then who cares. Me? I appreciate the importance of the find but you're not going to find me throwing cocktail parties over it. I was already excited when they discovered that life could exist and evolve without sunlight and that you could have photosynthetic organisms evolve without sunlight. What they've got here is pretty much more of the same.
Thank you for that post.
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