Hi everyone, and thanks for stopping by! My name is Stephen Tremp and I blog over at Breakthrough Blogs, mainly on science, science fiction, writing, promoting, and miscellaneous stuff. In keeping with my current mini-series theme of Aliens, I'd like to re-post an article from last year by Rusty Webb as he discusses a most fascinating subject: The Fermi Paradox. Take it away Rusty ...
To understand the context a bit better we need to think back to when European explorers started exploring the Pacific Ocean in earnest, a most curious thing met them at almost every stop they made: People.
Where did they come from?
People spilled out of Southeast Asia thousands of years ago. They spread across the great ocean on little more than rafts, hopping from island to island, most likely facing starvation and death from exposure as they drifted off into the great unknown to see what was out there. Within a relatively short period of time they’d covered the Pacific Ocean from New Zealand to Easter Island to Hawaii. Hundreds of islands, all full of people.
If we look at into the night sky and think of each star as an island in the pacific the question arises, if we go and explore, will we once again discover that someone has been there before us? Hopping from planet to planet like the Polynesians did here on earth so long ago?
We should. Well, we should if life is out there. In fact, they shouldn’t just be out there – they should be here.
And if we, people that is, decided to head for the stars now, or even if we waited a century to two to get the engineering issues that make space travel difficult sorted out – we could cover every habitable nook and cranny of our galaxy – a hundred billion stars – in as little as a few million years. A blink of an eye when compared to the age of the galaxy itself. It doesn’t require made up technologies and lightspeed vessels. We know how to do this.
So then, if there are aliens out there, anywhere in our hundred billion stars in the night sky – or have been at any time in the past 10 billion years – and even one race, one species of aliens, burst out from their home and into the starry night, then everywhere we look in the heavens should be the home of an interstellar civilization. If more than one civilization arose and did the same, then space would be very crowded.
So where is everyone?
Enrico Fermi thought the very same thing, and most stories say he blurted out the question while having lunch with colleagues. They should be out there, they should be here.
But they’re not, at least not in a way we can recognize.
There’s no shortage of possible answers. Many books have graced the shelves of our local libraries and bookstores on the topic. But no one knows.
So I ask you. Where is everyone?
You can visit Rusty at his blog The Blutonian Death Egg.
As always, thanks for stopping by and I hope you enjoyed Rusty’s post. I sure did. And I invite you to stop by my Website at Breakthrough Blogs for my Aliens series. We’ll cover many topics beyond little green men. See you there!