archive: Re: SETI [Fwd: Probability of other ET Life is 1]

Re: SETI [Fwd: Probability of other ET Life is 1]

Alfred A. Aburto Jr. ( (no email) )
Fri, 18 Dec 1998 06:55:41 -0800

It is an interesting book. Also discussed is some
reasoning as to why we might be among the 'first'
intelligent civilizations in the Galaxy ... In fact
I there is a recent Astrophysical Journal article
speaking of the same topic (I will look for the ref
and post here) --- it is like spring time when all
the flowers seem to bloom almost all at once ... so
too it is spring time for life in the Galaxy ...

P0 is "the probablility that life exists around some

It is not zero because we are life and we exist ...
So we know this one fact: P0 > 0, that is, P0 is NOT
zero! It is just a fact regarding P0, nothing more ...

The rest follows from P = 1 - (1-P0)^N, where N is the
number of stars chosen ...


>"Dr. H. Paul Shuch" wrote:
> At 05:22 AM 12/18/98 -0800, Alfred A. Aburto Jr. wrote:
> >In the book Aczel writes that the probability (P) that there
> >is life around at least one other star in the Galaxy
> >First of all, we know that P0 is not zero, because life
> >already exists on Earth.
> >So, if this
> >value of P0 is accurate, then, yes (!), there must be other
> >life in the Universe! This is a pretty profound conclusion!
> Maybe I'm missing something here. We determine that P0, the probability of
> life forming, is not zero because we exist, and then we use that fact to
> say that P, the probability that life has formed, equals 1. It's been a
> long time since I took probability theory (as opposed to just plain
> statistics), but to say that live exists in the Universe because life
> exists in the Universe looks to me like circular reasoning.
> Still, I gotta read that book.
> -----------------------------------------------------------------
> H. Paul Shuch, Ph.D. Executive Director, The SETI League, Inc.
> 433 Liberty Street, PO Box 555, Little Ferry NJ 07643 USA
> voice (201) 641-1770; fax (201) 641-1771; URL
> email work:; home:
> "We Know We're Not Alone!"