archive: Re: SETI Sagan: Conact: millions of civilizations?

Re: SETI Sagan: Conact: millions of civilizations?

Ed T. Toton III ( (no email) )
Mon, 21 Dec 1998 11:27:54 -0500 (EST)

> >My husband and I watched Contact again last night ( probably for the 12th
> >time). During the scene where Ellie and Palmer are sitting together
> >watching the stars she tells him "There are four hundred billion stars in
> >our galaxy alone . . . if just one out of a million of those had planets and
> >just one out of a million of those had life and just one out of a million of
> >those had intelligent life, then there would be literally millions of
> >civilizations." This is incorrect mathematically, right? Anyone else notice
> >this?

Heck yeah. One in a million million million? That's 10^18, or
1,000,000,000,000,000,000, or One Quadrillion. To say millions of
such civilizations would make the number even larger, on the order
of sextillions of stars. :-)

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Bones, Ed T. Toton III, System Programmer -- UUNET Server Operations
"I have not lost my mind! It's backed up on disk somewhere."
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