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Originally posted by MrPenny
Yeah, the equation could use some more variables.....but at least it has the value of "1" to work with.
“Complex life is separated from the simplest life forms by several very unlikely steps and therefore will be much less common. Intelligence is one step further, so it is much less common still,” said Prof Watson.
His model, published in the journal Astrobiology, suggests an upper limit for the probability of each step occurring is 10 per cent or less, so the chances of intelligent life emerging is low – less than 0.01 per cent over four billion years. Source
Originally posted by Nohup
We know that the equation at least equals one, but we already knew we exist. And since the Drake Equation doesn't really add anything to what we already know, I don't consider it particularly useful.
Originally posted by Badge01
Originally posted by rawsom
I believe that the Drake Equation is, in fact, quite correct and can be used to accurately calculate number of alien civilizations.
I basically agree with your comments, but, again, the DE is not designed to calculate if we are 'alone', or the number of alien civilizations in our galaxy.
There may be thousands of Type 0.5 agrarian civilizations in the Milky Way galaxy without the means or intelligence to broadcast a signal.
There may be lots of civilizations that are able to passively search for signals, but don't have the means or power requirements to broadcast actively.
In fact there may have been many thousands of civilizations that rose to prominance a million years ago but died out before Man first started walking upright.
Remember each planet is a closed biosphere. It's like a culture that lives in a glass bowl. Without the presence of some kind of renewing event, like plate tectonics or deep ocean currents, the lifespan or 'greenspan' of a typical Earth-sized planet may be short as they pollute their environment and die a toxic death.