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Publisher's Summary

In these lively and fascinating essays, scientists from around the world weigh in on the latest advances in the search for intelligent life in the universe and discuss just what that might look like. Since 2000, science has seen a surge in data and interest on several fronts related to ET (extraterrestrials); AI (artificial intelligence); and SETI (search for extraterrestrial intelligence). The debate has intensified over whether life exists outside our solar system, what that life would look like, and whether we'll ever make contact.

Included in this audiobook are essays from a broad spectrum of the scientific community: cosmologists, astrophysicists, NASA planetary scientists, and geneticists, to name just a few, discussing the latest research and theories relating to alien life. Some of the topics include: If life exists somewhere in space, what are the odds that it evolves into something we would recognize as intelligent? What will space travel look like in the future, and will it all be done by cyborg technology? How long until we are ruled by robot overlords? (This is actually a serious consideration.) Are we simply a simulation in the mind of some supreme being acting out a virtual reality game?

For those who have ever wondered, Is there anybody out there? here are the latest theories and evidence that move us closer to answering that question.

©2017 Jim Al-Khalili (P)2017 Random House Audio

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What science thinks of extraterrestrials

Don't be deceived by the title. This book is the science of detecting life in other planets. It does touch on some science fiction and our fantastic imaginations, but very quickly quells any proof of "aliens" as depicted by movies, books, and conspiracy theories.

Saying all the above, this is still one of the most fascinating collections of scientific thinking on what might be out there and possibilities of life in other planets.

It takes an Al-Khalili to bring those true scientists to talk about this subject as most have shunned away from the subject and for good reason. We cannot identify something that we can't define, and believe it or not, life is defined differently by many in science. In fact if there is one thing in common, it is that life cannot be defined.

Still, this book better than many others gives the perspective of many scientists, and gives a good foundation where the reader can make his own decision. Like consciousness, unfortunately there aren't many ways that can decisively prove that life exists beyond earth, and those nay sayers will always have the upper hand.

I would like to think we are progressive and open minded to understand that we may not be so special, and other life exists. Or that life is beyond our narrow interpretation of it, and this book brings hope.

Excellent collection of scientific thoughts on the subject. Highly recommended to anyone interested in science and too fixated on everyday chores.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Great.

Best thing I've listened to on audible 👍you wont be dissapointed if you are into SPACE STUFF

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Attention to Detail

I was impressed with the depth of this book. I expected it to be a brief overview of a wide range of topics pertaining to space aliens. And it was indeed an introduction to understanding what we know and don't know about aliens, how we search for them, what we're looking for and so on. But I was nicely impressed by the detail this book has.

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Really good book

I should've written something about this book sooner, but I found this book to be thoroughly enjoyable for so many reasons. I really liked some of the break downs on why aliens may decide to come to our planet, the discussion of what movies get things right and wrong as well as some of the more technical discussions. Overall super interesting.

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science rocks

I have always be interested in space and the ufo question. So this book combined two of my interests and I feel it did not disappoint. If you want to hear both sides of the ufo debate this book brings to forefront the science i the debate.

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Great overview of scientific opinion on alien life

This collection of essays presents a range of opinions of scientists from different areas of expertise, each commenting on the state of both research and theory regarding some aspect of life elsewhere in the universe, from ideas about the requirements of life, methods it's detection, what it might be like, likelihoods for finding life, and thinking about life that might be fundamentally different from us.

I enjoyed the breadth of discussion that this variety of different voices brought to it, which brought to light aspects of the question that we often miss. There's lots of good science in it, presented in a way that an average person interested in this subject can easily grasp.

I also liked that there was not uniform agreement among the writers on every subject. These are real, working scientists, working through the issues they are presented with. These items are good pointers to where future research will be fruitful.

I would highly recommend this to anyone who is interested in science or wants to know more about what might be out there.

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Paradigm Shift towards "We Are Alone"

Any additional comments?

.. a nice potpourri of ideas & approaches towards a the topic of "ALIENS" ( and LIFE in general !!! ) One Chapter ( I think it is #14) just killed it for me. I couldn't believe what I read /heard and after some fact checking I am convinced more than ever that we are alone.

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Short chapters but still quite dense and diverse

Truly eye opening and well thought out except for the few chapters on the subject of 'fiction/film/ect' felt like filler and not as pertininent to the overall subject matter.

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Major Al-Khalili fan

Loved the chapters and the explanations. Works like these make one sit and reflect upon human nature and inquire more.

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Space...................lots of space in space

Good info and solid science, gets you thinking about how small we really are in this universe....a spec on a rock circling a star in a sea of other stars with their circling rocks all rotating around a black hole, but wait...there are billions and billions more all doing the same thing too?!?! What a sick joke...space has too much space in between for us to travel or even try to communicate with any other life.
The big question is...where did this all come from, smart people back track things using evidence dug up along with some smart science but what was here before the Big Bang and what made the Big Bang happen!?!? Who or what made space and everything in it!?!?