Another Life?

Something’s cooking at NASA. The webs are abuzz with the words “extraterrestrial life” but a cursory examination reveals that the rumors actually point to an announcement of terrestrial life, albeit one that is very different from life-as-we-know-it. I think that’s even more exciting; a finding that will shake the foundations of Biology – and it involves a lot less travel.No, really, what’s more thrilling: finding alien life forms on Mars or Titan, or finding them right here among us?

The concept of the “shadow biosphere” has been talked about before, but actually few people have taken it seriously up until now. I’m rooting for it, but NASA does have a bit of a reputation for making a lot of noise about findings, so we’ll see.

Anyway, we’ll have to wait for the press conference, then for the publication of the result, then for the independent verifications, then for the arguments, then for the setup of testing protocols, then for some more findings of the same sort – and then we can rewrite every single textbook in the life sciences.

http://www.nasa.gov/home/hqnews/2010/nov/HQ_M10-167_Astrobiology.html

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