The search for life as we know it, behaving as we would expect it to do

Today’s xkcd:











This may not really be fair to researchers who are currently searching the radio waves for signs of artificially produced transmissions from other planets.  After all, there is only one electromagnetic spectrum, while there might be any number of ways species might use or not use chemical traces to communicate.  Still, I think the basic point is well taken.

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  1. cymast

     /  October 14, 2009

    I’ve often thought we are quite naive if we assume human signals will be sensed, and sensed accurately, by non-humans, and vice-versa. Exponentially so for extra-terrestrials. Confoundedly so for “life” as we do *not* know it.

  2. acilius

     /  October 14, 2009

    Same here! We’ve had so little success in communicating with non-human life on this planet, why would we expect it to be easier if we tried to communicate with life that sprang from an entirely different evolutionary history?

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