Read if the universe is teeming with aliens where is everybody fifty solutions to fermi s paradox and the problem of extraterrestrial life by StephenWebb Online


In a 1950 conversation at Los Alamos, four world-class scientists generally agreed, given the size of the Universe, that advanced extraterrestrial civilizations must be present. But one of the four, Enrico Fermi, asked, "If these civilizations do exist, where is everybody?" Given the fact that there are perhaps 400 million stars in our Galaxy alone, and perhaps 400 millionIn a 1950 conversation at Los Alamos, four world-class scientists generally agreed, given the size of the Universe, that advanced extraterrestrial civilizations must be present. But one of the four, Enrico Fermi, asked, "If these civilizations do exist, where is everybody?" Given the fact that there are perhaps 400 million stars in our Galaxy alone, and perhaps 400 million galaxies in the Universe, it stands to reason that somewhere out there, in the 14 billion-year-old cosmos, there is or once was a civilization at least as advanced as our own. Webb discusses in detail the 50 most cogent and intriguing solutions to Fermi's famous paradox. ...

Title : if the universe is teeming with aliens where is everybody fifty solutions to fermi s paradox and the problem of extraterrestrial life
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if the universe is teeming with aliens where is everybody fifty solutions to fermi s paradox and the problem of extraterrestrial life Reviews

  • Richard
    2019-01-22 02:55

    Point a decent-sized radio antenna at any part of the sky, or just look up at it all on a cloudless night: not a trace of aliens - doesn't that strike you as odd?It struck physicist Enrico Fermi as very odd: if the laws of nature are universal, working in the same way all over the galaxy, and have produced the Earth, life (and us) here, then they should have produced Earths (and 'us') everywhere. Worse, our solar system may be more than four billion years old, but the Universe itself is more than thirteen billion - so there should have been Earths out there with their versions of us for aeons already. Yet here we are, apparently alone. This has become known as the Fermi Paradox - in Fermi's own words, 'Where is everybody?' - and the more we learn, the more mystifying it becomes: the Search for ExtraTerrestrial Intelligence programme has been running for decades now, without detecting even a single stray signal, while at the same time the latest space probes are discovering new planets by the truck-load. In fact, this isn't a full-blown paradox at all, just a flat contradiction between what, on the one hand, we believe to be the way the Universe works (its laws of nature, science as a rationale, reason itself for that matter) and, on the other, the Universe we seem to be living in. One of these must be incomplete or even wrong in some way. Perhaps the former; to give just one example, perhaps there are unknown phenomena at work, vast cataclysms which periodically sterilize the entire cosmos and set the clock of life back to zero each time - if that were the case then we would, in a sense, be the first. Or maybe it's the latter: Fermi's 'everybody' are all out there, but for some reason don't want us to know that.This book is a compendium of fifty possible explanations of that sort, from the stolidly scientific to the wildly speculative - and flawed: many contain assumptions about alien psychology for instance (just one alien civilization behaving differently from the rest would flood the galaxy with radio transmissions or speeding spaceships). It's a thorough round-up which also reminded me just how odd all this is; any way you look at it, that silent sky may be the single most important fact our civilization has.

  • Paula
    2018-12-24 01:03

    Very very fun. All the science-based speculations that I love about science fiction, without the misogynist plots.

  • Dennis Littrell
    2019-01-21 21:53

    Webb, Stephen. Where Is Everybody?: Fifty Solutions to the Fermi Paradox and the Problem of Extraterrestrial Life (2002) *****Examining their navels?This is the most up-to-date and thorough discussion of the Fermi Paradox that I have read. Stephen Webb examines all the popular solutions as well as some esoteric ones, giving us considerable background on each along with the benefit of his knowledge on a wide range of relevant subjects including microbiology, plate tectonics, evolution, intelligence, language, philosophy, as well as astronomy and cosmology. And then he gives his solution: we are alone.That was Fermi's solution of course, and it is a popular one; however I don't think that Webb comes anywhere near to making a convincing case; and at any rate he is somewhat equivocal about whether his answer applies to the entire universe or to just the galaxy. It is clear that his answer applies only to life as we know it, having a carbon based biochemistry and a cellular structure. My feeling is that intelligent life forms may evolve from some other chemical basis or even from some use of energy and matter we know nothing about.On pages 237 to 239 Webb presents his argument that we are the only extraterrestrial civilization (ETC) in the galaxy by a process of elimination, i.e., life must be on a planet within both a galactic habitable zone (GHZ) and a solar continuously habitable zone (CHZ) around the right kind of star; must avoid cosmic disasters like supernovae; must have the right kind of moon, Jupiter, and plate tectonics; must evolve beyond single cells; must develop tool use and language, etc. He ends up sifting out everything except us, and the only reason he doesn't sift us out is that he has set us aside since we actually exist!This is close to sophistry, perhaps, but it has been argued before. I might call it the Fallacy of Elimination by Unknown Probabilities about Matters that May or May Not Be Essential. Putting that aside, consider this: If we extrapolate from what we know (as opposed to any speculation) about the existence of life in just our own galaxy, we should expect on average--at the very least--one ETC per galaxy. Wow. Far from being alone, this suggests more than 100 billion other ETCs are out there, although we are not likely to ever communicate with them.One of the things this book demonstrates, as others have before (see especially, Peter D. Ward and Donald Brownlee's Rare Earth: Why Complex Life Is Uncommon in the Universe [2000:], which Webb acknowledges as influential), is that when you're dealing with so little concrete information in such a vastness, it is impossible to be entirely convincing one way or the other. The conclusion in Rare Earth, with which Webb concurs, is that life is common in the universe, but intelligent life is rare. I agree substantially with this, but my "rare" is perhaps larger than their "rare."Some of the familiar but crucial questions considered here were addressed in the excellent Extraterrestrials: Where Are They? (1995) edited by Ben Zuckerman and Michael H. Hart. For example, How long do ETCs exist before they go extinct? Is space travel enormously difficult and expensive or is it just very difficult? Do ETCs have a psychology similar enough to ours to make them want to communicate? How would they communicate, using what sort of medium?--even: would we recognize a communication from an ETC if we received one?The answer to these questions and many others is, we don't know. But it's fun to speculate; and in speculating at least we can eliminate many conceptual and logical errors that might crop up. Furthermore such speculations expand the mind and allow the imagination a greater range. In direct contrast to Webb I think there's only the smallest chance that we are alone. Amazing how people can come to such divergent conclusions from the same evidence!For such answers as, They are so advanced that they have no interest in communicating with us, and They are so into their own self-constructed pleasure-enhancing virtual existence that they care not to look outward, etc., Webb has a ready response. For such answers to solve the Fermi paradox, he says, they have to apply to every single ETC. Surely, he posits, not all ETCs would have such a psychology. But, by taking all such solutions and playing an elimination game similar to the one Webb plays on pages 237-239, we can reverse his conclusion and eliminate all existing ETCs as non-communicative for one reason or another, arriving at the grand conclusion that we are not alone and that there are indeed a whole bunch of ETCs out there.I wish I had the space to address some other Stephen Webb arguments that I think are faulty, but perhaps just one more will be suggestive. On page 229, while arguing that only humans have symbolic language, he relates an experiment in which a dolphin learns to operate an apparatus to release food. The dolphin is timed. Then the scientists close that dolphin off and release a second dolphin into the pool with the apparatus. The first dolphin can send signals to the second dolphin. The scientists then time how long it takes for the second dolphin to learn to work the apparatus. They discover that it takes the second dolphin on average just as long as it did the first. Webb writes: "We can conclude from this that the first dolphin was unable to tell the second dolphin how the apparatus worked."Well, maybe. But replace the dolphins with humans, and the reward of food with hundred dollar bills, and perhaps we might conclude that humans are also unable to communicate how the apparatus worked!Bottom line: for SETI enthusiasts and anyone interested in the prospect of extraterrestrial life, this is a book, despite its flaws, not to be missed. --Dennis Littrell, author of "The World Is Not as We Think It Is"

  • Quinton
    2019-01-09 03:04

    I loved the premise of this book so much, but the execution fell a bit flat for me.Why? I think it was just because the author takes a sort of detached and tedious elaboration of all the different possibilities so that it fills a whole book. I would have preferred something with more pop and pizazz. Give the big picture summary, then break out the key parts, wrestle with the parts and try to really engage with the arguments to highlight the strengths and weaknesses. Instead, it seemed kind of dry and passive. The whole "50 solutions" is a bit misleading too.The premise is still great though and no one else thought to write a book on this topic so the author deserves credit for being the first to address the topic. I just felt like he didn't really tackle it in a satisfying or definitive way and perhaps someone can still come along later and do just that. And to be fair it's a sort of slippery problem where we don't exact have definitive data yet so there's probably only so much that we can expect.

  • Brian Clegg
    2018-12-26 03:08

    I started this book with a sense of foreboding. The subtitle is 'Seventy-five solutions to the Fermi paradox and the problem of extraterrestrial life'. Any premise based on giving 75 different answers to the same question - in this case, effectively 'Where are the aliens?' - sounds like a trainspotter of a book. A title that is obsessed with collecting every possible viewpoint, over and above any value that can be gained from reading it. However, the first proper chapter, giving some background to the Italian physicist Enrico Fermi, and the 'where is everybody' paradox that it is named after him, reassured me hugely, as it was entertaining and well written.I can honestly say that if Stephen Webb had continued in this vein and had written a book about the Fermi paradox and its possible solutions in the same narrative style as his chapter on Fermi and the origins of the paradox, I would have given this book four to five stars. That chapter demonstrated just how well Webb can write. But the format of 75 'different' solutions lets him down. By about the 12 mark, the whole thing was getting a trifle samey. And by solution 20, I was skip reading, searching for interesting bits.The book has a lovely range and covers many fascinating topics - for example, it went from Bayes' theorem to stone axe manufacturing in a few pages - but the constant return to yet another solution to the Fermi paradox gets, frankly, boring. Structured as a continuous narrative, the content of this book would have been excellent, but as 75 bitty 'solutions' it just doesn't work very well. This proved particularly irritating when Webb goes through all the different reasons why life could be rare in the universe, and says at the end of each, over and over variants on 'but of itself, this is probably not enough to justify the conclusion.' I found myself wanting to throw the book against the wall and scream 'But why should it be taken by itself? Why not combine the solutions?' .... And then Webb cheats and does exactly that in his own 'solution', number 75.This was so near an excellent piece of popular science (I'm not really sure why it's part of Springer's 'Science and Fiction' series, as it merely references ideas from SF, but the majority of popular science books do that), just let down by the structure. I'd also say that the publisher is making a mistake pricing the book as if it were an academic title: it's more expensive than any normal hardback popular science title, let alone a paperback.

  • Tom Söderlund
    2018-12-30 23:55

    Relatively comprehensive cross-scientific coverage of current thinking about the possible existence of "intelligent" life elsewhere. Surprisingly less human centric than popular science books from humans on average, but the question itself is quite much so...

  • Marina Windevoxhel
    2019-01-12 00:59

    "If we destroy ourselves, if we ruin Earth before we are ready to leave our home planet... well, it could be a long, long time before a creature from another species loos up at its planet's night sky and asks: 'where is everybody?' " Very clear explanations to complex theory. Only took so long to finish because I got distracted often. Loved it.

  • adam
    2019-01-11 02:04

    Science and science fiction collide to pose answers to a fundamental question about our universeIf the universe is so old and so big, shouldn't there have been ample opportunities for other solar systems, planets, life forms, intelligence, and technology to form? Some these civilizations must be millions of years older than us on Earth, so surely should have developed the capability to communicate and travel through from star to star and galaxy to galaxy. But we haven't heard from or seen anybody else. Where is everybody?This a big and provocative question that has scientific, philosophical, and religious implications. Webb breaks the question down by posing 50 possible solutions to this paradox. He brings in concepts from physics, astronomy, chemistry, biology, history, geology, science fiction, sociology, cognition, and engineering. To think about this question involves the combination of so many disciplines, and that's why it's so very intriguing. Not only that, our best answers are at the frontiers of most of these fields of knowledge. So, in this book you get a whirlwind tour of the biggest thinking, cutting edge, and open questions in so many different areas. I recommend this book to science lovers and science fiction lovers.Webb's structure takes a big getting used to. It can be repetitive at times, as he's tried to make each potential solution self-contained (as he states in the introduction). I read the book straight through.I found the book to be thoughtful, well researched, and thought provoking. It had reviews of basic science, which came off a big elementary (as if Webb had just reviewed a college 101 textbook and parroted back information [he is not an expert in evolutionary biology, for example]).Some of my favorite ideas are: Berserkers which are self-replicated robots that can quickly consume a galaxy; the singularity hits and human life, creativity, and curiosity is no longer necessary, civilizations are destroyed; and that "perhaps it is possible to develop a mathematical system based upon the concepts of shape and size, rather than numbers." I like that Webb can be creative at times. At other times, I found his repetitiveness about not being creative enough to get old quickly.

  • Swapnil Bokade
    2019-01-05 05:13

    50 years ago the great Enrico Fermi posed this question to 3 other physicists while out on lunch, " where is everybody?" Which is known as Fermi Paradox now. The crux of the paradox is as follows. Given there are so many billion stars and so many billion planets, if we follow the principle of mediocrity which says there's nothing special about life on earth and it can evolve anywhere given the right conditions, there should be an awfully large number of civilizations capable of communicating with us. So the question is why don't we see signs of intelligence anywhere else at all? The author has collected various ideas, theories or hypotheses which attempt to explain this Big Silence in this book. The book is divided into three sections 1. Alien are already here 2.aliens exist but haven't communicated 3. Aliens don't exist. The author himself tends to support the 3 group. He argues that given the vast number of parameters that are fine tuned for life on earth to have evolved it is highly unlikely that we would find another place where all theseParameters have been so similarly tuned. This idea had been explored much more in depth in book called Rare Earth which is also a good read on the topic. Personally I tend to disagree with this pessimistic view which says we are alone but since we have absolutely nothing in data to argue in one way or other this is as good a theory to support as any other. This book introduced me to some really novel explanations for the paradox like Von Neumann probes , zoo hypothesis or interdict scenario. All in all a really interesting read.

  • Joshua Hedlund
    2019-01-02 23:14

    Discusses history of Fermi Paradox and fifty representative solutions. Life seems to have arisen soon after life-supporting environment developed on earth. But if it's that easy for life to arise naturally, why haven't we seen any others?1. Helped me appreciate why many solutions that seem initially reasonable are unsatisfying when you investigate them. Yes, stars are far away, but within our own Galaxy, if intelligent life arose somewhere else a billion years earlier, even fairly conservative assumptions should have galaxy colonized in a hundred million years. Sociological arguments (ex. They don't want to explore, they're hiding out of caution, etc) require *every* other civilization to behave that way. Even "virtual" addicts would still eventually have to outrun the death of their star.2. Helped me appreciate how long-term life actually requires *more* fine-tuning than young-earth creationism. Introduced me to concept of the *continuously* habitable zone.3. Found it interesting that the breadth of solutions never seriously considered the possibility that the Christian God deliberately created life. Even seeded/alien type solutions assume a natural initial origin.Fun easy read that covers a lot of science, primarily astronomy but many related topics as well.

  • David
    2019-01-16 23:54

    This book discusses in the detail the decades-old "Fermi paradox" -- if the universe is so congenial to the formation and evolution of life, then where are all of these other civilization? Webb presents a list of 50 proposed "solutions" to the paradox, including: (a) societies lose interest in space exploration and colonization; (b) societies invariably destroy themselves before they venture out; (c) there is a "galactic ethic" that civilizations not disclose their existence to nascent civilizations such as ours; (d) space travel is impossibly difficult; and (e) colonization would take too long. Webb analyzes each of these "explanations", and then presents his own conclusion -- there are no extraterrestrial societies; we are literally the first, at least within the confines of the Milky Way. I personally feel this is a very significant question. This is a very good reference to unravel the mystery.

  • Francesco
    2019-01-03 23:48

    Very interesting book, full of brilliant ideas across multiple fields! Trying to answering to the Fermi paradox (on why we didn't meet extraterrestrial intelligent forms of lives yet or the Great Silence), the author shares with us brilliant ideas on the evolution of our galaxy, of our solar system, of our planet and on terrestrial life in itself.Particularly insightful the last chapters, where Webb explains the exceptionality of the transition from mono-cellular to multi-cellular life and the peculiarity of humans being the only species out of 50 billions to enjoy language, being language a necessary ingredient of an Intelligent life.The only negative point of the book is that the first part, dedicated to why ETIs already contacted us or not, is the least interesting one. So you need to get to the second half of the book to read the best pages.

  • Claus Appel
    2019-01-13 01:15

    This book has a lot of good information and analysis. My chief complaint is that Webb is tremendously biased towards technological optimism. He describes some of the arguments why interstellar travel and colonization may be so overwhelmingly difficult and expensive as to be completely infeasible... and Webb goes "nah, I'm sure we'll solve all that". I was hoping for a deeper analysis of the feasibility of interstellar travel, but Webb skirts past it. There are many other good things in the book, though.

  • Chris Lugo
    2019-01-01 04:57

    This is one of the most interesting books I have read in some time. It is an easy read for the non-scientific types but addresses one of the most important questions I think people can consider at this moment in our cultural development. Unfortunately I think that I agree with the conclusions of the author that perhaps intelligent life in the universie is exceedingly rare.

  • Riikka Vaahtera
    2019-01-21 01:11

    Loppuun saakka upeasti rakennettu teos, joka tarjoili jopa maailmankaikkeutta selittäviä ratkaisuja Fermin paradoksiin: "jos universumissa on muuta älyllistä elämää kuin ihmiskunta, niin missä kaikki ovat?" Kirja, joka sai sekä itkemään että nauramaan.

  • Kristi
    2018-12-31 04:59

    Couldn't make it through it, but I don't think that's the authors fault. Engaging and funny at time, just not for me, I guess.

  • Susi
    2019-01-08 05:17

    blew my mind & broke my heart, basically

  • Fresno Bob
    2018-12-28 03:13

    some of the 50 are mostly repetitive, would have like to have seen more depth of discussion

  • wilk_elektryczny
    2019-01-14 04:04

    Pamiętam kiedy pierwszy raz spotkałem się z pojęciem skali Kardaszewa. Albo Sfery Dysona. Mózgu matrioszki, Mózgu Boltzmanna. I wiele innych. Za każdym razem wyobraźnia wchodziła na najwyższe obroty i byłem zaskoczony, że ludzie nauki, mniej lub bardziej poważnie, rozmyślają o tak mocno wybiegających w stronę fantazji tematach. Marzyło mi się kompendium takiej wiedzy, bo losowe skakanie wzdłuż internetowych ścieżek zawsze budziło we mnie obawę, że coś mi umknie.Przypadkiem, bo nie spodziewałem się tego po tytule, trafiłem na takie kompendium w postaci tej książki. Myślą przewodnią są rozważania na temat tego, dlaczego nie zaobserwowaliśmy do tej pory cywilizacji pozaziemskich - rozważania w postaci siedemdziesięciu pięciu potencjalnych rozwiązań tzw. paradoksu Fermiego.Odpowiedzi są podzielone na trzy kasy: obce życie istnieje i jest tutaj; obce życie istnieje, ale jego śladów tutaj nie ma; obce życie nie istnieje. Każde potencjalne rozwiązanie zawiera jakąś ciekawą ideę, jej opis, krótka historię i analizę tego jak prawdopodobna może być. Ta forma pozwala przemycić w książce mnóstwo niezmiernie ciekawych koncepcji związanych, mniej lub bardziej ściśle, z rozwojem życia we wszechświecie i naszych poszukiwaniach tego życia. Są tutaj rozpatrywane teorie na temat powstawania życia i modele jego rozprzestrzeniania się w galaktykach. W tym również hipotezy na temat powstania życia na Ziemi, powstania inteligencji, powstania świadomości, rozwoju nauki, technologii. Są opisane techniki których używamy obecnie do poszukiwania śladów pozaziemskich cywilizacji. Są opisane, zarówno te istniejące, jak i te czysto teoretyczne technologie podróżowania w przestrzeni kosmicznej. Megastruktury kosmiczne i techniki ich wykrywania. Modele rozwoju planet i układów planetarnych. Natłok wiedzy w tej książce jest ogromny!Oczywiście całość mogłaby być lepsza - wszystkie te rzeczy opisane są dość skrótowo. Ale traktuję tę książkę jako skondensowaną pigułę wiedzy (mimo, że skondensowaną, to wcale nie małą) i drogowskaz, i tak ją traktując nie waham się przed wystawieniem jej dziesięciu gwiazdek. Na zachętę dodam, że po przeczytaniu zostało mi mnóstwo notatek o kolejnych rzeczach do przeczytania - książkach SF, ciekawych hipotezach, modelach i ludziach. Bogate przypisy (~400 pozycji, niektóre dość dokładnie opisane) same w sobie dostarczają już sporą ilość lektury.Chyba nie muszę wspominać, że polecam?

  • Mirco Blaser
    2019-01-18 05:56

    Yeah, I made it! That was a very interesting, hard and thought provoking read. The first three chapters were easy to read but once you get into the scientific bits you have to really focus to get anything out of it, I could barely do more than one solution per sitting. There’s no story, it’s just a pure collection of hard science facts applied to find a solution to the question of life out there in the universe.It’s super fascinating, and I loved it! The parts about possible Type II or III Civilisations with self replicating probes and communication technologies and languages far beyond our understanding were my favourites. Also it was amazing to read about natural science history and exactly how lucky a species we are to be where we are. I mean, it’s incredible how we’ve come here, how the moon formed perfectly, how our planet and the atmosphere came about, how we don’t get frozen or burned to death and how we survive in this very dangerous galaxy.Even if it can be very frustrating that we’ve never heard from aliens, I’m staying optimistic. We probably won’t see or hear anything in our lifetimes, but we’ll get there.

  • Jeremy
    2019-01-19 05:16

    The book presents an exhaustive list of simple and more elaborate solutions to the Fermi paradox. Each of them is clearly stated and kept simple (without too much details). Additionally there are plenty of references to other books and scientific studies if one wants to learn more about a specific subject. I would have liked to read a few more "solutions" around the theme of the multiverse, parallel universes and recent work in theoretical physics (string theory for example) that could have enlarged even more the range of possible resolutions for the Fermi paradox. But maybe the reason of the omission is the lack of data and evidence about these two domains? Or perhaps the field is too complicated to be explained in simple terms and hence be presented in this book. Anyway it is definitely worth a read if you've ever caught yourself thinking: "How can we be alone in the universe? Where is everybody?"

  • Ryan Rodenbaugh
    2019-01-13 01:06

    50 solutions to the Fermi Paradox (i.e., the contradiction between the lack of evidence and high probability estimates (via. the Drake equation) for the existence of extraterrestrial life). A really well-done book that summarizes conclusions of other leading scientists and researchers. I have been on a sci-fi kick lately, and this book really brought my thinking back down to earth, making strong cases for why "alien" life may not exist. I still subscribe to the "dark forest" theory (not discussed beyond 1-2 paragraphs in this book) but was very convinced by the "aliens don't exist" section of this book.

  • Morthen
    2018-12-22 22:50

    Mielenkiintoiben, monia ajatuksia herättävä, mutta aikamoinen sekamelska satunnaisesti yhteenkasattua matemaattis-fysiikkapainotteista tiedonjyvästen knoppitietoa, napsittuna sieltä täältä. Ihan sujuvakielisesti kirjoitettu, mutta silti jouduin lukemaan kirjaa välillä vain silmäillen tai pikalukien.

  • Wm. A.
    2019-01-05 05:02

    A must-read for anyone strongly interested in the question, Are we alone in the Universe? The book is exceedingly well researched and nearly exhaustive. It gives a fair treatment of many, many serious answers to the question, and also a few silly ones.

  • Scott Kardel
    2019-01-05 04:09

    "....Where Is Everybody?..." is an interesting look at life in the universe and the many possible reasons why it hasn't been discovered. It is an enjoyable book, but it is 15 years old and some of the science, especially in the field of exoplanets, is a bit out of date.

  • Juan Gallardo Ivanovic
    2019-01-04 04:50

    A wide and exhaustive explanation for Fermi Paradox. This book basically explores 50 feasible solutions for this subject in a well presented fashion.Sometimes gets too technical but in general terms is an approachable way to go deep into this paradox.

  • Jm Glez De Rueda
    2019-01-13 01:05

    super interesting book

  • Lili Kathey
    2018-12-23 01:54

    Course lit! Was an interesting read. Good that the author took up objective arguments and most sides to an argument, even though the writing was very subjective and made it clear what he thought about it.

  • Nils Kammenhuber
    2018-12-30 22:52

    After having visited Budapest and having seen all their cryptographically protected signposts, I'd judge the first hypothesis to be the most likely explanation, but the other 74 explanations also are a very interesting read.

  • Faber75 Gallo
    2019-01-05 22:50

    Sicuramente un testo ricco di dati, anche se alla fine credo che enucleare 50 possibili soluzioni al paradosso di Fermi sia stata un pò la scusa per metterci dentro, in ogni soluzione, un pò di divulgazione scientifica che male non fa... Lungi da avere una trama, questo libro è un bell'insieme di informazioni interessanti che riguardano la biologia, l'astronomia, l'antropologia e molte altre cose che finiscono in "ia".Anche se talvolta gli argomenti erano un pò fuori contesto mi è sembrato nell'insieme un libro interessante, divulgativo e utile. Certi argomenti forse sono un pò superati, anche a distanza di una decina di anni, ma rimane comunque un bel libro da tenere negli anni come spunto di studi e riflessioni.