Despite my attempts to avoid turning this into the X-Files blog, I am forced to succumb once again to the tantalizing appeal of the quasi sci-fi headlines I encounter. As they say, resistance is futile*.
I’m sure this is fairly typical NASA hype for mysterious press conferences (I have nothing to base that on- I doubt I’ve ever used the words “mysterious NASA press conference” in the same sentence), but yesterday I found out that precognition may be possible– so I’m fairly open-minded at this point. Apparently, NASA has announced a press conference to be held this Thursday, 12/2/10, “to discuss an astrobiology finding that will impact the search for evidence of extraterrestrial life”. NASA has been fairly tight-lipped about the details of the press conference, but we do know that they have assembled quite a cast of experts in fields related to life on other planets.
astrobiology: the study of the origin, evolution, distribution, and future of life in the universe
Again, I have no experience to base this on, so perhaps press conferences like this are fairly common. I don’t know. But I do know that it sounds an awful lot like the beginning of quite a few movies that typically end in giant green things killing lots of humans. (Brief side note- if precognition is real, will the future alien landing affect the outcome of the press conference on Thursday?)
Discover writer and astronomer Phil Plait’s reaction:
So what’s the press conference about? I don’t know, to be honest, beyond what’s in the announcement. The scientists on the panel are interesting, including noted astrobiologists and geologists who work on solar system objects like Mars and Titan. So this is most likely going to be something about conditions on another moon or planet conducive for life. Of course, the speculation is that NASA will announce the discovery for life. Maybe. I can’t rule that out, but it seems really unlikely; I don’t think they would announce it in this way. It would’ve been under tighter wraps, or one thing. It’s more likely they’ve found a new way life can exist and that evidence for these conditions exists on other worlds. But without more info, I won’t speculate any farther than that.
So, stay tuned to the news on Thursday. It could be the day we finally meet the Martians. Or at least a really cool new rock.
(*Note to self: must stop making Star Trek references)