weird life the search for life that is very very different from our own

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Weird Life  The Search for Life That Is Very  Very Different from Our Own
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Publisher : W. W. Norton & Company
Release Date :
ISBN 10 : 0393089940
Pages : 288 pages
Rating : 4.5/5 (2 users)
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“Weird indeed, and not a little wonderful.”—Nature In the 1980s and 1990s, in places where no one thought it possible, scientists found organisms they called extremophiles: lovers of extremes. There were bacteria in volcanic hydrothermal vents on the ocean floor, single-celled algae in Antarctic ice floes, and fungi in the cooling pools of nuclear reactors. But might there be life stranger than the most extreme extremophile? Might there be, somewhere, another kind of life entirely? In fact, scientists have hypothesized life that uses ammonia instead of water, life based not in carbon but in silicon, life driven by nuclear chemistry, and life whose very atoms are unlike those in life we know. In recent years some scientists have begun to look for the tamer versions of such life on rock surfaces in the American Southwest, in a “shadow biosphere” that might impinge on the known biosphere, and even deep within human tissue. They have also hypothesized more radical versions that might survive in Martian permafrost, in the cold ethylene lakes on Saturn’s moon Titan, and in the hydrogen-rich atmospheres of giant planets in other solar systems. And they have imagined it in places off those worlds: the exotic ices in comets, the vast spaces between the stars, and—strangest of all—parallel universes. Distilling complex science in clear and lively prose, David Toomey illuminates the research of the biological avant-garde and describes the workings of weird organisms in riveting detail. His chapters feature an unforgettable cast of brilliant scientists and cover everything from problems with our definitions of life to the possibility of intelligent weird life. With wit and understanding that will delight scientists and lay readers alike, Toomey reveals how our current knowledge of life forms may account for only a tiny fraction of what’s really out there.

Weird Life  The Search for Life That Is Very  Very Different from Our Own

“Weird indeed, and not a little wonderful.”—Nature In the 1980s and 1990s, in places where no one thought it possible, scientists found organisms they called extremophiles: lovers of extremes. There were bacteria in volcanic hydrothermal vents on the ocean floor, single-celled algae in Antarctic ice floes, and fungi in

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Convergent Evolution on Earth

An analysis of patterns of convergent evolution on Earth that suggests where we might look for similar convergent forms on other planets. Why does a sea lily look like a palm tree? And why is a sea lily called a “lily” when it is a marine animal and not a

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Extraterrestrials

"In this EK title Roush investigates a topic that has fascinated him since college -- the possibility and probability of life, intelligent or otherwise, in the universe. The book covers the history and science of our search for extraterrestrial life, and investigates what that search means for us as a

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Extraterrestrial

INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER “Provocative and thrilling ... Loeb asks us to think big and to expect the unexpected.” —Alan Lightman, New York Times bestselling author of Einstein’s Dreams and Searching for Stars on an Island in Maine Harvard’s top astronomer lays out his controversial theory that our

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The Giver

Living in a "perfect" world without social ills, a boy approaches the time when he will receive a life assignment from the Elders, but his selection leads him to a mysterious man known as the Giver, who reveals the dark secrets behind the utopian facade.

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Teaching About Evolution and the Nature of Science

Today many school students are shielded from one of the most important concepts in modern science: evolution. In engaging and conversational style, Teaching About Evolution and the Nature of Science provides a well-structured framework for understanding and teaching evolution. Written for teachers, parents, and community officials as well as scientists

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Everyone wonders what tomorrow holds, but what will the real future look like? Not decades or even hundreds of years from now, but thousands or millions of years into the future. Will our species change radically? Or will we become builders of the next dominant intelligence on Earth- the machine?

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The Coddling of the American Mind

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The Chess Queen

In 1986, Elizabeth Ward Hoskins died leaving the contents of her home on Cape Cod to my husband, Donald Ward Bennett Edwards. He grew up in California unaware of his Ward family history in Boston. He had the opportunity while still a young boy to meet his great aunt, Elizabeth Bruen

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AT THE SHARP END OF LIGHTNING: The intertwined worlds of Oceanlight and Earth are no longer hidden from view of each other. In one realm, Yalara Narika, a winged Sea Sprite, searches for her family and she encounters a deadly blue haze at sea. Escaping the poison makes her realize

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Stop Sabotaging Your Life

In Stop Sabotaging Your Life: 3 Steps To Your Full Potential, acclaimed life coach Bruno LoGreco shares his simple path to achieving healthy mental and emotional independence.How many times have you caught yourself thinking something like this?: I'm not enough—good enough…smart enough…good looking enough…successful enough.… LoGreco

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This profound spiritual guide opens the way for those who seek the truth about the riddles of life and death. Odyssey presents key concepts and teachings that challenge society's dogmatic views and answer life's most pressing questions. Explore the energies that are all around us in the planets and the

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