Friday, 12 August 2011
What Does a Martian Look Like? The Science of Extraterrestrial Life
The authors of this book also see a possibility of extraterrestrial life. "We now know that there are many planets out there in the galaxy, and we have good grounds for supposing that a number of these will have life." It may be strange life, though, they say, nothing like what we know on Earth. On those principles, Cohen and Stewart (respectively, a reproductive biologist and a professor of mathematics at Warwick University in England) lay a basis for what they call xenoscience--knowledge of the strange. They draw on serious science--biology, chemistry, astronomy and physics--and also on science fiction, because the best of it has "made some useful contributions to the scientific understanding of possibilities for alien lifeforms."