Extraterrestrial: The First Sign of Intelligent Life Beyond Earth

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ed
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Extraterrestrial: The First Sign of Intelligent Life Beyond Earth

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In late 2017, scientists at a Hawaiian observatory glimpsed an object soaring through our inner solar system, moving so quickly that it could only have come from another star. Avi Loeb, Harvard’s top astronomer, showed it was not an asteroid; it was moving too fast along a strange orbit, and left no trail of gas or debris in its wake. There was only one conceivable explanation: the object was a piece of advanced technology created by a distant alien civilization.

In Extraterrestrial, Loeb takes readers inside the thrilling story of the first interstellar visitor to be spotted in our solar system. He outlines his controversial theory and its profound implications: for science, for religion, and for the future of our species and our planet. A mind-bending journey through the furthest reaches of science, space-time, and the human imagination, Extraterrestrial challenges readers to aim for the stars—and to think critically about what’s out there, no matter how strange it seems.

https://www.amazon.com/Extraterrestrial ... oks&sr=1-2

This isn't von Danekin
ABRAHAM (AVI) LOEB is the Frank B. Baird, Jr., Professor of Science at Harvard University, chair of Harvard’s Department of Astronomy, founding director of Harvard’s Black Hole Initiative, and director of the Institute for Theory and Computation (ITC) within the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics. He also chairs the Advisory Committee for the Breakthrough Starshot Initiative, serves as the science theory director for all Initiatives of the Breakthrough Prize Foundation, as well as chair of the Board on Physics and Astronomy of the National Academies. Author of four books and over 700 scientific papers, Loeb is an elected fellow of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences, the American Physical Society, and the International Academy of Astronautics. In 2012, Time selected Loeb as one of the twenty-five most influential people in space.
Might actually shell out for it when it comes out.
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Re: Extraterrestrial: The First Sign of Intelligent Life Beyond Earth

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Re: Extraterrestrial: The First Sign of Intelligent Life Beyond Earth

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it was not an asteroid; it was moving too fast along a strange orbit, and left no trail of gas or debris in its wake. There was only one conceivable explanation: the object was a piece of advanced technology created by a distant alien civilization.
Escalated.png

There's a weird spinning sound too--oh, false alarm, that's just coming from Occam's grave.
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Re: Extraterrestrial: The First Sign of Intelligent Life Beyond Earth

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Re: Extraterrestrial: The First Sign of Intelligent Life Beyond Earth

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Interesting
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Re: Extraterrestrial: The First Sign of Intelligent Life Beyond Earth

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"Only one conceivable explanation"

Err, no.

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Re: Extraterrestrial: The First Sign of Intelligent Life Beyond Earth

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Witness wrote: Fri Jan 08, 2021 1:09 am Article by Loeb, FWIW: 6 Strange Facts about the Interstellar Visitor 'Oumuamua.
1. Assuming that other planetary systems resemble the solar system, Pan-STARRS should not have discovered this or any other interstellar rock in the first place. In a paper published a decade ago, we predicted an abundance of interstellar asteroids that is smaller by many (two to eight) orders of magnitude than needed to explain the discovery of ‘Oumuamua, assuming it’s a member of a random population of objects. Put another way, ‘Oumuamua implies that the population of interstellar objects is far greater than expected. Each star in the Milky Way needs to eject 1015 such objects during its lifetime to account for a population as large as ‘Oumuamua implies. Thus, the nurseries of ‘Oumuamua-like objects must be different from what we know based on our own solar system.
This is a theoretical prediction of the abundance of interstellar asteroids, but nobody knows what the abundance of "pieces of advanced technology created by a distant alien civilization" is. Does he imagine that the latter outnumber the former by two to eight orders of magnitude?

But then, alien spaceships would probably not be dispersed in random directions and might be aimed at specific stars, but still, it seems like assuming something even less likely than the probability they hypothesized. And it is only a hypothesis. It was based on theories, not observational data. Even their predicted abundance has an error bar of two to eight orders of magnitude. In other words, it's more likely that their model was just wrong.
2. ‘Oumuamua originated from a very special frame of reference, the so-called local standard of rest (LSR), which is defined by averaging the random motions of all the stars in the vicinity of the sun. Only one star in 500 is moving as slowly as ‘Oumuamua in that frame. The LSR is the ideal frame for camouflage, namely for hiding the origins of an object and avoiding its association with any particular star. The relative motion between ‘Oumuamua and the sun reflects the motion of the sun relative to the LSR. ‘Oumuamua is like a buoy sitting at rest on the surface of the ocean, with the solar system running into it like a fast ship. Could there be an array of buoys that serves as a network of relay stations or road posts, defining the average galactic frame of reference in interstellar space?
In contemplating the possibility of an artificial origin, we should keep in mind what Sherlock Holmes said: “when you have excluded the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.”
I don't think these musings have excluded anything yet.

This sounds very dubious to me. He's saying that the motion of Oumuamua is very close to the average of random motions of all the stars in the vicinity of the sun. I don't doubt the measurements, but what he says it implies. So what? You don't need an array of buoys to figure this out. We calculated it without them.
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Re: Extraterrestrial: The First Sign of Intelligent Life Beyond Earth

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I don't buy it either.

A (very rough) calculation shows that, in our vicinity, stars are so far away from each other that the volume you can assign to them is about a billion times greater than the volume of the solar system (counting large, out to Eris). You'd need a tremendous number of these "buoys" to randomly hit any target solar system – just to "hide their origin"?

And there's a temporal context: outside of our short technological (or even biological) window we wouldn't have noticed the "thing" fly by. Incredible coincidence, or they show up regularly, meaning they are even much more abundant.