About a year ago, we published a little blog (LSS 21 1 21) in which we at least considered the theory of Professor Avi Loeb that the object Oumuamua, more commonly by its everyday name of I/2017/U1, was in fact an alien spacecraft, or a fragment of one. We even opined that, if so, it could be a Good Thing as the threat from it might prevent the warring tribes of nations and football supporters from knocking six bells out of one another for a while.
No such luck. For two scientists called Steven Desch and Alan Jackson of Arizona State University have made a pretty convincing case that the thing was natural. It seems to be a chunk of frozen nitrogen, which is common in the bitterly cold regions of our own solar system, and so must be among the Oort clouds and Kuiper belts of our neighbouring stars. Here’s a link below.
For us, as ever, the key point is to keep an open mind and consider both sides, a la Bertrand Russell. We always felt that as Oumuamua was the first ever interstellar object, it would be an error to draw vast conclusions until we had seen a few more. But Professor Loeb is an erudite man and if you still want his side of the story, we reference his book . Reference, not plug, notice. Because when we read it we felt it contained a little too much information about Professor Avi Loeb and his life and times, and a little too little about Oumuamua and his findings. Well, it is quite a small object for a very large book.
So it’s back to the petty jealousies of many football supporters, dictators and peasant types, all knocking six bells out of each other and making the world a far worse place as they do it. Only the imminent threat of real aliens might convince them of the tininess of this planet, and their own tiny minds at the same time.
 Avi Loeb: Extraterrestrial: The First Sign of Intelligent Life Beyond Earth Houghton Miffin Harcourt 2021
astrobiology #extreterrestrial #alien #search for life #seti #space #astronomy