Perfect planet, clever species

Field Museum books explores chances of life elsewhere in the Milky Way and what makes life on Earth so special

CHICAGO--Life in outer space. Evolution. Warfare. Spirituality.

These are some of the topics Field Museum Curator Bill Burger tackles in Perfect Planet, Clever Species, a "romp through the history of the universe."

"[Burger] writes with the clarity and humor of one who has had experience communicating complicated ideas to the lay public," says the Boston Globe.

The book argues that there is probably life elsewhere in the Milky Way, but something more like "green slop" than intelligent life. We are the only intelligent life in the galaxy, Burger says, because we are the beneficiaries of a long series of improbable events and conditions that could never have occurred elsewhere. These include:

  • a long-lived star
  • a stabilizing moon
  • plate tectonics
  • the tilt of the earth
  • the existence of heavy metallic elements
  • flowering plants, etc.

This incredibly unlikely series of conditions have combined to allow life to form, evolution to occur, and civilization to flourish.

Even warfare is a sign of our special status and related to our successes, Burger says. The human brain grew and developed because of an "arms race" within the human race. In other words, our relatively large, complex brain developed because of a need to outfight other species and fellow homo sapiens.

The book is published by Prometheus Books.

- Peter Crane at the Royal Botanic Gardens calls it "an engaging tour do force of life, the universe and everything...overflowing with fascinating detail and provocative insights."

- Hugh Iltis at the University of Wisconsin-Madison writes, "I believe that this brilliant, richly documented, and well-written book--on par in historical importance with classics such as Rachel Carson's Silent Spring, Paul Ehrlich's The P

Contact: Greg Borzo
Field Museum

Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. New Test Spots ALD Carriers With Near-Perfect Accuracy
2. Perfect Powders For Improved Implants
3. Scientists Sift Through Trash In Search Of Perfect Landfill
4. A test case for DNA barcodes to identify species
5. Hidden diversity: DNA barcoding reveals a common butterfly is actually 10 different species
6. DNA barcode finds four new bird species
7. Endangered species list more bleak than originally thought
8. Wrapping a memory with an experience, capacity for recollection detected in non-human species
9. Critically endangered monkey species plummets more than 50 percent since 1994
10. Discovery of new shrimp species adds to unique family
11. Two warbler species find the West isnt big enough for both of them

Post Your Comments:

(Date:8/5/2020)... ... , ... Regenative Labs has received approval from the Centers for Medicare & ... first Wharton’s jelly allografts to be assigned a Q code and be approved for ... Wharton’s jelly allograft product to be recognized as a 361 HCT/P by CMS regulated ...
(Date:7/18/2020)... ... July 16, 2020 , ... A study has been published ... Neoasis™ active noise control device to attenuate typical noises in a simulated neonatal ... the alarm sounds from patient monitors, ventilators and other bedside devices that would ...
(Date:7/2/2020)... ... July 01, 2020 , ... AltruBio Inc. http://www.altrubio.com ... a biologic for the treatment of steroid-refractory acute graft-versus-host disease (SR-aGVHD), at European ... J Martin of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, this single-arm, open-label Phase ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:8/12/2020)... FARMS, Mich. (PRWEB) , ... August 12, 2020 ... ... Consulting Group, Inc. (EMMA International), a global leader in FDA compliance consulting ... of the nation’s fastest-growing private companies. The list represents a unique look at ...
(Date:8/3/2020)... (PRWEB) , ... August 03, 2020 , ... ... collection, today announced Jim Corrigan, President and CEO has been named one of ... broad cross-section of industry sectors, PharmaVoice 100 honorees are selected based on how ...
(Date:7/31/2020)... ... July 29, 2020 , ... R3 Stem Cell International is ... $3950. With 50 million stem cells total, patients may choose which extremities they would ... for arthritic joints (BMC Musculoskelet Disord. 2016). At R3 International, umbilical cord tissue is ...
(Date:7/31/2020)... ... July 29, 2020 , ... ... transmitter systems that can be configured to drive Klystrons, TWTs, IOTs, and magnetrons. ... drive one or two switches in a push-pull configuration; yielding fast fall time ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: