Finger Food # 2 - Fermi Paradox

We are in the week between podcast releases which means more Finger Food for you.  This serving comes to us from P.S. McKay. Bon appetit!

It was over a casual lunch. In an experimental lab in the 1950's one of the fathers of the Atomic Bomb was discussing a rash of theft of municipal trash cans in the area. One fellow scientist blamed it on UFO's which was based on the rash of sightings recently.

There was a good laugh to be had through all of it. How ridiculous the idea of aliens going around neighborhoods and stealing random trash cans.

Then Dr. Fermi stopped and suddenly said, "Then where are they?"

It as a poignant question that was immediately understood among his coworkers. The idea behind it is the universe is widely understood to be roughly 13 billion years old. There are many nearby stars that are many millions of years older than the Earth's current star. Given the idea that there are so many different stars, so many different possibilities for life, then where are they?

By that logic, even using earth technology that was slightly higher in advancement from 1950's tech, aliens should have been able to colonize or make contact with the rest of the galaxy within 5 to 50 million years of that advancement. While that seems like a long time for an alien civilization to develop, that is just a blink of an eye not only from a geological standpoint, but especially from a cosmological view.

With that understood, then where are all the aliens?