Can Life Be Merely an Accident? Robert Piccioni Announces ‘Everyone’s Guide to Atoms, Einstein, and the Universe’

August 4, 2009

WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif., Aug. 4 /PRNewswire/ — “Science shows that the conditions necessary for life are extraordinarily improbable. Life has four major prerequisites: a viable universe, the right atoms, a habitable environment and an effective genetic code.

“Albert Einstein once said: ‘What really interests me is whether God had any choices in the creation of the universe’ — meaning does the universe have to be the way it is due to the laws of physics and math, or could it have been very different? Fifty years later, science has found 20 choices — 20 knobs akin to the temperature and cooking-time knobs on an oven. Each knob could be set to almost any value, but it seems life is possible only if every knob is set to specific values — the values in our universe. For example, the universe’s initial expansion rate had to be right to 50 decimal digits. That is as likely as drawing the ace of spades from a shuffled deck 29 times in a row. Would you bet on that?

“What about atoms? Of the particles existing in the beginning, all but one in a billion were annihilated by antimatter. Only one in 500 of the survivors were converted into carbon or oxygen. Only one in ten million of those ended up on terrestrial planets. Overall, that is as likely as drawing the ace of spades 11 times in a row. We are truly made of the rarest and most precious ingredients in the universe.

“Earth is a wonderful and extremely improbable habitat. It’s in the right place in a favorable galaxy. Our solar system formed at the right time and with only one star of the right size. Jupiter protects us from asteroids, and our Moon stabilizes our seasons. Earth has a nearly circular orbit of the right size. It has the right mass and magnetic field to maintain an atmosphere. No one knows the odds of all that, but it could be as improbable as drawing the ace of spades 5 times in a row.

“Lastly, how likely are humans? We are defined by our DNA, which is 99.9% the same from one person to another and which contains three billion base-pairs. Randomly matching human DNA is as likely as drawing the ace of spades one billion times in a row. If you were satisfied with any species of life, not just humans, you could subtract five draws.

“Aren’t we special?”

So says California physicist, public speaker and science educator Dr. Robert Piccioni, author of “Everyone’s Guide to Atoms, Einstein, and the Universe.” Dr. Piccioni is developing a TV series on Einstein’s life, his discoveries and their impact on our society. See his website: http://www.guidetothecosmos.com.

Review books and photographs are available upon request. Author available for interviews. Special feature story inquiries are welcome.


    Robert Piccioni
    email: rpiccioni@sbcglobal.net

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SOURCE Robert Piccioni

Source: newswire

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