Discussion Forums - Science Fiction

Topic: The Making of Star Trek question

Club rule - Please, if you cannot be courteous and respectful, do not post in this forum.
  Unlock Forum posting with Annual Membership.
Subject: The Making of Star Trek question
Date Posted: 11/23/2011 6:18 PM ET
Member Since: 6/5/2011
Posts: 9,860
Back To Top

I'm wondering if anyone in this forum has the book The Making of Star Trek by Stephen Whitfield on their bookshelf and, if so, if I could ask you a question about it.  I read this book way back when, back in my Trekkie days (wink), and seem to remember the book incuded a forward or intro of some sort that tried to answer the age old question of "Is there life on other planets?" by reducing it down to a simple math equation.  Something like, if you took one one millionth of the suns in the universe that were similar to ours you'd have over ####### suns, if you took one one milliionth of those suns.....and so on.  I'd like to know the exact passage or who the source of it was.  Can anyone help?

Subject: Drake
Date Posted: 11/24/2011 11:04 AM ET
Member Since: 7/26/2006
Posts: 385
Back To Top

Are you talking about the Drake equation?  Check out Wikopedia.

Or do a web search for life on other planets.  Interesting reading if you want to kill an afternoon.

I've seen this equation referenced on television on The Big Bang as well as NUMB3RS, within the last month. 

Last Edited on: 11/24/11 5:19 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Subject: I believe I've found what you are referring to
Date Posted: 1/22/2012 12:51 PM ET
Member Since: 9/25/2011
Posts: 2
Back To Top

If you're still looking for that quote I believe I've found it on pg. 23:

" Ff 2 (MgE) - C1Ri1 x M = L/So"

"...The number of stars in the Universe is so infinite that if only one in a billion is a sun with planets...

...and if only one in a billion of all these planets is of Earth size and composition...

...the Universe would still contain approximately 2,800,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 planets capable of supporting oxygen-carbon life...

...or (by the most conservative estimates of chemical or organic probability) something like three million worlds with a good possibility of intelligent life and social evolution similar to our own..."

-From The Making of Star Trek

Date Posted: 1/23/2012 7:54 PM ET
Member Since: 6/5/2011
Posts: 9,860
Back To Top

Yes, yes, that's it, James.  It wasn't the math formula I wanted so much as the word simplification.  Ta'