A recent analysis of the fossils of ancient microorganisms from deep within Earth’s past have unveiled the presence of a surprising amount of biodiversity that flourished roughly 3.4 billion years ago, when the Earth was still a very young planet. The variety of metabolic processes that these early microorganisms used suggests that they needed time to evolve the diversity that the researchers discovered, meaning that life on Earth had to have started much, much earlier. And if life on Earth took hold that quickly in its history, what would prevent the multitude of other planets we’re discovering across the universe from forming their own lifeforms?
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Researchers may have discovered direct evidence of a former sister planet that resided in our Solar System, but was obliterated during an unknown cataclysm that occurred billions of years ago. It is theorized that the Solar System may have had as many as ten such lost planets early in its history, but this new evidence takes such theories and brings them that much closer to reality.
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"Life, as we know it."

In recent years, some members of the scientific community have begun to realize that this oft-repeated phrase encapsulates a concept that appears to have been limiting modern efforts to recognize signs of extraterrestrial life, both intelligent and primitive: our search efforts tend to focus on what is familiar to us, as opposed to our keeping an eye out for something that might be truly alien. Toward that end, a recently-published study has proposed that our inherent bias towards seeking the familiar may have been blinding us to evidence that has been staring us in the face all along.
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The University of Cambridge has announced that famed and accomplished theoretical physicist Professor Stephen Hawking died. Hawking passed peacefully at his home, also in Cambridge, on March 14, at the age of 76.
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