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Intelligent Life in the Universe

4.24  ·  Rating Details  ·  257 Ratings  ·  11 Reviews
The first popular and accurate discussion of natural evolution, origins of the universe, stars and planets. Collaboration between famous American Carl Sagan and world/famous Russian Astronomer, I.S. Shklovskii explaining the origins and life in the universe.
Paperback, 509 pages
Published November 16th 1998 by Emerson-Adams Press (first published January 1st 1966)
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Sylvia
Jun 14, 2009 Sylvia rated it it was amazing
Shklovsky's work is comprehensive and compelling. This is where Carl Sagan got his start - writing extensive foot-notes to Shklovsky's definitive exploration of the scientific and mathematical evidence for his conclusions that first, there almost certainly IS other intelligent life in the universe, and second, we will almost certainly never find them - and this was written before the expansion of the universe had been inferred.
Ilya
Sep 25, 2012 Ilya rated it liked it
Shelves: space
The first part of this book is a popular introduction to astronomy and cosmology; as far as I can tell, it is accurate but dated: a lot of discoveries were made after this book came out: pulsars, gamma-ray bursts; cosmic microwave background radiation was discovered just before the book was published. Also, a lot of what we know about the Solar system was found by robot explorers such as the Voyagers, which then just began to fly. The book speculates that dinosaurs became extinct at the end of t ...more
John E. Branch Jr.
Read it in the late 70s, in the original hardcover edition from 1966 (apparently not even listed here at Goodreads), as background while preparing a review of Carl Sagan's 1979 popular-science book, Broca's Brain. This collaboration with Soviet astrophysicist Iosif Shklovsky, which was a revised, extended, and retitled version of a book Shklovsky had published in 1962, struck me when I read it—and still does—as scientifically much more serious and focused than what I was reviewing. And yet I can ...more
Elisabeth
Jul 11, 2013 Elisabeth rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
Well written, highly readable, but far too dated to be useful or even terribly interesting. It must have been fascinating in the late 60s, but I was left wondering how much of what they said has turned out in the long run to be even close to true. Some of the description of methodology has been interesting, though.
Joy
Jul 31, 2009 Joy added it
read this a long time ago. i remember being shocked that i was reading it first of all then even more shocked that i thoroughly enjoyed it and laughed a lot. carl is funny. yes, his a funny scientist.
Thomas
Aug 02, 2010 Thomas rated it really liked it
A little dense for the casual reader. But a really wonderful resource nonetheless.
Jay
Apr 14, 2008 Jay is currently reading it
The best book on the subject. It covers a lot of ground in fine style.
Daniel Clark
Oct 03, 2012 Daniel Clark rated it it was amazing


I thought this book was important, and interesting to me.
Bramble
Feb 16, 2010 Bramble rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Fun for a stubborn 8th grade geek.
Noel
Feb 24, 2008 Noel marked it as to-read
recommended by mr.sinopoli
Terry
Jan 06, 2013 Terry rated it it was amazing
Delighted and dazzled me when I read this in high school (late 60's). Out of date now.
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in 1934, scientist Carl Sagan was born in Brooklyn, N.Y. After earning bachelor and master's degrees at Cornell, Sagan earned a double doctorate at the University of Chicago in 1960. He became professor of astronomy and space science and director of the Laboratory for Planetary Studies at Cornell University, and co-founder of the Planetary Society. A great popularizer of science, Sagan produced th ...more
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