Predicting Evolution

Evolution is often thought of as a haphazard, random process, the results of which cannot be predicted. A famous biological thought experiment, dreamt up by Stephen Jay Gould, imagines re-winding the tape of evolutionary history on Earth, then replaying this “tape of life” from the beginning. Given the random nature of evolution, it is often thought that the new life history of the planet would look very different from the current one...

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A Glass of Martian Red?

Wine has been with us, in one form or another, for 1000s of years, its origin stretching back to before written records began. When people settled new lands, they brought their vines with them, spreading viticulture across the world. If and when people settle on Mars (an idea that’s gradually moving away from the realms of fantasy and becoming a real possibility) they will almost certainly want to continue this trend...

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How interesting would the discovery of alien microbes really be?

Recent evidence suggests microbial life may have been present on Mars, deep in that planet’s past. Some microbes have been exposed to space and survived, suggesting they are tough enough to endure incredibly harsh conditions...

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