Are we the only living things in the entire universe? The observable universe is about 90 billion light years in diameter. There are at least one hundred billion galaxies, each with one hundred to one thousand billion stars. Recently, we’ve learned that planets are very common too. And, there are probably trillions and trillions of habitable planets in the universe. Which means, there should be lots of opportunity for life to develop and exist. But where is it? Shouldn’t the universe be teaming with spaceships? Let’s take a step back. Even if there are alien civilizations in other galaxies, there’s no way we’ll ever know about them. Basically, everything outside our direct galactic neighborhood, the so called “Local Group”, is pretty much out of our reach forever, because of the expansion of the universe. Even if we had really fast spaceships, it would literally take billions of years to reach these places, traveling through the emptiest areas in the universe. So, let’s focus on the Milky Way. The Milky Way is our home galaxy. It consists of up the four hundred billion stars. That’s a lot of stars, roughly ten thousand for every grain of sand on earth. There are about twenty billion sunlike stars in the Milky Way, and estimates suggest that a fifth of them, have an earth sized planet in it’s habitable zone, the area with conditions that enable life to exist. If only zero point one percent of those planet harbor life, there would be one million planets with life in the milky way. But wait, there’s more. The Milky Way is about thirteen billion years old. In the beginning, it would not have been a good place for life, because things exploded a lot. But after one to two billion years, the first habitable planet was born. Earth is only four billions years old, so there have probably been trillions of chances for life to develop on other planets in the past. If only a single one of them had developed into a space traveling super civilization, we would have noticed by now. What would such a civilization look like? There are three categories. A type one civilization would be able to access the whole energy available on its planet. In case you are wondering, we are currently around zero point seven three on the scale, and we should reach type one sometime in the next couple hundred years. Type two would be a civilization capable of harnessing all of the energy of its home star. This would require some serious science fiction, but it is doable in principle. Concepts like the Dyson Sphere, a giant complex surrounding the sun, would be conceivable. Type three is a civilization that basically controls it’s whole galaxy and its energy An alien race this advanced would probably be godlike to us. But why should we be able to see such an alien civilization in the first place? If we were to build generation spaceships that could sustain a population for around one-thousand years, we could colonize the whole galaxy in two million years. Sounds like a long time, but remember, the milky way is huge. So, if it takes a couple of million years to colonize the entire galaxy, and there are possibly millions, if not billions of planets that sustain life in the milky way, and these other life forms have had considerably more time than we’ve had, then, where are all the aliens? This, is the Fermi Paradox, and nobody has an answer to it. But we do have some ideas. Let’s talk about filters. A filter in this context represents a barrier that is really hard for life to overcome. They come in various degrees of scary. One: There are Great Filters and we’ve passed them. Maybe it is way harder for complex life to develop then we think. The process, allowing life to begin, hasn’t yet been completely figured out, and the conditions required may be really complicated. Maybe in the past, the Universe was way more hostile, and only recently things have cooled down to make complex life possible. This would also mean that we may be unique, or at least one of the first, if not the first civilization in the entire Universe. Two: There are Great Filters and they are ahead of us. This one, would be really really bad. Maybe life on our level exists everywhere in the Universe but it gets destroyed when it reaches a certain point, a point that lies ahead of us. For example, awesome future technology exists, but when activated, it destroys the planet. The last words of every advanced civilization would be: “This new device will solve all of our problems, once I push this button!” If this is true, then we are closer to the end then the beginning of human existence. Or, maybe there is an ancient type three civilization, that monitors the universe, and once a civilization is advanced enough, it gets eliminated, in an instant. Maybe there is something out there, that it would be better not to discover. There is no way for us to know. One final thought: maybe we are alone. Right now, we have no evidence that there’s any life besides us. Nothing. The Universe appears to be empty and dead. No ones sending us messages, no one answering our calls. We may be completely alone, trapped on a tiny moist mud ball in an eternal Universe. Does that thought scare you? If it does, you are having the correct emotional reaction. If we let life on this planet die, perhaps there would be no life left in the Universe. Life would be gone, maybe forever. If this is the case, we just have to venture to the stars and become the first Type Three civilization, To keep the delicate flame of life existing, and to spread it until the universe breathes its final breath, and vanishes into oblivion. The universe is too beautiful not to be experienced by someone. This video was made possible by your support. It takes at least 200 hours to make one of our videos, and thanks to your contributions on Patreon, we are slowly able to do more and more of them. If you want to help us out, and get your own personal bird for example, check out the Patreon page.

The Fermi Paradox — Where Are All The Aliens? (1/2)
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100 thoughts on “The Fermi Paradox — Where Are All The Aliens? (1/2)

  • February 8, 2019 at 4:07 pm
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    There's brand new stuff in the Kurzgesagt Merch Shop. Check it out here: shop.kurzgesagt.org

    Reply
  • August 25, 2019 at 8:48 am
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    The process is God you idiots!!

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  • August 25, 2019 at 9:17 am
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    0:25 oh wait!! Its a magnemite!!

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  • August 25, 2019 at 10:46 am
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    What If every galaxies contain only 1 habitable planet?

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  • August 25, 2019 at 4:46 pm
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    All hail galduck

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  • August 25, 2019 at 4:52 pm
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    We shall pray to Galduck and hope for our freedom

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  • August 25, 2019 at 4:53 pm
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    5:40 oh sh** everybody build bunkers

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  • August 26, 2019 at 5:29 am
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    knights of sidonia, good stuff @ 1:00

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  • August 26, 2019 at 6:52 am
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    Why do you think a civilization that can conquer the galaxy cannot escape our observations?

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  • August 26, 2019 at 7:29 am
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    I love the insane amount of random references in these videos. Haha the space ship at 1:05 is from Knights of Sidonia.

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  • August 26, 2019 at 12:29 pm
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    Maybe we are the last species to exist after a wipeout of species

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  • August 26, 2019 at 1:58 pm
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    is there 400 billion grains of sand

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  • August 26, 2019 at 6:46 pm
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    I can't help thinking, even if we made a ship that could catch up to the rest of the Universe, it would speed up…

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  • August 26, 2019 at 9:27 pm
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    Were gonna raid Area 51 to see them aliens, its not the raid thats a meme, its reality

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  • August 26, 2019 at 10:01 pm
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    omg : o !

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  • August 27, 2019 at 12:07 am
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    Pray to god that aliens show up and help us get out of the situation we’re in. I don’t want my children to die of over climate change or some fucked up disease

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  • August 27, 2019 at 1:16 am
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    Not true weve found fossils in meteorites of moss and bacteria think about that

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  • August 27, 2019 at 6:43 am
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    Did any any notice the pokèmon at 0:25

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  • August 27, 2019 at 8:18 am
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    I think someone got the script wrong, I dought theres only 40mil grains of sand. Maybe he ment to say 10,000 grains of sand, for every planet? which would be 4,000,000,000,000,000. I still think theres more grains of sand then that though hahahaha

    Edit: nvm just watched The Fermi Paradox II and he ment to say theres 10,000 stars for every grain of sand on earth, in the OBSERVABLE UNIVERSE. Makes more sence

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  • August 27, 2019 at 9:30 am
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    0:25 Magnemite

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  • August 27, 2019 at 11:39 am
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    What if animals take over the planet which animal has the possibility more

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  • August 27, 2019 at 2:44 pm
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    I love the Dont hug me Im scared computer top left at 0:17

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  • August 27, 2019 at 3:14 pm
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    Certainly there are millions of habitable planets in our milky way. But I think intelligent life form like humen are rare in our universe….

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  • August 28, 2019 at 12:44 am
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    Why did that look like Magnetite in the thumbnail?

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  • August 28, 2019 at 1:52 am
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    Don’t go spending millions trying to find a planet to conquer. Save the one you live in first. Priorities son.

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  • August 28, 2019 at 2:24 am
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    Using cutsey animation to lie to millenials are we? Aww.. and it would have worked too, I mean maybe if you spaced out the bullshit a little more. You're in the club and its too obvious what you people do and you're all in it together. Soon you'll be in hell huddled together… lying to yourselves that youre in paradise. Wait, no. You're actually going to be burning forever and stepping over each other as you do in this life, sharing the space with same intolerable imbeciles as yourselves. Can't wait for that day you're all wrangled together and thrown out like the poisonous waste you choose to be.

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  • August 28, 2019 at 3:18 am
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    Well, we put an Ahole called Trump to be our POTUS, so I guess we really need to end this life on Earth and start over again…or maybe just end it forever.

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  • August 28, 2019 at 4:24 am
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    The Reapers are coming

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  • August 28, 2019 at 7:05 am
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    Jesus is the only way, truth, and life!

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  • August 28, 2019 at 7:09 am
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    Nice. Believe all other postulates, even how ridiculous they are, as long as it does not involve an Intelligent Designer of all material universe. At least be an agnostic about it, but atheistic? How could you?

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  • August 28, 2019 at 9:09 am
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    Dem aliens are hiding from us

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  • August 28, 2019 at 10:59 am
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    People come up with good theories but they never think that with increasing technologies we can even teleport to different places around the universe. This might make colonization easy within 2000 years

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  • August 28, 2019 at 11:02 am
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    Also isn't it possible just like we cannot communicate with others the same way others cannot communicate with us

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  • August 28, 2019 at 11:37 am
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    The Brotherhood of Nod and a TARDIS

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  • August 28, 2019 at 12:55 pm
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    Maybe we wouldn't know, as the:
    The Amazon is literally on fire
    Global Warming
    Ice Bergs are melting
    The Bees are dying

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  • August 28, 2019 at 3:17 pm
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    Now i have 3 more brain cells

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  • August 28, 2019 at 5:58 pm
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    Maybe we are the only ones any our species has inherited the entire universe and everything in it

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  • August 28, 2019 at 11:22 pm
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    What’s the difference between a thousand billion and a trillion, if there is one?

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  • August 28, 2019 at 11:53 pm
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    I’m an ice cruncher

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  • August 29, 2019 at 12:34 am
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    Its weird to think that there might be others in the universe, maybe not like us, that are watching similar videos or lectures and wondering about life elsewhere…

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  • August 29, 2019 at 1:59 am
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    At first things would not be good cause things exploded a lot

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  • August 29, 2019 at 2:37 am
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    So like, they said a type 2 civilization is when we cover the sun somehow… Just let me know how to sign up for the empire when it's finished.

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  • August 29, 2019 at 5:17 am
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    "The universe is too beautiful to not be experienced by someone." — Kurzgesagt, 2015

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  • August 29, 2019 at 10:42 am
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    Fun fact: I made the Milkyway in my cereal bowl. Thanks to me, a galaxy exists.

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  • August 29, 2019 at 6:02 pm
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    Reapers; the greatest filter of them all

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  • August 29, 2019 at 11:34 pm
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    If is a giant destroyer duck whe Are…
    USA:WHE HAVE NUCLEAR MISSILES AND OIL!!!

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  • August 30, 2019 at 2:45 am
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    You need tectonic plates which provide carbon dioxide recycling. Otherwise you get a Venus. You also need a magnetosphere to protect against solar radiation. Otherwise you get a Mars. Both of which are only possible on Earth because we have a solid iron/liquid nickel inner and outer core rotating at different speeds. Something we wouldn't have if a planet hadn't run into us during the formation of the Earth. Also, it ran into us at an oblique angle which is the only reason Earth didn't blow up when it happened. You also need a Jupiter to stop comets. It might be a lot more rare than people think. Not as simple as living in the habitable zone.

    Reply
  • August 30, 2019 at 3:32 am
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    Where not alone in Space if we do Multiplayer Mode
    Just like MineCraft

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  • August 30, 2019 at 3:36 am
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    I swear one of those pictures of aliens was a river zora from zelda.

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  • August 30, 2019 at 10:22 am
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    I wish i could live in an age that allows me to catch a flight from earth to the other side of the milky way, have a fancy dinner, and come back.

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  • August 30, 2019 at 12:56 pm
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    Re: Type 3 civilisations: All I want to say is this: if we find some sort of mass relay outside our solar system… don't activate it!

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  • August 30, 2019 at 2:30 pm
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    2:24 Vulcanoes?

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  • August 30, 2019 at 10:26 pm
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    I like the magnamite alien

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  • August 30, 2019 at 10:49 pm
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    "and the universe is to beautiful to not be experienced by someone"
    That's deep

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  • August 30, 2019 at 11:22 pm
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    Typo: Vulcanoes

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  • August 30, 2019 at 11:53 pm
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    I think we're here

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  • August 31, 2019 at 11:48 am
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    4:12

    Kane Lives!

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  • August 31, 2019 at 1:01 pm
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    lol maybe some kind of life doesn't need earth conditions or maybe earth conditions are deadly for them

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  • August 31, 2019 at 5:49 pm
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    what about all the ufos off the coast of Virginia? Guy on fox news said he heard the gov recovered a ufo.

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  • August 31, 2019 at 10:18 pm
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    0:20 is that the computer from don't hug me i'm scared?

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  • September 1, 2019 at 12:34 am
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    0:24 this proves that Pokémon is real

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  • September 1, 2019 at 2:06 am
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    4:12 BROTHERHOOD OF NOD !

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  • September 1, 2019 at 8:03 am
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    galacduck#

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  • September 1, 2019 at 10:07 am
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    That would be waste of place

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  • September 1, 2019 at 12:21 pm
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    wait you said in another video: aliens are bad

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  • September 1, 2019 at 1:36 pm
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    0:58 thats just a straight out lie and it doesn't work like that at all, ever heard of Space time? The faster you travel the shorter the distance becomes, for people watching you, you move with a different speed in time than they do, you should do some research on that topic and maybe make a video about it
    Edit: if you would fly to the Andromeda galaxy and accelerate with 1g constantly, the spaceship would reach it after 28 years

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  • September 1, 2019 at 2:02 pm
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    I wonder if we could meet a second life (hopefully America doesn’t decide to genocide them) and become an empire (so I can clap some alien cheeks) and we can expand into the future as the greatest empire to ever exist!

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  • September 1, 2019 at 2:59 pm
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    5:02 Dalek! Someone call the Doctor!

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  • September 1, 2019 at 5:38 pm
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    (●__●)

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  • September 1, 2019 at 5:39 pm
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    why the dick monsters

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  • September 1, 2019 at 6:34 pm
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    Me and the boys on our way to become gods

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  • September 1, 2019 at 7:15 pm
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    0:20 AYYYYYYYYYYY dont hug me im scared reference

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  • September 1, 2019 at 7:58 pm
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    Why would anyone want to come around HERE? War, pestilence, massacres, ignorance, communicable diseases, nukes . . . If they are "intelligent life," NO WAY THEY ARE COMING TO SAY HELLO.

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  • September 1, 2019 at 10:25 pm
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    The idea of being alone in the universe would be a poor result and would be a huge disappointment.I feel like there'smore advantage and interest by exploring extraterrestrial beings

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  • September 1, 2019 at 10:41 pm
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    Galacduck is disappointed

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  • September 2, 2019 at 12:39 am
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    0:27 ah yes the magnemite planet…..when are we going?

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  • September 2, 2019 at 3:07 am
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    0:27 MAGNEMITE

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  • September 2, 2019 at 3:18 am
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    there really b an alien dood watching the same video about the possibility of us

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  • September 2, 2019 at 4:35 am
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    After watching this video
    Aliens – m i joke to you?

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  • September 2, 2019 at 4:36 am
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    Is that the computery guy?

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  • September 2, 2019 at 5:59 am
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    Hi

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  • September 2, 2019 at 6:02 am
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    0.1 magneton

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  • September 2, 2019 at 7:25 am
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    0:42 peep creepy stitch in the bottom left

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  • September 2, 2019 at 9:41 am
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    Can you do a video on Graham Hancock’s theory that there was an advanced civilization in the past?

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  • September 2, 2019 at 11:08 am
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    You are very smart

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  • September 2, 2019 at 12:19 pm
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    There's a bunch of videogame references in this video I only now noticed.

    – A Magnemite
    – A Gameboy
    – A Brotherhood of Nod logo????

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  • September 2, 2019 at 2:10 pm
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    no there are no aliens!!!

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  • September 2, 2019 at 3:58 pm
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    Maybe an alien is watching this right now

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  • September 2, 2019 at 4:32 pm
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    Loved the “Knights of Sidonia” reference!!

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  • September 2, 2019 at 4:40 pm
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    They’re in area 51

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  • September 2, 2019 at 5:08 pm
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    Your assumpsions are flaud and I reject your arguments. The evidence is out there we just have not found it.

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  • September 2, 2019 at 5:18 pm
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    Or the hardest scenario to believe of all, we are the most advanced civilization in all of creation.

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  • September 2, 2019 at 5:19 pm
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    We should take some cells to another planet that can keep thing alive and see how it evolves lol

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  • September 2, 2019 at 5:22 pm
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    Why Why we must venture the stars if we are the only life that would ever exist? Why life itself must keep existing ? Why can't lifeless matter just be?
    Do we really need the life to thrive? Why should we be cursed with this burden?, just because we exist cuz if thats the case nothing can prove otherwise
    that just disappearing is the exact outcome of what would of happened if we made sci-fi reality and lasted forever by overcoming every problem in the
    universe with extreme effort.
    It is really fun trying to write comments to kurzgesagt videos and hoping to give people further existencial crysis with every comment if that's possible. Thanks for reading.

    Reply
  • September 2, 2019 at 5:36 pm
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    its because time is so HUGE ITS sooooo Rare for the species to exist simultaneously

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  • September 2, 2019 at 6:43 pm
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    This is to much knowledge for me lol

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  • September 2, 2019 at 7:13 pm
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    Maybe the alien species dont want themselves to be discovered??
    they might be planning for something bigger!!

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  • September 2, 2019 at 7:25 pm
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    I don't really know what level of delusion one must achieve to think that we are alone in the whole Universe…

    Reply
  • September 2, 2019 at 8:05 pm
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    Didn't the computer with a face in the beginning of the vid look like computer guy from dhmis?

    Reply

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