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Astronomer and science writer Carl Sagan was one of those people he was an optimist when it came to the fair me paradox he believed that life was out there we just hadn't found it yet Sagan pointed to evidence from the fossil record that here on earth let's begin as early as five hundred million years after the years for it's almost like it was waiting to emerge and since it emerged quickly here on earth it stands to reason that life should emerge were ever gets the chance anywhere in our universe when you take into account the idea that there are perhaps three hundred billion stars in the Milky Way alone even the some small fraction of those have habitable planets that could host life then we should expect to encounter it sometime soon as we spread out to explore the countryside around planet earth there's a problem with basing our view of the rest of the universe on our own existence the idea that we can gain insight into our universe from our existence is called the anthropic principle in its vulnerable to a logical fallacy called selection bias being the only intelligent life in the universe where the only data point and our data set and so we tend to skew the results a little bit it's hard to resist the temptation of cherry picking the data when there's only one chair yes of course life can arise our very existence proves that fact but what it does not prove is that the emergence of intelligent life or any life really is easy or inevitable what is instead life emerging in our universe is really really really hard perhaps.