The Royal Society recently held a conference to mark 50 years of searching for extra terrestrial intelligence. One of the questions that we all ask ourselves from time to time is whether we are alone in the universe or whether life exists on other planets.
Recently, however, voices in the scientific world have been warning that it might not actually be wise to search for life on other planets. They argue that as the Universe is about 14 billion years old and the Earth is about 4.5 billion years old then if there were life on other planets they are likely to be far more advanced than we are. If that was the case and they happened to find us because of signals we have sent out then it is possible they may not be as friendly as we had hoped. Therefore, some scientists say that we should keep quiet just in case !
They raise an interesting point but I have to say that I would have thought that Earth would have received some sort of electronic signals by now if there was advanced life somewhere out there. So far, there has not been any sort of signs that life may exist elsewhere.
I happen to think, though, that us humans are unique and that life on Earth was caused by a unique accident so rare that it was a one off. In other words, I think that we are alone and it is us that will one day inhabit other worlds when our own has run out of resources.
I have to say that I have, of course, no evidence whatsoever to back up my opinions, apart from the fact that I haven’t seen any sign of any alien spaceships myself yet !
I walked out for a newspaper this Sunday morning and managed to stay upright despite the ice and slippery surfaces on the pavements.
What amazed me though was the fact that hardly any shops on my local high street had cleared the snow and ice from in front of their shops. The more I think about it the more I think that there should be a law to force shop owners to clear snow from the area in front of their shop. There was a mixture of snow, ice and slush which makes shopping a miserable experience and potentially dangerous too. But from the point of view of the shop owners I would have thought that they would want as many shoppers are possible visiting their shops to spend their hard earned cash there, especially in these harsh economic times when people have reduced their spending.
It does not take much effort to clear snow. In my opinion, it is good customer service to make the shopping experience as stress free as possible and if I saw cleared snow from in front of a shop I would think to myself that this shop cares about its customers. Doing something to make your business stand out from the competition is very important and it seems to me that this simple job is being overlooked.
I hear though that snow clearing from shopping areas is not as easy as it seems ! Clearing snow away but leaving the area more dangerous than it was before could land you in legal trouble. Apparantly, legal experts have said that if clearing snow caused injury to someone they could sue under “tort of nuisance”. If you make sure the area is gritted or salted after you have cleared it you should be in the clear. It is easier to walk in uncleared snow than on a slippery iced over cleared patch of snow so if you are clearing snow make sure you do good job of it.
Making Money from the Snow !
I was very impressed yesterday morning when a note popped through my letterbox offering a snow clearing service. Paths cleared for £4 and drives for £6 which included gritting as well ! Now that is what I call enterprising…Well done for the fast thinking !
Heated Roads is the Answer to Snow Chaos