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One Voice in the Cosmic Fugue

   1980    Science
Sagan discusses the story of the Heike crab and artificial selection of crabs resembling samurai warriors, as an opening into a larger discussion of evolution through natural selection (and the pitfalls of intelligent design). Among the topics are the development of life on the Cosmic Calendar and the Cambrian explosion; the function of DNA in growth; genetic replication, repairs, and mutation; the common biochemistry of terrestrial organisms; the creation of the molecules of life in the Miller-Urey experiment; and speculation on alien life (such as life in Jupiter's clouds). In the Cosmos Update ten years later, Sagan remarks on RNA also controlling chemical reactions and reproducing itself and the different roles of comets (potentially carrying organic molecules or causing the Cretaceous–Paleogene extinction event).
Series: Cosmos
The Sky at Night
The Sky at Night

   2016    Science
Triumph of Life
Triumph of Life

   2006    Nature
Nature Great Events
Nature Great Events

   2009    Nature
The Normans
The Normans

   2010    History
The Incredible Human Journey
The Incredible Human Journey

   2009    History
Motivation
Motivation

   2017    Culture
Natural World
Natural World

   2017    Nature
Seven Ages of Rock
Seven Ages of Rock

   2007    Art