Are we alone? Where is everybody?

We came up with DrakeEQ to provide a visual answer to the extraterrestrial question(s) using the stunningly elegant Drake Equation. We've coupled the calculator to a mesmerizing Milky Way in motion.

Perform beautiful thought experiments with this one-of-a-kind visual tool. DrakeEQ is both educational and entertaining.

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Activate the Quasar!

We came up with DrakeEQ to provide a visual answer to the extraterrestrial question(s) using the stunningly elegant Drake Equation. Use this fun simulator for the iPhone and iPad to graphically quantify the number of advanced extraterrestrial civilizations in our Milky Way Galaxy.

Are we alone?: DrakeEQ computes/displays civilization count and draws them to the display.

Where is everybody?: DrakeEQ approaches the Fermi Paradox by positioning the civilizations in 3D space and computing the average distances between them.

At nearly 7 years running, DrakeEQ is also one of the longest continuously supported apps on the entire App Store! Perform beautiful thought experiments with this one-of-a-kind visual tool. DrakeEQ is both educational and entertaining.


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Learn about the famous Drake Equation through direct manipulation of its 7 parameters with DrakeEQ. Easily tweak equation variables using fun drop-down manipulators.
  • Enter direct parameter values with keyboard or step through values
  • Average distance between civilizations calculator
  • Tunable precision
  • Highlight the solar system
  • Change star system colors
  • Tweet/Email results
  • Enduring support
  • iOS 7 optimized
  • Quasar from Sagittarius A*
  • Galaxy in motion
  • Distance between civilizations
    • Tweet and email results
    • Multiple viewing angles
    • Solar system locator
  • Only 0.99 USD!
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The Drake Equation primarily allows scientists to quantify the uncertainty of the factors which determine the number of “intelligent” extraterrestrial civilizations contained in our galaxy.

The Drake equation states that:
N = R* X fp X ne X f X fi X fc X L

N : number of civilizations in our galaxy with which communication might be possible.
R* : yearly average rate of star formation in our galaxy
fp : fraction of those stars that have orbiting planets
ne : average number of planets (or moons) that can potentially support life per star with planets
f : p fraction of the above that actually proceed to develop life
fi : fraction of the above that actually go on to develop intelligent life
fc : fraction of civilizations that are able to transmit detectable signals into space
L : length of time civilizations are able to release signals into space


Great Drake Equation Links

The Galaxy is Getting Crowded: What Does the Drake Equation Say About Kepler’s Discoveries?