I was having a discussion with my friend about alien life and we both kinda agreed that for life to be intelligent, it must follow the same path as all intelligent life in the universe. If we say that all life through the universe is Darwinian, then for a species to be intelligent it must have some sort of dexterous functionality, it must have a complex language and it must follow the same path of technological evolution as us. The reason why I say that is because without hands or some other kind of dexterous functionality, you can't build anything... no matter how smart you are, without hands you can only think. Without a complex language those thoughts and ideas can only remain in the persons head, again without hands you can't even draw them... And for technology, I think computers and binary are a universal technology. What I mean by that is I think an intelligent species will reach a certain threshold where nothing more can be acheived until the next peice of the puzzle is invented. I think computers are the natural step for any intelligent life, sure they may have completely different forms of computers but nevertheless they would use the same fundamental concepts. I think it would be extremely unlikely for an intelligent race to go from pen and pad to quantum computers for example, without having to use normal computers first. I doubt they would have gone from cars to rockets without first inventing jets. While I don't think it would be exactly the same or in the exact same order, I really think that all intelligent life (if any) would follow the same handbook and you can't really progress if you can't unlock the next puzzle. Assuming we never invented the computer, could we still have advanced? Sending probes into space, creating fighter jets, submarines ect? Of course not... anyway just wanted to ramble about that, what do you guys think? Please feel free to correct me it I've really got something wrong.