Life on earth has existed for around 3 - 4 billion years and Earth itself has been around for about 4.5 billion years. I personally believe that there is intelligent life beyond our home planet, I think it is probably quite abundant given the numbers of stars and planets that are out there. Something I have always wondered is how long before we came along could an intelligent life form theoretically have evolved. In other words, how soon, after the universe began, did first generation of stars create the heavier elements required for planet formation? And how soon after that could life have evolved on that first generation of planets to our level of intelligence? Iv always found it fascinating to imagine what those first intelligent life forms are doing now. I know it would be pure speculation but are we able to have an educated guess at when this might have been?