What will it look like when we finally reach another star system with habitable planets? Here is one possibility.
Gliese 581g is the first planet other than Earth to exist within its star's habitable zone, meaning it could support human life. Now we've got an idea of what it looks like...and it's seriously spooky.
Due to their position in the Gliese system, hypothetical creatures on planet Zarmina might not be alone in their own solar system, the way humans seem to be. And those neighbors could reach Zarmina pretty quickly.
Steve Vogt is the UC Santa Cruz astrophysicist who discovered Zarmina, the first recorded Earthlike planet outside our solar system. He told io9 what a human colony there would be like, and why he believes the planet already harbors life.