Re: >It did NOT evolve on planet earth.
>Have you read Crick and Orgel's
No, I haven't. I am vaguely aware of Panspermia as a general theory, that's about it.
Despite not having read your above recommendation, I find it quite amusing when someone who, I presume, works in IT like me, claims to know all about early life's bootstrapping mechanism.
"The idea that life originated on Earth is no less speculative."
and the OP:
"One things for sure. It did NOT evolve on planet earth. No time and no prebiotic soup."
My, my, what certitudes when the best minds in the field are still figuring things out. Extremophiles are a late addition to life sciences. So are other things like archea. Certitude is... we are very much in the early learning and speculation stages of this branch of science right now. We don't really know the missing link between inert organic matter and living organisms.
When someone takes a budding science, uses its own acknowledged problems and unknowns to say "X is bullshit, Y is better", then my own bullshit meter lights up if that person does not apply the same rigorous scientific criteria to Y. That's certainly the case with creationism, where we are told that evolution has "lots of theoretical holes", but the only needed experimental support for creationism is "it's in the Bible, believe!". Ditto intelligent design.
We don't know yet how life bootstrapped and even if we did for Earth, we would at this point be starting with a sample size of one.
As far as Panspermia goes, I am aware of it as a theory and it would be great to start looking more into it if we ever find traces of life elsewhere in the Solar system. That's about it.
Occam's Razor kinda puts the onus of disproving a local life start on Panspermia, doesn't it, though? Why go for something complicated, when simpler will do?
And, if you buy into Panspermia, does that not leave you with a variation on the exact same problem - how did life start up elsewhere?
So, to your "no less speculative", I call BS, despite not ruling out Panspermia outright.