Midnight In The Desert — SETI

Psychologists Say SETI Has Faulty Alien Contact Methods

Posted by K R on

Psychologists Say SETI Has Faulty Alien Contact Methods

A group of psychologists say scientists will never make contact with aliens because aliens are likely to use communications based on unknown physical principles. They also say scientists are prone to so-called inattentional blindness. A group of psychologists from the University of Cadiz in Spain has published an article criticizing alien-seeking scientists involved in the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI) project, saying they will never make contact with extraterrestrial civilizations. According to the article, published in Acta Astronautica, the scientists involved in SETI are concentrating solely on searching for radio signals when aliens are likely to use other forms of...

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Alien satellites might offer a new way to find E.T.

Posted by K R on

Alien satellites might offer a new way to find E.T.

By Seth Shostak It’s another scheme for finding the Romulans or the Borg — and it definitely has some advantages. The usual approach to looking for alien societies is to scan the skies for signals like radio transmissions or bright, flashing lasers. Either would tell us that someone’s out there. Lamentably, these schemes have a troublesome drawback: the need for synchronicity between the sender (aliens) and the receiver (us). What are the chances that, when our attention is directed to a particular planetary system, their transmitters are aimed our way? It’s like two pairs of eyes meeting across a crowded...

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But by the time we hear from aliens, they’ll probably be dead

Posted by K R on

But by the time we hear from aliens, they’ll probably be dead

If signals from an alien civilization ever reach Earth, odds are the aliens will already be dead. In an effort to update the 1961 Drake Equation, which estimates the number of detectable, intelligent civilizations in the Milky Way, physicist Claudio Grimaldi and colleagues calculated the area of the galaxy that should be filled with alien signals at a given time. The team, which includes Frank Drake (now a professor emeritus at the SETI Institute in Mountain View, Calif., and the University of California, Santa Cruz), assumed technologically savvy civilizations are born and die at a constant rate. When a civilization...

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Is Humanity Ready for the Discovery of Alien Life?

Posted by K R on

Is Humanity Ready for the Discovery of Alien Life?

When ‘Oumuamua, a mysterious interstellar object, swept through our solar system last October, it elicited breathless news stories all asking the obvious question—is it a spaceship? There were no signs it was—although many people seemed to hope otherwise. Throughout history most strange new cosmic phenomena have made us wonder: Could this be it, the moment we first face alien life? The expectation isn’t necessarily outlandish—many scientists can and do make elaborate, evidence-based arguments that we will eventually discover life beyond the bounds of our planet. To true believers, what may be more uncertain is whether or not such news would...

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Crypto-currency craze 'hinders search for alien life'

Posted by K R on

Crypto-currency craze 'hinders search for alien life'

Scientists listening out for broadcasts by extra-terrestrials are struggling to get the computer hardware they need, thanks to the crypto-currency mining craze, a radio-astronomer has said. Seti (Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence) researchers want to expand operations at two observatories. However, they have found that key computer chips are in short supply. "We'd like to use the latest GPUs ... and we can't get 'em," said Dan Werthimer. Demand for GPUs has soared recently thanks to crypto-currency mining. "That's limiting our search for extra-terrestrials, to try to answer the question, 'Are we alone? Is there anybody out there?'," Dr Werthimer told...

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