I'm a geek and a science junkie. I love the existence of this project and I'm proud to be an ongoing participant. I've always been a non-specialist - I consider myself a Jack-of-all-trades. I'm a self-taught computer tech (I'm currently an IT Manager in a 40-employee branch office of an Architecture firm). But my degrees are in Civil Engineering and Architecture.
I have an extensive science fiction collection, which I read and re-read constantly. I also collect AOL disks and CDs, on the premise that they've got to be worth something one of these days.
My home machine is a P3-750, and I also run on my work computer (P3-733) and several P-233 computers here at work (some Win98, some Slackware Linux).
Thoughts about SETI and SETI@home
In all likelihood, there is life in the universe (even in our own galaxy) right now. We may or may not meet it in the next 1000 years. So much depends on chance. (I've got a list of technologies to request if/when we do meet them, however.) We've got to own up to our own xenophobic streak, though. I don't think people will realize how threatening extra-terrestrial life feels until it's a reality. But any irrational fears would be far outweighed by the benefits of contact.
On balance, I'd prefer NOT to transmit our location indiscriminately. There's plenty of time to make contact (this isn't a race you know). And the potential for a mistake does exist.
I run SETI@home because it's fun! I think it's a productive use of my computer's time (and the electricity I donate). If there was a Distributed-Computing project to catalog the solar system's asteroid population, I might contribute time to that, too. It won't happen until the DC projects have more processing power than they need, but perhaps a distributed computing framework that allows users to contribute to more than one project at once would be a future goal. There's no reason to make all worthy DC projects re-invent the wheel. (Kudos to the SAH team! Thanks!)