Profile: Steffen Sletvold

Personal background
Norwegian, but born in Germany and half danish in blood.

I guess one could call me more European or perhaps even international.

Education wise I hold a Master of Information Technology and a Master of Science in Network Systems.

Working now in the field of IT as a Senior Systems Consultant.
Thoughts about SETI and SETI@home
Question: Do you think extraterrestrial life exists? If so, when and how will humans discover it?

Answer: I certainly do so. As it was so elegantly said in the movie Contact, which is based on a book by the late Carl Sagan: "... it would be such a waste of space!". When and how will only the future tell, but transmissions via radio waves is the most likely one I would think. We have already been transmitting since the middle of the last century, so perhaps someone out there would receive it and give us a hello signal back? Perhaps someone out there has already been broadcasting signals for ages?

Question: What are the possible benefits and dangers of such a discovery?

Answer: How we, the human race, are prepared to deal with such a find. However, discovery has always helped the human race to evolve to the next level and I have a feeling that such a find would do the same. If the species is more advanced they might have solutions to some of our problems here on earth?

Question: Should humans transmit a beacon for others to find? If so, what information should we send?

Answer: We have already sent some sort of messages out to the deeps of space. Both Voyager 1 & 2 and Pioneer 10 & 11 spacecraft carry messages from our planet. And as early stated, we have transmitted radio and television waves with strong enough signals for over 50 years. However, I still think we should set up some sort of beacon that would intentionally send out signals and transmit information to our whereabouts.

Question: Why do you run SETI@home? What are your views about the project?

Answer: I run it to harness "dead usage" of my PC. Since I firstly have paid money for it, I might as well harness as much usage of its capabilities as possible. Even when in screensaver mode. :-) And what better way to do this then to offer some help for such a great project as Seti@Home. The whole idea appeals to me and I want to do my part in helping this project reach its ultimate goal.
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SETI@home and Astropulse are funded by grants from the National Science Foundation, NASA, and donations from SETI@home volunteers. AstroPulse is funded in part by the NSF through grant AST-0307956.