|I am a software developer at a large software company in the Seattle area of Washington State (U.S.A.). I have been developing software since 1978 in locations around the U.S., Europe, and the Middle East. Among other hobbies, I enjoy computers, amateur astronomy, and amateur radio; a natural combination for participation in SETI@home.|
I collect (typically old) computers that others have discarded in order that they may continue to serve some useful purpose. To that end, I put them to work crunching on SETI@home work units. I have also harnessed the CPUs in several of the computers that I manage for my company. I keep all of these crunching on SETI@home work units 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year.
|Thoughts about SETI and SETI@home|
|Intelligent life must exist somewhere in this universe (or dimension or time), and most likely did, does, or will exist in a great many places and forms. However, Humanity's definition of "intelligent life" is woefully inadequate: Humans cannot even begin to imagine what "intelligent life" truly is, and in any event Humanity probably does not (yet) qualify as "intelligent life."|
Humanity will surely discover extraterrestrial life eventually, but intelligent extraterrestrial life will not permit itself to be "discovered" by Humanity until such life deems that Humanity is worthy of membership in the larger Universal Community of species. Criteria for such membership might include such fundamental things as actually being humane to each other (itself a very human-specific concept) and not posing a threat to ourselves, other Universal Community members, or the universe itself. The true benefits and dangers of membership in this Universal Community are even more impossibly unimaginable than the characteristics of the members themselves.
Transmission of any beacon prior to such a time when Humanity might be considered "probationary" members in the Universal Community may be unwise as it might draw attention to us in our present state, and we may well be "weeded" from the universe as unworthy of further evolution. Let us keep our emissions as muted as possible until that time, lest we be noticed and squashed just as we would squash an annoying and potentially dangerous pest.
Despite some of the above statements, I participate in the SETI@home project because I believe that what Humanity can learn about itself and the universe during the search for any extraterrestrial life is, at this point in our evolution, more important than the actual discovery of intelligent extraterrestrial life. The SETI@home project is a tribute to its visionary creators, and to the immense power of the Internet to both enable and empower the global community to unite behind a common purpose.
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