Profile: Shawn H. Hall

Personal background
Hi, Everyone!

My name is Shawn H. Hall and I am a computer technician and store owner. As of this writing I am 51 years old. I live a boring existence in a location where it is almost never cloudy. Dry is the word, actually, to describe the local desert--VERY dry. For excitement my friends and I go out to watch the cacti grow. Since it is so very dry, the cacti grow very slowly. As I said, I live a BORING existence.

I have many computers in my office, all of which are dedicated to SETI@Home research. This irritates my office manager, Les, but I just say, "Tough nougies!" Since I am the owner, he has no choice but to obey my orders. Oh, he does surreptitiously change my SETI@Home user and screensaver settings when I am not looking, but I usually catch on fairly quick. And did I mention that Les lives a boring existence, too?


Shawn H. Hall
Personal Computer Services
Palm Desert, California
Thoughts about SETI and SETI@home
Q. 1a. Do you think extraterrestrial life exists?

A. 1a. I am not egotistical enough to believe that we are alone.

Q. 1b. If so, when and how will humans discover it?

A. 1b. I think that SETI@Home has a better-than-even chance of being the method of discovery sometime in the near or far future.

Q. 1c. What are the possible benefits and dangers of such a discovery?

A. 1c. The possible benefits are obvious: better technology, information on unanswered questions about the universe and our place in it, and space travel to name a few. The dangers have been beat to death in multitudes of sci-fi movies, so I defer to them.

Q. 2a. Should humans transmit a beacon for others to find?

A. 2a. Why not? Whoever is out there will probably find us one day anyway due to our constant radio and television transmissions, even though it has been proved now that the signals actually fade before they travel too far. Any aliens who might exist, and who are sophisticated enough to look for us, probably have numerous ways to detect us, including ways that we might not have thought of, yet.

Q. 2b. If so, what information should we send?

A. 2b. How about something intelligent about us and our planet to help dispel any misconceptions that the aliens might garner from our aforementioned radio and television tripe?

Q. 3a. Why do you run SETI@Home?

A. 3a. I run SETI@Home hopefully to be the person to find that elusive ET signal. This will help me to achieve the fame and fortune that I so desire. Then, the world will be my oyster! ...Or not. Yeah, probably not.

Q. 3b. What are your views about the project?

A. 3b. I think that it is a grand undertaking that should receive unquestioned support from both the public and the government.

Q. 3c. Any suggestions?

A. 3c. Request more funds and bandwidth to accommodate all of your dedicated users.
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