The idea of contributing to what I consider to be good, logical science is very interesting. Since I am not a scientist, but enjoy keeping up with NASA and related interests and sites, SETI was a natural and enjoyable way to be part of practical space science, even if only in a small way.
I am a 56 year old Regional HR Manager. I have the privilege of working with about 1,000 associates in a 3 state area. With 30 years experience in business I enjoy popular science, history, reading, working on our yard, feeding the birds, watching satellites ( J-pass anyone) and my computers, hence SETI time.
Thoughts about SETI and SETI@home
Do you think extraterrestrial life exists?
It is practical and logical given the vastness of the numbers, that extraterrestrial life does exist or has in the past.
When and how will humans discover it?
I don't know if it will be discovered or inferred.
What are the possible benefits and dangers of such a discovery?
The benefits are self-evident, the knowledge itself.
Again given the distances I can't see any dangers unless some 24th dimensional reality is proven by the quantum or GUT folks.
Should humans transmit a beacon for others to find? If so, what information should we send?
Given our propagation of our radio and TV we are already sending a beacon. What information...hopeful something more stimulating than old Lucy reruns. But if the combination exists and the goals, technology for such a connection, think of the possibilities, the knowledge and information?