I am a 20 year old junior at Carnegie Mellon University, studying both mechanical engineering and computer science. I have been part of Seti@Home for a while now, getting involved back in my senior year of high school. However, due to a year long lapse in home internet connectivity, I have only recently been able to get the program running and sumbit new data units. Plus, I have a new computer that can process units about 4 times as fast, so I am working on getting that average unit time down :)
Thoughts about SETI and SETI@home
I am almost certain extraterrestrial life exists in this universe. We, as human beings, can not fathom the sheer enormity of this place that we live in. For another planet similar to ours to not exist amongst the trillions and trillions of other stars is simply not probable. However, I do not think that there is a significant chance of ever finding such similiar civilizations, as we are most likely seperated by a distance on the order of millions of light years.
I believe that we should transmit a beacon for others to find, because if we don't try, how can somebody else locate us? In addition, if a methodical search was in progress on another planet, they would also be looking for a specific kind of transmission, and most likely, the random radio waves we send into space would not be what they are looking for.
I run SETI@home because I can and because there will always be that curiosity to find out if we are not alone.