I was born in 1963, in Mobile, AL. I was an Air Force brat; I lived in Florida, the Philipines, and New York before I was five. I've lived most of my life since in Texas, except when I was active-duty Air Force; then I was stationed at Mather AFB in Sacramento, CA. I've been happily married to Jill since 1987, and have three children: Sarah, Sean and Duncan. I'm a systems analyst, and I love to read, build models (realspace-related), and follow the space program (both manned & un-manned).
Thoughts about SETI and SETI@home
I think it is the height of arrogance to say that there is *no* other life in the entire universe. Even if only at the most basic level, I think that there must be life somewhere. It looks like the chances are favorable for Mars (microbially speaking). If life has occurred on two planets in such close proximity, then that would be a pretty strong statistical indicator that the universe is fairly teeming with life.
Transmitting a beacon is an interesting idea. Thing is, we are transmitting a beacon now. All the TV & radio, cell phones, satellite communications are our beacon. Granted the signal degrades the further it goes, but I think it's the best we'll get. I don't think you'll ever get a government to fund such a thing, and corporations will always say, "Show me the money."
I run SETI@home because I like the idea behind SETI. I have 7 PCs at the house, and I'll do whatever I can to help out. My only suggestion would be to have a version (both *graphical* and command-line) for Linux/Unix users.