I am a 38 year old air traffic controller living in Wellington, New Zealand. I am currently working on a project to upgrade the ATC radar and flight planning computer system here in NZ.
Thoughts about SETI and SETI@home
It is likely that extraterrestrial life does exist. The questions I ponder are:
1. Is the universe of an age where intelligent extraterrestrial life has developed? As we exist, I would say this is likely.
2. Have any of these extraterrestrial communities got around to sending messages in our direction.
3. Have any of these messages reached us?
One benefit of answering my questions is that I and others will at last know for sure we are not alone. Ignoring Hollywood fantasy about the dangers of contact, I wonder how religion will cope with knowing that other life exists.
Humans should transmit a beacon. Obviously there will be practical limitations to the coverage of such a beacon, but this is no reason not to do so. Given that outside of personal fantasy we have not been visited by ET, there seems to be little danger in advertising our presence. The message we send should be simple.
I run S@h on up to 3 PCs at work, that is when someone doesn't come along and switch them off to save power. I feel it is a worthwhile use of spare computer time - others want to analyse cancer treatments - given the world's over population, I am not inclined to this.