Hey -- my name is Cathi, I live in Western Massachusetts, and I'm old enough to be a retired IT manager for New York State government. Lots of wide ranging hobbies and I've always had a great interest in astronomy and space exploration. My obsession started, I think, in early childhood watching shows like Star Trek, the (original) Outer Limits, and Fireball XL5 (anybody remember that?) on TV.
I got into computers in the late 80's and ended up with a satisfying and lucrative career in IT. I'm very interested in the intersection of computers and exploration, and I'm happy to loan some CPU time to the SETI project.
Thoughts about SETI and SETI@home
I run SETI@home because I'm interested in contributing, even in a small way, to The Search. I think it's highly illogical to assume that we are the only intelligent life in this vast universe and I think it's just a matter of time before we detect the presence of somebody else out there. When that happens, I'd like to be a small part of the effort that made it happen.
My views about the project are obviously very positive. I just wish there was more government and corporate funding of the effort. I think this is very important work and frankly I'd like to see more of my tax dollars going to the search for life vs. funding the defense establishment to destroy it. Don't get me wrong....both defense and scientific exploration are important but I think the funding and attention paid to each of them is greatly out of balance. Extraterrestrial exploration has been responsible for many of the technological and scientific advancements of the modern age and I think that as a country and a society we need to fund projects like SETI to ensure that advancement continues.