SETI – I Don’t Think We’re Alone Now

I’m not a Sci-Fi junkie now, but as a kid I was obsessed.  Whether it was Mork & Mindy, Star Wars, or E.T. The Extra Terrestrial, I always wondered if we were alone.  And really, what would we do if we did find little E.T.’s out there?  I’m sure with all the paranoid world leaders we put up with (and of course the media), we’d be coerced into FREAKING OUT.  Sci-Fi films in the last several years have been sparse, and usually portray our bug eyed lizard friends as aggressive and evil.  One recent film however, Another Earth, explores the idea of another YOU out there.  Another Earth had me pondering equations I’m not qualified (or educated) enough to solve; the last scene will have you scratching your head for hours.  It’s not a spaceship-droid-bad guy affair, but is thought provoking enough to make you wonder – WHAT IF?

SETI has launched a new site which lets you at home sift through radio frequencies from stars which they believe have the highest chance of alien life.  From the SETILive site:

SETILive is taking the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI) directly to you by presenting radio frequency signals LIVE from the SETI Institute’s Allen Telescope Array (ATA) while it’s pointed at stars that, based on Kepler exoplanet discoveries, have the best chances of being home to an alien civilization. We’ll also be putting you “in the loop” where if enough of you see a potential extraterrestrial (ET) signal in the same data, then within minutes, the ATA will be interrupted and sent back to take a second look. The data you see will be from frequencies where human-made Radio Frequency Interference (RFI) crowds them and we believe the human eye will have a better chance than SETI’s computer algorithms to find ET signals there.

That’s a lot, but fascinating as all get out.  Maybe you could take a listen to our extraterrestrial themed COLORCAST FOUR while you’re collecting data for SETI.  It contains interviews from Susan Hiller’s WITNESS, an installation where you can listen to eyewitnesses recount their own UFO sightings, from South Africa to Oklahoma.  It also contains tracks from Spiritualized, Cocteau Twins, Mahogany, O.M.D., Glass Candy, and more.  And of course, if you find anything let us know.

Here is video of Susan Hiller and team installing WITNESS at the Tate.  Also check out the Another Earth trailer and Carl Sagan’s message to humanity.  Wow, he makes science so sexy!

posted by phil