Friday, October 13, 2006

Seeking public’s help in finding extrasolar worlds, space elevator and six potential problem areas following alien contact

Welcome! “Alien Life” tracks the latest discoveries and thoughts in the various elements of the famous Drake Equation. You may notice that this and future entries are shorter than usual; Career, family and book deal commitments have forced me to cut back some of my projects. Now, here’s today’s news:
g Abodes - Astronomers at the University of California, Santa Cruz, are seeking the public's help to find and understand planets outside our solar system. But you don't need an advanced degree or even a telescope to participate - just a computer, access to the Internet and an interest in astronomy. See article.
g Cosmicus - Admittedly, at least for now, the idea of a beanstalk-like space elevator connecting Earth and space is a stretch. See
g Aftermath - The scientific search for extraterrestrial intelligence is accelerating its pace and adopting fresh strategies. This increases the likelihood of successful detection in the near future. Humanity's first contact with alien intelligence will trigger extraordinary attention from the media, from government authorities, and from the general public. By improving our readiness for contact, especially for security during the first 30 days, we can avoid the most negative scenarios — and also enhance humanity's benefits from this first contact with an alien intelligence. Six potential problem areas include communicating with the media and the public, communicating with scientific colleagues, government control, an assassin or saboteur, well-meaning officials and lawsuits. See