Sunday, September 21, 2008

Martian landscape photographed and what sort of signal is a SETI hit

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 -NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter has returned more than 8,214 gigapixel-size images of the Martian surface. The photos will aid in interpreting the Martian landscape, yielding clues about past water on Mars and helping plan future surface missions. See article.
g Message -What sort of signal would satisfactorily announce an extraterrestrial intelligence as detected by radio-emission or light reception? For an opinion article on what sort of signal is a SETI hit, see article.
g Cosmicus -Scientists expect startup glitches in the massive, complex machines they use to smash atoms. But the unique qualities of the world's largest particle collider mean that the meltdown of a small electrical connection could delay its groundbreaking research until next year, scientists said Sunday. See article.
g Learning -Here’s a wonderful Web site for kids: “Mysteries of Space and Time”. By the time a student finishes navigating this site, space should no longer be a mystery. Using clever graphics and offering games and other interactive features, this resource thoroughly covers black holes, the planets, and many anomalies of space. The lab section will be particularly helpful to astronomy students.
g Aftermath - For one futurist’s thoughts about what will happen to humanity when we make first contact with aliens, read this article. I offer this site not for its scientific rigor but as an example of something all of us who care about astrobiology should consider: What are the trends in popular culture about first contact? Such thinking will greatly influence public reaction when first contact actually does occur. See article.

Honoring the Past, Inspiring the Future

No comments: