Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Expedition to Antarctica and would we recognize ET at all?

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 Life - An international team of distinguished scientists, teachers and explorers from the United States, Russia, Austria and New Zealand are about to embark on a six-week expedition to Antarctica to study the icy ecosystems of the Untersee Oasis, including perennially ice-covered Lake Untersee. See article.
g Message -If extraterrestrial life and intelligence exist, and if these ETI have ever engaged in, or presently are engaging in, interstellar exploration or communication, this most likely will involve the transmission of material artifacts. Some evidence of this activity may be apparent from within the confines of the Solar System and thus could be detected by a suitable observational effort. See article.
g Imagining -The questions of what alien life will be like is a more than just an issue for science fiction enthusiasts. For those involved with the fledging science of astrobiology, this is a central issue: After all, if something is life “not as we know it,” how, in fact, would we know it to be life at all? See article.
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 article.

Honoring the Past, Inspiring the Future

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