Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Metabolic minimalist life and what impression we’d want to give our celestial correspondents

Welcome! "Alien Life" tracks the latest discoveries and thoughts in the various elements of the famous Drake Equation. Here's today's news:
g Abodes - Check out the new Are We Alone podcast “Pave New Worlds” by the SETI Institute: "The extra-solar planet count is more than 400 and rising. Before long we may find an Earth-like planet around another star. If we do, and can visit, what next? Stake out our claim on an alien world or tread lightly and preserve it? We'll look at what our record on Earth says about our planet stewardship. Also, whether a massive technological fix can get us out of our climate mess. Plus, what we can learn about extreme climate from our neighbors in the solar system, Venus and Mars."
g Life - Scientists have discovered a ocean-dwelling microbe that survives with a remarkably reduced set of genes. Dubbed a “metabolic minimalist,” the unique cyanobacteria plays an important role in the global cycling of nitrogen on Earth. See article.
g Message - If some day we decide to transmit intentional messages to the stars, rather than solely listen as current SETI programs do, what would we say? What sort of first impression would we want to give our celestial correspondents? See article. Note: This article is from 2003.
g Cosmicus - Where better to find out what’s hot in the world of science than at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)? Held last week in San Diego, the meeting is the nation’s largest annual general scientific conference and draws thousands of attendees from about 50 countries. This year’s theme was bridging science and society, and topics ranged from coral reef fisheries and food allergies to the science of superheroes. Here’s a whirlwind tour through 60 of the seminars. See article.

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