Thought for the month

“The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.” Origin uncertain, usually attributed as a Chinese Proverb.

Monday, 3 August 2015

ET the hunt continues

I have no special insights or beliefs as to whether extra-terrestrial intelligence resides somewhere out in the infinite universe. The Fermi Paradox, if intelligent life exists elsewhere then why do we see no evidence of it, seems to me to have merit. Last month saw the announcement of significant funding for project Breakthrough Listen, a comprehensive hunt for alien communications. Radio telescopes at Green Bank in West Virginia, the Parkes Observatory in Australia, and the Lick Observatory's optical telescope in San Jose, California, will scan stars in the Milky Way and a hundred other galaxies. Perhaps the general public consensus is one of expected failure. Suggesting a reading of Greek Myths, especially Pandora’s Box may seem irrelevant. However, as well as putting effort into looking for life beyond earth, I trust that some thought is being given on how to deal with a successful result.

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