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AstroSETI Interview: SETI Chief Scientist

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posted on Aug, 30 2004 @ 03:18 AM
On August, 19th, 2004 the Spanish-language SETI@Home site,, published an interview with Professor Dan Werthimer, director of the SERENDIP SETI program and chief scientist of SETI@home at the University of California, Berkeley.

The interview gives an interesting look inside the operations of the SERENDIP program and provides a tantalizing glimpse into the future of SETI research.

Interview with Dan Werthimer
Astroseti : You're working with Optical Seti too, searching small star brightness variations, not really produced by the star but for laser beams. Do we know the basics methods - radio and light - any advanced civilization should use for insterstelar communications, or should we expect to discover better ones in the future?

Dan Werthimer : The best thing earthling's know about for interstellar communication is electromagnetic waves. There may be something better - we are a young emerging civilization. But we know that radio and laser technology can communicate across the galaxy, so we should try.

Astroseti : What's your personal Drake's equation result?

Dan Werthimer : My guess is that the galaxy is teaming with primitive life, but advanced civilizations are much more rare - perhaps 10,000 per galaxy.

Astroseti : SETI Institute expects to find an ET signal within 25 years according to the ATA telescope bigger range if there are a reasonable number of civilizations. What's your bet for the first contact?

Dan Werthimer : 50 to 100 years. We're just getting in the game now, but capabilities are doubling every year.

Please visit the link provided for the complete story. is a heavy-hitting SETI@Home team. Its 1,200 members have contributed 600,000 work units and will probably make the top 100 overall teams when the final snapshot of SETI@Home classic is retired and the BOINC programs takes over. Way to go Astroseti!

Our ATS team is no slouch, and all the members should be proud of the work we have done. Keep those work units comin'!

posted on Aug, 30 2004 @ 04:01 AM
Thanks for that Spectre, that was interesting reading with some good questions asked

posted on Sep, 7 2004 @ 05:52 PM
Thanx Spectre for a very interesting read and discussion about Astroseti - 1 200 members eh?!! Well, our own 400-odd members could certainly give them a run for their money, I'm sure!!

Joking apart, kudos to them (and to us!) for helping to find ETI - it might never happen, of course, but, if we don't look and listen, then we never will have the chance to do so, will we?

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