An interesting article in The New Yorker on the necessity of keeping an open mind about what form an alien intelligence might take. Yet, even as the Kepler mission gets closer to finding a mirror image of our own planet, many scientists have ceased believing that we should be looking for ourselves in space. There … Continue reading What Makes an Alien Intelligent?
Pretty cool. Jeremy Kasdin in this TED talk discusses an idea to remove the glare of a star's light in order to possibly get a look at its planets. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XYNUpQrZISc
This is a pretty big milestone. The first Earth sized planet in a star's habitable zone. Pity it's so far away (500 light years) that spectral analysis probably won't be possible to figure out what its atmosphere has in it. The first Earth-sized exoplanet orbiting within the habitable zone of another star has been confirmed … Continue reading First potentially habitable Earth-sized planet confirmed by Gemini and Keck observatories — ScienceDaily
Ok, so if you're like me, you probably didn't pay much attention to the latest announcement of the number of exoplanets that had been found by Kepler. It seems like those kinds of announcements have become old hat. This reaction must have been common, and must have annoyed someone at NASA, so they created this … Continue reading Kepler’s Latest Exoplanet Hoard, Graphed
What if we could send humans anywhere at the speed of light, and at a rock-bottom price? That's eminently feasible if we send the information and not the protoplasm. No crew, just code. Consider: The human genome consists of about 3.3 billion base pairs. Since there are only four types of pair, that amounts to … Continue reading When Will We Build the Starship Enterprise? | Seth Shostak