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Location: UFOUpDatesList.Com > 2012 > Jul > Jul 16

SETI History

From: Ray Dickenson <r.dickenson.nul>
Date: Mon, 16 Jul 2012 08:13:46 +0100
Archived: Mon, 16 Jul 2012 10:47:03 -0400
Subject: SETI History


Hello List,

In his essay 'A Mirror in the Sky - The Drake Equation' Oliver
Morton gives some details of the history of SETI and the
characters involved:

[Quotation Begins]

SETI had started as a radio-astronomy project because Morrison,
Cocconi and Drake had seen that radio astronomy provided the only
way that a civilization such as ours could be detected by another
civilization such as ours.

<snip>

The technicalities of SETI were thus technicalities of radio
astronomy, such as the choice of appropriate frequencies ... and
signalling strategies. The difference between type I and type II
civilizations, for example, was basically a difference in the
power of their radio transmitters, and a difference in the
strategies that would be suitable for detecting them. (From
around the time of the Byurakan conference Drake himself becsme
increasingly interested in type IIs - supercivilizations - and in
1974 he and Sagan mounted a search for them. ...they used the
newly refurbished Arecibo radio telescope, a vast bowl in the
hills of Costa Rica. Instead of looking at individual stars they
looked at whole galaxies, simultaneously sampling the emissions
of billions of far-off stars on the basis that what the
supercivilizations lacked in numbers they would make up for with
the sheer power of their beacons.)

[Quotation Ends]

There you have it - as many of us have said, by default SETI was
initiated to look for primitives - like us.

And even when Drake and Sagan took an interest in advanced
civilizations they imagined the only difference would be a
matter of scale.

Admittedly it's hard to see into the future, but history tells us
that the difference from one era to the next always involves
change of paradigm: doing things in entirely different ways - as
technology allows.

So if we're really looking for advanced civilizations we
shouldn't expect them to still be using radio.


Cheers

Ray D




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