Today on Discovery Enterprise we present a grand debate between SETI@Home founder Dan Werthimer and planet-hunter and skeptic, Geoff Marcy concerning whether or not sentience and technological civilizations are prevalent in the Milky Way Galaxy and the rest of the Cosmos.
Science Fiction portrays our Milky Way Galaxy as teeming with advanced civilizations engaged in interstellar communication, commerce, and occasionally star wars. If so, great Galactic societies anticipate offering membership to Earth.
Back in our real universe, extraterrestrial life has proved elusive. None has been found. The arguments for and against technological life in the Galaxy have sharpened in recent years. Evidence abounds on Earth of the hardiness of life even in extremely harsh environments. Other evidence suggests the Earth may be a rare type of planet, unusually benign for life as we know it. Evidence on both sides is mounting. Which one is right? There can be only one answer: Either the Milky Way is teeming with technological life or it isn’t.
SETI: The Great Debate – Are We Alone?
Apr 30, 2010 7:30 pm Sibley Auditorium, Bechtel Engineering Center UC Berkeley Berkeley, CA 94720