Broadcast 3102 Dr. Seth Shostak

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Guest:  Dr. Seth Shostak;  Topics: Searching for advanced life off Earth, tools used, best evidence, within and beyond our solar system.  Please direct all comments and questions regarding specific Space Show programs & guest(s) to the Space Show blog which is part of archived program on our website,   Comments and questions should be relevant to the specific Space Show program. Written Transcripts of Space Show programs are a violation of our copyright and are not permitted without prior written consent, even if for your own use. We do not permit the commercial use of Space Show programs or any part thereof, nor do we permit editing, YouTube clips, or clips placed on other private channels & websites. Space Show programs can be quoted, but the quote must be cited or referenced using the proper citation format. Contact The Space Show for further information. In addition, please remember that your Amazon purchases can help support The Space Show/OGLF. See   

We welcomed back Dr. Seth Shostak for this one segment 62 minute discussion about searching for advanced life off Earth both within our solar system and outside the solar system.  Early questions focused on the probability of our finding sentient (advanced life) within the solar system or outside the solar system.  Also, the best places to search for life within the solar system but this would be searching for microbial life.  Don't miss what Dr. Shostak said and the list of prime search locations.  During this conversation, Dr. Shostak mentioned the technology needing to advance SETI searches so I asked him what type of advanced technology was needed for advanced life searches.  Our guest talked about electronics, more and faster computers, antenna systems and more.  Don't miss this part of our discussion.

We did talk about searching for ET using something other than radio waves.  Seth said we might try looking for artifacts, very large structures such as a Dyson Sphere or even going to the Moon and looking through the surface for clues left there earlier on by an advance ET but all of those ideas were limited.  I asked about searching Earth for ET artifacts.  Our guest said Earth was not a good place to search for ET artifacts and he told us why.  Listen to what he said and let us know what you think by posting on our blog. 

Listener Jack in Santa Fe suggested ET might be more advanced than us so they might search for less advanced life by using their older technology including radio technology.  Again, don't miss what our guest said in response to Jack's comment.  Seth was asked about sightings, UFOs and best evidence of visitors.  He said there was no convincing evidence and then spent a fair amount of time explaining his comment.  Don't miss it. 

Marshall was our first caller with the topic of the Fermi Paradox and the Goldilocks zone with exoplanets and life searches.  Later, Marshall talked about the possibility of life at the outer edge of the solar system thinking it would be difficult to find due to the absence of heavy metals.  Seth refuted Marshall's argument so don't miss it.  We then talked about other tools used by SETI including ground based telescopes, very large radio telescopes in Puerto Rico and the new one in China, plus Seth talked about the role of AI in modern day SETI searches.

Thomas in Singapore sent in several email questions on a variety of different topics.  I read each of his emails on air as they came in so don't miss what he was asking of our guest.  Seth did respond regarding each of the emails but was not generally in agreement with the listener ideas.  We then took a somewhat lengthy call from John in Ft. Worth.  Those of you who know John know that he immediately focused in on the DOD objects that we have talked about on the show and that have been in the news the past few months.  John was definitely of the opinion that they are not just UFOs but probably alien.  Seth was not convinced and even suggested what they might be based on military info given what he has heard from his contacts.  Listen and then let us know what you think so again, post your comments about this on our blog. 

Additional listener emails came in with questions for Seth.  BJohn wanted to know about a second origin of life for here on Earth.  Thomas continued asking questions, the next about a possible ET created computer virus that eventually let the aliens take over all of Earth.  Seth said he had written an article about this for NBC news and that he did not support the idea.  I then asked Seth about both active and passive SETI.  Seth had much to say about this, especially engaging in active SETI. 

Before the program ended, we fielded several more listener questions.  Ellen wanted to know if some sort of tracer signal could be attached to our broadcasts so we could determine if someone out there was listening.  Todd wanted to know if our current space program was a help or drag in searching for ET.  Paul asked about Seth's expectations for SETI.  Did he expect to find a signal every day?  Seth's response to Paul was most interesting so don't miss it.  Thomas got in the last email regarding the Fermi Paradox and proof. 

Please post your comments/questions for this interview on TSS blog.  You can reach Dr. Shostak through the SETI Institute website at or me.




SETI, searching for ET life and more

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17 Apr 2018 Dr. Seth Shostak
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