The Internet is Very Interesting Today

Did we miss an opportunity over the last few months? For several months, since Last April, SETI has been in hibernation, not taking calls from aliens living in other worlds with radio sets. Phil Plait reports that SETI is back on line after a revival of funding. The question is, did we miss any calls? The funds are private donations. Phil “… was happy to see that people such as Jodie Foster (who played SETI astronomer Ellie Arroway in the movie “Contact”) and science fiction author Larry Niven were among people who had contributed, as well as Apollo 8 astronaut Bill Anders. The $200k donated is enough to get things started again, but not enough to continue operations, so it looks like there will be more fund (and awareness) raising soon by SETI.”

You’ll notice that I’ve not been posting regular hurricane updates this year as I did over the last couple/few years. There are three reasons for this: 1) I’m inconsistent and capricious in my blogging; 2) In the Atlantic, which is where I’ve focused, the Hurricane Season has been less interesting than usual; and 3) Dr. Jeff Masters has it covered at his Wunderblog, which I strongly recommend. Dr. Jeff is currently reporting two African waves that may develop and if they do, I might start blogging their windy watery selves.

I know the average person does not understand what placebos are (and are not) but I also suspect that the average person in the health industry does not either, or at least, as well as they should. Neuroskeptic has an interesting blog post pointing to a piece in Nature about sham surgery. Worth a look.

There is now a new blog carnival: The Roman Bioarchaeology Carnival. Most of my personal bioarchaeology of these later periods has been Greek, but this is still interesting. Check it out. It’s mostly about human skeletal materials.

Don’t forget to check out Sheril’s new blog, “Culture of Science” … she’s been posting up a storm, and it’s all good stuff.

Does it work to “trap” bugs in a bug trap that attracts them to their doom, or do you end up attracting more bugs than get trapped, thus spiting yourself and the bugs? Ask Bug Girl, obviously.

Comments

  1. #1 bks
    August 11, 2011

    What is the scientific basis for continuing SETI? It presents certain problems for the anti-ID college as presented here:

    http://www.skeptic.com/eskeptic/06-02-16/

    Of course, as a Pantheist I believe that life *is* a universal principle. That is, I believe the Universe is alive. I think SETI is a grand idea. For the Atheist the justification for spending money searching for life “out there” is a bit harder to come by.

    –bks

  2. #2 Greg Laden
    August 11, 2011

    I never thought about it from an atheist perspective. As a scientist I assume there is life out there but that there is a low poss. of getting a signal, but missing it would be a cosmic level embarrassment! If I was in charge of funding for SETI I’d try to ensure that SETI data collection had multiple uses . THey are, after all, pointing big machines at the sky.

    SETI and ID are different.

    There is no a priori hint of ID, but there is an a priori hint of intelligent life in the universe.

  3. #3 Raging Bee
    August 11, 2011

    That is, I believe the Universe is alive. I think SETI is a grand idea. For the Atheist the justification for spending money searching for life “out there” is a bit harder to come by.

    What, an atheist can’t believe there’s other species out there and we should try to locate them? Where do you get that?

  4. #4 Greg Laden
    August 11, 2011

    Its the id connection, as a rhetorical barb. I’m actually fitting this nicely into a blog post I’m writing.

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