2010 World Science Festival Blog

Broadcast: The Search for Life

Update: The broadcast went really well. Thanks to everyone for participating. You can check out the replay and transcript with Jill Tarter and Seth Shostak here → Stay tuned for more interactive broadcasts to come. We’ve got some dingers lined up…

Join us tomorrow for a special interactive broadcast of The Search for Life in the Universe, originally taped during the 2010 World Science Festival. Accompanying the broadcast, we’re very excited to have live commentary and a Q/A session with the SETI Institute’s Jill Tarter and Seth Shostak.

Are we alone? It’s a question that has obsessed us for centuries, and now we have the technology to do more than wonder. From the Galapagos Art Space in Brooklyn, NY, scientists on the hunt for distant planets and extraterrestrial intelligence discuss their expeditions into faraway galaxies and barely visible realms. Nobel Laureate Sir Paul Nurse moderates this eye-opening conversation with Jill Tarter, David Charbonneau, Steven Squyres, and Michael Russell to contemplate what it would mean to have company in the cosmos.

Join the conversation!
During the 90-minute online broadcast, we’ll have live commentary from SETI Institute director Jill Tarter and astronomer Seth Shostak. Immediately after the program, there will be a follow-up discussion and Q/A session with these two scientists at the cutting-edge of the search for life in our universe. You can join the conversation by logging into the chat, or by using your Facebook or Twitter account.

You can also send in your questions via email or by Twitter (@WorldSciFest), and we’ll ask the scientists our favorites. And you can check back to read the transcript, even if you miss the broadcast.

Jill Tarter has devoted her career to hunting for signs of sentient beings through a systematic search for radio signals from Earth’s galactic neighbors. Time Magazine named her one of the 100 most influential people in the world, and she was the inspiration for Jodie Foster’s character in the movie Contact.

Seth Shostak is an astronomer, lecturer, and the author and editor of several books, including the 2009 Confessions of an Alien Hunter. The Senior Astronomer at the SETI Institute, he hosts the institute’s weekly science radio show, Are We Alone?

Tune in to worldsciencefestival.com on Wednesday, September 8, at 3:00 PM EDT to watch the show

Image courtesy of Jill Tarter and the SETI Institute.


  1. #1 Danielle Futselaar
    September 8, 2010

    Very well done! though the stream was not constant (i bet that will get better with experience), the solution of the broadcast together with the chat session is really nicely done!

    Thank you


  2. #2 Greg Boustead
    September 10, 2010

    Yes, that was fun! Thanks for joining the conversation, Danielle!

    As for the stream quality, what sort of issues were you having exactly? If you had at least 500kbs of bandwidth, I’m very surprised to hear you were having streaming problems. With thousands of viewers watching the broadcast, the feedback on stream success has been mostly positive; so I’d like to suss out the cases where it didn’t work.

    Thanks again,

  3. #3 Danielle Futselaar
    September 12, 2010

    Hi Greg,

    Hmm, well what happened was that it just stopped a lot, and sometimes indeed had to be restarted by pause and restart, and sometimes started again on its own. It got better later in the broadcast (maybe less people logged on then, not sure if that could have been influencing it?)

    If you like we could do some testing, i have “high speed” (30mb) wireless access (through apple airport) which should be good enough (we can upgrade the speed to 120mb already, but i never had the need for it). I am not an expert on the subject, but if you like to, i gladly help out (you know the email address 😉



  4. #4 Amigo
    November 8, 2010

    It’s very cool! Using…

  5. #5 mirgeo
    December 15, 2010

    I’ll go on twitter and write all that I think of it

  6. #6 Double Glazing
    December 27, 2010

    The topic about life is always an interesting discussion.Every person has their own explanation of what is life.There is no specific meaning but depends on how you appreciate and look on to it.For me,life is a mission from God.

  7. #7 Sandra Hopkins
    January 8, 2011

    Might have to use my twitter for this. This is just one of the questions in my mind that does not have a clear answer yet, have to watch to that video for me to tell if there’s another life form outside our planet.

  8. #8 ALeyram
    June 4, 2011

    Ne oldu da Hmm, sadece ve çok durdu ki bazen gerçekten durdurma ve yeniden başlatma ile yeniden başlatılması gerekiyordu ve bazen de kendi başına tekrar başlandı. Bu yayın daha sonra daha iyi (değil emin eğer etkileyen olabilirdi sonra oturum belki daha az insan?) Var

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  10. #10 Steve Salvo
    April 16, 2012

    The fact that Jill Tarter has devoted her career to hunting for signs of sentient beings through a systematic search for radio signals from Earth’s galactic neighbors is totally awesome.I’ve been doing that since I was a kid. I actually just signed my kid up for a contest with The Afterschool awards. I’m hoping they might like the video I made of his invention (a new APP) & he might win a scholarship.

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