Different people have different views about the existence of aliens. Some believe, some don’t. I personally believe that ‘Extra terrestrial life’ is possible. It is not necessary that they will be CHO (Carbon, Hydrogen and Oxygen) based compounds … like us humans. The conditions on Earth millions of years ago,viz. the Organic soup, just the ‘right’ temperature etc facilitated the formation of compounds which eventually lead to creation of life forms as they exist today. Maybe different conditions else where will or already have led to creation of different kind of life forms … which consist of entirely different spectrum of elements as we know … or even those elements, of which we don’t know anything as yet. Quite possibly the ‘elements’ in question don’t even exist on Earth, and exist only on a distant heavenly body which we are yet to discover !One thing which I have always found perplexing is that why are so many UFO or Alien sightings reported from USA ? … and not from India or Asia for that matter. What do Aliens find ‘more’ interesting in USA, that they visit like a picnic spot !! Maybe they really consider it a picnic spot !! Who knows !
People all over the world are ‘actively’ looking for ET forms of life. One theory is that ‘Intelligent ETs’ might be trying to contact us by sending radio signals ! The movie CONTACT was based on this assumption. So some real techies have set up Huuuuge network of dish antenaes to track these signals coming from outer space. Now the problem is that a lot of ‘trash’ radio waves also come from outer space and the culprits are the Pulsars, the Quasars, the Nova explosions etc which also emit radio waves. The solution, therefore, is to scan and process ALL the recieved radio signals for a logical pattern or a coded signal, and separate it from ‘the space noise’. But such work requires tremendous computing and processing power. This is where many volunteer organizations are pitchig in.
One such volunteer project is SETI@Home (Search for Extra Terrestrial Intelligence @ Home). It is one terrific example of distributed computing as well. SETI guys provide a screen saver which the volunteers install on their computers. Then all one has to do is to periodically download a batch of data to be processed by the screensaver. The screensaver crunches the data for some ‘interesting’ information … and while doing so produces some real cool graphics, which look good on the computer screen.
So those guys/gals with access to Net and whose computer is switched ON most of the time with a screen saver getting a lot of time to play, can download the screensaver. Besides getting a cool screensaver, one also gets the mental satisfaction of contributing to a scientific cause :o) (and NO, inventing new RECIPIES does NOT count as contribution to a scientific cause! ) And who knows that your screensaver ACTUALLY finds a coded message ! You won’t even get time to blink an eye-lid before you become a celebrity ! Some wishful thinking ……… but try it once. Who knows ….. really, who knows ……….
Found another interesting theory that we ourselves might have been ‘planted’ on Earth in larger scheme of things! Read it here.