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Archive for January 28th, 2009

Spore.com Astronomer Interview: Seth Shostak

Posted by ballightning on January 28, 2009

Recently Maxis opened the floor for the community to ask questions of Seth about astronomy and the SETI pursuit. Here are his responses to thier questions.

10heattj: What exactly does SETI look for?

 

The Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI) is just that: a scientific hunt for proof that thinking beings exist elsewhere in the cosmos.

 

Most SETI experiments are efforts to pick up signals from advanced civilizations – radio, or flashes of light. It’s also conceivable that we might find evidence for aliens by tripping across some mammoth engineering projects – structures that a highly sophisticated society might build and that might be visible in our telescopes.

 

LuckyPierre: Besides listening or watching for E.T.’s signal, what else does the SETI Institute do?

 

The Institute has a broad research program in a subject called “astrobiology”. This sounds as if it’s about life around other stars, which of course is treu. But a lot of astrobiology research concerns life on Earth: how did it get started, and when?

 

Other research areas include learning where could life survive, and how might we find hidden biology on Mars or some of the moons of the outer solar system. So the SETI Institute is about more than just looking for communicating aliens — it’s also about extraterrestrial critters that might not be clever, but whose existence would tell us a lot about whether life is extremely rare or very common. The Institute also has extensive programs for education and outreach, including a weekly science radio program, “Are We Alone?”

 

Falthron: Could you elaborate on the Wow signal?

 

The celebrated Wow Signal was picked up in 1977 with the Ohio State Radio Observatory’s large antenna. Ohio State’s “Big Ear” was being used in an automatic mode to search for signals, and one morning, when astronomer Jerry Ehman arrived at the scope to look over the printer output, he saw a big spike of radio noise. He wrote “Wow” next to it, hence the signal’s famous name.

 

But it wasn’t seen again, even though the telescope was set up to look at the same piece of sky only about a minute later. The signal’s not been seen since, either. Most likely it was just some earthly radio interference, although it’s possible it was ET sending us a very short ping. If we don’t find it again, we’ll never know.

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Creator Spotlight: Slartibartfast38

Posted by ballightning on January 28, 2009

For this SporeDay we have 2 new interviews, we’ll post the other one soon but first on to the creator Slatibartfast38, who has one of the largest fan bases out of any creator for spore. He has over 1000 subscribers and recently was a winner in the official holiday creation contest.

Here is full interview.

Do you find any particular inspiration for your work?
 

I find inspiration in just about everything life has to offer. My 2 sons inspire me daily. They are fine young men, and I couldn’t be more proud. I tend to get alot of ideas for the names of my spaceships from the music I was listenting to at the time I was creating. Some of my ideas have even come from the lyrics themselves. Images I may see on TV that day tend to have the same effect.

Slartibartfast38
 

Also, it is a constant pleasure to see the daily new creations from the community in general. Each and every creation has a great deal of effort and thought put into it. Knowing how much effort each person put into their creation is an inspiration.

To be perfectly honest, this is the first game I’ve ever purchased for a PC, and it has been a mind opening experience. I enjoy every aspect of it, and the freedom of expression is amazing. So the game ‘Spore’ itself has been a creative inspiration for me.
 

Have you met anyone during your experience playing spore?
Slartibartfast38

First of all, I’d like to thank everyone for giving me those ratings and making those comments. I have met so many fantastic people since starting this game. It’s hard to imagine what life was like before ‘Spore’. To name a few: Dirtymeat, Hydro_Glyph, LordVarmint, Didzo, Enderhenne, Lazywnch, Hilight, Narado, Mootacoo, Gryphon57, SharnaSanveech, ERrnesST, SlivaStari, Sakiara, calculatrice, Zonagirl, Spooradit, Thawed, Heistercrabb, Himmeslaub, rodham, akilahanahid, aquijybo, codyr2391, dragonkohan, Manifestation, Hermit_Blake, Alephred, RissaAngel, exinferios, OldRygel, Sushi Star, Binny, BellaBlim, Exploraziode, sensimelio, hattrickster, Drubinsky, blyon90, JDofPivot, XOTLY, Andeavor, Breakfall87, Torraan, NicMacc, quantamania, PielsYummy, and now you, MaxisCactus.
 

I literally could go on for another four pages. I am terribly sorry to anyone I may have left out.

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