Did you ever ask yourself if we're all alone, or whether there just might be alien life out there?
If you're one of the curious few, you can join the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI) as a citizen scientist to hunt down signs of alien life by looking at the universe's soundwaves with SETILive.
For the first time ever, the general public can see data being collected by radio telescopes, including the Allen Telescope Array (ATA) at Hut Creek California, to help search for intelligent life out there in space.
SETI's ATA is pointed at stars that have the best chance of being home to an alien life. If enough people monitoring the data spot an alien signal, then SETI will check out your findings. SETI says looking at the wave forms is the easiest way to tell human-made sounds apart from those engineered by extraterrestrial life.
The crowd-sourcing project is a result of the TED Prize Wish made by astronomer Jill Tarter, director of the SETI Institute’s Center for SETI Research
TED Prize director Amy Novogratz said: "Three years ago, Dr. Tarter stood on the TED stage and asked us all to unite in the search for life on other planets. The TED community responded by dreaming big and working hard – with many milestones to show for it. This landmark step empowers people around the globe to meaningfully contribute to this important scientific endeavor and work towards answering the ultimate question, 'are we alone?'"
Doctor Tarter said: "There are frequencies that our automated signal detection systems now ignore, because there are too many signals there. Most are created by Earth’s communication and entertainment technologies, but buried within this noise, there may be a signal from a distant technology. I’m hoping that an army of volunteers can help us deal with these crowded frequency bands that confuse our machines. By doing this in real-time, we will have an opportunity to follow up immediately on what our volunteers discover."
To get involved and monitor the Allen array's data for alien life, log in at SETILive