Big Picture Science Radio Show: Thinking About Thinking

Thoughts about thinking: how scary-smart crows fashion tools and can recognize you by sight … scientists who simulated, neuron-by-neuron, a piece of rat brain in a computer want to tackle the human brain … and what brain disorders teach us about the brain and our sense of self.
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  • Thoughts about thinking: how scary-smart crows fashion tools and can recognize you by sight … scientists who simulated, neuron-by-neuron, a piece of rat brain in a computer want to tackle the human brain … and what brain disorders teach us about the brain and our sense of self.

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  • Phil Nicholson from Cornell University gave SETI Talk on Tuesday February 07, 2017. Chance observations of stars as they pass behind planets have provided some of our most valuable data on the structure of planetary ring systems, beginning with the discovery of the uranian rings with the Kuiper Airborne Observatory in 1977.

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  • Voyager and Pale Blue Dot

    In 1990, the Voyager 1 spacecraft – outbound from the solar system at four times the distance of Saturn – swung its 1500 mm telephoto lens back towards Earth, and snapped a picture.

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    Voyager and Pale Blue Dot
  • Christopher McKee's SETI Talk on Tuesday January 31, 2017. Stars are the atoms of the universe. The process by which stars form is at the nexus of astrophysics since they are believed to be responsible for the re-ionization of the universe...

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  • Barry Welsh's SETI Talk was on Tuesday January 23, 2017. Minor bodies such as Kuiper Belt objects, comets, and asteroids constitute the rocky and icy debris left over from the planet building phase of our solar system.

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  • Norm Sleep's SETI Talk on Tuesday January 10, 2017. Asteroid impacts were a hazard to any life on the Hadean Earth. A traditional approach to geochemical models of the asteroid impactors uses the concentration of highly siderophile elements including the Pt-group in the silicate Earth.

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  • ceres false color

    Using data primarily gathered by SOFIA, NASA’s Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy, a team of astronomers has detected the presence of substantial amounts of material on the surface of Ceres that appears to be fragments of other asteroids.

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    ceres false color
  • Meteor streams

    From where do meteors come? NASA is mapping meteoroid streams in a project led by SETI Institute's Peter Jenniskens. Now visualized in 3D!

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    Meteor streams
  • Dan Kammen's SETI Talk on Tuesday December 20, 2016. It has been scientifically clear for some time that the global community must decarbonize the energy and material system entirely by mid-century.

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  • George Ricker's SETI Talk on Tuesday December 13, 2016. Dr. Ricker is the PI of the TESS Mission which will explore nearby stars for exoplanets.

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News and Announcements

  Are the Salad Days for Intelligence Still to Come?
Could it be that Homo sapiens is the first intelligent species in the cosmos? Given the number of planets now known to pepper space, that seems unlikely. Seth Shostak writes about the idea for NBC’s tech/science page.
  Take Me to Your Artist
SETI Institute artists are being inspired by our search for alien life.
  NASA Kepler Visionary Honored By American Association for the Advancement of Science
William J. Borucki, principal investigator for NASA's Kepler mission at the agency's Ames Research Center in Silicon Valley, California, has been named a Fellow by the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).
  The Life, The Sea, The Space Viking Sigur Ros (Jónsi, Orri Páll Dýrason, Georg Hólm), the whispering muse in Iceland
The Last part of The Life, The Sea and The Space Viking. Nelly discusses the soundtrack to the expedition The Life, The Sea and the Space Viking with the Icelandic band Sigur Ros.
  Dec 14 - Nathalie Cabrol presents the Sagan Lecture at AGU 2016
On Wednesday December 14, at 10:25 AM PST, Nathalie Cabrol will be presenting this year's Sagan Lecture at the American Geophysical Union in San Francisco.
  Arrival: Squid Pro Quo
Who speaks for Earth? If scientists ever succeed in making contact with extraterrestrial beings, who gets to steer the conversation? Indeed, how do we even have a conversation? Despite what Gene Roddenberry told you, any real aliens’ command of English will be meager.
  The Life, The Sea and The Space Viking Dr. Kári Stefánsson at Decode in Iceland, the search for the Viking gene
Part 7 of The Life, The Sea and The Space Viking. Join Nelly as she meets with Kari Stefansson the president and founder of Decode Genetics. Nelly and Kari plot to specify and define the Viking Gene.
  The Life, The Sea and The Space Viking Dr. Jill Tarter and the SETI Institute and research
Part 6 of The Life, The Sea and The Space Viking. Our latest clip enables you to enter Dr. Jill Tarters world of the SETI Institue and research. Jill describes the SETI Institutes search for life on other planets.
  The Life, The Sea and The Space Viking Dr Chris MacKay talking about terraforming
Part 5 of The Life, The Sea and The Space Viking: Chris McKay a research scientist from NASA Ames Research Centre expounds his interest in life on other planets, particularly Mars to Nelly.
  The Life, The Sea and The Space Viking Dr Nathalie Cabrol and the Licancabur Lake in Chile
Part 4 of The Life, The Sea and The Space Viking: This clip introduces us to Dr. Nathalie Cabrol, Senior Research Scientist and Director of the Carl Sagan Center. Nathalie explains how she travels to extreme places such as the Licancabur Lake at 5900m elevation in Chile, in order to study them and work out what makes a planet or moon habitable.

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