Profile

Cover photo
David Summers
Worked at Carl Sagan Center, SETI Institute
Attended Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Lives in Menlo Park, CA
531 followers|1,894 views
AboutPostsPhotosVideos

Stream

 
The discovery of an earth sized planet in a habitable zone is the news today.  As sign of a well conceived mission, Kepler gave real statistics.  Those had been saying that Earthlike planets would be fairly common (maybe 0.01% to 0.1%?  Which is a lot of given how many stars there are.)  But actually seeing one still gives a thrill.

What does it mean that the star is a red dwarf?  Life on planets around such stars is still under discussion, but nobody has come up with a good reason why it can't exist.  And these are the most common stars there are!
1
Add a comment...

David Summers

Shared publicly  - 
 
pretty sceptical about....
http://www.sheffield.ac.uk/news/nr/scientists-find-life-coming-to-earth-from-space-1.309972

He places a lot of faith on the premise that we know all mechanisms that could carry particles up that high and an hasn't seemed to rule out hat the balloon itself did function as a mechanism for carrying particles up.  Also, evidence points to life arising from a universal ancestor but if extraterrestrial life was "raining" in, this would seem to be unlikely.  Finally, there is the unanswered question of where this life is coming from.  It is probably even more unlikely that life could survive an interstellar trip and so you have the question, "What source of extraterrestrial life exists in the solar system that is ubiquitous enough to produce the amounts of infall he implies but which has evaded all detection?"
1
Add a comment...

David Summers

Shared publicly  - 
 
Reports that rumours of a big discovery being are overblown seems reasonable. It seems too early.
2
Susan Shofkom's profile photokevin olson's profile photo
2 comments
 
It must be the unicorn lair that N. Korea discovered.
Add a comment...
Have him in circles
531 people
 
Increasing questions about methane on Mars.  Not sure that it changes our out look for life on Mars a lot.  The methane had a chance to really push the chances forward, but as of now it still needed more confirmation (hence the experiment on Curiosity) and even then its biological source would need to be established.  As of now,  you can't rule out even current life on Mars, but it remains a speculative thing.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-24165219
1
Add a comment...

David Summers

Finding a Game  - 
 
For anyone who might be in the San Francisco Bay Area, there is a game in South SF.  We play Lunars and the system is a variant (based on older RQ with a d20) written by Ray Turney.  We meet every 3-4 weeks.
3
Mikko Tormala's profile photoŚanto Sengupta's profile photoDavid Summers's profile photo
6 comments
 
+Śanto Sengupta

We mostly consider the cosmopolitan Lunar Empire to be more place to base the campaign.
Add a comment...
People
Have him in circles
531 people
Education
  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology
    1984
Basic Information
Gender
Male
Work
Employment
  • Carl Sagan Center, SETI Institute
    Senior Researcher
Places
Map of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has lived
Currently
Menlo Park, CA
Links