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Very Exciting Times for setiQuest

Today setiQuest takes the next step in Jill Tarter's goal of "Empowering Earthlings Everywhere To Become Active Participants In The Ultimate Search For Cosmic Company."

The team spent the last year building a new data center, and porting SonATA software to run on the new hardware. Once that was done, attention turned to providing services to run on this infrastructure. The next step is to engage with you, the community, to drive the direction and progress of setiQuest.

Jill Tarter from TED 2011 – Day 2

Session 1: Stage revealed - and it's cosmic!!! Milky Way rises above the stage floor and all the sponsors' logos are being projected onto screens of starfields --- looks like setiQuestExplorer!

TED 2011 - Day 1

In line at 8 am, got my badge, got my bag, got my gifts, met my first ‘old friends’ from TED – I’m a TEDster again!

SonATA (or Sno-ATA?)

As a new guest blogger here, I recently had the great opportunity of being able to ask SETI Institute Astronomer Dr. Peter Backus  a few questions about the software known as SonATA (an acronym for "SETI on the Allen Telescope Array") which processes data as it comes into the control room/lab at Hat Creek, California, site of the Allen Telescope Array (ATA). 

SETI Institute researchers Jill Tarter amd Jon Jenkins on National Public Radio in the US

The story and a link to the audio version are here:
Jill and Jon talk about "listening" to sounds from space. Clearly, listening does not refer to audio, but to detecting the presence of radio waves - a form of electromagnetic waves. While the story itelf does not contain much new to readers of this website, it is still interesting to get such coverage on the radio.

A preview of the next release of setiQuest

We are very excited about a number of announcements coming up on March 1. Here is a brief preview.

Community Management and Social Business session of the Social Media Week conference in San Francisco

Over 150 registered attendees, most of them involved in some way in managing a community! I was looking forward to learning, and I wasn't disappointed.
The biggest lesson, however, came from a conversation with a fellow attendee - Susan Wilhite. The conversation was interesting and very relevant to the setiQuest community.

Massively expanding setiData archive

Today we increased the data available to you by more than 2x (75 new datasets!), including new kepler04 observations, O-stars, quasars, blazars, and more. We're talking about more than 1 TB of new data as grist for your mill!

setiQuest and Google's Summer of Code 2011

On Moday, January 24 Google announced their Summer of Code program for 2011. Under this program, Google encourages students to work as developers on open source projects for the Summer. A  stipend is a nice fature of this program, helping students "flip bits rather than burgers" (in Google's words).

Organizations apply and are selected by Google to participate in the program. Google than publishes a list of organizations along with links to their ideas pages and mentors. Students apply for these programs, and are selected by the metoring organizations.

OpenSource Progress

We have been busily preparing for our upcoming release of the OpenSonATA software. (Imagine, if you will, the SETI software engineers scurrying around like Santa's elves on December 24th). We have decided to release our source code under the GPL license. One of the big hurdles we faced was fixing any licensing issues embedded in our code before we release it to the public. Luckily we received the help of Palamida (see

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