Dr. Jill Tarter, Astronomer and Director of the Center for SETI Research at the SETI Institute in Mountain View, California explains the technology and significance of NASA's Kepler, which detects when stars "blink" or a planet passes in front of it, and her role in SETI, the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence. With the use of Kepler, Tarter tells us that there are probably about 50 billion planets in the Milky Way galaxy, of which 500 million are potentially habitable. So, she asks, are we alone? Tarter explains her research with SETI involving new ways to search for biosignatures around these planets that indicate extraterrestrial life.
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In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized.*