These Color Swatches Could Help Us Find Alien Life

For the first time ever, scientists have created a detailed catalogue of color swatches that correspond to nearly 140 known microorganisms, including those that can live in the most extreme environments. Armed with this knowledge, astrobiologists can now scan the atmospheres of distant exoplanets in hopes of finding a… » 3/17/15 9:25am 3/17/15 9:25am

Could Clicking On Familiar Faces Eventually Replace Passwords?

Passwords and PINs are notoriously difficult to remember. But it just so happens that we're exceptionally good at remembering distinct faces — a psychological quirk that security experts now say could be the next big thing in authentication. » 6/24/14 8:40am 6/24/14 8:40am

How Scientists Could Be Fooled Into Thinking They've Found Alien Life

One of the more promising techniques for detecting alien life is by scanning the atmospheres of distant planets for biosignatures. But as new research shows, astrobiologists could very easily be deceived into thinking they've found extraterrestrial life when a moon is involved. » 4/29/14 1:40pm 4/29/14 1:40pm

Congress Just Held a Remarkable Two-Hour Hearing on Aliens

In a refreshingly pro-science move, the House Science Committee set aside two hours yesterday to discuss the ongoing search for extraterrestrial life. The ensuing conversation was fascinating, but at times infuriating, with the experts discussing everything from alien biosignatures to the possibility that we're being… » 12/05/13 8:00am 12/05/13 8:00am

A New Equation Reveals Our Exact Odds of Finding Alien Life

It’s been over half a century since Frank Drake developed an equation to estimate the probability of finding intelligent life in our galaxy. We’ve learned a lot since then, prompting an astrophysicist from MIT to come up with her own take on the equation. Here’s how the new formula works — and how it could help in the… » 6/21/13 11:00am 6/21/13 11:00am