The timing couldn't be worse, say SETI scientists. After millenniums of musings, this spring astronomers announced that 1,235 new possible planets had been observed by Kepler, a telescope on a space satellite. They predict that dozens of these planets will be Earth-sized -- and some will be in the "habitable zone," where the temperatures are just right for liquid water, a prerequisite of life as we know it.
"There is a huge irony," said SETI Director Jill Tarter, "that a time when we discover so many planets to look at, we don't have the operating funds to listen."
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