I've always wanted to unpack the biases and assumptions that we have in thinking about extraterrestrial civilizations. The entire premise of the science fiction novel I'm writing is that aliens might be completely incomprehensible. It was fun to explore some of these same themes in this piece for now.space, which I came to after Douglas Vakoch, who helped found METI, contacted me to tell me about a conference at Arecibo regarding different models for extraterrestrial intelligence. I'd like to say I jumped on it right away but, unfortunately, I was really busy at the time and so it took me a couple months to even get back to Doug.
But I'm glad I did because talking to the researchers who spoke at the conference was extremely enlightening. My speculations about aliens have always felt deeply personal and solitary. But over the years I've spoken to a number of other researchers whose ideas mirror mine, and they've helped me feel less alone in this universe.