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Who We Are: Louis Scheffer

Dr. Louis K. Scheffer was one of the editors of the SETI Institute "roadmap" report called SETI 2020 and he is currently a technical board member for the Allen Telescope Array. His first two degrees were from Caltech and his PhD in electrical engineering is from Stanford. He is a Fellow at Cadence Design Systems (San Jose, California), where he is responsible for the software architecture of digital integrated circuit design tools. Lou Scheffer is the author of a significant paper called Aliens can watch 'I Love Lucy' published in Contact in Context. Conventional wisdom says that aliens might detect our TV signals, but will not be able to decode them. In contrast, Lou argues that "this view considerably underestimates the technologies that aliens might employ. By looking at likely technical improvements -- better receivers and feeds, bigger antenna, signal processing, and perhaps stellar focusing -- any civilization that can detect our radiations might well be able to decode it as well. Thus aliens can form their impression of Earth from 'I Love Lucy'."

Lou Scheffer

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