In the first half, senior astronomer at SETI, Seth Shostak, shared an update on the search for extraterrestrial signals, and commented on a recent report of strange radio bursts from space. According to Shostak, the first such radio burst was actually discovered in 2007, but the find was initially dismissed until ten additional phenomena were detected in subsequent years. Although scientists remain baffled by the origin of the bursts, researchers have theorized that they came from very far away and, thus, would have to have been generated by something "mighty powerful" such as colliding stars or a black hole. That said, he dismissed the possibility that they are of an alien origin since the sounds have been detected coming from various parts of the sky rather than a fixed point in space.
Regarding the search for ET life, Shostak detailed how SETI is currently working on a new program that would examine nearby red dwarf stars. These diminutive celestial bodies, which are smaller than the sun, have been known to possess planets revolving around them and, therefore, could be the site of extraterrestrial biology. Shostak also addressed the notion that the government would cover up the discovery of an ET signal in the event that SETI had successfully detected one. He revealed that there have been times where the organization had "false alarms" that lasted for hours but these moments never drew the attention of the government. Beyond that, he stressed that a radio signal coming from space can be detected by "anyone with an antenna" and, therefore, concealing such a discovery would be impossible.
During Open Lines, Sid in San Diego shared a strange sighting that he had earlier in the evening. While admiring the night sky, he noticed a "huge, long, absolutely perfectly straight chemtrail" which appeared to be crossing in front of the moon. Oddly, this chemtrail then shifted in the sky and moved counterclockwise away from the moon "like the hand of a clock rewinding," sweeping from a one o'clock position to a ten o'clock position. Baffled, Sid theorized that the movement was caused by the wind, but then realized that such conditions would disrupt the straight formation of the chemtrail. Ultimately, he conceded that "I have absolutely no explanation for it" and noted that his skeptic girlfriend "was a believer about this one."
Later in the program, Scott in Illinois imparted a forecast for the economy which is based on both his own research as well as insights from Heaven. He contended that there will soon be a breakthrough discovery which will change the US economy from petroleum-based to hydrogen-based as a result of new alternative energy technology. In turn, he said, the American economy will flourish and, in one or two years, the country will be completely out of debt. Additionally, he claimed that "the word of Heaven" told him that the price of silver will surge this year and may reach over $100 an ounce. While he does not know what the trigger event will be that causes this surge, Scott expressed such confidence in the prediction that he has allegedly "bet the ranch" on it becoming a reality.
For the first time in history, an autonomous car has completed the cross country journey from San Francisco to New York City. The robotic driving system, designed by automotive parts supplier Delphi and installed in an Audi SQ5, features a front-mounted camera that can survey street signs and traffic lights as well as six radar systems installed throughout the perimeter of the vehicle. Despite encountering a variety of weather and traffic conditions, the remarkable robo-car required human intervention for only 1% of the landmark trip. More on the story at Wired.