Flix Tuesday, July 21, 2015 - 05:30
One sifts through a newspaper every morning for an insight into the world around us. Inside the pages of The Times of India on Tuesday though, was a full-page-advertisement by Russian billionaire Yuri Milner, asking us to join him in his quest to find aliens. “Are we alone? Now is the time to find out” says the header on the page. Here is the ad:     The advertisement is paid for by the Breakthrough Initiatives which is part of the Breakthrough Prize Foundation. A new project initiated by the organisation is called Breakthrough Listen. The project aims to find whether extra-terrestrial life exists and the $100 million investment is being provided Milner, whose first name Yuri, is after the first cosmonaut, fellow Russian Yuri Gargarin. The advertisement says that as a “mature civilisation” we need to ask ourselves these questions. “Do we have a shared face, turned outward towards the universe?” it asks. It ends by saying that while the 20th century will be remembered for humankind’s travels within the solar system, the next century is when we “graduate to the galactic scale, seek other forms of life, and so know more deeply who we are.” The newspaper also carried an interview with Milner who went on to substantiate on the initiative. The project is arguably the most well-funded attempt to find extra-terrestrial life. Milner says that he was funding the project personally and he has always been curious about aliens. “The reason I was interested in launching this initiative was because there is a big, philosophical question which people have been asking for years, are we alone in the universe? I thought it is a big enough question for someone to do something about,” he told the newspaper.