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Mercury Magazine Contents
Vol. 28 No. 2
March/April 1999

Page Article
10 How Rare are Extraterrestrial Civilizations and When Did They Emerge? Mario Livio
Don't dismiss the notion of extraterrestrial civilizations too quickly - a piece of current research does not prove other civilizations are out there, but it does neatly suggest that the Galaxy may be in full life bloom.
14 Traversing the Galactic Darkness: The Interstellar Matters of Extraterrestrial Transmissions, James M. Cordes
Signals from other civilizations in the Galaxy are usually conceived to be electromagnetic and to contain some level of encoded information, yet those signals' propagation through the interstellar medium smears such information and makes the task of communication even more difficult.
20 A Biologist's View on Life Out There, John Aguiar
A multitude of stars in the Galaxy, and increasingly it looks as if many of them harbor worlds. But what of life on those worlds? First we must consider the nature of life on our own.
26 The View From a Distant Star: Challenges of Interstellar Message-Making, Douglas A. Vakoch
In the absence of knowledge of physical and cultural clues, communication between two species can be almost impossible. Almost.
2 Editorial, James C. White II
Out of the Dark Blue
4 Letters to the Editor
6 Echoes of the Past, Katherine Bracher
Comet Kohoutek
7 Education Newswire, Leo P. Connolly
Astronomy information for educators.
8 Accidental Astrophysics, Eric M. Schlegel
9 Astronomer's Notebook, Christopher J. Conselice
Large vs. Small Optical Telescopes
C1 SkyChart and SkyTalk, Robert A. Garfinkle
33 Commentary, Ryder W. Miller
To Explore and to Protect
35 Last Page, William Doria
The Psychological Imperative to Explore



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