Frank Drake had a problem. It was the fall of 1961, a year after his pioneering SETI experiment: Project Osma. Using an 85-foot antenna in Green Bank, West Virginia, Drake had unfurled the intriguing possibility that we might find proof of intelligent beings by simply eavesdropping on their broadcasts. He had spent several weeks pointing his antenna at two nearby stars, tuning a simple receiver to 1420 MH, hoping to detect transmissions.
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