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Voyager Interstellar Record
ljk4-1
post Dec 1 2005, 02:52 PM
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Voyager - A message from Earth

Saturday 19 November 2005

Summary

Jon Lomberg is an artist who could be called portrait painter to the cosmos. He illustrated most of Carl Sagan's books and articles and his paintings and multi-media presentations of astronomy have made him well known around the world. He's talking about the message he designed which was sent on Voyager II from the people of Earth to whoever might hear it in space.

Program Transcript:

http://www.abc.net.au/rn/science/ss/stories/s1505986.htm


--------------------
"After having some business dealings with men, I am occasionally chagrined,
and feel as if I had done some wrong, and it is hard to forget the ugly circumstance.
I see that such intercourse long continued would make one thoroughly prosaic, hard,
and coarse. But the longest intercourse with Nature, though in her rudest moods, does
not thus harden and make coarse. A hard, sensible man whom we liken to a rock is
indeed much harder than a rock. From hard, coarse, insensible men with whom I have
no sympathy, I go to commune with the rocks, whose hearts are comparatively soft."

- Henry David Thoreau, November 15, 1853

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Guest_PhilCo126_*
post Dec 30 2005, 02:49 PM
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For me it's still amazing to see how NASA presented views of deep space by just focusing in onto a painting of the planet Jupiter or an artist impression of Pioneer near the planet Saturn smile.gif
I especially like the 30 minutes NASA documentaries on Pioneer & Saturn... From time to time a DVD with both these is available via eBay ( http://stores.ebay.com/EARTHSTATION1-MULTIMEDIA )
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ljk4-1
post Jan 24 2006, 05:22 PM
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Message in a Bottle

by Jason Fry of the Wall Street Journal

Sending Messages Into Outer Space Has Changed Since Voyager's Day

January 23, 2006

http://online.wsj.com/public/article_print...2447848689.html

To quote:

"In all likelihood, space probes will be the only things of ours that endure after our species is gone and our planet utterly changed -- a few inert, pitted machines will be the sole clues that we ever existed, and the ancient messages they carry our only chance to explain who we were. It's vanishingly unlikely that any being will ever find the Pioneers, Voyagers or the New Horizons probe in the billion-odd years during which their messages will remain readable. But though imagining such a discovery borders on an act of faith, it's not impossible. And since it isn't, shouldn't the only trace of ourselves be something more substantive than an unbelievably ancient PR campaign? Don't we owe ourselves a final testament that's something more than space spam?"


--------------------
"After having some business dealings with men, I am occasionally chagrined,
and feel as if I had done some wrong, and it is hard to forget the ugly circumstance.
I see that such intercourse long continued would make one thoroughly prosaic, hard,
and coarse. But the longest intercourse with Nature, though in her rudest moods, does
not thus harden and make coarse. A hard, sensible man whom we liken to a rock is
indeed much harder than a rock. From hard, coarse, insensible men with whom I have
no sympathy, I go to commune with the rocks, whose hearts are comparatively soft."

- Henry David Thoreau, November 15, 1853

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Guest_PhilCo126_*
post Jan 24 2006, 05:43 PM
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Guests






Well I prefer the Pioneer plaque ... Seeing the Voyager plaque I really needed some extra explanation about the signs on it, which are mostly directives how to play the 'record' ...
Superb initiative though by the late Dr Carl Sagan !
Talking about this, it remains 'strange' why the New Horizons didn't bare such a message, all beit some small electronic one ( simular to the names of Earthlings it carries ) ph34r.gif
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ljk4-1
post Jan 26 2006, 05:12 AM
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Another good reason to have plaques and records on our space probes...
Attached thumbnail(s)
Attached Image
 


--------------------
"After having some business dealings with men, I am occasionally chagrined,
and feel as if I had done some wrong, and it is hard to forget the ugly circumstance.
I see that such intercourse long continued would make one thoroughly prosaic, hard,
and coarse. But the longest intercourse with Nature, though in her rudest moods, does
not thus harden and make coarse. A hard, sensible man whom we liken to a rock is
indeed much harder than a rock. From hard, coarse, insensible men with whom I have
no sympathy, I go to commune with the rocks, whose hearts are comparatively soft."

- Henry David Thoreau, November 15, 1853

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djellison
post Jan 26 2006, 10:19 AM
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Such a response is equally likely from the plaque. They might find the sounds from earth on the disk just as offensive as the sounds of reality TV smile.gif

Doug
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paxdan
post Jan 26 2006, 11:12 AM
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<42>

i seem to be having tremendous difficulty with my lifestyle

</42>
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ljk4-1
post Jan 26 2006, 02:01 PM
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QUOTE (djellison @ Jan 26 2006, 05:19 AM)
Such a response is equally likely from the plaque.  They might find the sounds  from earth on the disk just as offensive as the sounds of reality TV smile.gif

Doug
*


Pretend you have never heard of Earth or humans before. What would you imagine these sounds on the Voyager Record to be from:

http://re-lab.net/welcome/sounds2.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Voyager_Golden_Record

In Carl Sagan's The Cosmic Connection, there is a great section reproduced from the old British Punch magazine imagining how different ETI who encounter the Pioneer Plaque react to it. The spindly beings who look like the pulsar map are especially put off, as the lines are positioned in the rudest way imaginable.

http://www.stmarys.ca/academic/conted/webc...le1/page01.html

http://www.cambridge.org/uk/catalogue/cata...isbn=0521783038

There is also a great SF story in the old Omni magazine from 1978 about one of the Voyagers going through a black hole and splitting into numerous copies of itself into different parallel universes. Some very different ETI find the probe and its record, all having very different reactions to it. The last part is entwined with the actual Amoy language greeting that asks the ETI if they have eaten yet and to please come visit us when they have the time. cool.gif

http://re-lab.net/welcome/lang.html


--------------------
"After having some business dealings with men, I am occasionally chagrined,
and feel as if I had done some wrong, and it is hard to forget the ugly circumstance.
I see that such intercourse long continued would make one thoroughly prosaic, hard,
and coarse. But the longest intercourse with Nature, though in her rudest moods, does
not thus harden and make coarse. A hard, sensible man whom we liken to a rock is
indeed much harder than a rock. From hard, coarse, insensible men with whom I have
no sympathy, I go to commune with the rocks, whose hearts are comparatively soft."

- Henry David Thoreau, November 15, 1853

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djellison
post Jan 26 2006, 02:33 PM
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QUOTE (ljk4-1 @ Jan 26 2006, 02:01 PM)
Pretend you have never heard of Earth or humans before.


Physically impossible smile.gif

You can find members of our species who would find Classical to be utter tripe compared to Drum and Bass, or those who find Drum and Bass the work of satan himself compared to that of Schubert. If the opinion of people within a single species w.r.t. its creations vary so hugely, then one can not even being to imagine what they might be elsewhere. There is no means by which one could possibly gauge any reaction to the contents of these things nor the signals we have been sending out for 50 years or so by a species other than our own. Any suggestion is pure random speculation and infinitly more likely to be wrong that right.

It could range from "ug" to "INVADE AND DESTROY WITH OUR PHOTON BOMB"


Doug
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Jeff7
post Jan 27 2006, 01:42 AM
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QUOTE (ljk4-1 @ Jan 26 2006, 12:12 AM)
Another good reason to have plaques and records on our space probes...
*


So I guess future spacecraft, in addition to a message of peace, should also include an apology.smile.gif

Some options for what happens with our spacecraft, in order of probability:
1) Never found, either drifting in the emptiness of space, or destroyed by various phenomena, such as stars.

2) Found by a race so advanced that they immediately recognize the nature of the spacecraft and are able to hand it over to a computer that can analyze and decipher it in a few minutes.

3) A chunk of it, most likely the RTG, survives entry through a planet's atmosphere. Primitive lifeforms, similar to homo erectus or Neanderthals in intelligence, find the object after seeing a ray of light from the sky fall to the ground. Perhaps the record even survives in the wake of the disintegrating high gain antenna. They become religious artifacts, and one or all of the symbols are determined to be holy, like the cross in Christianity. After many religious wars over which is the true holy object, the shiny record or the vaned RTG, they finally find Earth and obliterrate us all for causing so much death in their world. smile.gif

4) A race around our technological level finds it, and takes offense to the naked humans onboard, but they're never able to figure out any of the other symbols, only that the people from that place comprise a wholly obscene race. tongue.gif
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AndyG
post Jan 27 2006, 09:57 AM
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QUOTE (Jeff7 @ Jan 27 2006, 01:42 AM)
4) A race around our technological level finds it, and takes offense to the naked humans onboard, but they're never able to figure out any of the other symbols, only that the people from that place comprise a wholly obscene race. tongue.gif
*

smile.gif
More confusing is the Pioneer Plaque. Any observant alien can see that the probe was made by just two beings, each a separate species, working together. They might call them Shorts and Talls. Tall has what looks like a third manipulative organ, compared to Short. These species have some form of carapace on top of their sensory appendages (presumably to deflect harsh radiation from their home star), they breathe hydrogen, navigate on their world using pulsars, and use their solar system's largest planet to eject 70's-era space junk into the cosmos.

The aliens will find us, if only to discover what we look like from the back...

Andy G
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Chmee
post Jan 27 2006, 03:31 PM
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5). A civilization of intelligent machines finds the probe, outfits it with a massive intelligence and sends it back where it arrives back to Earth in the 24th Century to ask the question "Why?". It is alternatively known as V'ger or P'neer depending on which probe is found. rolleyes.gif
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ljk4-1
post Jan 27 2006, 04:25 PM
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QUOTE (AndyG @ Jan 27 2006, 04:57 AM)
smile.gif
More confusing is the Pioneer Plaque. Any observant alien can see that the probe was made by just two beings, each a separate species, working together. They might call them Shorts and Talls. Tall has what looks like a third manipulative organ, compared to Short. These species have some form of carapace on top of their sensory appendages (presumably to deflect harsh radiation from their home star), they breathe hydrogen, navigate on their world using pulsars, and use their solar system's largest planet to eject 70's-era space junk into the cosmos.

The aliens will find us, if only to discover what we look like from the back...

Andy G
*


Jokes and cartoons about the two nude human figures go back to when the Pioneer Plaques were announced to the public in 1972. Sadly, they often rarely exceed the maturity level of schoolboys, plus most of the "humor" has been quite similar.

Interesting bit about the female drawing that is not generally known, which also reflects more on our society's response to such things rather than how an ETI might react to it. In deference to NASA's conservative squeamishness and the presumed public outcry, the female drawing has no genitalia.

Joe Davis of MIT decided to "resolve" this issue in the late 1980s by broadcasting a powerful radio message for 20 minutes from MIT's Millstone radar facility (until the facility authorities stopped him).

You can read the details of this and Davis' fascinating life and ideas here:

http://www.viewingspace.com/genetics_cultu...le_sciam/jd.htm

The artist, Linda Salzmann Sagan, tried hard to give her figures characteristics of all the major human races, but in the end many people ended up complaining that they saw every racial characteristic but their own. Some days you just can't win with the talking monkeys of Sol 3.

As for the plaque and record contents being perceived as deliberate insults, that is something I do not fear, nor would (or should) an ETI who has mastered interstellar travel. Perhaps an ETI might find something unintentionally offensive in the information (if they are even still fallible to such emotions), but presumably they would also be wise enough to realize that only truly insane beings would purposely send out rude and threating messages on primitive old space probes into the galaxy.

The only common parameter Carl Sagan and his team who created these messages knew they had in kind with any advanced technology ETI species is a fundamental understanding of science and mathematics. Using them as a "language", the rest of the messages rightly focused on describing who were are, where we live, and what we are about. They did not try to be "compatible" with every conceivable notion of alien intelligence. The team also assumed that such ETI would not be very impressed with our knowledge of science and technology level; they would want to know about who built the probe and record.

In Murmurs of Earth, Sagan et al did deliberate over what might be offensive or not to an ETI on the Voyager Records. They considered an image of a human embracing the galaxy as a sign of universal friendship and a desire to join with other intelligent beings in the Milky Way. But they nixed it for fear that it might also look like we wanted to take the galaxy for ourselves. They also rejected showing a nuclear bomb explosion (to display our technological level), as there was concern that it might be seen as a threat to others, feeble as such technology might be to starfaring ETI.

In the end, such information packages can only be reflections of ourselves. I think that alone is an important message to help an ETI - or our distant descendants - understand us.

The messages also say, for good or bad, that we will make our way into the galaxy. As with life here, the only way you don't make mistakes or step on toes is by not doing anything. You also don't learn and grow.

We will head into the wider galaxy some day. Might as well let our children and others know who led the way.


--------------------
"After having some business dealings with men, I am occasionally chagrined,
and feel as if I had done some wrong, and it is hard to forget the ugly circumstance.
I see that such intercourse long continued would make one thoroughly prosaic, hard,
and coarse. But the longest intercourse with Nature, though in her rudest moods, does
not thus harden and make coarse. A hard, sensible man whom we liken to a rock is
indeed much harder than a rock. From hard, coarse, insensible men with whom I have
no sympathy, I go to commune with the rocks, whose hearts are comparatively soft."

- Henry David Thoreau, November 15, 1853

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ljk4-1
post Jan 28 2006, 04:09 AM
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The Next Voyager Record: A Qatsi Perspective

Essay about art, aliens, and ET -- explaining how we might create a new kind of time capsule based on Reggio and Philip Glass's audiovisual collaboration. Presented at Musée d'Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris, February 2003.

http://homepage.mac.com/wjclancey/~WJClanc...nceyVoyager.pdf

The one thing some people who say the Voyager Record did not do or say enough do not seem to get is that the Voyager Interstellar Record Team had only a matter of months between the time NASA gave its okay for the record and when it had to be attached to the probes before launch. Plus they were working with a medium that had a rather limited data storage capacity.


--------------------
"After having some business dealings with men, I am occasionally chagrined,
and feel as if I had done some wrong, and it is hard to forget the ugly circumstance.
I see that such intercourse long continued would make one thoroughly prosaic, hard,
and coarse. But the longest intercourse with Nature, though in her rudest moods, does
not thus harden and make coarse. A hard, sensible man whom we liken to a rock is
indeed much harder than a rock. From hard, coarse, insensible men with whom I have
no sympathy, I go to commune with the rocks, whose hearts are comparatively soft."

- Henry David Thoreau, November 15, 1853

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