SETI: the search for extraterrestrial intelligence has been operating for the last sixty years Scientists have been using radio telescopes and searching space for any form of intelligible radio communication that could be coming from an alien species on a far distant exo-planet. Finding money and telescope time to do this have not been easy. Lately SETI have received a massive investment from a Russian billionaire and are now embarking on a program called “Breakthrough Initiatives”. With this will come more hours to search the heavens and more of the sky to track. Also now that the existence and position of a large number of exo-planets are known, telescopes can now be focused on these points with the hope of a signal.
One new aspect that was being considered, but which will for the moment be rejected, is the sending of our own signal into space which may well be detected by an alien race. But what could we say?
What message could you send that would represent the human race and the fragile planet we live upon? Would you send an accurate picture of the interhuman tensions and total destruction of the planet or a more soft focused view? Should we reveal information about our vulnerabilities to a possibly hostile alien race? Or should we bother as it would take so long to get there and so long for a return signal that humans will no longer exist?
What would you do? Send a message? And if so, what would you say?
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