Scientists have unveiled a method by which humans could establish communication with aliens beings in the cosmos and, if successful, prevent an intergalactic conflict.
The most exhaustive “science of extraterrestrial language” to date has been compiled by academics to ensure that any communication with aliens life is cordial and not interpreted negatively.
A study published in the Astrophysical Journal in 2020 estimated that there are approximately 36 “advanced” civilizations in the Milky Way Galaxy alone; however, the identification and communication with any of them remain unattainable for humanity at this time.
The Times reports that twenty-five preeminent authorities in linguistics, anthropology, animal communications, philosophy, computer science, and biology have compiled a new volume that “explores the potential nature of a non-terrestrial intelligence with linguistic capabilities.”
The paper includes contributions from notable figures such as Noam Chomsky, a political and social scholar from the United States renowned as “the father of modern linguistics.”
Dr. Douglas Vakoch, an astrobiologist and editor of the volume, stated to the newspaper, “I am optimistic.” It is conceivable that within our lifetimes, Seti (search for extraterrestrial intelligence) programmes could deliver or receive messages that could eventually receive a response.
Decoding Alien Communication
Humanity has conducted decades-long research into the possibility of sentient life elsewhere in space, even transmitting communications and signals in the hope of one day receiving something in return.
This encompassed the launch of the Voyager spacecraft outside of our solar system, carrying a ‘Golden Record’ that comprised music, greetings in 54 languages, and animal greeting sounds.
By utilising current knowledge of human languages and the diverse modes of animal communication, the new research attempts to “decode intentional communication from another world.”
Although scientists have previously reached the conclusion that the likelihood of effectively communicating with aliens life is remote but not nonexistent, this paper emphasises that enormous strides must be taken on Earth to improve humanity’s chances.
This may encompass the decipherment of untranslated ancient languages, such as Linear A, a script employed by the Minoans of Crete until 1,400 BC that was discovered on artefacts but remains undeciphered.
Academics may even be able to produce their own Rosetta stone, or pseudo-translation manual, comprised of key terms that are presumed to have significance across celestial bodies. Daily, the authors propose transmitting a brief, straightforward signal in the direction of “a million star systems.”
They recommend that, in the event that extraterrestrial communication is ever detected, humans return the precise same message as confirmation of receipt prior to attempting to decipher it.
Challenges and Strategies in Cosmic Communication
This will require examining the transmission for patterns that may indicate the presence of symbols. However, the scientists add that communication will be sluggish because it takes four years to travel at the speed of light to the nearest star other than the Sun. Additionally, it is conceivable that other life forms possess communication mechanisms and body chemistries that are incomprehensible to humans.
In spite of this, it is believed that any civilization with sufficient technological advancement to transmit messages will likely share essential characteristics including “tool use, symbol use, communication, culture-making, and curiosity.”
This implies that “many characteristics of human language may be shared with extraterrestrials,” according to the volume, which further states, “Our efforts to decipher alien messages will have a greater chance of success if we start with simple messages and progress to more complex ones.”
Failure to adopt this strategy could result in any potential contact with extraterrestrial beings resembling “castaways waving to each other from separate islands, knowing the other’s existence but being unable to learn more.”