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Earth Set to Receive Alien Reply, Invasion in 2015?

Illustration for article titled Earth Set to Receive Alien Reply, Invasion in 2015?

If all goes well—or very wrong—Earth may receive a message from aliens from the Altair solar system as early as 2015. Japanese astronomers Hisashi Hirabayashi and Masaki Morimoto sent an email there back in 1983, which was lost and has just been re-discovered by the latter at the Nishi-Harima Astronomical Observatory. Hirabayashi says they were drunk at the time, which explains why some of the 13 71 x 71 pixel images are the molecular formula for ethanol, the kanji characters for "kanpai!" (cheers!), and the English word "toast." Check out some of the pictures and play drunk alien yourself after the jump.

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According to Hirabayahsi, he "came up with that idea while drinking. The aliens probably won't understand that (kanpai and toast) part." We can only hope that whoever is looking for life at their radio telescope up there won't be drunk as well, if only to ensure good inter-planetary relations from the start. Example:

Illustration for article titled Earth Set to Receive Alien Reply, Invasion in 2015?
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Obviously, this means: "Dear People of Altair, We are organisms who reproduce sexually to form families. Life on Earth started in the water." Kind of scary, but better than the alternative—after five whiskies: "Hey alien dudes, here on Earth we are all nudist. Some of us are giants with big tits. Others are giants with tiny penises. Fishes like to suntan on the beach. Turn the page to see us drunk. Kanpai!"

Illustration for article titled Earth Set to Receive Alien Reply, Invasion in 2015?

Whatever happens with the decoding of this binary message, at least it gives a little hope to Mulder-wannabes and tinfoil hatters all over the world, who may see alien contact in just seven years. Otherwise, the prospect was quite bad: US scientists sent another message to M13—the Hercules globular cluster—thinking that having a big concentration of stars, it may give us a bigger possibility of getting an answer back, instead of Elvis singing back "Return to Sender." Unfortunately, they didn't think that the waiting time to get a message back from a planet in M13 would be a bit too long: a mere 46,000 years.

While Hirabayashi is hopeful that his message was received in 1999 and now a reply is getting back to be received by any Jodie Foster listening out there, he knows that it's highly improbable that it would work. "I believe in aliens, but they are very difficult to find," he says.

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If you add the fact that Altair may not have any planets at all, the chances are extremely slim. Still, he says that they did it because "it was good enough," and he is glad about it, especially after all the messages he got from schoolchildren everywhere: "children's response is the best thing."

What he doesn't realize is that children are small, talk in strange gibberish and get green sometimes, so his aliens may have contacted him already. [Sankei via Pink Tentacle]

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DISCUSSION

@utube2007:

What makes you think they have eyes? Your post makes it sound like you assume the aliens would be like us.

They almost certainly wouldn't.

The reasoning behind the DRUNK guys sending what they did was, it's better than sending nothing.

Even if the technologies are incompatible, there is a high degree of likeliness that the aliens would be able to figure out the signals weren't natural.

Your idea of light isn't that great either. Look up into the night sky and all you see are celestial bodies that produce....*gasp*....light.

If aliens were to shine a big flashlight at us, most people would think it was a new star, or some sort of pulse from a distant quasar.

@danger_the_pirate:

Says who? Just because carbon based life couldn't exist there doesn't mean some other "life" might not be there.

When looking for extraterrestrial life, all preconceptions of what life is must be thrown out. Chances are high that any alien that comes to earth would die a horrible death in out oxygen based atmosphere. Oxygen is poisonous unless you are adapted to it, like we are.

So, ET may be a semi-gelatinous blob with an appendage jutting from its center, that oozes instead of walks, and uses receptors in its skin to "see" its surroundings while it takes it's nourishment from the atmosphere of pure gaseous cobalt.