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. . . the suggestion is made to develop a protocol for sending messages to extraterrestrials

Scientists seek alien messaging protocol

Cover of the Space Policy journal

Cover of the Space Policy journal

Some U.S. scientists claim that current attempts at communicating with extraterrestrial life are either disorganized or too cryptic for aliens to decode. The claim is made by postgraduate astrophysicists in Space Policy, an international, interdisciplinary journal, where the suggestion is made to develop a protocol for sending messages to extraterrestrials.

Establishing an extraterrestrial communication protocol would improve the likelihood of messages being understood by alien lifeforms, say postgraduate astrophysicists Dimitra Atri, Julia DeMarines and Jacob Haqq-Misra. They state in their Space Policy paper, “By carefully constructing a framework by which to write and send messages, we will optimize the quality of messages as they are broadcast and increase the probability that we are understood.”

The authors suggest that such a protocol should include “constraints and guidelines for signal encoding, message length, [and] information content.” Additionally, they say a transmission strategy should be clearly laid out in this protocol, and they suggest “a simple physical or mathematical language with the signal repeated regularly to avoid being overlooked as noise.”

About Jason McClellan

Jason McClellan is an editor and staff writer for Open Minds magazine. Jason is also the producer and co-host of the web series Spacing Out!, web content manager and staff writer for OpenMinds.tv, and co-organizer and technical producer of the International UFO Congress. ------ Follow Jason on Twitter @acecentric and subscribe to Jason's updates on Facebook at Facebook.com/jason.openminds

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