By 1960, new radio telescopes were capable of detecting radio signals from at least the nearest stars and scientists began to consider what a message from outer space might look like. Dr. Frank Drake (the originator of the Drake Equation) came up with this first attempt at what a message from a race similar to ours, but from a different solar system, might look like. As a test, he sent this 551 character message to virtually every scientist with a serious interest in searching for extra-terrestrials - all eleven of them! This is the message Drake came up with: Deciphering it will be hard since, being from an alien solar system, a lot of clues that might be present in a message from Earth will be non-existent in a message to Earth. The only things that the two races will share will be mathematics, physics, chemistry, celestial mechanics, etc. i.e. - science and math are the most likely common links between the two races. If you can't figure it out, don't feel too bad. Of the scientists Drake sent his message to, only one, Barney Oliver, was able to decipher at least enough of the message to get the gist of what Drake was doing. He understood enough that he was able to construct his own reply asking if Drake wanted to meet for a drink.