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Voyager Golden Records

  1. Mar 3, 2015 #1
    The Voyager Golden Records are phonograph records which were included aboard both Voyager spacecraft, which were launched in 1977.
    My question is will be good enough now, wont the radiation damage the CD, can it be read, if at all it reaches some ET
    Arun
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 3, 2015 #2

    billy_joule

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    Do you know how a phonograph works? It's not a CD..
     
  4. Mar 3, 2015 #3
    Thanks, just found out that it is etched on the record
     
  5. Mar 3, 2015 #4

    BobG

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    The instructions are on the record. Personally, I probably would have gone with something more basic, such as a gramophone. But, considering that any beings that may see this record probably plucked it out of outer space, they would probably make the same assumption as you and wonder whether the disc was CD, DVD, or Blu-Ray.


    The_Sounds_of_Earth_Record_Cover_-_GPN-2000-001978.jpg
     
  6. Mar 3, 2015 #5

    billy_joule

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    It is a gramophone record.
    It's quite unlikely aliens have come across a CD, DVD or bluray or would have any idea how to interpret the digital encoding on any of those. An analogue signal makes much more sense. Of course, as long as they set their gramophone player to the correct speed so we don't sound like chipmunks.
     
  7. Mar 4, 2015 #6
    Was there CD recording technology in 1977
     
  8. Mar 4, 2015 #7

    BobG

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    Yes. There was no standard for the data format (which is necessary if you want any CD you buy to be playable on any CD player you buy), but recording standards wouldn't be a factor for a CD being sent to an alien race. The chances their standard would be the same as ours would be miniscule.
     
  9. Mar 4, 2015 #8

    Garth

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    They might sound like chipmunks!:woot:
     
  10. Mar 6, 2015 #9

    Chronos

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    Yes, that is unfair. Some of the finest music on earth was made by chipmunks. The phonograph idea was fairly ingenious. It is amazingly durable and even a cursory examination would reveal odd the odd etchings. Little more than curiosity is needed to realize it is data. Assuming the harvesting alien was unfamiliar with earthly linguistics [a safe bet], they may be unable to translate it, achieve a full translation and find it hilarious; or, on the darker side, take it as an invitation to exploit a potentially habitable planet populated by defenseless morons. Of course there is always the faint hope advanced aliens have outgrown the puerility of colonial aspirations. I tend to agree with Stephen Hawking, it was a bad idea.
     
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2015
  11. Mar 6, 2015 #10

    DaveC426913

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    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Voyager_Golden_Record
     
  12. Mar 6, 2015 #11

    Bandersnatch

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    Eh, I did try to start a forum game once, where people would pretend to be aliens trying to (mis)interpret the Golden Record. Didn't quite take off, though.
     
  13. Mar 6, 2015 #12

    billy_joule

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    I was being disingenuous. Who's to say they hear at all, let alone in the frequency range we do. That could be for the best, for all we know all 12 tone equal temperament music (or whale noises etc) could be a war challenge to them ;-)
     
  14. Mar 6, 2015 #13

    SteamKing

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    Or, we could pick up a message from space in a few years saying, "Send more Chuck Berry!" (h/t, old SNL skit)
     
  15. Mar 6, 2015 #14

    DaveC426913

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    Well, we humans have a natural limitations on our senses too, but that sure doesn't stop us from exploring all up and down the spectrum.
     
  16. Mar 7, 2015 #15

    Chronos

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    The golden record, as Dave noted, includes ingenious symbolic logic any advanced alien [capable of interstellar travel] should recognize. The dark side is the wisdom in road mapping our location to such beings. If they have any semblance of our proclivity for exploitation, it could turn into that Jurassic Park movie where the newly illuminated, yet still hapless, home improvement guy scolds the the bull horn message from the rescue party with "that is a bad idea!!".
     
  17. Jun 2, 2015 #16
    The whole record thing is a bit silly in terms of ET needing to interpret it. It was purely for the marketing of the project. Even when it was sent I remember groans of embarrassment from some of the scientific community.

    An intelligence capable of inter stellar travel from 'wherever' and finding Voyager in the vastness of space would be quite capable of tapping into our entire Internet system or the equivalent in future.
     
  18. Jun 2, 2015 #17
    The message has a shelf-life of a half a billion years, humans most likely don't. As far as I know the scientific community was for it, there were groans from conservatives about the previous mission because they had nude images of ourselves.
     
  19. Jun 2, 2015 #18

    BobG

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    And, in fact, the original version of the Golden Record also had nude images of humans, and they were axed out of the final copy by politicians that didn't feel nude images were appropriate.

    I think the only reason they got on the Pioneer missions was because the messages and illustrations were done on the cheap and hardly anyone outside the Pioneer mission knew what they were doing.
     
  20. Jun 2, 2015 #19
    Ha Ha, wouldn't want any aliens getting the impression that the human species are some kind of degenerate hippies. :))
     
  21. Jun 6, 2015 #20

    Chronos

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    That's something best left for aliens to discover for themselves ;).
     
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