Don't you ever listen?

Ever since the days of Marconi and Tesla we have been scanning the skies for signs of life, elsewhere.  Both men suggested we could send and receive messages to "Martians" using radio.  People across the US got involved in the search when, in 1924, Mars and Earth came physically closer to each other than they would come for the next 80 years.  For three strange days days in August of that year people all over the country turned off their radios for five minutes, every hour.  Meanwhile, about two miles above Earth's surface, scientists on board a blimp watched for signs of life using a "radio-camera."  They did not find anything.

Can Aliens Pick Up Our Radio Waves?

A couple weeks ago I wrote an article suggesting that maybe we are being visited now more than ever because aliens have picked up our radio waves.  So why have we not picked up theirs?

Why don't we pick up alien radio waves?
Why don't we pick up aliens radio waves?
Surely, a civilization with the ability to travel here from many light years away would have radio receivers of some type.  If they had FM radios like we do and they picked up one of our Pop stations, what would they think?  I am guessing the first response would be, "Turn that crap down!"

I do not know if aliens listen to music on the radio.  But it is inconceivable that they would not be aware of radio waves.  With that in mind, they would have to have noticed our broadcasts.  Why have we not found theirs?

Why Don't We Pick Up Alien Radio Waves?

The reason we are not able to detect alien civilizations via radio waves coming from outer space is simple.  We are too far away.  Assuming other civilizations broadcast information via radio, they would have to be within about a quarter light year away from us in order for us to pick up their stations, with any clarity.  That is a limitation of radio broadcasting.  At least that is a limitation of our ability to broadcast and receive radio waves on this planet, with our current technology.

The Klingon Channel
The Klingon Channel
Maybe on other planets people have ways to send stronger signals or receive weaker signals.  Maybe they are watching I Love Lucy or The Honeymooners right at this moment.  You would think they would respond with something equally witless and entertaining.  Perhaps they have and we are just not able to pick it up.  We need to improve our reception technology.  But then there is already so much garbage on TV, do we really need another station?  Most Americans do not even watch the BBC.  How many would watch The Klingon Channel?

If someone on another planet were to send a point to point transmission, however, it could be received by us from places over a hundred light years away.  The question then would be, what type of message would it be and would we be able to decode it?  It is unlikely that it would be in English, French, Mandarin, or any of the other "major languages" of our planet.  It would more likely be something digital, like the way we transmit information over the internet.  Would we, first be able to recognize that this signal is an attempt to communicate, and second be able to decipher it?  Not so sure.

Satellites scanning for radio waves
Satellites scanning for radio waves

Regardless, it is being worked on.  Right now, people at The SETI Institute in the US and other organizations around the world, are scanning the skies, looking for any signs of life.  Using large arrays of radio telescopes and sophisticated decoding equipment, scientists are working day and night to find them.  So far, very few results have been reported from this in terms of making actual contact.

It is possible aliens are trying to communicate with us now via radio waves but we do not recognize these transmissions.  You have got to think this would frustrate these people.

Space Noise
Your favorite actor?
Imagine if you saw your favorite actor at the supermarket and you waved at him from across the produce section and he did not wave back.  You might think, oh, he did not see me.  I will wave harder.  Still, he does not wave back.  Then you wave more furiously and shout, "Johnny!  Hey Johnny!  Big fan!"  But still he does not acknowledge you.  You would probably just give up and say to yourself, that guy is an a-hole.  He saw me.  Jerk!

In all likelihood, this is how some aliens are feeling.  They are here.  You would think they would say something, right?  What kind of creep hangs out on your front porch and does not try to introduce himself.  You would call the cops.  They have to know that.  So surely they must be trying to communicate - ringing the doorbell, so to speak.

Aricebo, baby

Space Noise

So are we.  Kind of.  In 1974 scientists blasted out the most power message ever or since, from the Arecibo facility in Puerto Rico.  It became known as the Arecibo Message.  I could have come up with that name.

One big message and the Universe was supposed to get it.  It is like when your spouse calls and says you never filled out your kid's permission slip for the field trip.  How could  you have missed it?  It was in the pile of junk mail that has been sitting under a magazine, for a week.  It was mentioned the moment you walked in the door three days ago.  That message went something like, "The kids have been acting like maniacs, the dog is sick, I've got something on the stove, my sister bought a sweater, there's a permission slip in the mail, my mom is coming tomorrow, my car is making a noise."

Don't you ever listen???

They are probably communicating.  We are definitely listening.  We have tried communicating, kind of.  I do not think we are all on the same wavelength, so to speak.  We need to take a step back and reassess our efforts.

At any rate...

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If you have seen an alien spaceship or any type of unidentified flying object (UFO) contact me using the Contact form on this page.  You may remain anonymous if you want.  I will not ridicule you or try to tell you why you are wrong.  I get it, I saw one too.

Thank you for reading and keep an eye on the sky.