The Eerie Silence - winning messages!

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The Eerie Silence - winning messages!

Postby Graham Southorn » Fri Mar 12, 2010 11:46 am

This just received from Penguin - winners of the competition to send messages into space today. I was happy to have a minor role in the judging - some of the entries were quite witty I thought. Wittier than I could be, anyway! [:D]


Wit or wisdom were required to be judged among the top 50 messages received in a recent competition to beam messages into space run by Penguin UK to celebrate the publication of The Eerie Silence: are we alone in the Universe? by astrophysicist Paul Davies to celebrate the 50th anniversary year of SETI (Search for Extra Terrestrial Intelligence).

Nearly 1000 messages received from all over the world will be beamed out from BT’s Goonhilly Earth Station in Cornwall towards the Orion neblua at 2pm on 12 March, the first day of National Science and Engineering Week UK, at a public event with Paul Davies at The Big Bang, Manchester Central Conference Centre.

Paul Davies says:
“From time to time, humans have deliberately beamed powerful messages into space to attract the attention of any cosmic company. On Friday, a big radio dish in Cornwall will do just that, conveying a selection of messages from earthlings to anyone who cares to listen. The messages will be directed towards the Orion nebula, a stellar nursery that would be an attractive location for an advanced alien community with astro-engineering prowess. It will take over 1,200 years for the messages to arrive, travelling at the speed of light, and I for one won’t be around to receive any reply. But the purpose of the exercise is not so much to establish a dialogue with ET. Rather, it is to get young people to reflect on some deep issues, such as whether or not we are alone in the vastness of space, what is mankind’s place in the universe, and why after 50 years of patient listening SETI astronomers are greeted by only an eerie silence? What is more, it is a bit of fun."

PAUL DAVIES is Chair of the SETI-Post Detection Task Group and Director of Beyond: Center for Fundamental Concepts in Science, Arizona State University.

[url=]Penguin - Eerie Silence[/url]

In no particular order, the 50 winning messages are:

Andrew Glester
If you've been watching our television broadcasts, I'd like to apologise for everything before and after Carl Sagan's Cosmos.

Karen Zold
Beautiful blue planet, teeming with life located on the edge of the Milky Way. Fantastic views of the Andromeda Galaxy and beyond into infinity. Perhaps the best location in the Universe 1 Trillion Trillion Trillion Trillion ONO. Must be prepared to look after current resident flora and fauna

Jill Dawson
Isle of Man
My Dad has told me for 43 years I was left behind by an alien spaceship so to all my relatives out there PLEASE CALL ROUND FOR COFFEE I WOULD LOVE TO CATCH UP!!

Linda Irwin
McCall, ID, USA
We are energy of the creationist kind incarnated into carbon based bodies. We have always been here since energy is only changed, never destroyed. Who and where are you?

martijn van vugt
delft, netherlands
Hilarious isn't it? Wait till you see how we run our rock. Definitely worth the visit. Are you on MyOuterSpace, by the way?

Dennis Treleaven
Please get in touch and if you could confirm that the universe was not created by god it would answer a lot of arguements down here.

Robin Goos
Requesting interference from other species / civilizations. We could use some excitement.

Laura Pritchard
Probably best you don't watch our films ET, Independence Day or Mars Attacks before making contact with us....

Natalie Smith
Planet earth - thought it was light years ahead but recently collapsed into banking black hole, seeks super star for sharing Milky Way, Mars and universal travel.

Ernest Long

Chris Bergoch
Los Angeles
Hello. Your work in our crop fields intrigues me. I would love to know how you do it! Also, why be so mysterious? Why not come down and say hello? We'd love to meet you and become friends!

Mrs Munro
Did you think YOU were alone in the universe?!

John Tingay
Please send us photos of your celebrities.

Andrew Brown
Canmore, Alberta
For sale or trade: Several billion tonnes of carbon dioxide. All reasonable offers considered! Must pick up, can not ship.

Tomi Vollauschek
Please move on. Nothing to see here.

Rio de Janeiro
Just observe. Keep away. This is a dangerous zone. Our divine entity is called Money. The people here may even kill for their deity. Do not try to understand.

John Moore
Help Wanted! Cleaners, caretakers and peacemakers required for extremely dirty and severely damaged planet.Honesty and integrity a must.We are a equal opportunitys' employer, applicants of any shape or form will be considered.Blue Earth Agency or uww//earth.cos

Andrea Smith
Can I have my frisbee back please?

My name is Nicola and I am 11. Is anybody in space? Is anyone going to reply to me, because I am reallly interested in life in space.

David Risser
We Taste Bad !

Deborah Hubbard
Hello, dear aliens. We tend to believe that we're pretty bright and you're weird, but I reckon it's the other way around. Please pop in any time so we can find out. Come for coffee we do that rather well.

Pete Marshall
westcliff on sea
4 4 2, whats your favoured formation?

vicky haining
Hi! If there's anyone out there, feel free to come and visit, we don't bite! Do you?!

Helen Cooper
You aliens have the best fashion sense, green is 'so in' at the moment and those huge eyes are a fabulous look!

Washington DC
01111001011011110111010100100000 01100001011100100110010100100000 01101110011011110111010000100000 0110000101101100011011110110111001100101
( this binary number translates as “you are not alone”..)

Reg Hewitt
Hello and welcome to Planet Earth. In order to help you with your invasion you now have two options. If you want to make our world a better place, choose “1"; to follow the precedent of our current leader choose "hash"."

Gary Hall
Sorry to drop this on you, but we've kinda wrecked our planet. Any chance we could come live with you? We've got beer...?

Martin Smith
Vacancies for Traffic Wardens. We are an equal opportunities employer. Any life form may apply. Reply to Human/inhuman Resources stating age (to nearest 1000 Earth years), carbon footprint and any special dietary or respiratory requirements (methane kits available).

Gordon McGuire
Hi. Could I have a 9 inch meat feast, a margherita, 2 garlic breads and a bottle of diet coke; thanks. Bye the way, is it still free delivery within 10 billion miles?

John Waite
Two thousand years ago, we had a very enlightening visit from the Creator's Son. Has he been to visit you yet?

Sue Coggin
What should I pack?

James England
I've checked google maps but can't find you. Where are you?

Steve Simpson
Arlington, Texas
Hello from earth! Should you seek our planet in order to find a new home because of excessive pollution on yours, go back. If you had to manipulate your craft around the space junk, that should tell you something about how we live!

Ann Barry
Usk, South Wales
What's occurring up there? If you're late again, dinner's going in the dog, and I can't deny it, that other lot don't look too friendly from by yer.

Eric Rush
PLANET for Sale. Water and some other resources Sun still works comes with moon. Could be used for spare parts.

Gavin Counahan
OK fess up. What have you done with Elvis?

Andy Cain
Do you still have Neil Armstrongs golfball up there and if so can we have it back ?

Seema Kurup
Hello! If you're planning to visit our planet, please know you will need to remove all metal from your person, take your shoes off and submit to a full body scan, carry all liquids/gels/aerosols in clear plastic bottles no bigger than 3.4 oz, surrender all cigarette lighters and batteries, pack all jams and jellies (but pies can be carried on) ...oh yes, Welcome to the Earth!

Thomas K
Abu Dhabi

Shawn Roberts
MAYDAY MAYDAY ,,Celestial vessel Earth,Taking on water fast! ,require immediate assistance,,over.

Austin Lewis
Normal, IL
Hello. My name is Austin Lewis, and I'm an artist. Here, artists depict things as they are, or as they seem to the artist. Sometimes we depict things that don't exist. What is art where you come from?

Solange Thomas
My message will include a group of prime numbers, and a binary code that, when stacked properly, shows a picture of a man waving, our planet location in our solar system, and a strand of DNA. I think the wave will indicates we're friendly.

Doug Barnes
Hi guys,Come and say hello! You have already made our mistakes ages ago, come and tip us off and save us a lot more grief!

Mike Bell
Hello. Contact our eternal father, who sent his only son jesus to our planet and he will explain all.

Alice Rook
Greetings from the 3td planet orbiting the big Ball of Fire. (a^2 + b^2 = c^2)(y = mx + b)(V = 4/3(pi)(r^3)

Mr Kelvin Bierton
Do you have crop circles on your planet ?

Chris Gosheron
Brisbane, Australia
Dear Starlings, my inconsiderate neighbours' all night partying and littering is intolerable. Please come and take them away. I'm confident that they would prove worthy experimental subjects and would help you understand just how easily we Earthlings are able to poop on our own doorstep.

Phil Darling
Hello friends. This is a warning. My race is made of many types of characters, most are fun and good. It's the ones that arent that make it dangerous for you. Give us a miss until we learn.

Georgios Mastrogiannis
What part does love have in your life?

Suzanne Rosen
Chigwell, Essex
Greetings from the pupils of GGSK College, Chigwell, Essex. Why don't you visit us one day - there is ample landing space for one spacecraft on the roof. Please come on Friday, when we have Channa and Puri for scool dinners. It is especially tasty.


A panel of Penguin judges together with Graham Southorn, Editor of BBC’s Sky at Night Magazine selected the top 50 messages. Each will receive a copy of Paul Davies book.

The competition was run by Penguin Books UK in association with National Science and Engineering Week, The Big Bang and Sentforever. It was supported by Daily Telegraph, Times science blog, Guardian Science, Royal Institution, Science Oxford, Oxford Literary Festival, Bristol Festival of Ideas, Cambridge Science Festival, BBC Sky at Night magazine and a number of science websites.
Graham Southorn
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