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Re: SETI public: To kick things off...
Detection of an undecipherable signal tells us more than "you are not
alone." There is is also "we are right here." Once we know that we can
learn things just by observing them, admittedly from afar. And if they
are detected a tremendous amount of resources will become available for
research on them.
Of course an undecipherable message could be deciphered at any time.
On Tue, 23 Nov 1999, Richard
> >Even an undecipherable message has important information content, for it
> >can be interpreted as "you are not alone."
> True, opf course, Paul. But imagine the depth of frustration at knowing
> 'they' were there, and being utterly unable to decipher their
> communication system, or construct one which they could decipher.
> We would gain a new piece of knowledge, certainly - but we would
> simultaneously define the limits of our future knowledge. The fact of
> their presence might be all we ever know.