Text A Message to Outer Space
Hello From Earth, a website set up in celebration of National Science Week in Australia is enabling Internet users to send a text-like message into the outer space.
They log into the website www.HelloFromEarth.net and type a Twitter-like message 160 characters long, which will then be beamed into outer space by the Canberra observatory.
The friendly words from planet Earth are transmitted to Gliese 581d, a planet eight times heavier than Earth and located more than 20 light years away in the constellation Libra. Scientists have identified Gliese 581d to be the nearest Earth-like planet outside of our solar system, and therefore, most likely to support life.
"It's like a message in a bottle cast out into the stars," said Wilson da Silva, a spokesman for the project. "What's interesting is not just whether there's anyone listening, but what the public will say to intelligent life on another planet.
Kim Carr, the eccentric science minister who launched the project, stated that it takes 20 years for the messages to be delivered, and he did not comment on whether the aliens will be able to understand English.