First Radio Signal Detected From Beyond Our Solar System

Aug 11, 2008 by Jared Smith

The internets has it’s collective panties in a bunch this morning after an article titled “First Radio Signal Detected From Beyond Our Solar System” was published by some geeks in South Africa. Many are heralding this as proof of alien life. The article (they are technically capable of receiving signals from 30,000 light years away, but can’t keep their web server running) claims that the group detected radio waves from the Sagittarius A region, which is the area of the center of our galaxy.

While a substantial portion of humanity is donning tin foil hats and dancing on top of L.A. skyscrapers with “Beam me up!” signs in hand, I was a bit skeptical because radio signals are naturally occuring and rather common in outer space – we’ve detected plenty of them. A closer reading of the article reveals that the announcement was simply that a bunch of nerds built an antennae big enough to detect it’s first extra-solar radio signal. It would be like me saying, “This is the first photo taken of M51 with my telescope” and the world somehow believing that the photo was the first ever taken of this galaxy.

So let’s pretend that this is a message from aliens on a different world, here are my thoughts on what it would likely mean:

– Princess Azura wants to transfer 6 Billion Riles to your account as she is trying to get her recently deceased father’s (an oil tycoon and the previous regent of her planet) funds out from under the newly imposed Military Junta on Sagittarius 19. What she needs from you is your Social Security number, address, phone number, bank details, etc.

– It’s just Jodie Foster’s dad, he wants us to build a machine.

– Is Amanda there? Amanda Hugginkiss?

– Never gonna give you up. Never gonna let you down. Never gonna run around and desert you.

– Hello. We are a very advanced civilization, could you help us get Windows Vista to run faster?

– Hitler at the Olympics

– Is your refrigerator running?

On a somewhat related note, I’ve been asked to present on astrophotography at a big star party tomorrow. Details at

  1. One Response to “First Radio Signal Detected From Beyond Our Solar System”

  2. Hi! I was surfing and found your blog post… nice! I love your blog. :) Cheers! Sandra. R.

    By sandrar on Sep 10, 2009

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