AffiliationDepartment of Mathematics, University of Arizona
MetadataShow full item record
CitationMatessa, M., Vakoch, D. A., Lower, T. A., Barkow, J. H., & DeVito, C. L. (2022). How to decode interstellar messages. Acta Astronautica.
Rights© 2021 IAA. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Collection InformationThis item from the UA Faculty Publications collection is made available by the University of Arizona with support from the University of Arizona Libraries. If you have questions, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
AbstractHow can we determine the meaning of a message from a distant civilization if we do not have a common language? This paper presents a general technique and principles for decoding interstellar messages: First, find the dimension of the message. Prime numbers may be useful in determining the proportions of messages. Next, find the symbols. This can be done considering symbol types: delimiters, values, relationships, and functions. Then, find the symbol meanings. Features that can help in determining meaning include sub-symbolic type, redundant symbols, expression consistency, physics ratios, and physics expression patterns. Concepts in this paper can be used when a message from another civilization is received, or they can be used to create messages, which can teach communication theory concepts.
Note24 month embargo; available online 5 December 2021
VersionFinal accepted manuscript