These Could Be The First Things Aliens Hear From Earth

Listen to the smooth sounds of ancient Akkadian from humanity's time capsule.

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Jul 28 2015, 5:01pm

Photo: Chris Isherwood/Flickr

Yesterday, NASA made a couple of playlists intended for aliens available on its official Soundcloud profile. The tracks come from the Golden Record, a set of recordings, images, and messages that scientists attached to the Voyager 1 probe.

NASA launched the two Voyager probes in 1977. Now in interstellar space, they're the furthest man-made objects from Earth. They're quite literally going where no man has gone before. Voyager 1 is doing a lot more than just taking measurements for scientists back home, though. It's also our most ambitious time capsule ever. The media on the Golden Record, curated by pop scientist Carl Sagan, theoretically provide a snapshot of human history, culture, and technology for our deep space neighbors. A full list of what's on the Golden Record can be found on the mission's official site.

Two playlists from the catalogue have been published on Soundcloud so far. The first is a list of 55 friendly greetings in languages from all around the world; from Akkadian, which hasn't been widely spoken in about 6,000 years, to modern English and Italian. The other playlist is a set of recordings of ambient sound, including babies crying and crickets chirping.

It's unlikely, given the vastness of space, that even if a capable civilization is out there, it would come across the probe. It's more a testament to our technological prowess than anything. But at least now you can plug in some headphones and pretend to be E.T. for a while, hearing humans for the first time."