What do you say to an alien?

February 12, 2012 | Source: New York Times

Earth speaks (credit: SETI Institute)

The news last week that a concerted scientific search for extraterrestrial intelligence by the SETI Institute in California has resumed raises fundamental questions: If we made contact, what would we say? And what answers would we anticipate?

The SETI Institute has begun an online outreach program called Earth Speaks to solicit messages. Dimitra Atri, a physics professor at the University of Kansas, and several colleagues recently created another Web site, DearET.

See also: Search for aliens is on again, but next quest is finding money