Humans have always had a fascination with space, from our early hunter-gatherer days of using constellations to navigate to broadcasting a Beatles song into deep space. And now, it looks like we’re going to start tweeting… to aliens.
Artists Nathaniel Stern and Scott Kildall have created an artsy-science project called “Tweets In Space” that proposes to send 140 character snippets to potential life-forms out in the black.
Specifically, they’re going to transmit tweets to the newly discovered “super-Earth” planet GJ 667Cc, which is five times larger than Earth itself but which scientists believe is a candidate for a planet able to support life. The planet is only 22 light years away, which is just a hop skip and a jump in space travel terms.
The artist pair are planning a performance in September 2012 to broadcast tweets containing the hashtag #tweetsinspace. Anyone can participate, but must send their tweet during the allotted performance time to transmit it using a high-powered radio messaging system.
In their own words:
“Our soon-to-be alien friends will receive unmediated thoughts and responses about politics, philosophy, pop culture, dinner, dancing cats and everything in between. By engaging the millions of voices in the Twitterverse and dispatching them into the larger Universe, Tweets in Space activates a potent conversation about communication and life that traverses beyond our borders or understanding. It is not just a public performance; it performs a public.”
This is just as much a scientific endeavor as it is a performance art piece meant to elicit thought from participants. The project explores our need to communicate and connect with one another, and both the depth and shallowness of doing it in 140 characters. By broadcasting our tweets to an alien race that may or may not exist (and if they do, likely wouldn’t understand a word of them), Tweets in Space is a “reflection on the contemporary phenomenon of the “status” updates we broadcast, both literal and metaphoric.”
The artists have created a RocketHub project to raise money for Tweet in Space, which you can donate to here.
(Space image via Shutterstock)
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