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An Alien Message was Decrypted

posted Jun 3, 2016, 7:58 AM by Abel Mendez   [ updated Jun 3, 2016, 8:09 AM ]


This is the list of 66 successful crackers (teams or individuals) of the SETI Decrypt Challenge, which ran from 26 April to 3 June 2016. The solutions to the six test questions Dr. Rene Heller asked are:
  1. What is the typical body height of our interstellar counterparts? 2.45 m
  2. What is their typical lifetime? 180 yr
  3. What is the scale of the devices they used to submit their message? 100 km
  4. Since when have they been communicating interstellar? 10,000 yr
  5. What kind of object do they live on? This one is tricky because I don't know the answer myself, making this part of the experiment a blind-blind test. The spatial information translates into 0.26 AU (100 times the Earth-Moon distance, if anyone recognized). The corresponding picture shows four planets or moons, one of which seems to be inhabited by our alien friends. So they might live on the 4th planet (or on one of three moons orbiting a giant planet) in the habitable zone around a low-mass star.
  6. How old is their stellar system? 6 Gyr
Dr. Heller have been asked whether they could not have used the period of the radio signal as a yardstick for the temporal dimension to make the message more universally readable - and not only by us. Obviously, the fact that they used the 50 yr as a yardstick means that they deliberately sent the message to us. Yes, the wave period could also be used. But the fact that they used their distance to us as a yardstick tells us that they know that we exist. They found us first. It's like they winked at us with this yardstick.

In total, Dr. Heller received about 500 e-mails relating to the SETI Decrypt Challenge and sent out about 200. More background information including a full description on how to interpret the message will be given in a journal article.

Thanks for your participation also to those about 30 individuals who sent Dr. Heller their not fully correct solutions. The successful crackers are sorted by date of their submission below. Their twitter user names are in braces if provided and cleared for publication.



01. Andy Stewart (@k4patzer)                                                     27 April 2016
02. Daniel Angerhausen (@dan_anger)                                              28 April 2016
03. Puiyan & Jason (@xeph_yr & @perfinion)                                       04 May   2016
04. reddit /r/askscience moderators (@RedditAskSci)                              04 May   2016
05. Mark Collins                                                                 05 May   2016
06. John Graham-Cumming (@jgrahamc)                                              06 May   2016
07. Robert Danorth                                                               06 May   2016
08. Frederick John Milens III (@FrederickMilens)                                 06 May   2016
09. Ching                                                                        06 May   2016
10. Shawn Beard (@DrShawnBeard)                                                 07 May   2016
11. Carlos Garcia Rodriguez                                                     07 May   2016
12. Hector Sanchez Iranzo (hesai88)                                             07 May   2016
13. Erick Vermot (@erickvermot1)                                                07 May   2016
14. Team Bip/Blop (@securityliaison & @alistairheath & @LondonCoal)             07 May   2016
15. Leon Hostetler                                                              07 May   2016
16. Gonzalo Bernabe Pacheco Covili (@gonn)                                      07 May   2016
17. Ian Baudains                                                                07 May   2016
18. Paulo Barreto (@pbarreto)                                                   07 May   2016
19. Xavi R. Pinteno (@frikjan)                                                  07 May   2016
20. Robert Boone (@BigRobVT)                                                    08 May   2016
21. Antoni Burguera (@tburguera)                                                08 May   2016
22. Daniel Nava (@dap_19)                                                       08 May   2016
23. Vladimir Kovoltelov (@Vokdal)                                               08 May   2016
24. Marco Lopez                                                                 08 May   2016
25. Patrik Hedstroem (@pathe915)                                                08 May   2016
26. Kurt Forsberg                                                               08 May   2016
27. Carlos Domingo (@Choli)                                                     08 May   2016
28. Ben Pearce (@AstroBio_Ben)                                                  08 May   2016
30. Griffin Smith (@PossiblyAWizard)                                            08 May   2016
31. Mike Matessa (@mmatessa)                                                    09 May   2016
32. Panupong V (@praew_proud)                                                   09 May   2016
33. Sergio Machado (@SergioM_71)                                                09 May   2016
34. Jeff Fountain (@jeff_fountain)                                              10 May   2016
35. Kevin Ducrocq                                                               10 May   2016
36. Matti Timonen (@timonenma)                                                  10 May   2016
37. Marcin Romaszewicz (@marcin_roma)                                           10 May   2016
38. Rafael Rubio (@rafa78bcn)                                                   10 May   2016
39. Orencio Robaina & Orencio Robaina & Vincent Cohen                           10 May   2016
40. David Bardini (@DBarTweet)                                                  11 May   2016
41. Pedro Igrejas                                                               11 May   2016
42. Anton Sudnikov                                                              12 May   2016
43. Sieg du Preez (@SiegDuPreez)                                                12 May   2016
44. Marius Utheim (@MariusUt)                                                   12 May   2016
45. Rodrigo Bascunan Barnert (@barnert)                                         12 May   2016
46. Juanma de los Santos                                                        12 May   2016
47. Davide Silvestri (@silvestridavide) & Gilles Mariotti (@GillesMariotti)     12 May   2016
48. Oliver Read (@ollie_read)                                                   12 May   2016
49. ISIR team - R. O. Chavez-Garcia & T. Goncalvez                              13 May   2016
50. Michael Luciani (@mikeluciani)                                              13 May   2016
51. Cedric Rousseau (@cedrouTwitting)                                           13 May   2016
52. Robert Pfender (@pfenderrg)                                                 13 May   2016
53. Borja Paz Rodriguez (@borjapazr)                                            14 May   2016
54. Jeff Landgraf (@jml985)                                                     14 May   2016
55. Rob van den Tillaart (@robtillaart)                                         16 May   2016
56. Carlos Laborde                                                              18 May   2016
57. Brian Irick                                                                 18 May   2016
58. Felipe Alejandro Salazar Vazquez (@Eofreond)                                19 May   2016
59. Fernando Daniel Leon                                                        19 May   2016
60. Luke Arpino & Rosie Leaman                                                  19 May   2016
61. Adrian D (@racanu)                                                          20 May   2016
62. Carlos Pena (@Wopper) & Alberto Cid (@Acido)                                21 May   2016
63. Nick Cranch (@2minds1)                                                      25 May   2016
64. Cedric Bassem & Yannick Jadoul                                              03 June  2016
65. Brian Hayzlett & Benj Zagorski & Ksenia Kriksunov & Matt Dubin              03 June  2016
66. Daniel Reardon (@Daniel_Reardon) & Ross Turner (@rossjturner)               03 June  2016