What would a foreign language be like?



Projects such as SETI and Breakthrough Listen are dedicated to detecting the signals that aliens may be sending to the universe. But there is an additional side to the story, if E.T. They contacted us, could we even understand it? That was the subject of a recent meeting of linguists that took place in Los Angeles, California, during the weekend of Memorial Day. The one-day workshop, "Language in the Cosmos," was organized by METI (Extraterrestrial Intelligence Messaging) and was held on May 26 as part of the International Space Development Conference of the National Space Society of 2018 (ISDC ). He marked the third workshop of this kind held at the ISDC by METI on the topic of contact and extraterrestrial communication.

On Earth, according to linguist Noam Chomsky, there is a kind of "universal grammar" that connects our languages, no matter how varied: "Chomsky has often said that if a Martian visited Earth, he would think we all speak dialects of the same language, because all terrestrial languages ​​share a common underlying structure, "said Douglas Vakoch, president of METI, in a statement on the workshop issued by the organization. "But if the aliens have a language, would it be similar to ours? That's the big question."

While some of the workshop presentations offered a positive view of future communication with extraterrestrial intelligence, others raised the possibility of lack of communication and misunderstanding, particularly on the basis that badumptions made by humans and alien civilizations could be very different David Peterson, who invented the Dothraki language spoken in HBO's "Game of Thrones," gave the closing talk of the workshop.

Although we have not yet received a definitive signal of an alien civilization, researchers will strive to improve detection techniques and linguists will continue to reflect on how a message will look and look when it arrives. By looking at past messages, such as the Voyager Golden Record, and by improving our understanding of the evolution of language on Earth, humanity can continue to refine the way we can reach out and talk to beings from another planet. [19659004] (function (d, s, id) {
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