The Ultimate Selfie: NASA’s Golden Record 2.0 by Jessica Roth

This post originally appeared on Curio Cabin, Jessica Roth’s wonderful blog. (Do yourself a favor and subscribe to it.) Thanks, Jessica, for generously allowing me to cross-post it here. 

The Universe Is Listening

In the late 70′s, NASA launched the first golden records into deep space. Each record was intended as a cosmic message in a bottle, set adrift in hopes that somewhere, sometime, a sentient alien lifeform would pluck it from the starry sands, play it back, and hear our distant voices echoing through the light years.

Left, a golden record (© Nasa/National Geographic Society/Corbis). Right, the other side of the golden record shows directions to play it. Identical records carrying the story of Earth were sent into deep space on Voyager 1 and 2. (NASA)
Left, a golden record (© Nasa/National Geographic Society/Corbis). Right, the other side of the golden record shows directions to play it. Identical records carrying the story of Earth were sent into deep space on Voyager 1 and 2. (NASA)

The man behind the first attempt to transmit an account of life on Earth, Jon Lomberg, is also the primary advocate for the Golden Record 2.0. What makes this endeavor different from the first is the collaborative spirit driving the compilation of the record. This time, Lomberg and NASA want to know: what does life on Earth mean to you?

Yes, you.

What Do You Have to Say?

Beginning in August, you will have the opportunity to contribute content to the Golden Record 2.0. Naturally, not everything will make the cut, but this iteration of the Golden Record project promises to share a much more intricate and representative narrative than the first. Once complete, it will be uploaded to the New Horizons probe and sent hurtling through the far reaches of our galaxy and beyond.
So, what do you have to say about life on Earth? Leave your response in the comments below and sign up to participate in the Golden Record 2.0 project by visiting the One Earth: New Horizons Message website.

Visit NASA online to learn more about the original Golden Record.

More Golden Record stuff on this blog here and here.

Jessica has contributed a couple of posts for A Life’s Work. Make sure to check these out.

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