A Journey Through Space, Time & Music

Posted on Wednesday, July 22nd, 2015 by

lightyearfm5Listen to the music of the past as you scroll farther from Earth on

What Songs From Earth Are Aliens Listening To? is a visual explanation of the vastness of our universe. It demonstrates how radio waves journey through space and time by using an example we’re all familiar with: popular music from Earth. The point of the site is to show how far radio signals have traveled from Earth since their initial broadcast (taking into consideration radio broadcasts leave Earth at the speed of light). In Earth’s orbit (or nearby), for instance, you’ll hear current songs like “Worth It” by Fifth Harmony. 20 lightyears away, you’d hear 1995’s “Take A Bow” by Madonna. And so on, moving backwards towards the invention of the radio.


Defy the Inverse-Square Law! makes it clear that all terrestrial radio broadcasts quickly are reduced to background noise just a few light years away from Earth. That means that any potential extraterrestrials out there aren’t really listening to Madonna. Still, the site offers an interesting way to examine how our music has evolved throughout history while demonstrating the vastness of the universe. As notes, 110 light years away marks the end of human broadcasts from Earth. In the grand scheme of things, that’s not that far. Luckily, both music and space exploration will continue to evolve into the future.


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