X-Message-Number: 21675
Date: Sat, 26 Apr 2003 14:03:28 -0400
From: Daniel Crevier <>
Subject: Self-defining symbols

To Mike Perry and Tom Donaldson.

For an example of a set of symbols that takes its meaning in itself, you may
want to take a look at Brian McConnell's book "Beyond Contact" (O'Reilly,
2001). He builds a binary language from the ground up, for the purpose of
conversing with extraterrestrials via radio telescope. The only assumptions
made are that the ET'S know about radio, astronomy (which is pretty obvious
if they receive the message), as well as numbers and mathematical logic
(more iffy, but I don't see how you could build a radio telescope without

Daniel Crevier

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