WASHINGTON: When extra terrestrials
want to tell their fellow beings, back on their mother planets, what
earthlings are like, chances are that they will be visiting the nearest post
office rather than rushing to the neighbourhood phone booth, as a new report has
indicated that the old fashioned habit of letter writing might be a better way
of sending interplanetary messages, than the current fad of e-mails.
According to Nature, engineers at the Rutgers University in New Jersey
have found that penning things down is a much more effective way of
sending messages, because a physical object would last longer than a beam of
The researchers are now asking scientists to keep a
sharp lookout for any hefty parcels, because this discovery specially holds
true for long messages.
The study suggests that whereas short
messages can be sent through radio waves, aliens are likely to send very
long ones, and this is best achieved through the written word, because radio
waves cannot take too much load.
Researchers aver that extra
terrestrials are likely to send a message of atleast 40 million terabits,
which is equivalent to all the world's telephone calls in a
The other reason why mails are better is because radio waves
are likely to start losing connectivity and become undetectable over long
distances, whereas a mail has the advantage of staying in the same
"Communication by the transmission of matter once
seemed ridiculous compared to using radiation, but it's not, and we should
be looking for both," the report quoted Christopher Rose, the author of the
study, as saying.
"Energy is kind of a currency: if something costs
less, it's more likely to get done," he added.