By Savannah Smith  |  12-28-2016   News
Photo credit: Inga Nielsen | Dreamstime.com

If they won't still get in touch with us, then we will find a way to reach them first with a message. Humanity is keeping hopes alive that we can eventually talk to aliens as scientists launched a major program aimed at sending messages to aliens despite strong warnings that doing so could be dangerous to the earth and to humanity.

Messaging Extraterrestrial Intelligence or METI is a new project that will start in 2018 that aims to find a way to send out signals into space so that extraterrestrials can pick them up. The group behind METI hopes to raise $1 million for the work to commence. Part of the money will fund building or borrowing a powerful transmitter capable of sending out messages into the universe.

The team would also devise the best plan to achieve its goal especially in terms of crafting a message that could be understood by potentially other living things in the distant universe. The scientists are looking at basic mathematical and scientific concepts for their initial message.

There are no regulations governing messages that could be sent into space, neither are there any restrictions on what messages should or could contain.This gives METI the freedom to proceed with their project even if they meet any objections in the future. The group said their project is directed towards the good intention of learning and sharing information.

Other scientists have long warned, however, that attempts to contact aliens can be dangerous and might lead to humanity's own " complete destruction". Stephen Hawking for one, earlier this year warned that we should even be wary of responding to any message from aliens comparing such possibility to the experience of native Americans with meeting Christopher Columbus, which he said " didn't turn out so well" for those being visited.

Hawking has always cautioned that any civilization humanity might encounter is likely to regard us as "no more developed than bacteria" and as such it might not just stop at looking to kill us but in " wiping us out because it does not care about us."

There have been previous efforts to send out messages into space including NASA's pioneer 10 and 11 spacecraft that carried messages written into plaques and a record, as well as radio messages meant to be delivered into the universe. It was not established, however, if those messages were received. Some have also suggested the possibility that for all we know, aliens have been similarly trying to send us messages or that we may unknowingly received such already. Scientists have concluded, however, that we have yet to succeed in hearing from aliens or talking to them.Still, we hold on to possibilities.

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