Talk:Voyager Golden Record

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I have now inverted the image of the disc so that it matches the diagram below. - Lee M 14:21, 28 Sep 2003 (UTC)

The replacement image was in turn replaced by a thumbnail that linked to a bigger image - but upside down once more. I took the right-side-up version, created a new thumbnail from it and replaced the previous versions with them. Phew. So now everything matches the diagram, although it would be better to have a full-size picture of the record adjacent to the full-size diagram, or alternatively to superimpose the diagram key onto the full-size image. Lee M 23:24, 29 Sep 2003 (UTC)

Are the captions for the images of the record and its cover swapped? - Arteitle 10:26, 10 Jan 2004 (UTC)
I decided that they were, and fixed them. - Arteitle 17:26, 24 Feb 2004 (UTC)


Since there is a uranium lining on the record, does this mean it is radioactive and could be harmful for use? Let's say a human were to find the record and touch it and such, would they suffer from radiation poisoning? (talk) 23:16, 20 January 2008 (UTC)

Not at all, natural uranium is barely radioactive (unlike enriched uranium) and therefore perfectly safe to touch with your bare hands. (talk) 00:36, 19 July 2009 (UTC)

The decay of Uranium-238 gives alpha particle. This particle has low penetrative power. It can be block by a sheet of paper or your skin, thus it can't harm you. Furthermore, the concentration used is very low. (talk) 08:11, 2 July 2014 (UTC)

Copyright Reasons?[edit]

Originally based on public domain text from the NASA Website (, where selected images and sounds from the record can be found. Much of the Voyager records, however, is only available in compiled form to extraterrestrials for copyright reasons.

What does this mean? Gaurav 15:13, 24 Jul 2004 (UTC)

A weak joke, one assumes? Richard W.M. Jones 18:35, 14 Sep 2004 (UTC)

  • From the NASA Voyager website FAQ section: [1] Jonathunder 15:33, 2004 Dec 6 (UTC)

Carl Sagan and his colleagues did the assemblage of the information on the Voyager Golden Phonograph Record. Most of the material they used was copyrighted by the creators/owners and Sagan had to get copyright releases in order to assemble the original record. Subsequently, Warner Multimedia was able to obtain copyright releases for the 1992 version of "Murmurs of Earth", by Carl Sagan, et al and included all the sounds and songs on the CDROM set that accompanied the Warner New Media release of the book. We have included on the Voyager web site ( only that information for which we were able to get release, that's why everything, especially the music and the photos, is not there.

Unfortunately, the book and CDROM are no longer being published....

I don't think government property/documents can be copyrighted Dudtz 9/8/05 6:26 PM EST

I'm not sure of the truth or falsehood of that statement, but it doesn't matter - the contents of the record aren't government property, they're the property of many many people being used by the government with permission.

I think there's copyrighted material in this article. See for the original text. I think the text about the languages is taken over. --U:Dgb 18:14, 16 April 2006 (UTC)

Male-Female interaction[edit]

The following statement can be found in the article:

"After NASA received much criticism over the "smut" on the Pioneer plaque (the line drawings of a naked man and woman) from the Christian right that objected to "using tax dollars to send pornography into space" they chose not to include anything on the subject of male-female interaction."

However, I have been looking (on the NASA website) at some of the images that were place on the record and they include:

I am therefore not sure that the above statement in correct. Does anybody else have any thoughts/input on this? Cheers TigerShark 09:05, 25 August 2005 (UTC)

"Anything on the subject of male-female interaction" is incorrect. However, the VGR team had desired to include a photograph of a nude man and woman holding hands; NASA did not allow this. The image in question is a photographic version of this silhouette. The photo was not included, the silhouette was. This is documented in the collection of photos and in the chapter "Pictures of Earth" by Jon Lomberg, both in Sagan's Murmurs of Earth, the definite history of the Record. (The original photo is included there as well, but my scanner is unfortunately not working anymore.)
As for the Pioneer debate, this is documented in the Pioneer plaque article, to which I have added another source besides Murmurs.--Eloquence* 17:58, September 10, 2005 (UTC)

When will they "arrive" ?[edit]

From the article:

The Voyagers will take about 40,000 years to come close to another star

They will be a mere 2.3 light years away from us. The distance to the next star is 4.3 light years, so they will be not at all "close" to another star. Does anyone know to which star they are approximately travelling?

It's stated in the article.

Stars are not fixed in position. The closest star *at the moment* is 4.3lY away. As it happens, the star that Voyager will make its closest approach to is travelling *towards us* somewhat faster than Voyager is travelling away from us. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:33, 30 March 2016 (UTC)

Fictional Sighting[edit]

I'm quite certain that there's a Star Trek novel in which we discover a similar communication from an ancient civilization and the POV character (Picard, I'm pretty sure) muses about the Voyager Record and reveals that when contact was made with Vulcans, Klingons, etc. their scientists were given copies of the record, and none could make heads or tails of it. Anyone remember this? MBlume 23:04, 30 May 2006 (UTC)

As long as we're talking Star Trek, I removed a reference to Star Trek 5, since the Klingons destroy one of the Pioneer probes, not a Voyager. Besides, this article is about the record, not the Voyagers themselves. CFLeon 21:23, 30 May 2006 (UTC)


This may seem like nitpicking, but should fictional events be referred to in the present or the past tense? The fictional section in this article uses both (in one case, in the same entry, though that's been fixed) - is there Wiki policy on this? MBlume 23:04, 30 May 2006 (UTC)

Please remove the irrelevant cartoon picture of Megatron. I'd like to see a picture of what's actually on the album. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 18:39, August 22, 2007 (UTC)

Escape From Solar System[edit]

There are two sentences that contradict each other in the article:

"As of 2006, the Voyager spacecraft will be the third and fourth human artifacts to escape entirely from the solar system. Pioneers 10 and 11, which were launched in 1972 and 1973 and preceded Voyager in outstripping the gravitational attraction of the Sun"

"Voyager 1 was launched in 1977, passed the orbit of Pluto in 1990, and left the solar system (in the sense of passing the termination shock) in November 2004."

These two sentences use two different definitions of escape from the solar system. The first sentence uses the term to mean reaching escape velocity (it looks like), and the second one uses the termination shock, which neither Pioneer has passed yet. NHammen 22:24, 29 June 2006 (UTC)

the pioneer solid third stages followed both space craft in there 11 experenced a initual injection aimpoint
 that would have placed it in a solar orbit but after space craft seperation it was placed on  a correct orbit that  ended up in a 

solar system escape orbit.the pioneer 11 third stage may still be in a solar orbit. pioneer 10 and voyagers 1 and voyagers 2 third stages followed closely out of the solar system. there fore there are 9 objects escaping our solar system pioneer 10 pioneer 10 and its third stage pioneer 11 voyager 1 voyger 1 's third stage voyager 2 voyager 2's third stage new horizen new horizens third stage--Infocat13 01:27, 6 October 2007 (UTC)

Messed footnotes[edit]

I changed the format of a reference (adding the 'ref' tag). Now all the references are together but they are duplicated! I can't change it back and I can't find what's wrong... polkium 05:29, 30 August 2006 (UTC)

What a crock[edit]

Behold the glory of the human race - a cute little record that I'm 100% sure will simply astonish aliens when they happen upon it. I'm sure they'll fall to their knees in worship to our magnificence. And then they'll throw this piece of garbage in the trash where it belongs. What was Sagan thinking? He was more of a madman than a scientist.

Actually, I think the idea is that eventually the more inventive of humankind will venture outward, leaving ALL the whinging, whining, stick-in-the-mud naysayers behind . . . —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 10:42, 12 November 2008 (UTC)

It was more a symbolism thing. Who knows what aliens might do with it if they ever find it? Let's say it crash lands, fairly intact, but the creatures on the world it crashes on consumes all the material types of the Voyager. Or the alien's wouldn't even think much of it, there could be lots of differneces in life out there. Try not to assume that they'll throw it in the garbage, if they even know what garbage is...0_o

There's always the chance that no one will ever find it, that one seems a lot more plausible.

If they can see it for what it is, they won't throw it away. I find it more likely that they would just discount it as rubble, though, assuming they find it.Mr.WaeseL 00:57, 20 November 2006 (UTC)

It'll more than likely wind up being vaporized as it falls into the helosphere of some star a few billion years from now. 16:05, 18 January 2007 (UTC)
I hope so because if any civilized and intelligent species should find this, they will think we are a bunch of retards and probably set out to destroy us - which we probably deserve anyway... 05:55, 24 February 2007 (UTC)AR
The only one here who REALLY DESERVES to be destroyed is for suggesting that we all "probably deserve" to be destroyed. I hope he/she will spend all the rest of eternity burning in hell where he/she belongs! (talk) 00:44, 19 July 2009 (UTC)
I've recently read that most, if not all, immensely powerful alien species possessing an advanced capacity for interstellar travel do not, in actuality, make their decisions regarding their culling of nascent civilizations based on whether or not they consider the species' contributions to the intragalactic P2P network to be that of "a bunch of retards". I can't quote a source on this, however, as is not considered a valid one. Muad 19:28, 25 February 2007 (UTC)
They would be far too busy rocking out to "Johnny B. Goode" to bother coming to destroy us. Nice selection, Mr Sagan!
Most of these posters are way too cynical. Space exploration tends to stimulate idealism and flights of fancy. Brutannica (talk) 21:18, 19 December 2007 (UTC)
they're more stupid than cynical. don't tar the fine tradition of cynicism with this drivel —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:52, 7 January 2008 (UTC)
I hope it is destroyed. How reckless can you be, chucking out your location and the basics of your biology into a vast unknown, quite likely any creature venturing at great expense through the vastness of space doesn't do it out of fundamental curiosity but rather for profit or nourishment.09:07, 22 December 2010 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Noserider (talkcontribs)
Poor Carl, casting his golden bread upon the waters of space. This record says a lot about Carl Sagan, but very little about the human race or the American people, who launched the vessel. I didn't realize he penned that turd with Jodie Foster. Maybe it's not too late to send a ship to intercept the probe before it becomes an interstellar embarrassment. Ocanter (talk) 15:14, 28 March 2008 (UTC)
I wasn't aware the American people constituted the human race. I'm also not sure where you came up with the idea that it says ANYTHING about Sagan, let alone a lot. How is saying hello in Mandarin, the sound of a heartbeat, and Beethoven's Fifth saying little about the human race? I have read the article multiple times and every time I feel inspired. The point was not to show off our ego, or even to communicate with aliens- the point was to show ourselves what's really important.ILikeFish (talk) 14:54, 28 July 2009 (UTC)

What are the chances of advanced alien life possessing a phonograph record player in 40,000 years time? They will probably just use it as a frisbee, or send a transmission back to us asking "Do you have it on MiniDisc?". If NASA really wants to impress extraterrestrial beings with the extent of human achievement they should send into space a selection of pornographic movies and the first four Danzig albums. DANZIG666 (talk) 02:48, 31 May 2008 (UTC)

You don't seriously think they just sent a record? They sent a player along as well. That's why it includes instructions on how to play it. ILikeFish (talk) 14:54, 28 July 2009 (UTC)
While this conversation seems to be more about the disc itself than about improving the article, it did prompt one thought: it seems to me that the most likely fate of this disc will be precisely that some humans will get ahold of it, assuming we don't destroy ourselves first. It's a long way off, but even if someone sent something to go get it a couple of centuries from now, that's only a couple of centuries, and so a probe which might travel 100x faster than Voyager could get there and back within a decade easily. Why might someone do that? I don't know, but it seems likely enough. Humans get up to lots of interesting things, given enough time.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 15:57, 22 September 2010 (UTC)

Images encoded into vinyl?[edit]

I thought this mission had also sent out images encoded into vinyl, namely one of a woman in a supermarket. It looked very 70's era. I used to have the image. Does anyone know of a package like this being sent into space or am I mistaken?


Is this what you are looking for? Ap William 07:03, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

Total cost of project[edit]

I was wondering if there is any information about the total cost of the project.

Nothing, compared to the costs of designing and launching the probes themselves. Most of the content on the record didn't involve any copyright fees for this project, and selecting the materials on it wasn't any kind of big bucks affair either. Strausszek (talk) 18:20, 20 August 2016 (UTC)

Choice of gold, instead of some other material?[edit]

Is there a reason why gold was chosen instead of some other (possibly more durable) metal?

Is gold known to be durable when facing interstellar hazzards?

Its not actually gold. Its gold plated copper. (Thank you, NASA's web site) As for using gold on it, I have no idea why. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Vkeios (talkcontribs) 06:53, 19 December 2007 (UTC)
it's an efficient reflector and conductor, and it doesn't corrode or tarnish —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:56, 7 January 2008 (UTC)

Clarification/corrections needed[edit]

Okay, I've been trying to figure this out, and cross-reference with various sources. A few things need clearing up. Firstly, the layout of the disc should be made explicit - as I understand it one side (facing outwards) is entirely music, and the other contains more music, the messages and sounds, and the video.

Also, is the disc monaural? I assume so, but it would be nice for this to be made explicit.

The number of video images appears slightly uncertain. Nasa, and this article, says 115. The CED site says 116 and says Nasa miscounted, and shows 116. CED goes on to say that there were also 6 video text pages, 2 with Carter's message, and 4 with Nasa names - credits, if you will. Although I've not seen any other explicit reference to this - only sources mentioning ambiguously that the disc has a "printed" message from Carter, which in the past I've interpreted to mean that it was printed on/inside the case. Also, apparently, 20 of the images were in colour, encoded as triplets of red/green/blue images, with the rest being just monochrome. So one could say that there were 162 frames, encoding 102 monochrome images and 20 colour images.

The image types should also be clarified - at the moment it hints that they're just photos. It's actually a combination of diagrams, photos and photos with explanatory notes.

The article says "printed messages from President Jimmy Carter and U.N. Secretary-General Kurt Waldheim." Don't think that's right - more accurate to say Carter's message was text encoded as video, and Waldheim's message was spoken in the audio section.

Anyone disagree with any of this? --KJBracey (talk) 00:03, 6 December 2007 (UTC)

Musical Corrections[edit]

I thought we must cleanned the data of the music, specially the issue concearning to the authorship of the recordings. A week ago I've found in the next webpage of the UCLA the possible authorship of "El Cascabel" recording, being wrong the attribution to Lorenzo Barcelata and Mariachi México. I changed the data on the chart in that section.Any questions or changes please let me know --Beat Boy (talk) 22:31, 17 February 2008 (UTC)

What's the disk's diameter? (talk) 14:58, 2 June 2008 (UTC)

I changed the info about the Gould recording to "Book 1" from "Book 2". (talk) 21:11, 2 January 2009 (UTC)

Request for clarification: Heat at entry[edit]

Is the record durable enough to survive the descent through a distant planet's atmosphere? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:26, 26 July 2008 (UTC)

Absolutely not. (talk) 00:46, 19 July 2009 (UTC)

AC+79 3888??[edit]

Is AC+79 3888 in the constellation of Ophiucus?. The AC+79 3888 wiki article says it's in Camelopardalis. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:15, 14 September 2008 (UTC)

Gliese 445 is in the constellation of Camelopardalis (at RA 11:47 and Dec 78:41, see and also the cited The previous edit (529960029) is correct. This also matches the Wikipedia articles on Voyager 1 and Gliese 445 (the latter used to say Ophiuchus but was fixed in 2008!). I will restore the IP edit (changing to Camelopardalis). Majumda (talk) 21:29, 27 December 2012 (UTC)

Question about the music table[edit]

Is it in any order at all? Is it in the oder of what's on the disc or something? Also, I noticed that the first mention of the states says 'U.S.' while the next two say 'USA'. Is this inconsistency there for a reason? --Thaddius (talk) 13:13, 2 December 2008 (UTC)

Picture of Cover still upside down[edit]

In contrast to the discussion on the top of the page, the image of the record's cover still appears upside down for me. It would be nice to have it fixed at some stage, since it mismatches the NASA explanation diagram. (talk) 18:06, 23 October 2009 (UTC)

Contents of the Voyager Golden Record[edit]

Since there are no mentions anywhere of the nature of the images are contained within the record, I decided to create a new article, Contents of the Voyager Golden Record, that would list them. After a bit a thought, I figured the sounds and music should be aggregated in this article also.

The rationale for creating a new article was that the list would make the current voyager golden record too big and the layout awkward. I find it sad that all this material (the music and the images) is all copyrighted, but in time (they will expire someday), I believe some wikipedians will find a way to add those images and sounds to wikipedia's media collection for all to enjoy.

After all, this record the only piece of humanity that extends past our solar systems and is supposed to represent all of us. Despite it being a timecapsule (made in the late 70's) and given the limitations of the medium, I found the image selection still relevant and very apt at describing life on this planet. I digress, but this record definatly has very deep philosophical implications that I believe all humans should explore. If you want to see the photos and hear the sounds go to Comments welcome. Tinss (talk) 16:51, 30 April 2010 (UTC)

At the new article, is the only (or primary) new content contained in the list in the "#Images" section, and the prose in the "#Playing" section? If so, I'd strongly favor merging it back into this article. This article is currently only 27kb, and if we removed all the overlapping content, it would be very very short.
(I'd been planning on adding the list of images here, but kept getting distracted - mostly by the dutil-dumas message, which also needs much work at Wikipedia... ;)
Note: I made a few minor corrections to your post for comprehensibility, in this edit. Hope that's okay.
So, I strongly agree with adding the list, and any other new content, here. HTH. -- Quiddity (talk) 20:14, 28 May 2010 (UTC)
I agree this move makes this article a bit short, but the contents section as it is right now would make the article too long. As links to sounds and image thumbnails will be added to the table, this problem will only be exacerbated. I will try to find more content about the Golden Records on the web to add a bit of meat the article. If I can't I'll merge it back with Contents of the Voyager Golden Record. However, if anyone does it before me, I'll accept the change as consensus. Thanks for you opinion.Tinss (talk) 01:29, 31 May 2010 (UTC)

How much data?[edit]

How much data is recorded on the record in bytes? It occurs to me that if we were to do something like this again now, sending up a terabyte hard drive and a solar powered computer would enable a single push button to allow the finder to see and hear video/audio and then surf a cached version of all the languages of Wikipedia plus some language learning materials like Rosetta Stone or whatever.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 15:59, 22 September 2010 (UTC)

It's an analog record, there isn't any particular number of "bytes" recorded on it because there is no digital information. Sending a solar-powered computer wouldn't work too well because as the computer moves away from the sun, it will no longer be able to generate an appreciable amount of power. Also, even if you could get a computer to play video/audio and surf a cached version of Wikipedia, you're still making a lot of big assumptions about the extra-terrestrials who might find it, namely:
  1. The aliens can sense electromagnetic waves in the visible spectrum the same way we can.
  2. The aliens can sense sound wave vibrations the same way we can, and they are capable of sensing the same audio frequencies as we are.
  3. The aliens would have some way to meaningfully translate a human language encyclopedia into something that they could understand. Software like Rosetta Stone is intended to teach a language to someone who already knows a different language (i.e. an italian speaker looking to learn swedish). There is no software package available which attempts to teach a language to someone who doesn't speak any known languages.
Back to the drawing board... Face-wink.svg SnottyWong chatter 19:42, 22 September 2010 (UTC)
On the contrary, I think it would be possible to teach English to an extraterrestrial life form. We learn new languages by associations because we can assume a lot of things to be constant on earth ie: apples, water, clouds, rocks are pretty much the same everywhere. It cannot be assumed that there will be such things on other worlds, but mathematics (logic would be especially important here), shapes, colors (a wavelength) should work the same everywhere in the universe. As a matter of fact, the golden record uses universals like this in the instructions on its cover. Anyway, I like to think that if those extraterrestrials are as lonely as we are and technologically advanced enough to go in space and catch the probe, they will invest the resources into understanding everything about it; like we would do if we found something equivalent in the harbor of earth.
You are certainly free to have an opinion on anything. Here, you are also free to express it, no matter that it has no justification. Unfortunately your confusion between an "alien life form" and an "alien intelligent technological life form" suggests you haven't given this question much thought, or didn't bother (weren't capable of?) articulating your position. Making generalizations about other possible aliens and what they can and can't *perceive* and *understand* is empty rhetoric (and shows a considerable failure of imagination, imho). ... That is, unless you can cite something authoritative (i.e. peer reviewed scientific publication)?? (talk) 19:58, 19 October 2017 (UTC)
Wikipedia would certainly be a worthy candidate for a bottle in space type of project. After all, its the most comprehensive compendium of knowledge ever created. Finding a correct format would certainly be a challenge (I do not think you can send hard drive in space, they are too sensitive), but nothing impossible. Either way, those projects are more symbolic than anything as the chances that the probes (Pioneers and Voyagers) currently outbound from earth ever get discovered are slim to none.
With today's technology, we would certainly be able to send a lot more data than they did with the Golden Record. Estimating, the capacity of the record is not easy since everything in it is encoded in analog form, but if we consider to bandwidth of the record to be the same as a brand new LP, 22Khz (44Khz sampling rate) and its dynamic range to be between 65-70db, which requires 12bits to encode, we get a bit rate of 44000*12 = 528Kb/sec in mono. Assuming the disc is an LP written at half the speed of a normal LP, it would hold 45 minutes of audio per side which would amount to a disc capacity of 2*45*60*528 = 13932000 Kb, or 1741500 KB, or 1741.5 MB (Note that I am using MB as x10^6 bytes). Quite a bit of data actually, but keep in mind that it's in analog form. Tinss (talk) 20:34, 22 September 2010 (UTC)
It's fairly likely that we could teach English (or, at the very least, communicate in some rudimentary way) with an alien life form. However, it's quite another thing to say that we could blindly send something to an alien civilization (with no information about the nature of this civilization, mind you) that would allow them to learn English (or any other human language) without any intervention from a human. It's true that math and logic would likely be universally understood by technological civilizations, but concepts like color are completely human. The wavelength of an electromagnetic wave is universal, but the perception of that wavelength as the experience of color is certainly not.
Sure, if we sent them a TV screen and played some images on it, they would probably be able to detect the electromagnetic waves coming out of the TV. They might detect it biologically if their bodies are evolved to do so, or they might detect it technologically using some kind of meter. Either way, unless their bodies (if they even have bodies) are so similar to ours that they have organs which are tuned to sense the visible spectrum of light, the EM waves from the TV would likely make little sense to them. Our bodies are evolved to see the visible spectrum because the Earth's atmosphere efficiently passes light in those wavelengths and blocks other wavelengths. We only see TV screens in the visible spectrum, but that doesn't mean they aren't putting out infrared and ultraviolet signals. How would the aliens know that the important information is only between 380nm to 750nm wavelengths? SnottyWong spill the beans 21:26, 22 September 2010 (UTC)
I completely agree with you, we cannot expect aliens to interpret pictures, movies, sound and text the way we do. Even if they would be able to see the same spectrum as us, it remains doubtful if those images will mean anything to them at first glance. However, the point here is to convey information. While we can look at a picture at all wavelengths, it is only in the visible spectrum that information on this picture (patterns and variations) start to appear (at other wavelengths, its blank). An analogy would be satellites using SARs to pierce the cloud cover of Venus and image its surface.
Venus globe.jpg
Venus-real color.jpg
There is little information in the visible spectrum but lots outside of it. If the information is encoded in a digital form (eg: RGB) rather than displayed using our technology, then they will interpret it in colors they can see as this encoding is not relative to a specific spectrum. Still, they should be able to figure out what king of colors we meant to encode in the first place by looking at the probes themselves and the markings on them. I think that the aliens will be able to make sense of this information easily. Regardless, I completely agree with you. It will take them years to analyze what we have sent them and make sense of it (ie: convert it to something they can relate to), but if they feel as lonely as us, then I trust that they will invest the resources and time. Tinss (talk) 15:35, 23 September 2010 (UTC)
The collection of 116 images includes photographs and diagrams showing physical and mathematical quantities, DNA, human anatomy and reproduction, and the solar system and its planets. Deplorably, no chess game in algebraic notation was included. The images of humanity depict a broad range of cultures; these images show food, architecture, and humans in portraits as well as in going about their day to day lives. Disappointingly, images of humans playing a game of chess were never considered by Sagan and his associates.

FadulJA (talk) 03:14, 22 October 2012 (UTC)

How could you possibly know what they considered? Why would such a useless and uninformative image be added to the collection?

If I had to do it, I'd include a series which demonstrated our life-cycle, from birth to death - preferably for both a 1st Worlder and a nomadic hunter gatherer. I'd include another one on our sexual reproduction. One on our cities, another on our suburbs, and on our villages and rural domiciles. The others would be on our museums, art, and technology. I can see chess making it after a couple hundred of thousand more common situations. I note that no photograph is capable of "showing" any mathematical quantity. (talk) 19:58, 19 October 2017 (UTC)

Contradiction with Voyager 1[edit]

The background section contradicts the Voyager 1 article in two ways. The background section for Voyager Golden Record states:

However, the Voyager 1 article clearly expresses that Voyager 1 has both traveled a greater distance than Pioneer 10 and 11:

And the Voyager 1 article states that not even Voyager 1 has managed to leave the solar system "entirely":

(With 3 citations listed, I might add). ialsoagree (talk) 07:07, 20 January 2013 (UTC)

There are several DIFFERENT definitions of what defines the outer boundary of our Solar System. The Sun's gravity dominates near-by interstellar space and some would argue that an object hasn't "left" the Solar System until it is no longer in the Sun's "Hill Sphere". (The classical Hill Sphere definition is limited to satellites, so it needs to be broadened slightly to include the Sun's meander around the center of the Milky Way.) Most would probably agree that the Solar System is bordered by interstellar space (which would better be called the interstellar medium). The transition zone between the plasma which defines the Solar Wind ("inside" the Solar System) and the plasma of the interstellar medium ("outside" the Solar System) seems to be quite variable and is certainly not close to a spherical shape. The Oort Cloud (which, while we have (strong) evidence of its existence isn't something that we can directly observe (at least, not yet)) is at distances of up to 3 light-years from the Sun (and therefore in interstellar space) yet it is typically considered as being part of the Solar System. Feel free to believe that Voyager(s) have or have not "truly" left the Solar System. Compare the Oort Cloud at 50,000 to 200,000 AU with Voyager 2 at 115 AU (July 2017); we've got a long way to go, but Voyager will be dead (nonfunctional) within the next decade. (talk) 20:42, 19 October 2017 (UTC)

Materials - etched not written[edit]

this was the 2nd paragraph in materials before i editted it.

The records also had the sentence "To the makers of music – all worlds, all times" handwritten on them. Since this was not in the original disc specification, it almost caused their rejection.

and this is the section of NYT article that is referenced

And after the record was completed, NASA rejected it on technical grounds. Late one night in a New York sound studio, when we’d finished cutting the master, I inscribed the words, “To the makers of music — all worlds, all times,” in the “takeout grooves” next to the label. (The Voyager record is a metal version of the 33 1/3 vinyl records of the day, recorded at half-speed to double its data content. Etching an inscription between the takeout grooves was a trope I’d picked up from John Lennon.) A NASA quality-control officer checked the record against specifications and found that while the record’s size, weight, composition and magnetic properties were all in order, its blueprints made no provision for an inscription.

So the record was rejected as a nonstandard part, and the space agency prepared to replace it with a blank disc. Sagan had to persuade the NASA administrator to sign a waiver before the record could fly.

i'm not 100% happy with what i changed the text to. so please change the wording. i've never been that comfortable writing, and most of my edits involve fixing spelling mistakes, broken links, adding links. mostly just tidying up. but the original text didn't make sense. i thought that someone took a pencil, or marker and simply wrote on the gold surface. i read the article referenced and found out what it actually was. these sorts of etched inscriptions are common with LPs, often just some sort of serial number or sometimes a signature or message. it's interesting because it combines a small, often overlooked detail of an everyday object (LPs being everyday at the time) and included it on something that has already or will soon leave the solar system.

i know i'm drastically oversharing on this tiny edit. it's just that i do realize that carl sagan himself described it as "handwritten" in episode 6 of cosmos#!*$&^%, and don't want to start another useless and irrational edit war because i'm disagreeing with a word sagan said to describe something he helped make. i greatly admire sagan, but i don't necessarily think he was more knowledgable about music recording, LP production or etching terminology than the person who produced it.

#!*$&^% bloody hell. i keep forgetting that "youtu(.)be" links are blocked.. so i couldn't include a link to the relevant moment in the video. go here and jump to around 8:28 to see the part where sagan describes the disc. ≈Sensorsweep (talk) 06:25, 22 June 2013 (UTC)

Analogous effort to send Wikipedias into space[edit]

A proposal along the same lines to send a Wikipedia into space has been made here. Comments are welcome. -- econterms (talk) 00:59, 25 March 2015 (UTC)

The plan is to harvest Wikipedia's Good Articles and blast them into space. The proposal is hopeless and the spirit of it is doomed to failure, in fact it's the kind of thing that gets Wikipedia a bad press. I'm not convinced that Wikipedia's pool of good articles is representative of the sum total of humanity's knowledge. I count just 37 "Good Articles" on the entire field of mathematics, vs 84 good articles on individual Family Guy episodes; the Engineering and technology - Transport section is dominated by hundreds of cut-and-paste articles about Washington State Routes, Michigan Highways, New York State Routes, Colorado State Highways, which are in the long run a pointless waste of resources; the Literature section implies that there are only 172 good novels, including Halo: The Fall of Reach, its sequel Halo: The Flood, Batman: The Ultimate Evil, plus a tonne of young adult sci-fi; the Natural Sciences section is dominated by cut-and-paste descriptions of bygone Atlantic hurricane seasons etc. The fundamental problem is that Wikipedia has thousands of competent entries - they describe the topic, they are illustrated, they meet the criteria - on topics of utterly trivial unimportance. The Voyager record wasn't an undifferentiated mass of rubbish that briefly diverted the teenagers of 1977, it was carefully selected by intelligent individuals. In that respect it goes against everything Wikipedia stands for. -Ashley Pomeroy (talk) 13:16, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
Agreed, but you can't blame people for writing about subjects they are passionate about. Wikipedia after all is a reflection of its editors and sadly most of them are not interested in science and engineering. Still, I'm not worried. Building an encyclopedia is an effort that takes generations; we will get there slowly but surely, every worthy topic will get a decent article in time. Wikipedia is something we should be proud about as being one the most useful content website on the planet, it's not perfect, but it way better than what we had before.
With regards to the record, it itself has serious flaws and not much scientific value. For instance, there are no pictures of poverty, inequality, disease, war, violence or death; it only presents mankind in a positive light. Sagan was not an idiot, I'm certain his original selection must have better represented the realities we live in, but regrettably, political forces meddled in and censored the contents of the record. For instance, there are no pictures of a naked man and woman on the record because NASA had received criticism over the nudity on the Pioneer plaque. Frankly this kind of thing happening frustrates me way more than Family Guy oriented articles being over represented.Tinss (talk) 20:41, 6 June 2015 (UTC)

Voyager in movies[edit]

One of the Star Trek movies was based on V-ger which the crew of the Enterprise discovered to be Voyager after being intercepted and modified by an alien race, it was on its way back to Earth. (talk) 16:25, 17 July 2015 (UTC)

I've tagged the In popular culture section with Template:In popular culture: "Please reorganize this content to explain the subject's impact on popular culture rather than simply listing appearances". Finnusertop (talk | guestbook | contribs) 17:39, 25 July 2015 (UTC)

Audio from golden record on Soundcloud[edit]

Victor Grigas (talk) 17:19, 12 October 2015 (UTC)

Uhh nice. Upload them to wikimedia commons then. Huritisho 12:50, 14 October 2015 (UTC)

Probe name in italics?[edit]

The main pages for the space probes do not have their names in itals. Is there a reason they are italicized on this page? Not with all those rocks about (talk) 04:34, 27 May 2016 (UTC)


Let us give 'the theoretical aliens' the benefit of the doubt and assume them capable of deducing 'first level interactions with the rest of the galaxy' (the sentient species exploring their solar system and starting to #intentionally# send things beyond it) and making due allowances. 09:55, 1 October 2016 (UTC)