NASA has a free e-book available entitled “Archaeology, Anthropology, and Interstellar Communication” and edited by Douglas A. Vakoch, the Director of Interstellar Message Composition over at SETI.
I haven’t read it yet, but I put it on my Kindle app. Do I get points for that?
The book boasts awesome chapters such as “Learning to Read: Interstellar Message Decipherment from Archeological and Anthropological Perspectives”, “Speaking for Earth: Projecting Cultural Values Across Deep Space and Time”, and “Inferring Intelligence: Prehistoric and Extraterrestrial”.
It should provide some interesting food for thought with regards to decoding language and symbology. Despite what some folks want to believe, the book does not claim that ancient rock art is communication with or from aliens.
What this collection of thought is likely to do is give readers insight into their own locked perspectives and how that hampers communication across cultures, not to mention what that might mean for communication beyond any conceivable shared or even relatable language or culture.
Of course, I’m just guessing. I’ll let you know after I read the damn thing.
Addressing a field that has been dominated by astronomers, physicists, engineers, and computer scientists, the contributors to this collection raise questions that may have been overlooked by physical scientists about the ease of establishing meaningful communication with an extraterrestrial intelligence. These scholars are grappling with some of the enormous challenges that will face humanity if an information-rich signal emanating from another world is detected. By drawing on issues at the core of contemporary archaeology and anthropology, we can be much better prepared for contact with an extraterrestrial civilization, should that day ever come.