New Website Shows What Could Be on ET's Playlist

By James O Malley on at

Ever wondered what aliens could be listening to? A clever new website has done the work to help us visualise it - based on how far our radio signals have travelled into space. lets you scroll back in time - as radio waves travel at the speed of light it means that on Proxima Centurai, which is about 4.2 light years away they're still listening to hits from 2011, and will still be wondering if London can pull off hosting the Olympics.

As the site flies further out from the earth and goes further back in time, the playlist is apparently based on tracks that were in the American Billboard Top 10 for that point in time, and selected at random - meaning that each time you go through, you should hear a different selection of tracks.

Wired, which spoke to the creators of the website notes that despite being incredibly slick, the creators didn't officially license the music used - but they're hoping that the record companies will look kindly on their entirely non-commercial, and educational venture.

Perhaps most profoundly, when you reach the end of the journey - at 110 light years, at the point when humans first invented radio transmissions the airwaves go silent, and the site shows a 'map' of the Milky Way showing how far our transmissions have travelled. Unsurprisingly, our civilisation has barely gone anywhere. We should probably do something about that. [Wired via TechRadar]