This is the personal blog of Adam J. Schirling, the founder and editor-in-chief of Drunken Absurdity, a revolutionary ezine. For the best in alternative literature, poetry, art, movies and more go to This blog is strictly for my personal rants, some dirty pics, and the occasional cool story or sweet tunes.

Does the 'WOW signal" creep you out?? It fucking should

>> Thursday, October 13, 2011

The WOW signal was a radio signal that was picked up at The Big Ear radio telescope, as part of the SETI project, by a Dr. Ehman on August 15, 1977. Big Ear used numbers, from zero to 10, to document how far above the useless background noise any signals went. In a comically childish system, the eggheads ran out of fingers and had to use toes, adding letters A-Z on top of the numbers. The Wow! Signal was "6EQUJ5," meaning it began at a scale of six, crept past the letter threshold, jumped to Q and then as far as U before fading gradually.

All of this happened over 37 seconds, and all of this from a seemingly empty point in space. Perhaps even more mind-boggling, it came from a non-terrestrial and non-solar system source. It was a signal shot to Earth from one of the emptiest places imaginable, and something from that place somehow got to us.

Amazed at how closely the signal matched the expected signature of an interstellar signal, Ehman circled the signal on the computer printout and wrote the comment "Wow!" on its side. This comment became the name of the signal

It could be, as skeptics suggest, interstellar scintillation of a weaker continuous signal. That is important because a continuous signal is far less remarkable, and what they picked up might have been a weak, continuous signal that gained strength for a short time. However, it's a mysterious signal from space that follows a very calculated system, turning off, and turning on. That... really shouldn't be.

The signal had the trademark of an artificially produced interstellar broadcast. How did they broadcast it from a point in space where there are no planets and there are no solar systems? Well, the only explanation would be a spaceship, and the signal is used to communicate to other spaceships.

Dr. Ehman has stated his doubts that the signal is of intelligent extraterrestrial origin: "We should have seen it again when we looked for it 50 times. Something suggests it was an Earth-sourced signal that simply got reflected off a piece of space debris."

He later recanted his skepticism somewhat, after further research showed an Earth-borne signal to be very unlikely, due to the requirements of a space-borne reflector being bound to certain unrealistic requirements to sufficiently explain the nature of the signal

 For once the explanation that there's an alien craft beaming signals is more logically sound than the tried and true "space debris" argument. And THAT should creep you the fuck out


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Freelance writer and poet. Founder and Editor in Chief of Drunken Absurdity. President of Drunken Absurdity LLC

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