Wednesday, September 03, 2008


A rather bizarre paper was posted on the astro-ph arXiv today. In it (well from the abstract that I've read) the authors propose that a sufficiently advance civilisation could have the means and desire to add phase modulations to Cepheid variable stars as a way of broadcasting signals over a large distance. They suggest that we should therefore try looking for such non-natural modulations in the large collection of Cepheid observations that have been made over the past 100 years. Now I don't want to suggest that this is a silly idea, but the reason I point out this article is because I like the termed they've coined for such a civilisation of Cepheid manipulators - they call them the "star-ticklers".