Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Really Weird Monument

Create an object so strange no one will ever think it's natural.
  [vote for,

This isn't really much of an idea in and of itself. It's a collorary to another idea, namely a monument to humanity on a nearby celestial body. (So if we fall we won't be forgotten.) I think it's a great idea, and I have a suggestion:

Make something that orbits the Earth, at geosynchronous altitude- but backwards. (Rather than staying in one place above the earth, it circles the entire globe at a very good clip.) A good sized object too, maybe with solar panels powering a very high powered arrray of floodlights on the surface of the object. Once every hundred years or so, it puts on a hell of a light show. If we do fall into a new dark age, people will revere this strange light in the sky (we know that OUR civilization loved looking at the sky when we developed it) and once they begin to understand science, they will notice some funny things about that light. I'd have it broadcast primes amoung other things. (And a decent value for Pi, the poor mathematicians spent centuries on that.) They, once they understand orbital mechanics, will know that it's at an interesting altitude and that the way it's moving is very odd indeed. Hopefully, our future counterparts will become intrigued with the object and mount a manned mission to recover it. Whatever time capsule of our history we choose to enclose will be recovered and examined. If we got REALLY lucky and the object became very revered, maybe even in a religious sense, the thing could become part of what drives our descendants back into space- we always liked the moon and we went after all.

Madcat, Nov 14 2003

The Related Idea http://www.halfbake...k_20our_20Existence
Tooting my own horn [cameron, Oct 04 2004, last modified Oct 05 2004]

keo http://www.keo.org
[chud, Oct 04 2004, last modified Oct 05 2004]

An Example of a Really Weird Monument. http://www.roadside.../UTWENmetaphor.html
Don't be surprised if this ends up in orbit. [Amos Kito, Oct 04 2004, last modified Oct 05 2004]


       I would have thought carving "Kilroy Woz Here" on the Moon would be adequate.
DrCurry, Nov 14 2003

       sp: collorEry
phundug, Nov 14 2003

       "I'd have it broadcast primes amoung other things. (And a decent value for Pi, the poor mathematicians spent centuries on that.)"
Which they won't be able to receive until *after*:
1) they've invented radio,
2) figured out that this thing is broadcasting (by tripping across the frequency, I presume), and 3) decipher the message.

       By then I'm sure our decendant will have a good grasp of prime numbers and pi.
phoenix, Nov 14 2003

       Not the primes! Do you realize how many centuries our mathematicians have already wasted on those things? And now you want to bother future generations with it all over again.
phundug, Nov 14 2003

       I like the idea of a massive orbital light show, ut it might be a good idea to make it more frequrent than every 100 years... Some people would live their entire lives without seeing it, and nobody would live long enough to see it twice.   

       Phoenix is right though, when he? says that our descendants will have a good grasp of prime numbers and pi, but at the very least the monument could act as an orbital rosetta stone, if any remnants of our civiliation survive into the next.
Condiment, Nov 14 2003

       there are people living today that are well over 100 years old (ok, so there aren't very many) so I'm sure some people would be able to see a centennial light show twice.
Freefall, Nov 14 2003

       And also, if you want it to be "so strange no one will ever think it's natural", then you should broadcast the primes _wrong_. And broadcast pi with some decimal places screwed up. After all, it may turn out that primes and pi are, in fact, natural phenomena. Future generations may know that. So, if they just see a bunch of primes, they will (correctly, for their time) assume it is part of the same nature.   

       The real dilemma in this project is how we can demonstrate our *knowledge* to future generations without it all looking too natural in and of itself.
phundug, Nov 14 2003

       "Sheesh - those 21stcenturinarians - they were absolutely hopeless at math. They couldn't even get the prime numbers right! How could they ever have gotten anything into space?"
DrCurry, Nov 14 2003

       Oh also, I befor E except this word, which is Weird. Ain't that the truth? You could almost say the word itself is...funny.
sartep, Nov 14 2003

       I rather favor something that very closely resembles nature, but is just a little bit off, so that it would stir up controversy for decades. Something like the face on Mars, unmistakably winking like a great big ascii smiley...   

       I love the idea of some sort of monument to give the future inhabitants of this planet, be they hyper-intelligent apes or whatever, a clue. Perhaps a talking doll...
RayfordSteele, Nov 14 2003

       Maybe this has already been done, many people think so. Easter Island and other related monuments are believed to carry a message from the past, although noone has been able to decipher it in its totallity, yet. Most think the message concerns survival of the race after some sort of world disaster which occurs ever six or eight-thousand years or so.
RJ_I_2, Nov 14 2003

       ...beige, feint, feisty, foreign, forfeit, heifer, height, heir, heist, neighbor, reign, rein, seismometer, their, veil, vein, weigh, codeine, either, Keith, leisure, neither, seize....
silverstormer, Nov 14 2003

       Freefall: Yes, there are plenty of people living to be well over 100 years old nowadays, but in a dark age, which is what Madcat is suggesting, the chance that a person lives to be 100 is very slim indeed.
Condiment, Nov 14 2003

       So what is a collorary? Isn't in my dictionary.
suctionpad, Nov 14 2003

       There's a very narrow band of space available for in geosync orbit - very specific altitude and in the plane of the equator. In fact I think all of the available slots are already occupied. Your satellite would go barreling thorough that backwards and smash into all of our communication sattelites.
toiyabe, Nov 14 2003

       How long could we make the thing last for? Could we give it a few millenia waranty?   

       It has the big advantage over time capsules that the witch hunters wouldn't be able to confiscate it and burn its owners at the stake.
RobertKidney, Nov 14 2003

       There's a very narrow band of space available for in geosync orbit - very specific altitude and in the plane of the equator. In fact I think all of the available slots are already occupied. Your satellite would go barreling thorough that backwards and smash into all of our communication sattelites.   

       That's probably true; I'm just not sure that I care. Assuming we're heading for a new dark age I think we could convince the powers that be to clear the orbit in question. On the other hand, a ring of sattelites in orbit that hang motionless above the Earth's surface are fishy too. I just wish they were more visible; they'd partially bake this idea.
Madcat, Nov 15 2003

       I like your Idea too Humanbean, but I'd suggest aluminum. It doesn't rust. (It does oxidise but that doesn't weaken it a bit.) You could stick it on Everest, and then you'd know that some day some bloody idiot is going to climb that mountain, because it's there no less, and find that cylinder.
Madcat, Nov 15 2003

       Oh, and I should clarify things a bit. I'm not suggesting that the light broadcast radio. I'm suggesting that the flashes of light represent interesting numbers.
Madcat, Nov 15 2003

       If you are worried that they will think that they will think that we are stupid because we gave PI the wrong value, you could brodcast the right value of PI ( quieter ) at the same time. Also, why have it orbit backwards? ( Why not geostat over Euraisia? )Could we have it contain a computer so that it can "talk" to the world ( maby have more flashes during forest fires, ect. )
my-nep, Nov 15 2003

       how about it orbits forward and broadcasts pi backward?
flyfast, Nov 19 2003

       I really like the idea of an orbiting device designed to protect against the death of human civilisation. I'm not sure it would be possible to leave a satellite unattended for more that a few decades though - certainly the orbits of the ones up there at the moment decay over time until they burn up in the atmosphere.
hippo, Nov 19 2003

       ////broadcasts pi backward//
Where would it start?//

       How about "7"?
PeterSilly, Nov 19 2003

       //broadcast the primes _wrong_. And broadcast pi with some decimal places screwed up.//
Huh, what decimals?

       Pi is 306, dude. Yeah, that's the ticket...
thumbwax, Nov 19 2003

       It orbits at the correct altitude for a Geostationary satellite, because any civilization worth its salt will eventually know what that altitude is. It does that backwards so they'll go: "WHAT?!?" Anything that odd is going to be investigated at some point.
Madcat, Nov 30 2003

       13:16 And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads:   

       13:17 And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.   

       13:18 Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is three point one four one five nine two six five three five eight nine seven nine three two three eight four six two six four three three eight three two seven nine five   

       13:19 ...wait, i meant two point seven one eight two eight one eight two eight four five nine zero four five two three five three six zero two eight seven four seven one three five two six six.   

       13:20 no wait, maybe it was...
cameron, Nov 30 2003

       would this count as baked [link]?
chud, Nov 30 2003

flyfast, Nov 30 2003

       Maybe you could make it black and rectangular.
waugsqueke, Nov 30 2003

       //would this count as baked\\   

       I'm tempted to say no, but it IS a really weird monument...
Madcat, Dec 05 2003

       what if it also contained an obscenely huge amount of seed pods? every few hundred years it would drop canisters of seeds for our staple foods (coffe, marijuana, cocoa, etc) so that they could never be completely wiped out by any kind of armageddon event.   

       core o' larry?   

       i suppose you could plant some good memes in it, as well.
changokun, Dec 05 2003

       its a good idea and all, but the dinosaurs did that too, and look at how it worked out for them.
HalfwayHebrew, Dec 05 2003


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