The incredible story of these scientists who “chatted” with a whale

The incredible story of these scientists who “chatted” with a whale
The incredible story of these scientists who “chatted” with a whale

If you’ve always dreamed of conversing with a humpback whale, scientists from the Whale-SETI group had that chance. In an article published in the scientific journal Peer Jthey explained their very stimulating approach.

Concretely, the researchers used a recording of the contact song of this animal in order to attract its attention. The female named Twain quickly appeared, and she responded with some form of greeting, then began to swim around the boat.

Soon a translator to understand animals?

For the rest, the exchange remained quite brief, but the scientists hope to be able to have other discussions with the beast by managing to identify certain sounds of its language: ” How are you ? » Or “Is the fishing good today?” » The impressive sounds emitted by this very intelligent animal can be distinguished in this report from our colleagues at CBS Sacramento.

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While this approach is exciting in itself, it also opens the way to exciting new thoughts. Quoted by BGRBrenda McCowan of UC Davis, the lead author of this study, emphasizes:

Due to current limitations in technology, an important assumption in the search for extraterrestrial intelligence is that extraterrestrials will be interested in establishing contact and will thus target human receptors. This important hypothesis is certainly supported by the behavior of humpback whales.

This is far from the first time that the idea of ​​establishing discussions between men and animals using their language has been mentioned. In 2020, we mentioned in particular this study carried out by scientists from Delaware who tried to decode the sounds made by mice.

The team thus collected data on groups of four mice comprising two males and two females. They interacted for five hours and all of these exchanges were all recorded on video. The researchers then used machine learning artificial intelligence to better understand who is saying what and under what circumstances the vocalizations are emitted.

We can also cite this report published a few years ago by Amazon in collaboration with futurologist William Higham. This text bet on the fact that within a decade teams will have succeeded in putting on the market a translator allowing people to speak with animals. We’re not there yet, but things are definitely moving forward.

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