So it's perhaps appropriate that my first public talk to mostly-adults will be about the challenges of communication. Of course, since I'm speaking officially as an officer of the USS Dauntless, at Science Fiction and Fantasy South Africa's Star Trek MiniCon, I won't be looking at conventional terrestrial human communication. Instead, I want to look at how talking to aliens might go, once we realise that they're unlikely to have much in common with us either physically or psychologically. And rather than just making shit up out of thin air, I'd like to look at what we've learned about communication with non-human animals here on Earth, as a rough, general analogue for extraterrestrial communication. This has some important limits, which I will address, but I think the basic idea should be good as a crash intro to how much we take for granted about humans-only language and interaction.
So, use your human eyes to detect the squiggly absences of EM radiation in the part of the spectrum you're accustomed to detecting visually from the monitor ahead of you, and take note of the brain-sounds these squiggles denote within your shared social context, to interpret the space-time coordinates of this talk of mine, and the MiniCon in general:
The Star Trek MiniCon (which will also feature a talk by the Dauntless's dauntless leader, Owen Swart, plus lots of other fun stuff; see links above) will be from