The addressees of MOM are clearly identified: A society which has reached at least a technologically industrialized level similar to our own.
Any society, whose educational foundation is based upon the principle of cause and effect, will be interested in what happened before them. This principle implies time, no matter if a cause occurred a millisecond or millennia before the effect.
The future finders can be our own offspring – or the descendants of raccoons.
Let’s assume that there was a technical society of the dinosaurs. This is not an impossible thought, considering it is very unlikely to find traces after 66 million years. If this dino-civilization would have left something similar as MOM, it would be sensational – we would definitely be interested within this.
MOM collaborates with initiatives, which will place information about humanity at specific spots within our solar system, e.g. at Lagrange-points.
Extraterrestrial civilizations, who visit the solar system, may be able to uncover artificial objects within these regions after long intervals of time.
Will different societies understand MOM at all?
We can observe some species on our planet which would have either a physical or mental capacity to develop into forms of technical societies. Some of them had millions of years more time than the human species to do so.
What are the characteristics which facilitate a species to evolve into a technical society? The answers to this question can probably found by asking, which are the missing characteristics, which preventedspecific species to step to a more advanced stage? Why didn´t crows, ravens, dolphins, lizards, octopuses or insects develop into technical societies? Some of them had far more time than primates, e.g. ants exist in their present shape since 100 million years, this is 40 times longer as we needed to develop ourselves from the first tool-making hominids into our present stage.
Beside physical and mental characteristics (a brain with sufficient capacity and something like hands), a couple of abstract features or behavioral patterns seem to be essential for the transition into a technical, industrialized society. These patterns are: curiosity, ability to communicate, and altruism.
While chipping a stone to form a tool it happens that a spark lights dry leaves. The individual who caused it must not run away from fear but needs to be curious for this incident.
Say, the comprehension what caused the fire and the ability for a repetition is given, this individual must be altruistic enough to share this newly learned skill with others. Other individuals who witnessed this event need to be curious too and in some way be able to communicate the desire for inclusion into this new knowledge.
Furthermore, three general features of a planet are crucial to allow a life-form with social structures turn into a technically-advanced society:
A planet with plate tectonics forms continents or at least volcanic islands. A species living on solid land can develop artificial materials (such as ceramics or metals) more easily than a species living under water on an ocean-covered planet.
2 The composition of the atmosphere must allow chemical reactions to yield energy. The high portion of oxygen, which was triggered by micro-organisms and which is maintained by plants, facilitates fire (or redox-reactions in general), which is necessary to process metal ore.
3 The stars need to be visible.
On a planet with a gapless cloud layer navigation would be very hard. Other senses such as magnetoreception could partially compensate this.
Seeing the stars would not only enable easy and precise orientation but also foster higher mathematics.
The early astronomic observatories and calendars (Stonehenge, Zorats Karer,…. ) were based upon the cyclical run of the sky’s objects.
For a society living on a permanently overcast planet it’s not easy to recognize the spherical shape of the planet.
The ancient Greeks already calculated the Earth’s diameter by the diverging lengths of shadows of obelisks at different latitudes.
There are planets with different chemical properties. Life as we know it is based on fluid water and hydrocarbons, but there are other theoretical possibilities for the emerging of life (in the sense of self-reproducing molecules, which practise metabolism, thus consume energy). These life-forms are subject to similar constraints as mentioned above.
These parameters (curiosity, communication, altruism) and the planetary characteristics (continents, atmosphere which enables energy production, visible stars) may yield technical societies which will be in its understanding of the universe not substantially distinct from us.
During their evolution, interstellar civilizations may have speculatively passed through similar stages of development as the one we presently live in and, therefore, may be capable of accessing or at least recognizing elements of our knowledge.
We may assume that MOM can in some way be comprehended by extraterrestrial societies.
But – as stated elsewhere – maybe already our grandchildren will make use of MOM, in the instance that no blogs from the early 21st century survive.