FEDCON: Whales, SF and space travel - Lecture
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FedCon 31 | Vortrag | Wale, SF und Raumfahrt | Bettina Wurche

In the 60’s, space travel developed rapidly. Would one meet aliens in space? How would one communicate with them? In search of alien communication patterns, NASA researchers on Earth looked for an intelligent species that spoke a completely different language than humans. They decided on dolphins. Intensive study of dolphins yielded fantastic insights into the behavior of these friendly marine mammals. However, they did not want to learn English, instead sex and drugs came into play.

Since that time, small and large whales have been a firm part of science fiction, whether as uplift intelligence or as an intelligent contact for extraterrestrial messages.

Meanwhile, biologists also concede that whales have a culture and languages, albeit quite different from human ones.

In addition, the CETI research project promises a quantum leap in the decoding of the sperm whale language with the support of AI – so that the idea of communication with whales from science fiction could be implemented in the real world.

Lecturer: Bettina Wurche
Duration: 60 min  -  The Lecture will be held in: german

Bettina Wurche, a graduate biologist, science journalist and science blogger, studied in Hamburg, specializing in marine biology. On sea voyages mainly in waters of the Arctic and Antarctic, the whale expert has seen over 1000 whales.

She loves to write and speak about creatures in the seas of the past, present and future. On Earth and other worlds. The exploration, sustainable use and protection of the oceans with their unique ecosystems is her special concern. Her work focuses on knowledge and science marketing, mostly writing for Spektrum or Bild der Wissenschaft u ä Medien. Born in Hamburg, she became stranded in Darmstadt, where she came into contact with space travel - as an astrobiology consultant for ESA or TerraX, among others. Another focus is on future technologies and extrapolations of possible life scenarios.

She has also been writing the successful science blog Meertext. As a self-confessed science fiction fan, she uses the imaginative and narrative strength of SF for knowledge and science communication.

Sources & additional links for Whales, SF and space travel:

Scienceblog Meertext,




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