Back in 1977, a team of hip NASA scientists led by astrophysicist Carl Sagan produced two gold-plated copper records featuring a compendium of sounds, images, and illustrations from planet Earth. The 12-inch time capsules were loaded onto twin Voyager spacecraft then launched into space with the hopes that alien life would find the records and presumably play them on their galactic Technic 1200s.
After 36 years of flying through space and past the outer planets, Voyager 1 is now believed to have left the Solar System according to a bunch of really smart people at the University of Maryland. Marc Swisda, a researcher on the project, admits that it’s a “controversial view” because there’s hotly contested debates about whether it has left the solar system, reached interstellar space, or is occupying a zone between the two.
Amazingly, the scientific instrumentation on the spacecraft is still operational and in about 40,000,000 years is expected to pass with 9.3 trillion miles of the nearest star, which is probably the amount of time it will take intelligent life to reverse engineer a retro stylus to play the damn record.