1362 - "Morse Code"

This forum is for the individual discussion thread that goes with each new comic.

Moderators: Moderators General, Prelates, Magistrates

User avatar
willpellmn
Posts: 93
Joined: Wed Apr 21, 2010 11:05 am UTC

1362 - "Morse Code"

Postby willpellmn » Wed Apr 30, 2014 5:07 am UTC

Image

Title text: Oh, because Facebook has worked out SO WELL for everyone.

Hm. So this is what it feels like to post the comic thread.....

ctrl
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Apr 18, 2014 5:58 am UTC

Re: 1362 - "Morse Code"

Postby ctrl » Wed Apr 30, 2014 5:21 am UTC

LJ is quite alive, although overrun by russians now.
Oh, and they closed public SVN recently.

User avatar
rhomboidal
Posts: 801
Joined: Wed Jun 15, 2011 5:25 pm UTC
Contact:

Re: 1362 - "Morse Code"

Postby rhomboidal » Wed Apr 30, 2014 5:25 am UTC

Now I'm curious if the French ever coded all their vowel accents and other special characters. I'll bet it would've sounded beautiful...

User avatar
Djehutynakht
Posts: 1546
Joined: Thu Feb 10, 2011 1:37 am UTC

Re: 1362 - "Morse Code"

Postby Djehutynakht » Wed Apr 30, 2014 5:35 am UTC

The Wikipedia page says... yes. There are codes for things such as accented characters.

BlaiseV
Posts: 2
Joined: Wed Apr 30, 2014 8:19 am UTC

Re: 1362 - "Morse Code"

Postby BlaiseV » Wed Apr 30, 2014 8:20 am UTC

I am surprised by this : I was in the french navy in 1998 and we still used morse code (Scott, at least)

BlaiseV
Posts: 2
Joined: Wed Apr 30, 2014 8:19 am UTC

Re: 1362 - "Morse Code"

Postby BlaiseV » Wed Apr 30, 2014 8:22 am UTC

rhomboidal wrote:Now I'm curious if the French ever coded all their vowel accents and other special characters. I'll bet it would've sounded beautiful...


There is a code, but the convention is to not use them except when required for understanding, I believe

hujackus
Posts: 79
Joined: Sat Aug 22, 2009 4:30 am UTC

Re: 1362 - "Morse Code"

Postby hujackus » Wed Apr 30, 2014 8:22 am UTC

Quick, someone from the OTT do a diff on the frames to see if there is any morse mustard.

Andromeda321
Posts: 123
Joined: Fri Sep 18, 2009 11:31 pm UTC

Re: 1362 - "Morse Code"

Postby Andromeda321 » Wed Apr 30, 2014 9:35 am UTC

Lovely comic. One thing to note though, there are actually some people who use Morse code, as in Ham radio communications you can often get a signal out further than you could if it was a more complex signal. Never interested me, but ten years ago you still needed to learn it to get certain license classes (and when they got rid of that about five years ago many old guys in that hobby screamed bloody murder).

So I know a bit from that still, but honestly it's mainly just useful in trivia contests and such. :wink:

DonJaime
Posts: 23
Joined: Wed Nov 28, 2012 9:20 am UTC
Location: Brandenburg
Contact:

Re: 1362 - "Morse Code"

Postby DonJaime » Wed Apr 30, 2014 10:11 am UTC

Citation needed ... I can't find any French source for the "last cry". Did they transmit it in English, or is it just an urban legend (a.k.a. a story in The Economist)?
I don't think 'pedant' is really the right word.

User avatar
orthogon
Posts: 3104
Joined: Thu May 17, 2012 7:52 am UTC
Location: The Airy 1830 ellipsoid

Re: 1362 - "Morse Code"

Postby orthogon » Wed Apr 30, 2014 10:48 am UTC

DonJaime wrote:Citation needed ... I can't find any French source for the "last cry". Did they transmit it in English, or is it just an urban legend (a.k.a. a story in The Economist)?

Apparement....

Morse, at least as used by hams, is almost its own language, when you consider the Q-codes, other codes like HI, YL etc. There's even a tendency to co-opt words from other languages if they're shorter; I'm thinking particularly of "DE" (-.. .) used to mean "from" (..-. .-. --- --). (As illustrated by the transcript)

Edit: Furthermore, Randall translated "CQ" to "Calling all" and edited out the frequency (500kHz). Reasonable things to do but made it harder to Google.
Last edited by orthogon on Wed Apr 30, 2014 10:50 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.
xtifr wrote:... and orthogon merely sounds undecided.

User avatar
da Doctah
Posts: 997
Joined: Fri Feb 03, 2012 6:27 am UTC

Re: 1362 - "Morse Code"

Postby da Doctah » Wed Apr 30, 2014 10:50 am UTC

Andromeda321 wrote:Lovely comic. One thing to note though, there are actually some people who use Morse code, as in Ham radio communications you can often get a signal out further than you could if it was a more complex signal. Never interested me, but ten years ago you still needed to learn it to get certain license classes (and when they got rid of that about five years ago many old guys in that hobby screamed bloody murder).

So I know a bit from that still, but honestly it's mainly just useful in trivia contests and such. :wink:


It's used to transmit the call-signs for VOR stations, for anyone using them for aviation guidance.

And a guy I know showed up to a couple of recent meetings wearing an LED nametag flashing Morse for his "Hi my name is..." greeting.

eidako
Posts: 126
Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2011 10:24 am UTC

Re: 1362 - "Morse Code"

Postby eidako » Wed Apr 30, 2014 12:14 pm UTC

da Doctah wrote:VOR stations

Also racons and ramarks.

User avatar
thevicente
Posts: 119
Joined: Fri Jan 29, 2010 3:19 pm UTC

Re: 1362 - "Morse Code"

Postby thevicente » Wed Apr 30, 2014 12:54 pm UTC

On a personal note, last December I used an Arduino to drive my Christmas lights to so they blinked a message in Morse code.

Needless to say, nobody noticed.

User avatar
orthogon
Posts: 3104
Joined: Thu May 17, 2012 7:52 am UTC
Location: The Airy 1830 ellipsoid

Re: 1362 - "Morse Code"

Postby orthogon » Wed Apr 30, 2014 1:45 pm UTC

thevicente wrote:On a personal note, last December I used an Arduino to drive my Christmas lights to so they blinked a message in Morse code.

Needless to say, nobody noticed.

How do you know? :twisted:
xtifr wrote:... and orthogon merely sounds undecided.

azaethral
Posts: 31
Joined: Tue Oct 26, 2010 6:22 pm UTC

Re: 1362 - "Morse Code"

Postby azaethral » Wed Apr 30, 2014 1:47 pm UTC

thevicente wrote:On a personal note, last December I used an Arduino to drive my Christmas lights to so they blinked a message in Morse code.

Needless to say, nobody noticed.


This is part of the reason why Star Trek's "scan for all languages on all frequencies" seems so absurd.

User avatar
orthogon
Posts: 3104
Joined: Thu May 17, 2012 7:52 am UTC
Location: The Airy 1830 ellipsoid

Re: 1362 - "Morse Code"

Postby orthogon » Wed Apr 30, 2014 2:00 pm UTC

azaethral wrote:
thevicente wrote:On a personal note, last December I used an Arduino to drive my Christmas lights to so they blinked a message in Morse code.

Needless to say, nobody noticed.


This is part of the reason why Star Trek's "scan for all languages on all frequencies" seems so absurd.

We also need to bear in mind that aliens can't decode Morse. WARNING! TVTROPES! WARNING!
xtifr wrote:... and orthogon merely sounds undecided.

Vanzetti
Posts: 64
Joined: Tue Nov 18, 2008 7:31 pm UTC

Re: 1362 - "Morse Code"

Postby Vanzetti » Wed Apr 30, 2014 2:46 pm UTC

LJ is like, the largest blogging site in Russian language.

Arcadious
Posts: 2
Joined: Thu Aug 12, 2010 1:17 am UTC

Re: 1362 - "Morse Code"

Postby Arcadious » Wed Apr 30, 2014 6:59 pm UTC

Vanzetti wrote:LJ is like, the largest blogging site in Russian language.


LiveJournal, while still registered and hosted in the US, is owned by a russian SUP Media.

User avatar
da Doctah
Posts: 997
Joined: Fri Feb 03, 2012 6:27 am UTC

Re: 1362 - "Morse Code"

Postby da Doctah » Wed Apr 30, 2014 8:17 pm UTC

orthogon wrote:
thevicente wrote:On a personal note, last December I used an Arduino to drive my Christmas lights to so they blinked a message in Morse code.

Needless to say, nobody noticed.

How do you know? :twisted:


That's easy. The message was "If you can read this, come to the back door and I'll give you bacon."

hujackus
Posts: 79
Joined: Sat Aug 22, 2009 4:30 am UTC

Re: 1362 - "Morse Code"

Postby hujackus » Wed Apr 30, 2014 8:43 pm UTC

orthogon wrote:We also need to bear in mind that aliens can't decode Morse. WARNING! TVTROPES! WARNING!


Lol. A simple misunderstanding. They used morse code not for security, but because all the other lines of global communication were taken over.

MyOwnSelf
Posts: 2
Joined: Wed Mar 27, 2013 5:12 am UTC

Re: 1362 - "Morse Code"

Postby MyOwnSelf » Wed Apr 30, 2014 11:54 pm UTC

I'm really really confused at the rock in panel 3.

Mikeski
Posts: 1113
Joined: Sun Jan 13, 2008 7:24 am UTC
Location: Minnesota, USA

Re: 1362 - "Morse Code"

Postby Mikeski » Thu May 01, 2014 1:11 am UTC

MyOwnSelf wrote:I'm really really confused at the rock in panel 3.

A cloud drifted over, so the sparkly quartz lines didn't show up.

User avatar
thevicente
Posts: 119
Joined: Fri Jan 29, 2010 3:19 pm UTC

Re: 1362 - "Morse Code"

Postby thevicente » Thu May 01, 2014 3:18 am UTC

orthogon wrote:
azaethral wrote:
thevicente wrote:On a personal note, last December I used an Arduino to drive my Christmas lights to so they blinked a message in Morse code.

Needless to say, nobody noticed.


This is part of the reason why Star Trek's "scan for all languages on all frequencies" seems so absurd.

We also need to bear in mind that aliens can't decode Morse. WARNING! TVTROPES! WARNING!


Oh me yarm. Guys, I think we may have lucked out big this time. The message I blinked was "FUCK YOU ASSHOLES"

Edit: allowing for the delay for the speed of light is finite, we may still yet to be fucked.

azaethral
Posts: 31
Joined: Tue Oct 26, 2010 6:22 pm UTC

Re: 1362 - "Morse Code"

Postby azaethral » Thu May 01, 2014 4:26 am UTC

thevicente wrote:Oh me yarm. Guys, I think we may have lucked out big this time. The message I blinked was "FUCK YOU ASSHOLES"


That was going to be my question, but I left it unasked. Yet I wonder, wouldn't that have been a bit of a downer for anyone that was clever enough to decode the message? I probably would have gone with something along the lines of "this space is intentionally left blank."

webdude
Posts: 57
Joined: Tue Feb 15, 2011 6:11 am UTC

Re: 1362 - "Morse Code"

Postby webdude » Thu May 01, 2014 4:53 am UTC

Ole: Sven, Sven, Sven, Olav, Sven, Sven, Sven

Alf: Huh? What's that?

Ole: Norse code!

User avatar
Copper Bezel
Posts: 2426
Joined: Wed Oct 12, 2011 6:35 am UTC
Location: Web exclusive!

Re: 1362 - "Morse Code"

Postby Copper Bezel » Thu May 01, 2014 6:19 am UTC

azaethral wrote:
thevicente wrote:Oh me yarm. Guys, I think we may have lucked out big this time. The message I blinked was "FUCK YOU ASSHOLES"


That was going to be my question, but I left it unasked. Yet I wonder, wouldn't that have been a bit of a downer for anyone that was clever enough to decode the message? I probably would have gone with something along the lines of "this space is intentionally left blank."

I couldn't possibly resist "Remember to drink your Ovaltine."
So much depends upon a red wheel barrow (>= XXII) but it is not going to be installed.

she / her / her

User avatar
thevicente
Posts: 119
Joined: Fri Jan 29, 2010 3:19 pm UTC

Re: 1362 - "Morse Code"

Postby thevicente » Thu May 01, 2014 12:53 pm UTC

azaethral wrote:
thevicente wrote:Oh me yarm. Guys, I think we may have lucked out big this time. The message I blinked was "FUCK YOU ASSHOLES"


That was going to be my question, but I left it unasked. Yet I wonder, wouldn't that have been a bit of a downer for anyone that was clever enough to decode the message? I probably would have gone with something along the lines of "this space is intentionally left blank."


Not that I expected anyone to actually read it, but I have noisy neighbors. I'd like them to be down.

User avatar
orthogon
Posts: 3104
Joined: Thu May 17, 2012 7:52 am UTC
Location: The Airy 1830 ellipsoid

Re: 1362 - "Morse Code"

Postby orthogon » Thu May 01, 2014 1:34 pm UTC

hujackus wrote:
orthogon wrote:We also need to bear in mind that aliens can't decode Morse. WARNING! TVTROPES! WARNING!


Lol. A simple misunderstanding. They used morse code not for security, but because all the other lines of global communication were taken over.

Hmm. Perhaps. Although Morse Code isn't itself a line of communication, it's just possible that the only available lines of communication might have necessitated the use of a low bandwith coding/modulation system such as Morse/CW. Perhaps the Shortwave bands were not being jammed, or there were some old telegraph cables.

Another possibility is that Morse sent by a human operator might be quite difficult to decode automatically, owing to the inevitable imperfections in symbol durations, etc., whilst still being perfectly readable by another human. This would work a bit like an audible Captcha, especially if the operators deliberately warped their sending.

This guy only mentions the Morse thing from Independence Day in passing, but it's an interesting discussion about the plausibility of hacking the mother ship. I think he'd fit right in on our forum.
xtifr wrote:... and orthogon merely sounds undecided.

azaethral
Posts: 31
Joined: Tue Oct 26, 2010 6:22 pm UTC

Re: 1362 - "Morse Code"

Postby azaethral » Thu May 01, 2014 6:11 pm UTC

orthogon wrote:This guy only mentions the Morse thing from Independence Day in passing, but it's an interesting discussion about the plausibility of hacking the mother ship. I think he'd fit right in on our forum.


So basically one of those "wow, telnet packets are totally unencrypted end-to-end" kind of moments.

azaethral
Posts: 31
Joined: Tue Oct 26, 2010 6:22 pm UTC

Re: 1362 - "Morse Code"

Postby azaethral » Thu May 01, 2014 6:12 pm UTC

thevicente wrote:Not that I expected anyone to actually read it, but I have noisy neighbors. I'd like them to be down.


I'd suspect that it wouldn't be the neighbors that figure it out, but the space aliens. :D

User avatar
PayasYouDraw
Posts: 91
Joined: Tue Jan 07, 2014 12:57 pm UTC

Re: 1362 - "Morse Code"

Postby PayasYouDraw » Mon May 05, 2014 2:50 pm UTC

orthogon wrote:
hujackus wrote:
orthogon wrote:We also need to bear in mind that aliens can't decode Morse. WARNING! TVTROPES! WARNING!


Lol. A simple misunderstanding. They used morse code not for security, but because all the other lines of global communication were taken over.

Hmm. Perhaps. Although Morse Code isn't itself a line of communication, it's just possible that the only available lines of communication might have necessitated the use of a low bandwith coding/modulation system such as Morse/CW. Perhaps the Shortwave bands were not being jammed, or there were some old telegraph cables.

Another possibility is that Morse sent by a human operator might be quite difficult to decode automatically, owing to the inevitable imperfections in symbol durations, etc., whilst still being perfectly readable by another human. This would work a bit like an audible Captcha, especially if the operators deliberately warped their sending.

This guy only mentions the Morse thing from Independence Day in passing, but it's an interesting discussion about the plausibility of hacking the mother ship. I think he'd fit right in on our forum.


Thanks for that fascinating read.

It just happens that I finished reading Ender's Game the other day (and watched the recent movie). The aliens in both cases are telepathic, a hive mind in the case of the Buggers. For a species like that there would be no secrets, no privacy and no need for security systems or codes.

In both cases, not expecting independent thinking beings was part of the downfall.
Ah-ooooh! Rolling back the rivers in Time!

CWR
Posts: 11
Joined: Mon Oct 13, 2014 2:19 pm UTC

Re: 1362 - "Morse Code"

Postby CWR » Mon Oct 13, 2014 3:04 pm UTC

I've been reading too much manga recently, and accidentally read the panels right to left. This makes it a rather poignant, but terribly funny strip.

Was Morse code the first binary language?


Return to “Individual XKCD Comic Threads”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 84 guests