Who created the 2009 'HELLO FROM EARTH' project to beam messages into outer space?
Wilson da Silva is an Australian feature writer, science journalist, editor and documentary filmmaker who has worked in magazines, newswires, newspapers, television and online. He is a co-founder and the long-serving former editor of 'Cosmos', Australia's No. 1 science magazine in print and digital.
He is the creator of 'HELLO FROM EARTH', a web-based initiative to send messages from the public, each just 160 characters in length, to 'Gliese 581d', the nearest Earth-like planet outside the Solar System.
Created as a science communication exercise for 2009 National Science Week in Australia, it collected nearly 26,000 messages that were beamed by NASA's Canberra Deep Space Communication Complex on 28 August 2009.
Da Silva is the winner of 32 awards, including 'Editor of the Year' (twice – in 2005 and 2006, 'Publishers Australia Excellence Awards'), the 1997 'Human Rights Award for Print Journalism' and the 1996 'Michael Daley Award for Science Journalism'. He has also written and produced two prize-winning documentaries, including 'The Diplomat', the film that depicted Nobel Peace laureate José Ramos-Horta and his eventually successful struggle to win independence for East Timor. The film won da Silva and fellow producer Sally Browning the 2000 'Australian Film Institute Award for Best Documentary'.