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Inspired partially by this comment on one of my answers, I got to thinking on what the quickest way to communicate would be on an intergalactic scale.

Say humans have colonised the galaxy, and use wormholes for faster-than-light travel. How would they communicate with other colonies?

As far as I am aware communications can be done by either radio waves (as done with the Mars Rover for example, and most interplanetary satellites) however this has a delay into the minutes already just one planet over, and would definitely not be fast enough on such a large scale.

You could use light based data transfers (based on optical fibre for example, without the cable) however this would still be restricted to the speed of light, which at such distances is still not as quick as you might hope.

Sending raw light based or radio based data transfers through wormholes would be out of the question, as the signal would be severely scrambled and undecipherable on the other end, if it reached anywhere to begin with.

The only way I could think of would be to send physical carriers, (little spaceships carrying the data) back and forth through wormholes. However that is not ideal as it seems expensive and still not very fast.

Is there any way to achieve near instant intergalactic communications without having to rely on the cosmic variety of carrier pigeons?

Edit: As pointed out by Guy with jewels' names, this much depends on the stability of wormholes in my world. I had not given this much thought, but I always assumed at least the following:

Travel through wormholes is hard and risky. It will bash and tear away at ships, and insufficiently armoured ships will just be torn apart. This significantly reduces longevity of any ships regularly jumping through wormholes.

They would not be stable enough to run a physical cable through. This would (in my opinion) be "too easy". Also you would still need enough cable to span the entire distance.

Wormholes can't be created artificially. They exist naturally, and in large part are a deciding factor on where intergalactic travel is possible. They are however fairly abundant and cover most of the galaxy.

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Create a sender/reciever next to worm holes. They recieve data send with speed of light then record on anything and send throught wormhole. Then second unit on the other side recieve it and push information further with light.

Think about it as me using screenkeyboard on tablet to send/create/recieve message, then using internet to instatly show it on someones screen.

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  1. Even if it's not possible to create wormholes, it might be possible to affect them. Put a relay station near one end of the wormhole, that causes fluctuations in the wormhole, and then another station and the other end to measure the fluctuations. You now have an intergalactic radio of sorts.

  2. A low bandwidth solution, could be what is essentially a machine gun placed at one end, and a variation in firing rate, and you can measure the bullets as they come out the other end. This is essentially a telegraph, more or less impervious to any instability in the wormhole unless it is so bad it would be impossible for a ship to pass through as well. Improvements can of course be made depending on how rough your wormholes are. A pulsed laser beam, and you have a modern fiber connection, or you could use particles or whatever else is sturdy enough to not get broken, but small enough it's not too large a drain on resources.

Between wormholes you'r stuck with the speed of light, if wormholes are your only FTL means of travel.

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Why not postman with ship jumping through wormholes? As it's fastest mean for travel, you should use it.

Or better yet, get small wormhole in post office on one planet and second on another. Then you would only throw pen-drives full of internet through them back and forth.

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  • $\begingroup$ That would mean an intergalactic variant of the old phone switchboards. Not out of the question I suppose. $\endgroup$ – Plutian Feb 11 at 10:25
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    $\begingroup$ @Plutian it's question how stable are those wormholes. If stable enough, you could simply run cable through them. $\endgroup$ – Guy with jewels' names Feb 11 at 10:29
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    $\begingroup$ Not that stable I suppose. Running a cable through a wormhole to instantly cover lightyears of distance doesn't seem possible. I'm no expert on wormholes, but I would assume you would still need enough cable to cover the entire distance, which would be in a constant state of instability. $\endgroup$ – Plutian Feb 11 at 10:41
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    $\begingroup$ @Plutian You decide how stable are wormholes in your world after all. $\endgroup$ – Guy with jewels' names Feb 11 at 10:54
  • $\begingroup$ True, I'll add this to my question for clarity. $\endgroup$ – Plutian Feb 11 at 10:55
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I would write it in as the compression and expansion of the space-time continuum. the signal is targetted like how the new iPhones can do targeting signaling. The signal has a large amount of energy at the anterior and the posterior which compresses the space-time continuum in front of it and expands it from behind. This method of transport isn't safe for non-light particles due to temporal and spatial warping but is perfect for sending information.

No need to write in wormholes or delivery and you can even write in signal stations which basically could be a big laser cannon that can blast the information through space by compressing and expanding the space-time continuum. You could even add different rates for standard and expedited signal sending depending on how much the person wants to pay for the energy needed to manipulate space-time.

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  • $\begingroup$ So, if I'm reading correctly, you want to transmit your data as an Alcubierre drive, except just the warp bubble without a ship on the inside? That's feasible (at least, as feasible as an Alcubierre drive). The ability to create high-energy coherent FTL pulses and sending beams of them screaming across the galaxy may have consequences, though. $\endgroup$ – BBeast Jul 23 at 12:57
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First of all, both light and radio waves travel thru space at the same speed - at speed of light. They are both just electromagnetic waves of different frequencies.

Electromagnetic waves (so both light and radio) can pass thru wormholes just like objects made from matter. You don't have to record your messages on physical objects.

You may need to have a relay at both ends of the wormhole to forward the signal in, but that may not be even necessary if the wormhole is aligned with the sender and receiver.

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