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"Cyberpunk worked when the Internet was in its hand-wound crystal radio phase, when you had to be a sort of hobbyist to do e-mail, and it all had a very steep learning curve. Those days are over."
- William Gibson

Artificially Pulsating Star  
  A star that has been modified to pulsate with a message to the entire universe.  

Brains flashed out his lighted message across the moving tape. The electronic genius had done its job, not only cracking the code of the pulsating star, but ferreting out the language behind it, and then translating those words into our language.

Darby's face held pride. And perhaps the hum of the machine, too, was triumphant at its nameless feat.

And at last the answer was there, before their eyes, the message from M-81.

"Warning to all galaxies. Danger awaits to strike you, as it has struck us. But before we were wiped out, we sent this message.

"We caused one star to fluctuate like a variable, by means of subatomic force-fields that serve as curtains around the star. We installed the controlling unit on a planet of that star, set to continue flashing its signals long after we were gone.

"A synchronized tape message automatically controls the unit, making the star flash bright and dim according to a universal code built from pure mathematical fundamentals. Intelligent beings with astronomical science would note the variable star that obeyed no known laws, and soon realize that it conveyed a warning. "

From The Cosmic Blinker, by Eando Binder.
Published by Science Fiction Plus in 1953
Additional resources -

Compare with the slightly earlier hyperspace beacon from The Repairman (1959) by Harry Harrison and the space beacon from Troubled Star (1952) by George O. Smith.

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  More Ideas and Technology from The Cosmic Blinker
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