Last month I posted about the NASA probes Pioneer 10 and 11 and Voyager 1 and 2 as the first (known) elements of human archaeology to exit the solar system and enter interstellar space, wondering (semi-seriously) how the rest of the galaxy would react to them.
Well of course, thinking about it (silly me) and, as many people have since pointed out (sometimes politely), we DO know what happens next; indeed a whole variety of different scenarios have presented themselves to us and these are worth (briefly) outlining here, as a form of archaeo-interpretation, just in case the probes are found and the messages from Homo sapiens that are bolted to them are ever read. In short, we need to be prepared.
An alien race (of blue energy) will discover the location of Earth thanks to the instructions placed on Voyager 2 and will decide to visit. Earth military will shoot down the alien scout ship but the pilot will evade capture by cloning himself a new body from a lock of hair taken from a recently deceased painter / decorator (much to the surprise of his widow). A series of adventures will undoubtedly follow, at the end of which the Alien/Starman/Clone will depart Earth and his new/old/not-cloned wife (who by then is carrying their alien/clone/blueenergyball-hybrid child).
An alien race of living machines will find Voyager 6 (presumably launched in secrecy at some point after Voyagers 1 and 2), drifting alone and damaged in deep space. They will repair and upgrade it, in the process helping it achieve a degree of consciousness, at which point it the probe will start calling itself 'V'Ger'.
An alien race (the Sidons), annoyed that the propulsion system of Voyager 1 (the "Queller drive") has wiped out millions of their race in an interstellar accident, will track down the last remnants of humanity (by now living on a space station on the moon which is travelling through deep space following the destruction of Earth). People will talk a lot. There will be an explosion and all the Sidons will die.
An alien race of robotic/transformingthingamajigs (the Transformers), divided into two main factions (the Maximals, descended from the Autobots, and the Predacons, descended from the Decepticons) will discover the location of Earth thanks to the instructions placed on one of the Voyager probes. Because Earth is rich in Energon, apparently (who knew?), which the transformers need for fuel, they will travel back through a tear in the space/time continuum created by a transwarp device in an attempt to plunder the planet. Robotic thingys will shout (a lot), change into all manner of insects and animals and there will be explosions. Something will happen (very slowly).
An alien race (the Psychlos) will discover the location of Earth thanks to the instructions placed on one of the Voyager probes. They will invade. Everybody will frown a lot and there will be some modest explosions. A thousand years later some humans will do something and the frowning aliens will stop breathing....or something. Everyone will be happy.
An alien race (unnamed) will discover the location of Earth thanks to the instructions placed on one of the Voyager probes. They will, for no apparent reason, crash three asteroid-like thingys into Earth. Newsreaders in the USA will get very upset.
Earth will eventually destroy the alien mothership. Newsreaders in the USA will be very happy.
An alien race (unnamed) will discover the location of Earth thanks to the instructions placed on one of the Voyager probes. Unknown to them, however, information on the disc will have been altered by two laboratory mice by the names of 'Pinky' and 'The Brain' (one is a genius, the other insane) in order that they appear to be the leaders of Earth and....