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  #11  
Old 05-02-2010, 10:34 AM
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I sort of think that there are two possibilities that are the most likely. Either they would have some type of designs on our planet and they could be hostile, or they simply wouldn't care about us one way or the other. If they are that advanced that they can travel the incredible distances to get here, we are not on an equal enough footing with them for them to care about being our friends. I actually think that is the most likely, that they don't care about us at all if they exist.
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  #12  
Old 05-03-2010, 07:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain Tom Coughlin View Post
I sort of think that there are two possibilities that are the most likely. Either they would have some type of designs on our planet and they could be hostile, or they simply wouldn't care about us one way or the other. If they are that advanced that they can travel the incredible distances to get here, we are not on an equal enough footing with them for them to care about being our friends. I actually think that is the most likely, that they don't care about us at all if they exist.
That's my take on it as well. I mean what could we offer a civilization that is capable of crossing space? It'd take something in the neighborhood of 70,000 years for any craft we'd launch to reach the nearest star, that is by our means of propulsion. Other than studying us as a society if we so interested them, I'm not sure of anything we could really offer that would interest a civ capable of harnessing such power as to cross space. I mean they could be millions of years ahead of us. No telling how long lived an extraterrestrial intelligence could be or just how alien to what drives us as a society in every facet.
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  #13  
Old 05-03-2010, 09:59 PM
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Maybe the longer term implication would be more like the Trek proposition - that FC would be the key driver in changing human behaviour rather than being about the alien race that came to us.
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  #14  
Old 05-04-2010, 09:22 AM
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I call BS on the idea aliens would even consider conquering earth. It would never be worth the expenses and here is why.

If they can travel space conveniently, then that means they must have one thing: Energy! In abundance.

Considering we do not have energy in abundance yet, but have allready come a long way in developing the basics for artificial intelligence, it is safe to assume these aliens would have an easy time to build a robot laborforce which can exploit a planets ressources fully autonomously, build factories, build a fleet of transport vessels to ship the mined ressources to the homeworld and even procreate by manufacturing more robots which mine more ressources, build more factories and more transport vessels and more robots....

All these robots dont need an athmosphere to breathe, dont need water to drink or food to eat. They would not need an environment that can sustain life.

Therefore it would not matter for these aliens wether they spawn their fully autonomous robot colonies on inhabitable or uninhabitable worlds. All that matters is:

1) Are the planets ressources rich enough to make its exploitation pay off?
2) Are the obstacles to overcome small enough to make the project most profitable?

The human civilization would be summarized under the list of obstacles. To exploit an inhabited world would only boost the expenses while adding nothing to the benefits.

Ergo they would prefer to exploit uninhabited worlds because its much cheaper and much more profitable and there is an abundance of uninhabitable worlds out there.

Finally, a species developed enough to create sufficient energy for traveling the stars will very unlikely suffer from overpopulation. And even if they would be troubled by overpopulation and at the same time be sinister enough to wage war on earth and kill millions, it would be much easier to reduce the own population by waging war on their own planet then to invest all the ressources in bringing war to the other side of the galaxy.

In conclusion: No matter what economic system they have, no matter what culture or ideology, if their leadership would be evil, greedy and selfish then they would have no interest in us.

The only ET's who would even consider the trouble to contact us to be worth it would be the curious explorer kind of guys.

Last edited by Botany Bay : 05-04-2010 at 09:29 AM.
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  #15  
Old 05-04-2010, 09:45 AM
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I disagree. Columbus discovered America by chance and despite huge transport costs the continent has been conquered by Europeans.
If some aliens discovered us by chance as well and if they were roughly similar to us, there would a good chance for conquest and subjugation or annihilation. It would be a much simpler and easier job than the conquest of the New World because of to the larger (compared to Europeans vs. Native Americans) technological gap between these hypothetical aliens and us.
In short, we or our planet would be a virtually free meal for them.

The other options are ignorance, a less friendly form of experimentation with us, a more friendly form of mere observation or peaceful first contact. Peaceful on the side of the aliens ...
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  #16  
Old 05-04-2010, 10:12 AM
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Originally Posted by horatio View Post
I disagree. Columbus discovered America by chance and despite huge transport costs the continent has been conquered by Europeans.
If some aliens discovered us by chance as well and if they were roughly similar to us, there would a good chance for conquest and subjugation or annihilation. It would be a much simpler and easier job than the conquest of the New World because of to the larger (compared to Europeans vs. Native Americans) technological gap between these hypothetical aliens and us.
In short, we or our planet would be a virtually free meal for them.

The other options are ignorance, a less friendly form of experimentation with us, a more friendly form of mere observation or peaceful first contact. Peaceful on the side of the aliens ...
You dindt understand my argument. Exploiting america needed inhabitable environments to have the whole conquest even make sense because the exploitation needed human labor which needed an inhabitable environment.
These aliens would not need inhabitable environments for their robot labor force. Breathable air and drinking water would therefore not be a benefit for their enterprise - it would be irrelevant, cost neutral.

So, why to come the long way and conquer a planet with a population that resists when you could just settle on a planet a tiny distance away, like Mars or any other planet in the solar system. This way you evade all the trouble while still having ALL the benefits - the ressources.
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  #17  
Old 05-04-2010, 10:38 AM
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Sure, assuming that they don't want space, air, water, certain chemical compounds in our Earth, slaves, etc. your argument is correct.
But such assumptions are quite narrow, especially when we deal with a big unknown like a hypothetical alien civilisation. I am pretty sure that there is something useful for these guys on our planet and if they are unscrupulous and can easily zap us away to get access to it, why shouldn't they do it?
Perhaps they are folks like in Independence Day who travel to a planet, exploit and ruin it and travel to the next one, a bunch of intergalactic locusts? Perhaps they are just a bunch of sadists who like to torture other lifeforms? Perhaps they work for something like the Orion Syndicate and search interspecies sex slaves? Perhaps they look like snails and wanna kill the French for having eaten their distant relatives?

See, you can come up with the strangest motivations, but at the end of the day we simply don't know what they might want or not want from us. Anything could happen from nice to ugly.

By the way, we also use high-tech to exploit low-tech countries which also seems a bit counterintuitive on the first glance considering costs and benefits.
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  #18  
Old 05-04-2010, 10:51 AM
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It might be interesting to approach the question not from a technical but more from a social or biological point of view:
Then the question of the degree of peacefulness of a hypothetical alien civilisation can be translated into the question of whether cooperation become more important relative to competition in order to progress and endure as a civilisation.
I think it is obvious that competition is necessary in order to progress but cooperation is necessary to endure. Without cooperation between the major nuclear powers we might have very well already annihilated us.
So you need a basic level of competition to remain vital but once you reach the technological level at which self-annihilation is possible, cooperation becomes more and more relevant. Otherwise all your progress gets wasted when you blow yourself up.

So my best guess is that aliens who can travel for thousands or millions of lightyears are more peaceful than we are.
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  #19  
Old 05-04-2010, 10:51 AM
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Then by the same token Hawking's arguement is like wise narrow.

I don't see how he came create intentions out of the blue based on numbers or not.
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  #20  
Old 05-04-2010, 10:56 AM
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Well, his very existence speaks for the necessity of peaceful- and friendliness. In a more barbaric society a person with a handicap might have not been cared for wheras in a more civilised one a genius with a handicap like he can flourish and bring his species a step closer to the stars.
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