View Poll Results: Will aliens be hostile or friendly

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  • Friendly

    42 52.50%
  • Hostile

    25 31.25%
  • We are alone

    13 16.25%
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Thread: Will aliens be friendly or hostile?

  1. #281
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    Re: Will aliens be friendly or hostile?

    I just ask a few simple questions, myself.

    The first of such is "what can a being do on its own and what requires cooperation with fellow beings?". Does the creation of interstellar spaceships indicate a being more or less prone to cooperation than a less advanced species? If the being in question has developed vast and sometimes terrible technologies, what sort of nature is being revealed by the fact it is traversing the enormous distances between stars rather than blowing up its fellow beings?

    If such an alien were to show up one day, the ONLY valid approach would be to treat it as friendly. If it wasn't friendly, game over for us. If it was friendly and our own xenophobia led to us being hostile, though, our loss. I dunno. I see it a bit like Pascals wager in regards to the existance of God in terms of the logic involved.
    "you're better off on Stormfront discussing how evil brown men are taking innocent white flowers." Infinite Chaos

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    Re: Will aliens be friendly or hostile?

    Quote Originally Posted by independent_thinker2002 View Post
    Do you have any good links?
    I don't mark such essays. You might find something pertinint at Astrobiology Magazine

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  3. #283
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    Re: Will aliens be friendly or hostile?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tashah View Post
    I would suggest looking into the alien-contact psychological essays of exobiology.
    Tashah, the most educated sage of exobiology is still speculating about something he's never seen. Educated speculation, perhaps, but speculation nonetheless.

    The whole planet-search, which is a recent phenomenon, has blown many theories about how solar systems form right out of the cosmos. Astrophysicists were stunned to find giant Jovian planets orbiting their stars at radii less than Mercury's orbit; it was considered impossible. Other results have been totally opposite what we expected...many systems do not seem to follow the same "rules" as ours in terms of orbits, planet types, etc.

    See, we were speculating about other solar systems, but until the past 15 years we'd never seen one. A lot of our speculation turned out flat wrong.

    I think that with aliens it may well be the same. Speculation can be useful, as it can propose many thought-models, some of which might be in the ballpark...but it isn't knowing.

    Two centuries ago, the idea that we would be able not only to split the atom, but to harness its power within a concrete building and produce energy with it, was virtually inconcievable to the educated public. Men flying by mechanical means was a belly-laugh to most people. We had not yet harnessed electricity. To a person of the year 1809, the technologies we take for granted today would seem almost miraculous.

    Yet, our society and our human nature has not changed nearly as dramatically. We still make war; some societies still enslave; individuals still commit crimes against others. A person of 1809 would certainly be surprised at some aspect of our social order, but would soon recognize that human nature itself has not significantly changed.

    In theory, aliens might have a civilization a billion years old; those who believe this tend to all but deify aliens and assume they are beyond our comprehension but benevolent. However, some scientists doubt that any civilization can endure so long without collapsing back into barbarism, probably several times in cycles of rising and falling. Our own planet has seen this several times, the most dramatic example being Rome and the Dark Ages that followed its collapse.

    If we can go from horse-and-buggy to nuclear power and space shuttles in 200 years, can we be so certain that another 200 years will not see us developing a means of crossing the stars? Right now most existing theories say no...but 200 years ago there was no theory of nuclear power either. Yet in 200 years, do you think human nature will change significantly? I don't. There's little evidence of it.

    Aliens could be no more socially or psychologically advanced than we are, and only moderately higher in technology. The assumption that they would be peaceful, benevolent demi-gods is merely speculation with no basis in fact. It isn't even certain that their homewold would have a singular government, or that they would have ceased warring on each other.

    Interstellar travel could be only one Einsteinian-level "Eureka!" away. Or it might be forever impractical...we don't know.

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  4. #284
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    Re: Will aliens be friendly or hostile?

    Quote Originally Posted by Goshin View Post
    Tashah, the most educated sage of exobiology is still speculating about something he's never seen. Educated speculation, perhaps, but speculation nonetheless.

    The whole planet-search, which is a recent phenomenon, has blown many theories about how solar systems form right out of the cosmos. Astrophysicists were stunned to find giant Jovian planets orbiting their stars at radii less than Mercury's orbit; it was considered impossible. Other results have been totally opposite what we expected...many systems do not seem to follow the same "rules" as ours in terms of orbits, planet types, etc.

    See, we were speculating about other solar systems, but until the past 15 years we'd never seen one. A lot of our speculation turned out flat wrong.

    I think that with aliens it may well be the same. Speculation can be useful, as it can propose many thought-models, some of which might be in the ballpark...but it isn't knowing.

    Two centuries ago, the idea that we would be able not only to split the atom, but to harness its power within a concrete building and produce energy with it, was virtually inconcievable to the educated public. Men flying by mechanical means was a belly-laugh to most people. We had not yet harnessed electricity. To a person of the year 1809, the technologies we take for granted today would seem almost miraculous.

    Yet, our society and our human nature has not changed nearly as dramatically. We still make war; some societies still enslave; individuals still commit crimes against others. A person of 1809 would certainly be surprised at some aspect of our social order, but would soon recognize that human nature itself has not significantly changed.

    In theory, aliens might have a civilization a billion years old; those who believe this tend to all but deify aliens and assume they are beyond our comprehension but benevolent. However, some scientists doubt that any civilization can endure so long without collapsing back into barbarism, probably several times in cycles of rising and falling. Our own planet has seen this several times, the most dramatic example being Rome and the Dark Ages that followed its collapse.

    If we can go from horse-and-buggy to nuclear power and space shuttles in 200 years, can we be so certain that another 200 years will not see us developing a means of crossing the stars? Right now most existing theories say no...but 200 years ago there was no theory of nuclear power either. Yet in 200 years, do you think human nature will change significantly? I don't. There's little evidence of it.

    Aliens could be no more socially or psychologically advanced than we are, and only moderately higher in technology. The assumption that they would be peaceful, benevolent demi-gods is merely speculation with no basis in fact. It isn't even certain that their homewold would have a singular government, or that they would have ceased warring on each other.

    Interstellar travel could be only one Einsteinian-level "Eureka!" away. Or it might be forever impractical...we don't know.
    Now I remember why this is always a bad idea. Lectures. Ugh. The ubiquitous pebble in my shoe.

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  5. #285
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    Re: Will aliens be friendly or hostile?

    I thought about this a bit more and, sci-fi fantasy aside, the most likely "visitation" would be a space probe, not a physical being. It could be a simple fly-by probe or something like our Mars lander.

    Thinking really far out there, and since we have yet to explain the beginning of life here, who's to say some "seed pod" didn't land here with a few single-cell organisms billions of years ago?

    Our "God" may some ancient alien's 5th grade science fair project.

  6. #286
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    Re: Will aliens be friendly or hostile?

    Quote Originally Posted by Joe1991 View Post
    Thinking really far out there, and since we have yet to explain the beginning of life here, who's to say some "seed pod" didn't land here with a few single-cell organisms billions of years ago? Our "God" may some ancient alien's 5th grade science fair project.
    This concept is known as Panspermia.

    Ooops, I did it again.

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    Re: Will aliens be friendly or hostile?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tashah View Post
    This concept is known as Panspermia.

    Ooops, I did it again.
    Thanks, I knew it wasn't an original thought, I've read different twists on it, didn't know it had it's own word though.

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    Re: Will aliens be friendly or hostile?

    It is my personal belief that it is as simple as supply and demand for resources to determine how friendly they will be.

    Chances are they would be sending out scouts searching for more resources and once they find them they will come in great masses

    we are nothing but a bunch of cows....
    Last edited by creativedreams; 06-28-09 at 03:50 PM.

  9. #289
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    Re: Will aliens be friendly or hostile?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tashah View Post
    Now I remember why this is always a bad idea. Lectures. Ugh. The ubiquitous pebble in my shoe.
    Sorry, didn't mean to come across like that.


    Some things are hard to say without getting a bit wordy.

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    Re: Will aliens be friendly or hostile?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gardener View Post
    I just ask a few simple questions, myself.

    The first of such is "what can a being do on its own and what requires cooperation with fellow beings?". Does the creation of interstellar spaceships indicate a being more or less prone to cooperation than a less advanced species? If the being in question has developed vast and sometimes terrible technologies, what sort of nature is being revealed by the fact it is traversing the enormous distances between stars rather than blowing up its fellow beings?

    If such an alien were to show up one day, the ONLY valid approach would be to treat it as friendly. If it wasn't friendly, game over for us. If it was friendly and our own xenophobia led to us being hostile, though, our loss. I dunno. I see it a bit like Pascals wager in regards to the existance of God in terms of the logic involved.
    You should read Footfall by Niven and Pournelle.

    Or Protector, by Niven.

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