Author Topic: If aliens call, what should we do? Scientists want your opinion.  (Read 6230 times)

Doktor Howl

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Re: If aliens call, what should we do? Scientists want your opinion.
« Reply #15 on: July 08, 2019, 06:00:35 am »
One of the many things that I find fascinating about humans is the weird idea that we must be savages compared to alien civilizations, when we might very well be the most advanced species in the galaxy and that's why we haven't heard anything yet.

Yeah.  WE are the Ancient Ones, and when they dig us up, they will develop theories about what noble beings we had to have been.

I want to haunt their bathrooms forever.
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Nephew Twiddleton

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Re: If aliens call, what should we do? Scientists want your opinion.
« Reply #16 on: July 08, 2019, 06:02:33 am »
Expanding on option 3:  Twilight Zone episode-ish.  We send them cordial invitations to visit, but then it goes all The Hills Have Eyes on them when they do.  Or maybe we just invite them in and describe our history in a really positive tone, like we're all proud of it.  Send them home with a complex.

Expanding on option 3 some more (this is pretty much repost):

"Come on down 'galactic space brothers', Doktor Howl has something for ya."

 :lulz:

I seem to remember writing something here once describing humans in a way that would be terrifying to aliens, among which were things like, "they intentionally consume disinfectant for fun" and "they speak to entities that you cannot perceive" with the sense that humans are so convinced of their gods and ghosts that they *must* exist and it's the aliens' deficiency that they can't see or hear them

I just tripped across that thread.  I shall try to dig it up this week.

Nice!
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Re: If aliens call, what should we do? Scientists want your opinion.
« Reply #17 on: July 08, 2019, 06:05:01 am »
One of the many things that I find fascinating about humans is the weird idea that we must be savages compared to alien civilizations, when we might very well be the most advanced species in the galaxy and that's why we haven't heard anything yet.

Yeah.  WE are the Ancient Ones, and when they dig us up, they will develop theories about what noble beings we had to have been.

I want to haunt their bathrooms forever.

It would be a fitting tribute to our kind
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Re: If aliens call, what should we do? Scientists want your opinion.
« Reply #18 on: July 08, 2019, 02:08:11 pm »
I guess I did not express my meaning clearly.  I meant contact in the sense of them sending a message we are capable of receiving, or in visiting this planet, not in the sense of establishing some sort of meaningful two-way communication.  Any message they sent would be intended for species they believed to be their equals, and I doubt we would qualify.

I have personally made contact with ants, and I still considered them to be ants afterward.  I do not think this contact was a positive experience from the ants point-of-view (if they can be said to have such a thing).

Why do you doubt that we would qualify? If we were capable of receiving, deciphering, and responding to their message, not only are we roughly their technological equals, but they're also thinking like us.

It's the "deciphering" and "responding" parts that I have doubts about.  In Stanislaw Lem's "His Master's Voice", humans receive a message of alien origin.  However, they are unable to make much sense of it; the protagonist hypothesizes that the message was intended for a civilization at a much higher level of development, and that it was intentionally encoded such that unintended recipients would be unable to use the information in the message to harm themselves.

Responding to it was out of the question; we'd need to harness the entire power output of a star to do it.
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Re: If aliens call, what should we do? Scientists want your opinion.
« Reply #19 on: July 08, 2019, 02:17:12 pm »
One of the many things that I find fascinating about humans is the weird idea that we must be savages compared to alien civilizations, when we might very well be the most advanced species in the galaxy and that's why we haven't heard anything yet.

If we buy the argument made by that copernican method guy in the next thread over, half the alien civilizations should be ahead of us, and the other half behind.

But matters of probability aside, fantasizing about aliens that are more advanced than us is simply more interesting than the alternative.  We've already met aliens that were less advanced than us.  We generally kill a bunch of them, take their stuff, colonize their land, and then civilize them.  Been there, done that.
"When I say 'engineering', I have unreasonable expectations.  It must - as you know - look good in PADS AND give you plenty of help ducking and weaving in meetings.  But it must also, at some distant point in time, function.  If it does not, then you must accept that you are not in fact an engineer but instead an MBA.  Hang your head in SHAME, sinner!"

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Re: If aliens call, what should we do? Scientists want your opinion.
« Reply #20 on: July 08, 2019, 02:35:22 pm »
One of the many things that I find fascinating about humans is the weird idea that we must be savages compared to alien civilizations, when we might very well be the most advanced species in the galaxy and that's why we haven't heard anything yet.

If we buy the argument made by that copernican method guy in the next thread over, half the alien civilizations should be ahead of us, and the other half behind.

But matters of probability aside, fantasizing about aliens that are more advanced than us is simply more interesting than the alternative.  We've already met aliens that were less advanced than us.  We generally kill a bunch of them, take their stuff, colonize their land, and then civilize them.  Been there, done that.
That depends on the scale difference. Nowadays we tend to protect the miniscule amount of space tribes still inhabit. Aliens who could colonize us have probably no interest to.
Very painful to get rid of, why even bother.

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Re: If aliens call, what should we do? Scientists want your opinion.
« Reply #21 on: July 08, 2019, 04:30:39 pm »
One of the many things that I find fascinating about humans is the weird idea that we must be savages compared to alien civilizations, when we might very well be the most advanced species in the galaxy and that's why we haven't heard anything yet.

If we buy the argument made by that copernican method guy in the next thread over, half the alien civilizations should be ahead of us, and the other half behind.

But matters of probability aside, fantasizing about aliens that are more advanced than us is simply more interesting than the alternative.  We've already met aliens that were less advanced than us.  We generally kill a bunch of them, take their stuff, colonize their land, and then civilize them.  Been there, done that.
That depends on the scale difference. Nowadays we tend to protect the miniscule amount of space tribes still inhabit. Aliens who could colonize us have probably no interest to.

They're probably unable to do so, since they didn't evolve here. Microbes are wrong, food web is wrong, gravity is almost certainly wrong, as is atmospheric composition and pressure, unites they have technologies to mitigate pretty much everything
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Re: If aliens call, what should we do? Scientists want your opinion.
« Reply #22 on: July 08, 2019, 04:33:30 pm »
I guess I did not express my meaning clearly.  I meant contact in the sense of them sending a message we are capable of receiving, or in visiting this planet, not in the sense of establishing some sort of meaningful two-way communication.  Any message they sent would be intended for species they believed to be their equals, and I doubt we would qualify.

I have personally made contact with ants, and I still considered them to be ants afterward.  I do not think this contact was a positive experience from the ants point-of-view (if they can be said to have such a thing).

Why do you doubt that we would qualify? If we were capable of receiving, deciphering, and responding to their message, not only are we roughly their technological equals, but they're also thinking like us.

It's the "deciphering" and "responding" parts that I have doubts about.  In Stanislaw Lem's "His Master's Voice", humans receive a message of alien origin.  However, they are unable to make much sense of it; the protagonist hypothesizes that the message was intended for a civilization at a much higher level of development, and that it was intentionally encoded such that unintended recipients would be unable to use the information in the message to harm themselves.

Responding to it was out of the question; we'd need to harness the entire power output of a star to do it.

I have my doubts that two alien civilizations would be able to decipher each other's signals even if they are of roughly equal technological development, and That's because outside of science and math, they're going to have no common frame of reference. It's like that thing where if a lion could speak you still wouldn't understand it
« Last Edit: July 08, 2019, 04:36:19 pm by Nephew Twiddleton »
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Re: If aliens call, what should we do? Scientists want your opinion.
« Reply #23 on: July 08, 2019, 04:37:12 pm »
Nevertheless, if an alien civilization contacts us, why not give it a go?
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Doktor Howl

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Re: If aliens call, what should we do? Scientists want your opinion.
« Reply #24 on: July 10, 2019, 12:16:50 am »
Nevertheless, if an alien civilization contacts us, why not give it a go?

Because I hate aliens.  :crankey:
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Re: If aliens call, what should we do? Scientists want your opinion.
« Reply #25 on: July 10, 2019, 12:19:41 am »
Nevertheless, if an alien civilization contacts us, why not give it a go?

Seriously, have you not seen any of those movies?!
« Last Edit: July 10, 2019, 12:36:35 am by Brother Mythos »

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Re: If aliens call, what should we do? Scientists want your opinion.
« Reply #26 on: July 10, 2019, 01:42:26 am »
Nevertheless, if an alien civilization contacts us, why not give it a go?

This could lead to excellence
Or serious injury
Only one way to know
Go, go, go


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Re: If aliens call, what should we do? Scientists want your opinion.
« Reply #27 on: July 10, 2019, 03:36:52 am »
Nevertheless, if an alien civilization contacts us, why not give it a go?

Seriously, have you not seen any of those movies?!

Yes, and they're almost all universally shite on basic science. You going to believe some capitalist dog from Los Angeles who doesn't understand basic science selling you stupid ideas and probably is just fucking rebooting something from 40 years ago to void actually being creative? Movies are fun to watch, but fuck them for actual real life applications.

Again: aliens who come here are probably committing suicide by horrible, tortuous means. What's the harm in a phone call?
« Last Edit: July 10, 2019, 03:38:34 am by Nephew Twiddleton »
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Re: If aliens call, what should we do? Scientists want your opinion.
« Reply #28 on: July 10, 2019, 03:37:32 am »
Nevertheless, if an alien civilization contacts us, why not give it a go?

Because I hate aliens.  :crankey:

This at least it's a proper answer
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Re: If aliens call, what should we do? Scientists want your opinion.
« Reply #29 on: July 10, 2019, 04:10:45 am »
Again: aliens who come here are probably committing suicide by horrible, tortuous means. What's the harm in a phone call?

I always thought the conclusion of "War of the Worlds" was nonsense.  How the hell could the aliens be advanced enough to build interplanetary spaceships and beam weaponry, but be ignorant of pathogens?

We barely had the technology to make it to the moon, but we still knew enough to be worried about the unknown, and put the first astronauts in quarantine when they got back.
"When I say 'engineering', I have unreasonable expectations.  It must - as you know - look good in PADS AND give you plenty of help ducking and weaving in meetings.  But it must also, at some distant point in time, function.  If it does not, then you must accept that you are not in fact an engineer but instead an MBA.  Hang your head in SHAME, sinner!"