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SuperKevin
2009-Oct-06, 05:45 AM
Couldn't really decide where to post this, not really a conspiracy theory or an average space/astronomy question:

Suppose an alien species is aware that we are on this planet with the capability of visiting us and saying hello. For what reason's wouldn't they have made official contact so far?

All opinions welcome, thanks.

tnjrp
2009-Oct-06, 06:30 AM
Most obvious categories that come to mind are
aliens have an interest in us but do not want us to be aware of their presence (as of yet, anyway)
aliens are not contacting us because they are by nature xenophobic, scared of something else or not curious
aliens are not interested in us because they are so much further ahead of us that "smarters man on Earth means no more to them than the smartest termite"
aliens would like to contact us but can't
Tho I'm sure explanation can be contrived which do not fall into these umbrella categories.

Neverfly
2009-Oct-06, 06:45 AM
Aliens might be keen on avoiding us if they look like this (http://jeffsucksatlife.files.wordpress.com/2009/01/twinkiethekid1.jpg).

Jetlack
2009-Oct-06, 08:05 AM
Couldn't really decide where to post this, not really a conspiracy theory or an average space/astronomy question:

Suppose an alien species is aware that we are on this planet with the capability of visiting us and saying hello. For what reason's wouldn't they have made official contact so far?

All opinions welcome, thanks.

Maybe because we wont like their types around here?

Jens
2009-Oct-06, 08:30 AM
Maybe they don't think we wash our hands enough, and are afraid we might try to shake hands with them. Or that we might cough and give them some (for them) terrible germs. Or maybe they don't like the way we smell. :)

Neverfly
2009-Oct-06, 08:57 AM
If an alien life was considering whether or not to contact us, I can speculate a few base assumptions:
-They would likely be more technologically advanced than us.
-They would likely have been observing us; Although this is tricky.
-Assume a bit of convergent evolution; that they think in similar fashion as we do.

The first thing I think an alien species might take note of is the most dangerous and obvious aspect of Humanity: Superstition.
Another reason would be our habit of exploitation. Causing destruction or damage in our short term self interest.

I think an alien observer would not necessarily fear that we would hate it or try to harm it. Even though there would be elements of that in our society, they would likely realize that our over-all attitude (at first) would be a welcoming one.

But taking the two examples I posted above, an alien might feel drawn to teach us ways of using and renewing resources without exploitation.
Whereas superstition is just a flat problem. That is the one clincher that would represent humanity's threat as a whole.

slang
2009-Oct-06, 09:49 AM
I think an alien observer would not necessarily fear that we would hate it or try to harm it. Even though there would be elements of that in our society, they would likely realize that our over-all attitude (at first) would be a welcoming one.

So it could be a matter of what they decode first: Alf or Alien.

uncommonsense
2009-Oct-06, 10:07 AM
Oh lamb,

NOE (not of earth) is looking down upon us in ways we werent meant to understand. NOE moves in ways we can't know, but trust, as many have sworn to witness such presence and have been awed beyond words.

Sometimes we ponder in silence to ourselves: "Oh NOE, why not show thyself to me, so as I may believe and shed any doubt, and simplify my confusions as to my ultimate fear -- of the unknown, beyond this life on earth"

NOE is testing our faith. Belive. What have you got to loose?

Neverfly
2009-Oct-06, 10:23 AM
So it could be a matter of what they decode first: Alf or Alien.
Or worst of all: Star Trek.





NOE is testing our faith. Belive. What have you got to loose?

Lose.
It's LOSE.
Loose is a knot that ain't been tied right.

worldcruiser
2009-Oct-06, 10:27 AM
Oh lamb,

NOE (not of earth) is looking down upon us in ways we werent meant to understand. NOE moves in ways we can't know, but trust, as many have sworn to witness such presence and have been awed beyond words.

Sometimes we ponder in silence to ourselves: "Oh NOE, why not show thyself to me, so as I may believe and shed any doubt, and simplify my confusions as to my ultimate fear -- of the unknown, beyond this life on earth"

NOE is testing our faith. Belive. What have you got to loose?

If I believe unsupported fantasies, perhaps I would risk my sanity.

Nick Theodorakis
2009-Oct-06, 12:42 PM
They're ignoring us because we are made out of meat (http://www.terrybisson.com/page6/page6.html).

Nick

Buttercup
2009-Oct-06, 12:44 PM
Because they read our news headlines and are scared to death of us?

Hlafordlaes
2009-Oct-06, 01:37 PM
Because they are busy mining resources in the solar system and don't want to pay taxes.

stutefish
2009-Oct-06, 02:17 PM
Because.

captain swoop
2009-Oct-06, 03:19 PM
If they are Alien how would we recognise the communication?
It's always assumed they would communicate in a way we would recognise, something 'human centric'

'So long and thanks for all the Fish' springs to mind.

mugaliens
2009-Oct-07, 01:56 AM
If they are Alien how would we recognise the communication?

Well, it won't have anything to do with meat.

WayneFrancis
2009-Oct-07, 02:31 AM
I'd say they wouldn't be all that interested in use. Odds are if they could get here to observe us they would have been here long ago and being so far advanced they would have figured out the genetic code long ago. The fact that just recently we have slightly increased our technology doesn't surprise them and because our technology is so primitive it doesn't interest them.

stutefish
2009-Oct-07, 02:40 AM
No, seriously: Because. Just because.

Without having some idea of their characteristics, any speculation as to their motives is meaningless.

aastrotech
2009-Oct-07, 03:08 AM
Maybe because we're a crop they planted and cultivate but are not ripe and ready for harvest yet.

aastrotech
2009-Oct-07, 03:13 AM
Without having some idea of their characteristics

You poor fellow. You have no ideas? Well let me give you a couple. They may be more advanced. They may be equally advanced. They may be only a little more advanced.

Anybody else have any more ideas you want to give this poor guy?

DrWho
2009-Oct-07, 03:22 AM
You poor fellow. You have no ideas? Well let me give you a couple. They may be more advanced. They may be equally advanced. They may be only a little more advanced.

Anybody else have any more ideas you want to give this poor guy?
More advanced is meaningless.

jamesmatthews
2009-Oct-07, 05:01 AM
Overt contact would be akin to a biologist sneezing on her petri dish culture - the sample would be irrevocably altered/destroyed.

One must first define one's terms. Us/them implies a distinction which may be illusory.

Jens
2009-Oct-07, 05:13 AM
More advanced is meaningless.

How do you define meaningless? :)

DrWho
2009-Oct-07, 05:57 AM
How do you define meaningless? :)
In the usual way.

clint
2009-Oct-07, 10:04 AM
It's actually us who ignored them (http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.php?az=view_all&address=283x815)

jokergirl
2009-Oct-07, 01:29 PM
Maybe they just plain old Don't Care, and Earth isn't nearly interesting/rich enough for them to start caring.

;)

Hlafordlaes
2009-Oct-07, 01:36 PM
Sure hope they show up soon, been waiting a long time for exolinguistic data. Gonna be hard with those folk from the Crab Nebula, tho, what with all that mouth clicking and sideways innuendo.

eric_marsh
2009-Oct-07, 01:49 PM
Because they are studying us and the first responsibility of any researcher is to not alter the experiment.

Dgennero
2009-Oct-07, 01:49 PM
They might have the equivalent of a prime directive.
Maybe they came to the conclusion that contact with a selfish, primitive, emotionally unstable species like us will lead to one of three possible, undesirable outcomes:
1.) We will suffer an incorrigible loss of self-esteem and wither away
2.) Some of us will create a fanatical alien-cult, misunderstanding anything they might teach us
3.) We will try to exploit their technology and behave like a 5 y/o with a loaded gun.

Probably all of the above.

rommel543
2009-Oct-07, 05:26 PM
Well lets look at this logically. If we were the ones who were out there looking around and came across Earth. First thing you would notice is the signal transmissions emanating from the planet. A good investigative protocol would be to sit a a safe distance and monitor those transmissions. HAVE YOU SEEN THE CRAP ON TV LATELY. They would look at the reality TV and sit-coms and think that there was no intelligent species here. They could have a craft parked out beyond the orbit of Jupiter, watching Survivor and Days of Our Lives, and we would never know that they were there. They could think that the crap we're spewing out is intelligent, true live transmissions. Combine that with the wrestling, action movies, etc. and you can get a pretty interesting picture of the human race.

MAPNUT
2009-Oct-07, 06:11 PM
Let's assume they're studying the Earth as an ecosystem. As do we. How many of the lower species on Earth have we tried to contact?

Scientifically, that is. People talking to their pets don't count.

Slightly related old topic: http://www.bautforum.com/off-topic-babbling/44030-what-heck.html

Trebuchet
2009-Oct-07, 06:41 PM
Somehow an old Far Side cartoon involving aliens shaped like fire hydrants, and a dog, has come into my head.

captain swoop
2009-Oct-07, 06:45 PM
Well lets look at this logically. If we were the ones who were out there looking around and came across Earth. First thing you would notice is the signal transmissions emanating from the planet. A good investigative protocol would be to sit a a safe distance and monitor those transmissions. HAVE YOU SEEN THE CRAP ON TV LATELY. They would look at the reality TV and sit-coms and think that there was no intelligent species here. They could have a craft parked out beyond the orbit of Jupiter, watching Survivor and Days of Our Lives, and we would never know that they were there. They could think that the crap we're spewing out is intelligent, true live transmissions. Combine that with the wrestling, action movies, etc. and you can get a pretty interesting picture of the human race.

Which assumes they could get anything meaningful from picking up random TV signals. They won't have TV sets to watch the shows on.

All the rsponses so far (prime directives, studying us etc assumes they are basicaly human in nature. Remember we are talking about Aliens.
Rimmer was on the right track when he interpreted a broken shin as a 'Hello' message from an Alien.

Hlafordlaes
2009-Oct-07, 07:22 PM
Let's assume they're studying the Earth as an ecosystem. As do we. How many of the lower species on Earth have we tried to contact?

Scientifically, that is. People talking to their pets don't count.

Slightly related old topic: http://www.bautforum.com/off-topic-babbling/44030-what-heck.html

That actually made me think of a reason for them to make contact, or at least experiment with individuals (not that I am proposing anything ATM). We humans test and train a number of animal species for language use and communication via symbols.

Granted, no reason to think an alien species uses spoken communication; it might be via changes in coloring, movement (like sign language), or chemical (like rudimentary plant signaling (not language, just example of technique)). Whatever the method, I should think it would be interesting to a purported alien scientist to gauge basic human capacities in a non-innate method for us.

Arnold Layne
2009-Oct-07, 11:53 PM
Well lets look at this logically. If we were the ones who were out there looking around and came across Earth. First thing you would notice is the signal transmissions emanating from the planet. A good investigative protocol would be to sit a a safe distance and monitor those transmissions. HAVE YOU SEEN THE CRAP ON TV LATELY. They would look at the reality TV and sit-coms and think that there was no intelligent species here. They could have a craft parked out beyond the orbit of Jupiter, watching Survivor and Days of Our Lives, and we would never know that they were there. They could think that the crap we're spewing out is intelligent, true live transmissions. Combine that with the wrestling, action movies, etc. and you can get a pretty interesting picture of the human race.

They could watch the History Channel and learn about themselves.

blueshift
2009-Oct-08, 12:58 AM
I still think that some species just might open up the Voyager and, after finding the CD on the inside, they will come to the conclusion that all the pits and lands match some dental plate for one of their pets.

BigDon
2009-Oct-08, 01:03 AM
I was thinking this very question while laying on the floor after a particularly bad seisure last Monday.

It's the same reason none of us would like to associate with a troop of chimpanzees. We are terrifing animals to each other, much less another species.

Luckmeister
2009-Oct-08, 02:27 AM
Somehow an old Far Side cartoon involving aliens shaped like fire hydrants, and a dog, has come into my head.

The cartoon that comes to mind with me is an alien telling a gas pump, "Get your finger out of your ear and take me to your leader."

mike alexander
2009-Oct-08, 02:38 AM
Why do we always assume the aliens won't like reality TV? After all, we're the most intellectually advanced species on our planet and we scarf it down like cotton candy.

Boors can own starships too, you know.

Spoons
2009-Oct-08, 02:42 AM
Has anyone considered they might be hanging at a safe distance leaching our wireless internet connections, and hence not wanting to be detected?

I had a neighbour like that once.

Arnold Layne
2009-Oct-08, 03:04 AM
Has anyone considered they might be hanging at a safe distance leaching our wireless internet connections, and hence not wanting to be detected?

I've got my eye on some of the members here :shifty:

slang
2009-Oct-08, 08:09 AM
The cartoon that comes to mind with me is an alien telling a gas pump, "Get your finger out of your ear and take me to your leader."

I remember reading a short story (don't remember author, it was translated to Dutch I think), where an alien on Earth desperately tried to talk to the most prevalent lifeform. Unfortunately the cars did not know how to talk back.

mugaliens
2009-Oct-08, 08:09 AM
We humans test and train a number of animal species for language use and communication via symbols.

Good point - we communicate with a number of animal species quite often. Of course most of that communication is to get them to do our will.

But they do communication back to us, mostly with their basic needs and wants, but also emotions such as affection or displeasure (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0qRDx-fz7Xk).

tnjrp
2009-Oct-08, 08:58 AM
Good point - we communicate with a number of animal species quite oftenYes, even scientists often communicate, in a limited fashion, with their test subjects. For example by mimicking bird calls. We even tried that personally with owls in our biology class at school (I don't think the owls were very impressed tho).

In the case of humans & pets and other domesticated animals, the communication is in fact both typical and two-way, tho not always very precise.

While these instances may not constitute "a scientific attempt at communication" (it certainly depends on specific definition of communication), it's still something one might expect to happen (and some indeed maintain is happening constantly) with even super advanced (whatever that means) aliens and us lowly Earth-men.

rommel543
2009-Oct-08, 12:49 PM
Which assumes they could get anything meaningful from picking up random TV signals. They won't have TV sets to watch the shows on.

All the rsponses so far (prime directives, studying us etc assumes they are basicaly human in nature. Remember we are talking about Aliens.
Rimmer was on the right track when he interpreted a broken shin as a 'Hello' message from an Alien.

With the amount of radio noise out there I have to assume that any intelligent species would have the understanding to filter signals to certain frequencies. There are too many natural occurring ones not to.

Also I wasn't taking the "prime directive" or any other type of sci-fi nobility. Even in the animal kingdom a creature will wait from a distance to observe before going in. Whether it be friend or lunch. Even if the Aliens were militaristic and going to zap us off the Universal map, I can't see them just flying directly in without sitting back and observing from a distance first. Even a friendly species would sit back and determine if we were friendly first.





I remember reading a short story (don't remember author, it was translated to Dutch I think), where an alien on Earth desperately tried to talk to the most prevalent lifeform. Unfortunately the cars did not know how to talk back.

In the Hitchhikers Guide, Ford Prefect attempted to communicate with a car when he first got to Earth. It was Arthur Dent that saved his life by stopping him from being run over (and thus the 5 part trilogy begins - and no I'm not acknowledging the book the other author is writing.).

clint
2009-Oct-08, 09:18 PM
Yes, even scientists often communicate, in a limited fashion, with their test subjects. For example by mimicking bird calls. We even tried that personally with owls in our biology class at school (I don't think the owls were very impressed tho).

In the case of humans & pets and other domesticated animals, the communication is in fact both typical and two-way, tho not always very precise.

While these instances may not constitute "a scientific attempt at communication" (it certainly depends on specific definition of communication), it's still something one might expect to happen (and some indeed maintain is happening constantly) with even super advanced (whatever that means) aliens and us lowly Earth-men.

While I acknowledge our difficulties to efficiently communicate with other species on this planet,
I don't think this is in any way comparable to the (hypothetical) challenge of communicating with more advanced aliens.

Unlike any other species on this planet, humans are quite capable of grasping and communicating enormously abstract ideas.

I don't think there is any concept - however advanced or complex it might be - that is completely beyond our comprehension.
Even if the exact scientific details are way beyond our average mental capabilities, there should always be a way to illustrate the idea in a simplified way.

captain swoop
2009-Oct-08, 11:13 PM
As we can't know any of the characteristics of the 'Aliens' we suppose might be watching us why do we assume they will even recognise anything we do as being 'intelligent' or designed?

Nowhere Man
2009-Oct-08, 11:30 PM
In the Hitchhikers Guide, Ford Prefect attempted to communicate with a car when he first got to Earth. It was Arthur Dent that saved his life by stopping him from being run over (and thus the 5 part trilogy begins - and no I'm not acknowledging the book the other author is writing.).
That's something that was added for the movie. The original radio series/TV show/novels don't go into how Ford and Arthur met.

Fred

Nowhere Man
2009-Oct-08, 11:33 PM
I still think that some species just might open up the Voyager and, after finding the CD on the inside, they will come to the conclusion that all the pits and lands match some dental plate for one of their pets.
Well, it's not a CD, it's an analog record, with a wavy groove. And pictorial instructions. But your thought can't be completely eliminated.

For all we know, they will translate it as "Your mother gurgles weech with low-life foobs" (to quote another cartoon).

Fred

Luckmeister
2009-Oct-09, 01:06 AM
I expect the aliens' first contact to be with dogs instead of us. They will find canine ESP much easier for communication than our languages. They will ask a dog if the human, which is obviously under its control, was hard to train. The dog will reply, "Oh no, they're easy to train. My human works all day to provide me with food and a home and even pays for my doctor bills. And when I take him for a walk, he obediantly scoops up my poop and disposes of it for me."

At least I hope it goes like that -- then the aliens might let us live. :lol:

Mike

HenrikOlsen
2009-Oct-09, 05:05 AM
I'd agree except replace it with cats. :)

We have species on the earth where we know they have a fairly sophisticated language and are quite intelligent, yet we have made very little progress with actually communicating because the mode is so different from what we do.
Telling a cat to keep away from some specific food is actually quite easy, since we have vocal chords that are quite capable of making the MY! food growl, but saying the same in the vibrantly dynamic color shifts of a squid is something we just can't do.

sarongsong
2009-Oct-11, 04:24 AM
While I acknowledge our difficulties to efficiently communicate with other species on this planet, I don't think this is in any way comparable to the (hypothetical) challenge of communicating with more advanced aliens...Neil Tyson - Human Intelligence? (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w-uZZ7RdL5E)
YouTube 04:48

Wherein he contemplates that the 1-2% difference in DNA between humans and chimps be applied in the other direction, up the life form scale. :)

dwnielsen
2009-Oct-11, 04:47 AM
Well, the assumption in the OP was that they necessarily wouldn't be communicating, but what if they were, but only to the extent that we were capable of being communicated to on meaningful terms. For instance, if someone knows that they are talking to a baby or an easily angered senile person, they will communicate perhaps in more, uh, poetic, metaphorical ways.

TheHalcyonYear
2009-Oct-11, 08:02 AM
Aliens may be waiting for intelligence to emerge on this planet before they bother stopping by. There's a lot of stars out there, can't visit 'em all.

TJMac
2009-Oct-11, 07:34 PM
Maybe, in spite of the unknown advances they have over us, they are not unlike us in their bickering and politics? That could leave them sitting in their secret location, watching, recording, maybe analyzing us, (not anal probe, just reviewing the data) while half says, "We must never have any contact with this species," the other half insists, "We must make contact immediately," be it to save us, enslave us, or eat us.

Fun idea to banter about...

TJ

flynjack1
2009-Oct-12, 03:03 AM
My guess is that the human race at present is no threat and thus not worth the investment of effort to make contact. As we venture further into space we may tread on something elses territory and thus bring real attention to ourselves.

Spoons
2009-Oct-12, 02:09 PM
The above post makes a bit of sense to me. If we are no threat nor near the development of a far advanced critter, then they have no defensive need to monitor us and nothing to gain by contacting us, so it's easy to imagine they'd just walk on by.

captain swoop
2009-Oct-12, 06:27 PM
All ofwhich still implies they have human motivations and intentions.

cosmocrazy
2009-Oct-12, 07:00 PM
True but i guess we don't have much else to go on at present.

flynjack1
2009-Oct-12, 07:54 PM
I suspect that survival instincts are rather universal, I also suspect that space travel is an expensive endeavor in regard to resources regardless of one level of technology. A visit here would presuppose the investment in energy would be rewarded by some gain. As we discover more and more stars with planetary systems it seems likely that ours is not especially unique in resources. A lot of guess work on my part and perhaps the LGM are simply gallivanting about the galaxy and haven't discovered our little corner yet.

sarongsong
2009-Oct-12, 08:21 PM
My guess is that the human race at present is no threat...Since there have been many reports (http://www.google.com/search?client=opera&rls=en&q=ufo+atomic+test&sourceid=opera&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8) of UFO sightings in connection with nuclear facilities/tests, maybe they're just monitoring our progress to ensure we don't become one, not necessarily to them, as much as the planet itself.
...and thus not worth the investment of effort to make contact...There are those who maintain they have; Whitney Strieber (http://www.unknowncountry.com/), e.g.

Hlafordlaes
2009-Oct-12, 08:24 PM
If stable small wormholes were possible, I can imagine someone sticking a little camera lens through, but not communicating much if at all. That's all I need, armchair aliens in the shower with me.

flynjack1
2009-Oct-12, 08:39 PM
I think the Bad Astro and others may have it right. The most likely means of "settling the galaxy" would be to use robotic craft capable or replicating themselves and preparing worlds for future settlements. In this method the entire galaxy and indeed entire visible universe could be eventually settled. This might not be a good thing if some race is ahead of us in this task.

Not to diminish your claims Sarasong, but the fact remains that there is no solid evidence of alien encounters here on Terra-firma. I have spent thousands of hours flying at night and have yet to see any unexplainable phenomena, though I have met pilots who claimed otherwise. As I was raised in the Show-me State I will maintain my position for now.

mugaliens
2009-Oct-13, 08:23 AM
I think the Bad Astro and others may have it right. The most likely means of "settling the galaxy" would be to use robotic craft capable or replicating themselves and preparing worlds for future settlements. In this method the entire galaxy and indeed entire visible universe could be eventually settled. This might not be a good thing if some race is ahead of us in this task.

I agree! Send 'em out!


Not to diminish your claims Sarasong, but the fact remains that there is no solid evidence of alien encounters here on Terra-firma. I have spent thousands of hours flying at night and have yet to see any unexplainable phenomena, though I have met pilots who claimed otherwise. As I was raised in the Show-me State I will maintain my position for now.

I wasn't raised in the Show-me State, but I've spent thousands of hours flyng at night, and agree with your assessment.

clint
2009-Oct-13, 08:55 AM
That's all I need, armchair aliens in the shower with me.

Somehow your last sentence made me think of Kim Basinger in My stepmother is an alien (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/My_Stepmother_Is_an_Alien).
I guess much depends on how those aliens look like... :)

Noclevername
2009-Oct-15, 02:32 AM
Maybe aliens are trying, but their means of communication is so different we can't comprehend it as anything but random noise.

SuperKevin
2009-Dec-03, 07:50 AM
My guess is that the human race at present is no threat and thus not worth the investment of effort to make contact. As we venture further into space we may tread on something elses territory and thus bring real attention to ourselves.

This reason makes the most sense to me. Can just picture first contact: As we speed past Pluto an alien spacecraft stops us, shows up on our viewscreen and says "Do you know why I pulled you over?"

mugaliens
2009-Dec-04, 08:11 AM
Somehow your last sentence made me think of Kim Basinger in My stepmother is an alien (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/My_Stepmother_Is_an_Alien).
I guess much depends on how those aliens look like... :)

So long as they look like Kim, I have room for guests.

tnjrp
2009-Dec-04, 09:32 AM
One might think that any aliens who have the means to come around for a visit also would have the means to look like pretty much anything. Including just like humans, or Kim Basinger.

Spoons
2009-Dec-04, 12:57 PM
Juan can only hope.

mugaliens
2009-Dec-05, 12:43 AM
Since there have been many reports (http://www.google.com/search?client=opera&rls=en&q=ufo+atomic+test&sourceid=opera&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8) of UFO sightings in connection with nuclear facilities/tests, maybe they're just monitoring our progress to ensure we don't become one, not necessarily to them, as much as the planet itself.There are those who maintain they have; Whitney Strieber (http://www.unknowncountry.com/), e.g.

So then we can just quit worrying about nations who're developing nukes because the aliens will intervene if they try and use them, right?


If stable small wormholes were possible, I can imagine someone sticking a little camera lens through, but not communicating much if at all. That's all I need, armchair aliens in the shower with me.

A single fiber-optic cable would sovle half the problem of communication. The other half of the problem involves figuring out what language they're using. Cryptologists would have fun with than one!


The most likely means of "settling the galaxy" would be to use robotic craft capable or replicating themselves and preparing worlds for future settlements. In this method the entire galaxy and indeed entire visible universe could be eventually settled.

But by the time it's prepared, will we still be around? Or even have any need for terraforming, anymore? How do we know we won't have migrated to a machine existence by then?


This might not be a good thing if some race is ahead of us in this task.

If there's any life out there at all, then there is some race ahead of us, even if they're still in a single-cell stage. If so, we have an ethical dilemma: to terraform, or not? If we do, we may be wiping out that life. If we don't, we may be spelling doom for subsequent human travellers who may already be on their way.

I content that it's life alien to our world, and we have no problem living off life much closer to home!

Burger King, mmm...

Spoons
2009-Dec-05, 01:02 AM
I suspect if you tried to live of Burger King alone, you might actually have a great many problems.

That said, I'm now tempted to have one of their breakfasts. Luckily I've had zero salt in the last week - should all balance out nicely. I'm just glad I'm not a slug. (An actual slug anyway :D )