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A Realistic Assessment of How it Would Go: Aliens

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posted on Aug, 18 2006 @ 04:03 PM

Originally posted by thesneakiod
i think people expect far to much from them, they certainly wouldnt save

I really have to agree with this point. Even we were lucky enough to be discovered by benign aliens, who REALLY wanted us to succeed, they most likely wouldn't save us, but rather wait for us to clean up ourselves.

Originally posted by Merkeva
Thats exactly my point, Im not convinced that other sentient beings would see us as "lesser animals" maybe far less civilised than they are. There are still tribes living in remote places on this planet that use what we would see as primative tools.They are far less educated than us,we could tell and show them things that blow there mind,our technology ect, but are they lesser animals? I dont thinks so.

Hmmm... You may be right, I'll admit. It's possible that we're at the base of a mentally evolutionary chain, past the sentient point of no return. But the problem still remains in communications. If our discoverers are unable to even establish communication with us for one reason or another, we stand a much lesser chance of being coined sentient.

Plus, for all we know, sentient life is a weed in many solar systems, and the next step up is something wholly different. So different and advanced from "sentient life" that it is roughly in comparison to animals compared to sentient life.

Originally posted by Merkeva
Honestly I dont think it will we so black and white, if they are like us they will have differing opnions they will have there conservatives and there liberals, there warmongers and there peace makers ,there ecologists and there economists.They may have a 2000 year long debate as to what to do with us who knows

Now I could definitely see that possibility as well.

posted on Aug, 19 2006 @ 02:24 AM

Originally posted by thelibra

Originally posted by Esoteric Teacher
I believe the odds of life having visited this planet long ago are drastically underestimated by the general public.

See I'm much more in the opposite camp here. While I certainly don't discount the possibility of there being space-faring species out there somewhere, the odds of them having "seen our signal" AND planned the trip logistics AND travelled to our solar system SUCCESSFULLY and THEN proceeded to our specific planet are exponentially lower with each additional circumstance you have to add. Then to add "long ago" shortens the timeframe even more, unless you mean before artificial radio waves, in which case I'd say the odds were, quite literally, astronomical, due to the sheer number of stars and the sheer random chance they'd have picked ours with no technological noise as their guide.

The odds are just too far against it.

With what we know, yes the odds decrease, however i still believe the odds favor us being known to someone. With what we currently understand about time and time dialation, time travel is not an absolute improbable in either direction. Couple this fact (the fact it has not been ruled out by any known laws of physics) with the Drake's equasion then any civilization anywhere throughout the entire universe, throughout all time obtained both space travel and time travel (space travelling is time travelling), then the odds of us being known would drastically increase.

I'm going to say this one more time. Drawing upon the knowledge of what humanity does not know, humble yourself and please consider the plausibility of the possibilities.

Couple this fact (the fact it has not been ruled out by any known laws of physics) with the Drake's equasion then any civilization anywhere throughout the entire universe, throughout all time obtained both space travel and time travel (space travelling is time travelling), then the odds of us being known would drastically increase.

Do I still think it happened? Maybe. Who knows.

Perhaps the evidence we seek is right in front of us. Perhaps we do know. Perhaps the knowledge of knowing is so absolute we can not consciously accept it, in effect splitting our own minds. A conscious, and a subconscious. You said in an earlier post we should know ourselves. It was a comment to a posted statement i had made. I think we were saying the same thing, just two different ways. That we should know ourselves is paramount to understanding the truth. For us (humanity) for the most part is a flawed observer because of our judgment and objections to our very experiences.

As one poster said, we humans evolved, defying all odds, didn't we?

Did we? Alone, and without some sort of assistance? I'm still undecided on this issue, and i know this may put me in the "kook" category with some people. And i accept that. But, the fact remains we knew things way back when that still can not be fully explained as to how. Our collective histories both parrellel eachother all over the world, and also offer a lot of unexplained enigmas. For instance, you may ask?

One example from many that pops into my mind right now is something i read in a book about lost civilizations, perhaps it was about Atlantis, but i can not remember my exact source, but i am sure i read it in a book.

It would seem that in the B.Cs the Greek measurement of a "Stade" (where our word for stadium stems from) was comprise of i believe 214 Greek feet. A coincidence is that there is 214,000 Greek stade around the circumference of the the equator. So, is this a coincidence, or did the Greeks know the size of the planet Earth as early as 800 B.C. ? Unfortunatley we are not sure why there is such a correlation between their measurements of length and the distance around the equator.

I like this this thread. very little negativity, and a lot of sharing of thoughts in a comfortable tone.

posted on Aug, 19 2006 @ 02:42 AM
Well the question is are we being visited and if we are why?

The opening story is a very good one but I feel that it may be dependant on supposing after many many more millennium than we have been around the aliens that are visiting us if they are would be thinking along the same lines as people here do today. After all we only have had a working steam engine since 1763 or something. If they have got here they are way way ahead of us and have a great deal of our bad points sorted out long in there past. I hope anyway.

Perhaps humans have to catch up with there inventions a little and I guess we will have a better way of doing just about everything by the time we are able to travel to the stares.

We have sent out pictures of ourselves on Voyager ok it will be a very long time before it gets anywhere interesting but it’s an invitation to drop by. Oh yes and buy the way SETI has picked up one signal a while back and it was denoted as WOW it didn’t last long and so far as I know it’s not been repeated but it did happen. However yes I agree with one chap radio waves as we know them would be just to slow for the distances involved.

Visited or not? Dose anybody know how much SETI is costing? I have no idea but it looks like a whole lot to me. So the USA government are spending all this cash for what? Considering nothing unusual has ever happened? That is according to them. I would like to bet that more cash is being spent on SETI than is being spent on detecting asteroids that may bring about our destruction as it did with the Dinosaurs. This is not a matter of if only a matter of when.

I personally love all this stuff and spend hours thing about all sorts of ideas.

So the original idea is this if there where aliens we would all be dead meat. Certainly possible.
But perhaps not quite as likely as the original guy thinks. I don’t know for sure if we are being visited but for sure there seams to be a great deal of something going on.

What I do know for sure is we are being lied too. That is a cert.

Just one example of which there are very many. ROSWELL 1947 for three days it’s a UFO then it turns into a weather balloon this carries on for about 35 years then it becomes a spy balloon. Now how ridicules can you get the US send up a spy balloon that is bright silver or gold and would reflect in he sun shine. If true what sort of lunatic would think of this one, if not true what lunatic would think of putting out that story?

The best question I can think of is WHY. Why are they keeping all this stuff so secret.

Now I am not saying it’s true but for sure it’s food for thought, read up on “alternative 3” At worst it’s the sort of thing that would fit.

posted on Aug, 19 2006 @ 01:18 PM
my daughter wanted to watch ET today. It got me thinking

remember the beginning ? The ET's are here to collect plant specimens.

there was a star trek movie where they came back in time for a whale if I'm not mistaken

there was even a south park (the first) where the aliens determine cows are the most intelligent life on earth

maybe the aliens would just consider us merely dangerous hurdles to another valuable item on the planet ?

perhaps its arrogant to think we would be the only possible reason they would come here ???

posted on Aug, 19 2006 @ 10:18 PM

Originally posted by MAC269
Well the question is are we being visited and if we are why?

I sincerely believe a lot of answers lie behind our own intentionality and the personal initiators (causes) that we use to substantiate (justify to ourselves) our reasons for our intentions.

I guess an easier way to say what i just said above is: Know yourself, and why you do what you do. Why is this important? Because all we experience is held up and compaired to all else we know, and when using empathy for another, we do for others what we would like done.

"What you are looking for is what is looking."
-- Saint Francis of Asissi

I wrote the above stuff because i think it is prudent we know ourselves before we consider other pre-requisites to answer the question you began your post with.

I do like your contribution by the way. You ask some good questions. I believe sometimes just asking the right question is a great leap towards any pursuit of the truth. The questions are the initiators of discovery.

Do you know why Sir Isaac Newton is famous? Because he "discovered" gravity? Because he noticed an apple fall from a tree? I think it was due to him asking the correct question. It is true he noticed an apple fall. But then he looked up in the early evening sky and looked at the moon. He asked himself "Why do all abjects fall to earth like the apple, but the moon does not?" In his quest to answer this question he produced a better understanding of physics and other disciplines of science.

We have sent out pictures of ourselves on Voyager ok it will be a very long time before it gets anywhere interesting but it’s an invitation to drop by.

With our current understanding of time, are we absolutely certain that a response could not have been recieved by humanity prior to the invitation to "drop by"?

Dose anybody know how much SETI is costing? I have no idea but it looks like a whole lot to me. So the USA government are spending all this cash for what?

I liked your post a lot. It is apparent your wheels are turning. However as a positive and reinforcing member here on ATS, i believe it is an obligation to correct misunderstandings.

The USA no longer supplies funding for SETI. Congress ended this in 1993. I get the impression from your above quote that maybe you were not informed, so i thought i would let you know. Here is a link concerning the history of SETI:

Again, your post is a positive one, and i thank you for it.

posted on Aug, 20 2006 @ 12:17 AM
TheLibra, you obviously have put a lot of thought into this and would like to commend you on your posts, but I think you are limiting the possible scenarios. In one breath you seem pessimistic about the inadequacies of the human race, and yet use our flawed human logic to determine the agenda of an alien race.

You aren’t giving us enough credit and don’t consider the fact that we are capable of advancing. Not long ago it was perfectly acceptable to have slaves working in fields, but now it is inconceivable that it was even considered. We have come a long way, and we still have a ways to go. It may be hard to imagine that in the future that we may solve all of our differences with other countries and live in a world of peace, but I continue to have hope. Have you ever consider that an advanced race of beings may have reached this point?

I believe that any life form will advance until it reaches equilibrium within its environment, otherwise that life will consume all resources and perish. Maybe we have already gone beyond this point, but if we don’t solve the problems we face, this will be our fate, which would be the same fate of any other life on any other planet.

If a race of beings were able to survive long enough to advance to the point of having interstellar flight capability, I would think they would have already reached this point of equilibrium. If they were visiting our neck of the woods, they probably don’t need anything from us, because they already have everything they need. They would not have any need for our resources or our planet. They might consider us inferior, but they would not be interested in conquering us. If that was their intention, I think they would have done it already. Although, I agree they would also not be interested in saving us.

Just a few thoughts.

posted on Aug, 21 2006 @ 11:31 AM

Originally posted by Esoteric Teacher
With what we know, yes the odds decrease, however i still believe the odds favor us being known to someone.

Unfortunately, your following proofs, though, do nothing to support this statement. I'll explain...

Originally posted by Esoteric Teacher
With what we currently understand about time and time dialation, time travel is not an absolute improbable in either direction.

Granted. But then again, almost everything has not yet been ruled to be an absolute anything, probably, possible, or not. For instance, it has not been ruled absolutely impossible that man can fly under his own power (with nothing but what you were born with, (ie. hang gliders don't count)). However, all known empirical evidence supports the negative that man cannot, in fact, fly under his own power. You cannot give "such and such hasn't been ruled "absolutely impossible" as evidence, only as reason to continue investigating, and even then, sometimes you just have to accept that the previous several million exact same results will be sufficient for you to continue on with your studies using that assumption. Sometimes such assumptions/theorums are proven wrong, shaking up the world of science, but without previous assumptions in place, we'd have never progressed to where we are today. And even disproven theorums still hold true in "most" cases, but are disproven in the extreme, usually on the quantum level of the extreme large or extremely small.

In any event, saying X isn't absolute isn't really convincing, because it is neither evidence nor proof.

Originally posted by Esoteric Teacher
Couple this fact (the fact it has not been ruled out by any known laws of physics) with the Drake's equasion then any civilization anywhere throughout the entire universe, throughout all time obtained both space travel and time travel (space travelling is time travelling), then the odds of us being known would drastically increase.

I'm not sure where your understanding of the Drake Equation came from, but let me give you the skinny on it. The Drake Equation is merely a formula devised in the late 50's early 60's to predict the probability of alien life


(...The main purpose of the equation is to allow scientists to quantify the uncertainty of the factors which determine the number of extraterrestrial civilizations...)


The Drake equation states that:

N = R* x fp x ne x fl x fi x fc x L


N is the number of civilizations in our galaxy with which we might expect to be able to communicate at any given time

R* is the rate of star formation in our galaxy
fp is the fraction of those stars that have planets
ne is average number of planets that can potentially support life per star that has planets
fl is the fraction of the above that actually go on to develop life
fi is the fraction of the above that actually go on to develop intelligent life
fc is the fraction of the above that are willing and able to communicate
L is the expected lifetime of such a civilization

There's nothing in there about space/time, time travel, or that all civilizations have travelled through time. Additionally, it's a flawed theory because we cannot adequately quantify some of these factors. The Fermi Paradox and variances in the "agreed upon" values has caused a resulting difference as wide as 0.0000008 to 10. That's a hell of a range.

Additionally, one cannot discount the Rare Earth hypothesis, which basically states that the conditions neccessary to develop intelligent life are so rare as to make it entirely possible that we're the only system in our galaxy capable of such. However, Just as Drake's equation is flawed, I feel the Rare Earth hypothesis is flawed as well because it arrogantly assumes that intelligent life requires conditions similar to Earth, which I feel is hogwash. Life sprouts up wherever and works with the hand its dealt.

However, it does give you and idea of why one cannot just say "Well, if you consider the X, Y, and Z hypothethesis, then this is practically assumed to be so," when all hypotheses are so vastly differing and supporting of the creator's own personal agendas.

(more in the next post to answer several people's question)

posted on Aug, 21 2006 @ 11:37 AM
I'm not singling out Esoteric Teacher on this, I've actually see a very similar reply over and over throughout not just this thread, but others as well. I'd like to address it now...

Originally posted by Esoteric Teacher
I'm going to say this one more time. Drawing upon the knowledge of what humanity does not know, humble yourself and please consider the plausibility of the possibilities.

This is a common argument I hear. "We don't know X yet, so Z is possible."

The problem with that statement is that, as far as present-day reality goes, it's a useless argument. I can say that, with the scope of our information, we don't know that Alpha Centauri prime is made of marshmallow goo and hyper-intelligent kittens developed time travel there. Why not? We haven't proven it's not true, so it's possible, and therefore certainly a valid statement--but alas, a useless statement.

There's a saying one of my professors used, "science is built upon the bones of old theories." What this ultimately means is that we do not figure out the true nature of something by guessing at it, we figure it out by proving what it is not. For instance, we still don't know what an atom looks like. We kinda have an idea, and a basic understanding of how it works with other atoms, and how electron clouds work, and weak atomic bonds, and so forth, but our present concept of the atom is based upon everything we've figured out about what it is not.

So, our present SCIENTIFIC idea of how Life, the Universe, and Everything, all works together isn't based upon the thought of "this is how it is" but rather "everything except this is how it isn't."

Thus, you cannot discount our present understanding of the universe as being too inadequate to judge what the most likely event will be. In point of fact, responsible science requires it. Because if we are to assume Z, just because X hasn't been proven or disproven yet, then we must also accept that A through W haven't been proven and are thus, just as valid.

THAT is why assumptions must be based upon what we presently know about the universe. I seriously doubt there is anyone on Earth whom could be remotely considered a scientist who thinks we've discovered everything there is to know about Life, the Universe, and Everything. The more "future knowledge" we try to incorporate into our scenario, the more alien (excuse the pun) and incomprehensable the results will be.

In other words, just as we can say "Well, it's safe to assume humanity will have worked out all its differences by the time we reach the stars" we can also say "in actuality, torture will have become a publicly acceptable art form, and human babies will be used to fuel the space ships." or "A nearby star will explode, wiping out all life in the surrounding area (including humanity) before we can achieve interstellar travel" just like we could say "We won't even use ships, cause they're too slow, we'll have perfected astral travel in our minds," just as we could say "We've actually BEEN colonizing stars for eons now, it just happened so long ago we forgot about it, and we've been cut off from the homeworld for a while now."

All those statements are equally valid, equally unproven, and equally USELESS, because they do nothing to prepare us for the most likely eventuality which is really what all this is about.

Historically, as far back as we can trace, as well as within the present, as well as what 99.999999% of the most probable outcomes for the forseeable future all say the exact same thing: life requires resources to produce energy vital to its own survival, there are limited resources, if limited resources do not meet the demand of competing life forms, they will fight over said source, and that the superior of the two will win, and the winner will determine the use of that resource.

That's what has been proven to be the case for thousands and thousands of years, and I can only see two possibilities for breaking that cycle:

1.) Perfect (or near perfect) matter to energy to matter transferrence - All matter is made of energy. Energy is neither created nor destroyed, only transferred. Conversion of matter from one form to another results in a loss of energy to heat, waste, etc. If one could figure out how to perfect this process to the point where any matter could be converted to energy, and energy could be converted to any matter, with a minimum of waste, AND the cost in energy to bring about this transferrence was minimal, then this would alleviate the need to compete for a limited resource.

Unfortunately, to convert matter from one atomic form to another requires energy equivolent to that needed to split it. In other words, yes, you can turn lead to gold, but it costs so much in energy to do so it's not even remotely worth it.

2.) Culling our population to the point where we no longer have to compete for resources because the supply exceeds the demand. - Simply put, if we kill off (or ship off) enough of Earth's population, we can, at least temporarily, alleviate the need for competition of resources.

The problem with this is twofold: one, if population is that low (and sparse), then entire pockets will begin to die off because of the lack of a viable gene pool to draw from. This creates competition for a whole new previously unconsidered resource: mates. The other problem is societal stagnation. In a world where you don't have to worry about your needs being cared for, what's the point in developing more technology, or achieving anything (except boredom).

So, in essence, my point is this: it's worthless to speculate based on ideas that haven't been proven, tested, or had any historical basis, when trying to determine the probability for a forseeable future event.

This isn't to say I don't appreciate a sci-fi approach to the scenario, but by the time those things are a consideration, I'll be long long dead and not caring. What I'm primarily concerned with is "what's the most realistic and likely result of aliens discovering us in the near future."

And there is not a shred of evidence to suggest we won't still be in competition for resources, or that mankind's treatment of man will be any better ten years from now as opposed to yesterday. It is also very unlikely that there will be many MAJOR groundbreaking discoveries about physics in the next ten years that force us to think about the universe in an entirely different light (like FTL travel, stargates, wormholes, etc)

[edit on 8/21/2006 by thelibra]

[edit on 8/21/2006 by thelibra]

posted on Aug, 23 2007 @ 03:25 PM
Ok, I only skimmed through the other posts here, and didn´t see this brought up. (But if it was, sorry.)

As the OP compared our civilization to a bird and it´s "civilization." Which is true to a point.

A bird doesn´t have the need to reach out, or the want to improve itself. (Which I hope most of us does.)

We as humans, constantly try to improve our surroundings, the way we live, eat, interact with each other, and we constantly are trying to find somone "out there." I think this gives us a big edge when (and if) aliens do decide to visit earth.

We want to change. Birds do not. (They are contempt with what they have it seems, or rather they lack the knowledge that things could be so much better.) Unlike us, we know that there are better fuel methods out there, we know that there must be an answer to the things we are currently struggling with.

And I honestly think, as long as the aliens aren´t bent on our destruction, that they will probably try to help us out.

Because lets face it, there has to be more then just one race of aliens out there. And if we can be it´s allies, help them grow in numbers, to fight off enemies (if they have any) then I think we have a decent chance of being helped, rather then being destroyed.

I just thought I´d throw that in. Because I feel, even though we lack major social skills, that we do want to be better. And the aliens will see this. What serves them better? Destroying us, or helping us evolve so that we one day may be able to help them?


posted on Aug, 23 2007 @ 03:44 PM

Considering SETI has YET to find even one recognizable extra-terrestrial source of artificial radio waves, we can assume that even this much larger number of potential candidates is relatively small.

As you mentioned, the same problem (larger the sphere, smaller the surface to receive the signal) applies to us looking for them also....

In addition, not only do we have to be using similar methods of communication to detect, but we have to be using them at the proper time. If the civilization is so far that the signals take 100,000 years to get here, and they started using them 50,000 years ago, then the signals are STILL on their way here! (and have just as much time to go before detection!).

It's not even a needle in a haystack. It's more like finding a particular chosen grain of sand, on a beach the size of the whole planet. I don't think most people really truly grasp the odds that SETI faces, and that the fact we haven't detected something yet doesn't mean a hill of to what could be out there.

posted on Aug, 23 2007 @ 03:47 PM
Well you've got a few good points, but they've actually already "discovered" us quite some time ago and are here currently.

Also, your assumptions about what they're interested in and how they would travel is like an ant trying to discuss our motivations and how we could possibly get around such a huge world. See what I'm saying?

posted on Aug, 24 2007 @ 09:43 PM
Though I can appreciate all the work that went into this, thelibra, I can't help but note a problem...

A species capable of traveling from its homeworld to our world undoubtedly has the entire breadth of resources stretched between the two points at its disposal. Between Earth and wherever is a gigantic stretch of raw materials and energy that, to the best of our knowledge, aren't claimed. You brought up the Oort cloud, and you're quite right - that little region is certainly worth several billion Earths in terms of resources.

A species such as this has either mastered faster-than-light travel, or has found a way to live comfortably within a transport through space. Probably both! This being the case, the idea of living on a rock floating around a star would seem primitive, or at best "quaint".

There would be no reason for a species this developed to really give a damn about us and our rotating clod of iron and silica. The effort needed to extract our resources would be quite large compared to just scooping up an equal amount of asteroids or even interstellar particles. Quite simply, compared to the resources an interstellar species would have available, and the technology available... Earth is trivial and meaningless.

I would imagine such a species would see earth as little more than a very obscure footnote and possible tourist destination. We would be regarded in much the same way as a person from "the west" might regard an isolated cave ecosystem in the Andes. It might be neat to see on the TV just to look at the weird critters there, but then you think no more of it.

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