posted on May, 15 2009 @ 07:01 PM
It honestly depends upon what type of alien we are discussing. Are we talking interplanetary/intersystem-capable humanoids (very similar to StarTrek,
Halo, Mass Effect, and similar concepts)?
If we are - we can assume they are hyper-social predators, much like ourselves. Their biology would have roots in competition with other native
species for access to resources. The kinematics of a humanoid are the ultimate in the evolution of a predator - the long limbs allow for strikes,
jabs, sweeps, and rapid recovery/adjustment of posture while the digits (fingers) allow for grappling - allowing us to manipulate the anatomy of our
prey/aggressor. Almost any part of the humanoid body can be turned into a weapon - crotches (of joints) can be used as the focal points for clamps;
fingers/digits used to apply very precise 'sharp' force, etc.
Compared to any other anatomical construct - the humanoid anatomy is incredibly efficient for a predator, and opens up the ability to manipulate the
universe in a way that other anatomies find difficult.
Assuming competition with other species fueled their biological development, and they share a similar anatomy, it is very likely that their
"thought" would be rather similar, as well. Recent studies into behavior, anatomy, neurology, etc have demonstrated a link between anatomy,
thought, social behavior, and communication.
Now - it's highly likely that any form of life that is capable of technological development is a predator. Why? Predators are the only animals to
develop the senses keen enough to coordinate with others in its species (pack hunting) as well as analyze its prey to strike at vital points.
Assuming this holds true in other ecosystems (perhaps a big assumption), we would expect the majority of species having the ability to observe the
world in enough detail to develop various forms of technology would have their biological roots as a predatory species.
Their drive for competition with other species would compel them to develop tools and develop socially. They have the ability to manipulate the world
around them, and the ability to observe how their efforts play out. After beating out threats from most other species - they would be left with each
other to compete with. Their predatory and social natures would collide in the spectacular chaos it does in our own society.
Assuming they don't blow themselves up (rather unlikely) - they would eventually move away from their planet. I would expect them to have conflicts
between the social and predatory natures, just as we likely will for a very, very long time.
Now... for something that is completely alien.... God only knows. You can't really cover all of the possibilities.
That said - were an alien species to observe us - they could have a number of different reactions.
I, for one, find it rather amusing that we accept our own existence so readily - yet find it so difficult (as a whole) to entertain; much less accept;
the notion that there are other cultures out there that are capable of traveling distances we cannot even fathom, and fly around our airspace.
It contests our arrogance as a species. Just about everything on this planet takes note of us - fleeing or contesting our mere presence. And here
some critter from the cosmos has the audacity to fly around our air space as if we are inconsequential!? It's a rather insulting notion.
That said - we are still highly competitive, adaptive, and quite intelligent. We use bacteria to produce many things, and they are getting a growing
amount of attention for industrial applications. Perhaps our tendencies are being utilized by an alien species to develop technologies in ways that
are alien to their own experience.
An alien species that has not fought a war in generations would potentially have difficulty developing applied defenses and weapons.
We fight each other all the time, and (in all irony) place value on life - we're constantly developing ways to kill/neutralize a target while sparing
our own lives, and 'fixing' those that get damaged. We do it very quickly, and as a matter of survival.
Perhaps much like we utilize the behavior of a bacterial colony to produce hydrogen or special bio-medical compounds - our tendencies are utilized by
other species for the development of technology.
We may not place much value on our intellect or technology because we cannot visit other planets on a whim (like these things seemingly can) - but we
often lose sight of such big-picture elements. Bio-medical companies from western worlds will send people deep into various rain forests to consult
with local tribes and observe their medical practices. They return with samples of various fauna and things used in a healing ceremony (when
possible) to figure out how the consumption/application of those ingredients work to treat a problem.