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The alien invaders in the new movie "Battle: Los Angeles" are anything but friendly looking. Mechanical components are built right into their stringy bodies, a weapon protrudes from an arm, and machinery bristles along their armored exoskeletons. But like us, the aliens possess slimy internal organs and they can bleed.
This portrayal of extraterrestrials, however, strikes some scientists as unrealistic. Should any real visitors — or conquerors — from space come to our planet, the scientific odds strongly suggest the aliens will be completely artificial forms of life.
In civilizations advanced enough to travel between the stars, it is quite likely that machines have supplanted their biological creators, some scientists argue. Automatons — unlike animals — could withstand the hazards to living tissue and the strain on social fabrics posed by a long interstellar voyage.
Furthermore, nonliving beings would not have to worry all that much about the environmental conditions at their destination — if the planet is hot or cold, bacteria-ridden or sterile, has oxygen in the air or is airless, machines would not care.
Dyer has identified four paths that could lead to the substitution of humans or other biologicals by their own robotic creations — and given enough time, he thinks such a fate awaits most life in the cosmos.
"I believe that we will be replaced within a few hundred years by synthetic agents much more intelligent than ourselves," Dyer said, and these hardy heirs will be far better suited for colonizing distant worlds.
The first path for robotic domination, logically enough, is through dependence. An ever-increasing reliance on machines to do work for us will one day reach a critical juncture when these sentient bots decide to cast off the yokes of their air-breathing overseers.
The second slippery slope to robots replacing humans is a new sort of arms race that has echoes of "Terminator," wherein nations construct cybernetic fighting forces that get of control.
The machine takeover need not be violent, however, and could represent a transformational leap for humanity based, perhaps, on our desire for immortality.
Scientists have long projected that technology will eventually reach the point where our brain-based consciousnesses can be transferred to synthetic media, and Dyer sees this as the third path to machine supremacy.
Futurist Ray Kurzweil has famously promoted the idea of such a man-machine convergence as the "singularity" and he has foretold 2045 as the year in which it happens.
Continuing leaps forward in artificial intelligence (AI) — brought to popular attention recently by IBM's Watson computer vanquishing its human champions in the quiz show "Jeopardy!" — imply that machines will eventually be able to think for themselves.
The fourth way robust mechanical entities ascend is through forays into interstellar space. More than likely, "space travel will simply be too difficult for biological entities," Dyer said.
"Traveling from one star system to another is hard and it's slow," Shostak agreed.
Even zipping along at close to the speed of light — the universal speed limit — reaching the nearest star system, Alpha Centauri, would take voyagers on the order of half a decade. The energy requirements for accelerating a spaceship to speeds appropriate for cosmic excursions, however, are daunting, Shostak said.Habitable planets could very well be centuries apart.
Originally posted by KingLeoric
reply to post by Kangaruex4Ewe
If aliens attacked they would most likely exterminate us using disease. Why in the world waste resources when a simple alien virus could do the trick. As some believe the black plague may have been more then just mice with lice in the water supply.
Originally posted by LogicMan07
Think about it, if aliens have the sort of technology to travel to Earth, I can not see them not having the technologically to fix any of the problems they may have in their part of the universe.
If aliens visit us its because they know were here and they want to either:
a) observe our species
b)teach our species how to not be frigging ignorant and retarded towards one another
And if they are hostile theres nothing we can do.