reply to post by Druid42
Cyanide based life wouldn't necessarily be immediately deadly to us on contact.
The Cyanide would be tied up and bonded as part of the biological blueprint, likely stable and essentially harmless. If, however, we were to attempt
to toss one on the barby to see if it tastes like chicken, it very well may taste like almond chicken, but that taste would likely be the diner's
There are, of course, other questions that arise from speculation on a variety of non-carbon based life.
We can attempt to extrapolate some from our experiences in attempting to communicate with dolphins for instance, or ants, or any other animal.
Any potential meeting with anything 'other' is going to present a whole range of possibilities in communication alone. We communicate by sound, and
symbols representing sounds, as well as other methods.
What are the other possibilities and kinds of communications that might exist?
First contact could very well be with a species that communicates via pheromones, or touch, or rapidly changing complex patterns across their skin
similar to squid.
Silicone based life is also mentioned.
Such could as a rarity have evolved naturally, but, we then also come to the possibility of artificial life.
As old as the Universe is, if there ever has been another technological space faring civilization, there then begs the question about self
replicating/repairing artificial intelligences that have outlived their own creators.
There very well could be something like autobots and decepticons out there, or more likely something much more 'alien'.
On the cusp of technological singularity we are ourselves, we may even find the evolution of a species, such as ourselves, follows a predictable
pattern of biological evolution followed then by the biological civilization opting for a more durable existence as machine augmented life, or even
complete machine life, and then back to self guided, self engineered biology again.
If we can store ourselves as data where that data can be injected into a machine, and back to biology, swapping bodies could be like changing clothes.
That's all speculation, however.
Point is, anyone we meet depending the age and sophistication of the civilization, could look like, or be anything.
A sufficiently sophisticated species of any origin could very well present themselves to look exactly like us, if only as a matter of first contact