Saturday, May 01, 2010

ETI wouldn't invade Earth and why the search for alien life is worth it

Welcome! "Alien Life" tracks the latest discoveries and thoughts in the various elements of the famous Drake Equation. Here's today's news:
g Abodes – When scientists got an unprecedented up-close view of Pluto from the Hubble telescope recently, they found mysterious bright and dark spots mottling the dwarf planet's surface. Now researchers think they have a better guess at what's causing those weird spots. See article.
g Life – Scientists have known for some time that migratory birds have smaller brains than their resident relatives. Now a new study looks into the reasons and concludes that the act of migrating leads to a reduced brain size. See article.
g Message – The search for alien life is worth it - even if we find nothing, it still forces us to think about who we are and why we are here. Even flights of fancy can serve a deeper purpose. See editorial.
g Cosmicus – A visionary zeal to seek new worlds and new civilizations is a factual enterprise for a new generation of galactic explorers. They are taking on spacetime and hoping to boldly go where no spacecraft has gone before — out to far-flung stars and the planets that circle them. There is no doubt there are worlds out there beyond our own cabal of planets, but even if you've got the heaviest of foot on the accelerator, plotting a speedy route to the stars is not easy. See article.
g Aftermath – The human race could be devastated if aliens were to learn of our existence and venture to Earth, warned British scientist Stephen Hawking on Sunday. But how could extraterrestrials really invade Earth? See article.

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Rshulman78 said...

Any aliens with the technology to use interstellar travel would also have an advanced knowledge of the sciences, including chemistry and genetics. Aliens would never have a logical reason to invade and destroy us. They could travel to gas giants/nebulas for any gas/fuel they would need, and they could use rocky bodies from other systems. That's one less thing to worry about!

Rob Bignell said...

I generally agree. As for living space, a variety of structures from O'Neill space colonies to Niven's ringworlds easily could be engineered by a starfaring civilzation. There are some remote possibilities for invading aliens, though: religious jihads and Borg-like entities come to mind. Let me emphasize the word "remote", however.