Death by Alien Attack? Or, We Come in Peace?

Stephen Hawking thinks we should be concerned about aliens.  In a yet to be released documentary series, Hawking speculates about what might happen if our little blue dot where found by an alien civilization.

If aliens visit us, the outcome would be much as when Columbus landed in America, which didn’t turn out well for the Native Americans,


Such advanced aliens would perhaps become nomads, looking to conquer and colonise whatever planets they can reach,

Let’s do some science.   Survey all the alien civilizations we know about and work out which are likely to do us in and which are our good friends.  Hmmm…. That’s a sample size of zero to work with I’d say, unless you take seriously all the talk of shape changing lizards and little green men.

Should we be concerned?  The earth has already been advertising its occupation by a civilization capable of radio communication for quite some time.  Marconi’s first reasonably good radio transmission was in 1895.  Trans Atlantic communication first demonstrated in 1902.

From time to time we’ve deliberately beamed radio communication out to the stars.

I’m sure Stephen Hawking knows the alien game is guess work.

The real challenge is to work out what aliens might actually be like.

Some notable skeptical bloggers have also had their say on this topic, such as:

PZ Myers, Phil Plait and the SGU team (listen to episode #250).

Will it be “War of the Worlds” or a friendly robot like C-3PO?  Will it be thousands of Daleks or Ford Prefect (just here to write a book entry)?

Is Stephen Hawking right?

Have your say, comment below.


2 Responses to Death by Alien Attack? Or, We Come in Peace?

  1. Terry Kelly says:

    There’s no reason for assuming they’d be hostile. They would at least have to be highly advanced and capable of sophisticated social organisation to get it together to get here. I can’t imagine they’d be particularly nasty in order to do that. I’d also be fairly confident they wouldn’t be crusading religious fanatics given the incompatibility of religious beliefs and science. They’d have to be curious, adventurous, well organised, socially cohesive and extremely scientifically literate. I’d be personally more inclined to be interested in them, should they ever be in contact, than to fear them or assume maliciousness.

  2. tony virgo says:

    I think it is OK for Hawking to speculate but it gives air to the impressionable which is unfortunate.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: