Re: [GZG] A number of scientists respond to Hawking's concernsabout Aliens
From: Phillip Atcliffe <atcliffe@n...>
Date: Wed, 12 May 2010 17:56:29 +0100
Subject: Re: [GZG] A number of scientists respond to Hawking's concernsabout Aliens
Gzg-l mailing list
> Of course there is every reason this could easily go something along
> the lines of "....we have promised ourselves that we we would not make
> these same mistakes, but we failed. We have since realized that this
> is folly. Prepare to die!"
> Another possibility is, "Oh....this place is yours? Sorry, we really
> didn't notice you there."
"Of Men and Monsters" by William Tenn.
> Still another, "I realize you are intelligent and that you have
> developed culture, but we are starving and your planet represents the
> only supply of fresh food in the sector."
> Or perhaps, "...but you are so damned tasty!"
> How about, "We'd love to have peaceful coexistence but the fact that
> you don't eat your mates after breeding and selectively cull your
> young is an afront to our way of life."
> "Five fingers? Really? that's too weird."
What was that story that had first contact being the local alien
overlord informing the human race that they'd just been given to the
local overlord of another species, and he was just a bit bigoted. "Don't
any of your species have grren skin? Or at least blue?" 8-)
> In all seriousness I like the fact that Hawking was willing to accept
> the fact that aliens, if encountered, have just as much of a chance to
> be a foe as a friend.
What intrigues me about the whole debate is that Hawking is saying the
same thing that Jack Kirby (the comic artist and all-around imaginative
genius) said when the Pioneer 10 plaque was designed and publicised. Why
tell aliens where we are? They might not be benevolent. Jack's words
were lost, or ignored, in all the controversy over other aspects of the
plaque -- the nudity of the human figures, the non-appearance of the
woman's vagina, the supposed submissive pose that she had (actually
intended to demonstrate the workings of the hip joint), etc., etc. Lots
of people had alternative ideas for the plaque -- one suggestion from,
IIRC, the Catholic Church, was to show a pair of hands folded in prayer
(nothing else, just the hands). Jack's was to show a pair of
super-powered humans leaping off the planet to convey the message "Hi
there! Look what we can do. Mess with us at your peril."
Yet again, the King was decades ahead of his time... ;-)