• Question: Have you considered that if you actually encounter life on other planets they could be far more advanced and may be in need of land and more power therefore wanting to destroy our civilisation

    Asked by mosblackflames to Sara, Amy, Drew, Julia, Kimberley on 23 Jun 2011. This question was also asked by juliet, bridget.
    • Photo: Amy MacQueen

      Amy MacQueen answered on 20 Jun 2011:

      I hope they wouldn’t because that would be a tad scary. But you are correct that it would be possible! 🙂

    • Photo: Drew Rae

      Drew Rae answered on 20 Jun 2011:

      Hi guys. There’s an idea in science called Fermi’s Paradox, which is about the fact that if alien life is so possible, why haven’t we found it yet? There are a number of proposed solutions, but one of them is “Maybe they are all hiding”. The obvious question is “What are they hiding from?” and more importantly “Why aren’t we hiding too?”

    • Photo: Julia Griffen

      Julia Griffen answered on 20 Jun 2011:

      Hey… I have thought of that… and that’s sometime why i dont like to think about things to much, you come up with a dramatic world ending senario that ends in mass destrcution that some film director could make millions from… sometimes easier to thing about what I want to have for tea… involves less possible doom and devestation! 🙂

    • Photo: Sara Imari Walker

      Sara Imari Walker answered on 23 Jun 2011:

      Hi mosblack, juliet, and bridget! Great question! This is actually a hot debate in the scientific community among SETI (search for extraterrestrial intelligence) and METI (messaging extraterrestrial intelligence) researchers. So I thought about it a lot, and heard a lot of debates on the issue. I for one am optimistic that if we did make contact it would be a good thing. I maintain this optimism for several reasons.

      The first is that interstellar distances are soooooo HUGE that if we did discover an advanced alien civilization through SETI (or if they discovered us because of a METI message) we would be having a very slow conversation over the airwaves for quite a while! It can take 10s, 100s and even 1000s of years for electromagnetic (light) waves to travel between stars in our own galaxy! So its hard to imagine many advanced civilizations actually getting to visit us. We might just have to play telephone and wait a really really long time for a response. That would still be neat though!!!

      On the chance that we do encounter a civilization advanced enough for interstellar travel across galatic distances, well then that would really be something!!! However, it is not guaranteed that such a civilization would have any interest in the things we value. Maybe they don’t breath oxygen! What good is the Earth then? The possibilities for extraterrestrial life are pretty limitless at this point – we just can’t know what’s out there. Since we don’t know that makes us scared of it, but I think we should try to learn as much as possible! I hope we do find intelligent aliens, and that they are benevolent – think of the things we could learn!!!!