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What is an alien?

 
 
RexRed
 
Reply Mon 26 Apr, 2010 09:44 pm
I just can't seem to figure it out?
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Type: Discussion • Score: 5 • Views: 3,815 • Replies: 35
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Francis
 
  1  
Reply Mon 26 Apr, 2010 09:57 pm
Legal or illegal?
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RexRed
 
  1  
Reply Mon 26 Apr, 2010 10:03 pm
Our world was forged by the universe.

And if there be extraterrestrial life out there, more civilized and evolved than us, do we really expect them to not be "humane"? They would have had to have developed technologies too.

What really constitutes the boundaries of what an alien is?



Francis
 
  2  
Reply Mon 26 Apr, 2010 10:09 pm
@RexRed,
Our world forged by the universe? What a singular assertion...

Did you really gave it a thought?

As a matter of probability, there should be aliens.

But they precisely should be aliens, nothing you could ever imagine..
Eorl
 
  1  
Reply Mon 26 Apr, 2010 10:37 pm
Aliens have certainly explored other parts of our solar system, but I don't think there's any evidence of any having ever been to Earth.

Life elsewhere in the universe almost certainly exists, but the idea of ever finding each other seems somewhat against the odds. Sadly. Or, fortunately.
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BillRM
 
  1  
Reply Tue 27 Apr, 2010 02:00 am
@Francis,
Quote:
But they precisely should be aliens, nothing you could ever imagine..


Come on they would had evolved under the same laws of physic and evolution as we had so there would likely be more things similar between out two natures then not.
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Tue 27 Apr, 2010 05:08 am
@BillRM,
Ive heard that statement on TV about respecting the "same laws of physics and evolution". However, there are many interpretations of the same laws, and on tv, they didnt speak of the laws of CHEMIASTRY. What if life is not Carbon based? Its possible that several other elements, acting like carbon, cpuld form the chemical basis of a type of life but in a fashion that we could never imagine. For an example, a Silicon or Phosphorus based life (or Fe Cu Se) could be figured as a tetrahedron rather than bilaterally symmetrical. Also, since evolution is usually "Tinkering" with bodyplans, we have an almost infinite number of plans that could result if the tinkering werent based upon an exactly same set of environmental circumstances that occured on earth.
EG, if there was no marked increase in O2 on a planet like during the Devonian through the Carboniferous here on earth, we may not have evolved insects or developed lungs. LIfe could be in the form of great big gossammer, air floating jellyfish.
There are a whole bunch of exobiologists whove looked at the possibilities that resulted from every environmental challenge (They looked at some of the major bodyplan developments that resulted) and Theyve concluded that evolution barely tapped the barrel of possibilities.

However, on the other side,It does turn out that, for this planet, several body plans for plants and animals were so successful and good that they developed several times on totally different organisms.
Foofie
 
  1  
Reply Tue 27 Apr, 2010 05:16 am
Aliens are, in my opinion, someone who is not an American citizen. Being concerned about possible aliens from other planets is premature, I believe. We should wait for the sighting of a mother ship, before we broach any thoughts about extra-terrestrial aliens. Some aliens are in the U.S. illegally. Some are in the U.S. legally. Some are just tourists and walk around with a tour book printed in their native language.
Eorl
 
  1  
Reply Tue 27 Apr, 2010 07:53 am
@Foofie,
So the vast majority of people you consider aliens?
Eorl
 
  1  
Reply Tue 27 Apr, 2010 07:55 am
@farmerman,
Yeah but... Carbon is surely the 100:1 favourite for lots of reasons?
djjd62
 
  1  
Reply Tue 27 Apr, 2010 07:56 am
@Eorl,
i'm guessing most americans think if you're not an american you're likely not even human

0 Replies
 
Irishk
 
  1  
Reply Tue 27 Apr, 2010 08:50 am
@RexRed,
RexRed wrote:
What is an alien?


Shhhhhhhhhhhhhh! Whatever you do, don't talk to one! They are only here to plunder, rape and pillage...kinda like Columbus did.

Quote:
Don't talk to aliens, warns Stephen Hawking

He suggests that aliens might simply raid Earth for its resources and then move on: “We only have to look at ourselves to see how intelligent life might develop into something we wouldn’t want to meet. I imagine they might exist in massive ships, having used up all the resources from their home planet. Such advanced aliens would perhaps become nomads, looking to conquer and colonise whatever planets they can reach.”

He concludes that trying to make contact with alien races is “a little too risky”. He said: “If aliens ever visit us, I think the outcome would be much as when Christopher Columbus first landed in America, which didn’t turn out very well for the Native Americans.”


Irish(I should have used code)K
engineer
 
  2  
Reply Tue 27 Apr, 2010 09:18 am
@Irishk,
I thought Hawking blew it on this one. If aliens have the technology to cross space to get to us, they likely have the technology to harvest asteroids and other space bodies, farm their own food and generate power cheaply. We're projecting a bit to assume that Earth is special in terms of raw materials and tasty foodstuffs. It's great for us, but space is full of all sorts of great stuff.
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Francis
 
  1  
Reply Tue 27 Apr, 2010 09:26 am
BillRM wrote:
Come on they would had evolved under the same laws of physic and evolution as we had so there would likely be more things similar between out two natures then not.

If anthropomorphizing makes you feel better...
0 Replies
 
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Tue 27 Apr, 2010 09:36 am
@Eorl,
Quote:
Yeah but... Carbon is surely the 100:1 favourite for lots of reasons


On this planet it is. What about a silica based life? If its 100;1 against that means that about 1% of life is not C based? Some chemist proposed a P based life form with a structure of information transfer simialr to layerd chips of several phosphorus compounds. Instead of aDNA/ RNA based world, we have a Life form that is similar to a few of the stuff living along the mid ocean ridges.
0 Replies
 
RexRed
 
  1  
Reply Tue 27 Apr, 2010 01:05 pm
The earth has gone through so many changes over many great ages one would figure that it has provided the multiplicity of conditions for nearly all forms of life to have evolved.
Eorl
 
  1  
Reply Tue 27 Apr, 2010 04:04 pm
@RexRed,
Rex and Farmer,

Yeah sure it's possible, probable even, but mostly you'd expect to find carbon based forms. I'll list some of those reasons I think this, though I may be wrong on all counts...

1) Carbon is the lowest atomic number element that supports incredibly complex chemistry (dare I say organic? Bit of a circular argument) with it's six happy little bonding docks. It's like the leggo block of the chemical world.

2) Carbon is probably common in the universe for the reasons above.

3) The periodic table will be the same anywhere in the universe, I think that's the bit folk forget. (although it could easily be expanded).

4) who could compete with carbon based forms, except under conditions where carbon based forms aren't viable? It's been suggested that early in earths life there may have been other contenders, but carbon easily won the race.

5) I'm saying that if we find 100 planets with life, 99 of them would be carbon based. Not due to my lack of imagination but due to occams razor!
0 Replies
 
Foofie
 
  1  
Reply Tue 27 Apr, 2010 05:43 pm
@Eorl,
Let us not belabor what I already posted. Just my opinion; of no consequence to the rest of the cosmos.
0 Replies
 
RexRed
 
  1  
Reply Wed 28 Apr, 2010 12:25 pm
http://www.moesrealm.com/img/fifth_element_03.jpg
Francis
 
  1  
Reply Wed 28 Apr, 2010 12:31 pm
@RexRed,
Why can't you come up with an alien aria, instead of that beautiful part of Lucia de Lammermoor, sung by Sarah Brightman?
0 Replies
 
 

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