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Is SETI at risk of downloading a malicious virus from outer space?
io9 ^ | 6/27/12 | George Dvorsky

Posted on 07/11/2012 2:09:03 PM PDT by LibWhacker

We take it for granted that the search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI) is a safe endeavor. Seriously, what could possibly go wrong with passively searching for interstellar radio signals? Unfortunately, the answer is quite a lot –- especially if the incoming signal contains something malicious, like a computer virus or Trojan horse.

And according to the experts, this isn't just idle speculation – the threat is very real. So, just how concerned do we need to be?

To get a better sense of this possibility, we spoke to two experts on the matter: Andrew Siemion, a PhD candidate in astronomy at SETI-Berkeley, and Milan Cirkovic, Senior Research Associate at the Astronomical Observatory of Belgrade and a leading expert on SETI.

We'll get to their answers in just a second, but it's worth doing a quick review to understand where this idea came from –- and not surprisingly, it's science fiction inspired by science.

Visions of viral doom

Science fiction writers have been worried about this possibility ever since the advent of SETI, back in the early 1960's.

Soon after the launch of Frank Drake's Project Ozma in 1960, which was the pioneering attempt to listen for extraterrestrial radio signals, the BBC produced A for Andromeda, a television series that was written by the acclaimed cosmologist and science fiction writer Fred Hoyle. The story concerns a group of scientists who detect a radio signal from a distant galaxy that contains instructions for the design of an advanced computer. The scientists decide to go ahead and build the computer, which in turn produces a new set of instructions for the creation of a living organism, named Andromeda. It's at this point where one of the scientists raises an objection, amid fears that Andromeda's purpose is to subjugate humanity.

In 1968, Stanislaw Lem reprised this issue in his novel His Master's Voice. In the story, scientists work to decode what seems to be a message from outer space, specifically a neutrino signal from the Canis Minor constellation. As the scientists decode the data, they conclude that it is a mathematical description of an object, possibly a molecule or even an entire genome. They go on to construct two strange substances that exhibit odd properties, a glutinous liquid and a solid object that looks like a slab of red meat. They learn that the liquid can cause an atomic blast at a remote location –- which, if used as a weapon, would make deterrence impossible. As a result, many of the scientists become convinced that it's an extraterrestrial weapon of some sort.

And more recently, the idea of receiving instructions from aliens was explored by Carl Sagan in his 1985 novel Contact (which was made into a major motion picture in 1997). But unlike his worrywart sci-fi predecessors, Sagan portrayed aliens as being genuinely friendly.

In Sagan's story, extraterrestrial contact is made, with the aliens transmitting the blueprints to a massive engineering project — supposedly for us to build. After much consideration, the device is constructed, and it turns out to be a transportation device for a single human occupant.

Carl Sagan always held firmly to his belief in benign aliens. He was convinced that any advanced civilization had to be friendly by default — that overly aggressive or misguided aliens would have destroyed themselves prior to advancing to such a stage. His theory suggested that an interstellar selectional effect was happening, and the only advanced aliens left standing would be the good ones.

Be careful

Sagan's optimism notwithstanding, we should probably be more than a little bit wary of receiving a signal from a civilization that's radically more advanced than our own.

When we spoke to SETI-Berkeley's Andrew Siemion, he admitted that SETI is aware of this particular risk, and that they've given the issue some thought. He stressed that SETI's primary objective is just to detect a signal. "Detecting signals is far easier than decoding them," he told io9. "Our searches don't attempt to decode or decipher any information content from signals that trigger our algorithms." In other words, the folks at SETI-Berkeley are only concerned with whether or not a signal is present, and whether it's real.

But that doesn't mean they're still not careful. When we asked Siemion about the possibility of inadvertently receiving or downloading a virus, he stressed that the possibility is extraordinarily low, but not impossible.

"Our instruments are connected to computers, and like any computers, they can be reprogrammed," he warned. "Our software receives input that ultimately comes from unknown sources, and again, while this input is never executed or decoded, we don't perform rigorous checks to validate this unknown input like a computer security conscious programmer might do with an internet application."

Siemion speculated that, if an extraterrestrial intelligence had very deep knowledge of the software systems we use for our experiments and the architecture of our computers, they might be able to send a sequence of signals that would cause a memory buffer to overflow and perhaps allow arbitrary code execution.

"However, if ET had this level of knowledge about terrestrial technology," he said, "it would make far more sense to use a similar technique with the thousands of satellite downlink stations dotting the globe, or the billions of cell phone radios constantly listening for a ping from a cellphone tower."

Siemion stressed that this doesn't apply to such projects as SETI@Home and Astropulse, which he said are "thoroughly vetted by very competent computer security professionals, and every effort is made to ensure [their] safety."

In regards to the threat of a Trojan horse, Siemion admitted the possibility, but doubted that humanity would ever blindly follow a set of blueprints or instructions that we received from another intelligent civilization.

"Just as human cultures establish trust over many decades and centuries moving in small steps, humanities' relationship with an extraterrestrial civilization would likely evolve slowly over perhaps many millennia," he told io9. "Maybe after many thousands of years, when humanity has established some level of rapport with our cosmic neighbors, we might feel comfortable accepting and utilizing their technology."

Be afraid

Like Siemion, Milan Cirkovic also believes that the risk of acquiring something nasty from an ETI is very real. But he's a bit more worried. Alien invaders won't attack us with their spaceships, he argues — instead, they'll come in the form of pieces of information. And they may be capable of infiltrating and damaging or subverting our computing networks, in a manner that's similar to the computer viruses we're all too familiar with.

Cirkovic admits, however, that the possibility should be taken with a grain of salt. In order to work, an alien virus would have to somehow know or intuit our protocols and operating systems.

"The efficiency of a virus in achieving its malicious task is proportional to the degree of its specialization. More general viruses are, therefore, less efficient," he tells io9. "To be able to infiltrate our networks, the alien virus should be general to a fantastic degree."

When we asked Cirkovic what the purpose of an ET virus might be, he responded, "If we discard anthropocentric malice, it seems that the most probable response is that they have evolved autonomously in a network of an advanced civilization -– which may or may not persist to this day." If this is the case, speculated Cirkovic, these extraterrestrial viruses would probably just replicate themselves and subvert our resources to further transmit themselves across the Galaxy. In other words, the virus may or may not be under the control of any extraterrestrial civilization –- it could be an advanced AI that's out of control and replicating itself by taking over the broadcast capabilities of each civilization it touches. A very frightening thought.

To prevent this, Cirkovic suggests that we should sever any connection between the SETI and METI (messages to ET) equipment, and the rest of the human info-sphere. He admits that this is easier said than done.

Cirkovic's fear is not without warrant — after all, people write viruses here on Earth all the time, for no particular reason. Perhaps signals such as these are the ultimate manifestation of computer viruses — a self-replicating information system that finds compatibility with others, thereby infecting it.

It's clear from our conversations with Siemion and Cirkovic that extraterrestrial life may be more bizarre and dangerous than we can imagine. Should humanity eventually receive a transmission from the depths of space, we would do well to treat it with great caution and consideration.


TOPICS: Astronomy; Science
KEYWORDS: malicious; seti; virus; xplanets

1 posted on 07/11/2012 2:09:12 PM PDT by LibWhacker
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To: LibWhacker
Is SETI at risk of downloading a malicious virus from outer space?

Quarantine it in an Airstream.

2 posted on 07/11/2012 2:11:11 PM PDT by Roccus
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To: LibWhacker

“about the possibility of inadvertently receiving or downloading a virus, he stressed that the possibility is extraordinarily low, but not impossible.”

It’s actually far more likely that I’d be able to flap my arms and fly to the moon, naked.


3 posted on 07/11/2012 2:14:39 PM PDT by Psycho_Bunny (Future generations will curse what we've done to them.)
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To: LibWhacker
they might be able to send a sequence of signals that would cause a memory buffer to overflow and perhaps allow arbitrary code execution.

buffer overflows come from poor assumptions about the data. For example allocating 256 bytes of memory but trying to load a text string into it until you hit a null character, even if that is more than 256. Since we don't expect any data format from the aliens (or the random noise of space), we don't make faulty assumptions of what that format will be.

4 posted on 07/11/2012 2:19:07 PM PDT by KarlInOhio (You only have three billion heartbeats in a lifetime.How many does the government claim as its own?)
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To: LibWhacker

The ones you’ve got to watch out for are the Arcturian advance fee schemes...


5 posted on 07/11/2012 2:19:45 PM PDT by Noumenon (I will not pay the Obama jizya.)
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To: LibWhacker

I can’t get some of my Mac applications to work on my PC. I doubt that aliens would have universal viral applications.


6 posted on 07/11/2012 2:19:52 PM PDT by Mikey_1962 (Obama: The Affirmative Action President.)
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To: LibWhacker
Is SETI at risk of downloading a malicious virus from outer space?

No... but in 2009 a malicious swine flu virus was spread by some illegal aliens.

7 posted on 07/11/2012 2:23:51 PM PDT by GregoTX (Federalist)
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To: LibWhacker

When things go wrong:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Virus_(1999_film)


8 posted on 07/11/2012 2:25:40 PM PDT by Truth29
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To: LibWhacker

A civilization of machines would not be constained by Sagan’s hypothesis. They could infect our machines to destroy us, in effect turning earth technology into Decepticons.


9 posted on 07/11/2012 2:27:31 PM PDT by omega4179 ( el 0bama comio un perro)
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To: LibWhacker

The invaders of “Independence Day” were destroyed by a Mac virus.

Which I why I use Windows....


10 posted on 07/11/2012 2:31:06 PM PDT by Old Sarge (We are now officially over the precipice, we just havent struck the ground yet)
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To: Noumenon

I use Macaferengi virus protection.

If you can outcheat them outright, they’re fine business partners.

Ferengi rules of acquisition

http://www.sjtrek.com/trek/rules/


11 posted on 07/11/2012 2:42:06 PM PDT by cripplecreek (What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world but loses his soul?)
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To: LibWhacker

how about this scenario?

A small group of computer intelligentsia get together, and device
a set of signals (which are a “ code “ of sorts) that are
beamed down to known SETI detectors, through a privately
launched satellite

These signals are non sensical, non codelike (computerwise) in simple
analysis, but are some type of code nevertheless.But when all of
these signals are fed into the SETI computers,
this non codelike information is built to find other data segments which have
been beamed down and fed into the SETI computer main
information bank. The code segments assimilate and
self assemble into a computer virus of sorts. From the
SETI banks this information is shared on millions of
computers, silently siphoning off information, and
turning the private computers into computer “zombies” which
send out malicious and information sucking code to other
connected networks. Pretty soon, you can knock out the whole
systems. They may even be able to tap into military/government
data banks....and disable the system when a emergency
situtation develops....

Bring back pigeons and pencils and paper.


12 posted on 07/11/2012 2:42:39 PM PDT by Getready (Wisdom is more valuable than gold and diamonds, and harder to find.)
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To: KarlInOhio
buffer overflows come from poor assumptions about the data. For example allocating 256 bytes of memory but trying to load a text string into it until you hit a null character, even if that is more than 256.

Ah, C-isms. Using Ada, or LISP-like languages and this problem goes away (unless you specifically tell it not to do bounds-checking): precisely because both were designed with a concept of array/list whose implementation required bounds. {In the case of LISP, the bounds being in-theory the memory of the Computer/VM [but wouldn't overflow, in any case]}

Since we don't expect any data format from the aliens (or the random noise of space), we don't make faulty assumptions of what that format will be.

I'm not so sure about that. The last few programs I've been on could be called horrid chimeras created and fostered by cut-and-paste. -- Sometimes assumptions are made in a certain section of code which are valid, but in another are invalid.

13 posted on 07/11/2012 2:54:42 PM PDT by OneWingedShark (Q: Why am I here? A: To do Justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with my God.)
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To: Noumenon
Subject: Nigerian Astronaut Wants To Come Home
Dr. Bakare Tunde
Astronautics Project Manager
National Space Research and Development Agency (NASRDA)
Plot 555
Misau Street
PMB 437
Garki, Abuja, FCT NIGERIA

Dear Mr. Sir,

REQUEST FOR ASSISTANCE-STRICTLY CONFIDENTIAL

I am Dr. Bakare Tunde, the cousin of Nigerian Astronaut, Air Force Major Abacha Tunde. He was the first African in space when he made a secret flight to the Salyut 6 space station in 1979. He was on a later Soviet spaceflight, Soyuz T-16Z to the secret Soviet military space station Salyut 8T in 1989. He was stranded there in 1990 when the Soviet Union was dissolved. His other Soviet crew members returned to earth on the Soyuz T-16Z, but his place was taken up by return cargo. There have been occasional Progrez supply flights to keep him going since that time. He is in good humor, but wants to come home.

In the 14-years since he has been on the station, he has accumulated flight pay and interest amounting to almost $ 15,000,000 American Dollars. This is held in a trust at the Lagos National Savings and Trust Association. If we can obtain access to this money, we can place a down payment with the Russian Space Authorities for a Soyuz return flight to bring him back to Earth. I am told this will cost $ 3,000,000 American Dollars. In order to access the his trust fund we need your assistance.

Consequently, my colleagues and I are willing to transfer the total amount to your account or subsequent disbursement, since we as civil servants are prohibited by the Code of Conduct Bureau (Civil Service Laws) from opening and/ or operating foreign accounts in our names.

Needless to say, the trust reposed on you at this juncture is enormous. In return, we have agreed to offer you 20 percent of the transferred sum, while 10 percent shall be set aside for incidental expenses (internal and external) between the parties in the course of the transaction. You will be mandated to remit the balance 70 percent to other accounts in due course.

Kindly expedite action as we are behind schedule to enable us include downpayment in this financial quarter.

Please acknowledge the receipt of this message via my direct number 234 (0) 9-234-2220 only.

Yours Sincerely, Dr. Bakare Tunde
Astronautics Project Manager
tip@nasrda.gov.ng

http://www.nasrda.gov.ng/

*********************************

14 posted on 07/11/2012 2:58:43 PM PDT by Charles Martel (Endeavor to persevere...)
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To: LibWhacker

Oh crap! We’re doomed! Some idiot is going to broadcast Windows Vista into space and the aliens are gonna come and nuke us.


15 posted on 07/11/2012 2:58:43 PM PDT by Ronin (Dumb, dependent and Democrat is no way to go through life - Rep. L. Gohmert, Tex)
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To: LibWhacker
especially if the incoming signal contains something malicious, like a computer virus or Trojan horse

Well, I guess that would provide the answer they're searching for.

16 posted on 07/11/2012 3:01:47 PM PDT by Cementjungle
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To: LibWhacker

On my “things I’m worried about” list, this possibility ranks just below the lack of trans-gendered bathrooms in Portland Oregon.


17 posted on 07/11/2012 3:05:21 PM PDT by dead (I've got my eye out for Mullah Omar.)
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To: Charles Martel

That poor Nigerian fellow!


18 posted on 07/11/2012 3:08:44 PM PDT by dead (I've got my eye out for Mullah Omar.)
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To: LibWhacker
Not one Apple computer has ever been infected with a computer virus written by aliens.
19 posted on 07/11/2012 3:10:43 PM PDT by HereInTheHeartland ("The writing is on the wall - Unions are screwed. reformist2 10:04 PM #27")
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To: LibWhacker

Perhaps we’ll download the secret formula for making Natasha Henstridge!


20 posted on 07/11/2012 3:13:53 PM PDT by jimmygrace
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To: LibWhacker
If humanity is gullible enough to accept the likes of Obama and Stalin and Lenin and Hitler and Ahmadinejad and Castro and Mao and Chavez, as leaders, then, we are gullible enough to accept viruses from alien civilizations that could destroy us. More proof of that, is the fact that, billions of people are willing to accept the lies of the global warming hoaxers, and would vote to re-elect Obama.

Plus, there will always be those who will feel the need to "explore" the alien signals, even as they knew that, there is a danger involved in doing so.
21 posted on 07/11/2012 3:17:52 PM PDT by adorno
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To: LibWhacker
This alien has asked to look at my hard drive. I will get back to you . . .


22 posted on 07/11/2012 3:21:47 PM PDT by freedomlover (Make sure you're in love - before you move in the heavy stuff)
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To: LibWhacker

First find simple bacteria on Mars and then we can worry about these supposed super aliens.


23 posted on 07/11/2012 3:24:08 PM PDT by ari-freedom
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To: LibWhacker
Y'all are aware that there is a group of people-- though I don't know how large (unless you count scientologists) who think aliens are already among us, and controlling us... and that only those "in the know" (like our power leaders) really know what's up.

This is an explanation of the bizarre "one world order" worldism of GHW Bush, Clintoonians, GW, and bamalamadingdong. It's all "part of the plan". That and legalizing loco weed to better "convey" the proles to their proper place. Hey, it worked for the Incan ruling class with mama coca!! This has been around since the TV show "The Invaders"... don't forget to look at the little finger!

24 posted on 07/11/2012 3:27:53 PM PDT by John S Mosby (Sic Semper Tyrannis)
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To: LibWhacker
without knowing the architecture of earthly electronics and the computer code running them, i fail to see how they could do much harm...
25 posted on 07/11/2012 3:28:37 PM PDT by Chode (American Hedonist - *DTOM* -ww- NO Pity for the LAZY)
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To: LibWhacker

Wouldn’t be funny if aliens were from an OSX world. And they all revered Windows. Yeah...that would be funny.


26 posted on 07/11/2012 3:31:05 PM PDT by Vermont Lt (I just hate our government. All of them. Republican and Democrat.)
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To: LibWhacker
"Carl Sagan always held firmly to his belief in benign aliens. He was convinced that any advanced civilization had to be friendly by default — that overly aggressive or misguided aliens would have destroyed themselves prior to advancing to such a stage. His theory suggested that an interstellar selectional effect was happening, and the only advanced aliens left standing would be the good ones. "

Sagan, like all liberals, understood nothing about human nature, or about nature in general. Anyone who did could never make the claim he made. There is nothing in nature or in man's history to indicate that advanced civilizations do anything other than despoil inferior cultures and supplant them with their own--mostly in the name of conquest.

Siemion and Cirkovic seem on a more likely track. My personal beliefs run along the line of Edward Harrison's solution to the Fermi Paradox.

The Fermi Paradox states:

The apparent size and age of the universe suggest that many technologically advanced extraterrestrial civilizations ought to exist. However, this hypothesis seems inconsistent with the lack of observational evidence to support it.

Harrison's solution?

An intelligent species beyond a certain point of technological capability will destroy other intelligence as it appears, as is exemplified by the theorised extermination of Neanderthals by early man. Such behavior would be an act of prudence: an intelligent species that has overcome its own self-destructive tendencies might view any other species bent on galactic expansion as a kind of virus.

We should keep our heads down. :)
27 posted on 07/11/2012 3:32:01 PM PDT by Sudetenland (Member of the BBB Club - Bye-Bye-Barry!!! President Barack "Down Low" Obama)
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To: LibWhacker

Just to be on the safe side... I’m playing ALL of my Slim Whitman albums... right now!!

And replaying Charlie Sheen in “The Arrival”, where I always wanted someone to spray the “grasshopper men” aliens with
bug spray— and have one say “This stuff just killlls me!!”


28 posted on 07/11/2012 3:32:30 PM PDT by John S Mosby (Sic Semper Tyrannis)
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To: Charles Martel

Splendid! Let’s do what we can to bring this poor man home. First - open airlock and start walking...


29 posted on 07/11/2012 3:33:24 PM PDT by Noumenon (I will not pay the Obama jizya.)
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To: ari-freedom

Yeah! I know that they are discovering planets at a furious clip these days, but we’re also learning the limits of habitability, not only on a solar system but also galactic scale. Too much radiation in the inner galactic regions.


30 posted on 07/11/2012 3:33:24 PM PDT by Tallguy (It's all 'Fun and Games' until somebody loses an eye!)
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To: adorno
So, in that regard... assuming these greater intelligence aliens have studied us and this predilection for stupidity and self destruction, perhaps they just "check in" every now and then to see if we've done ourselves in.

I tend to like "The Day the Earth Stood Still" , only in the abstract though, because Sagan-like, they assume that Klaatu's species is benign, though powerful. Sort of like world socialism, benign and overwhelming.

31 posted on 07/11/2012 3:44:19 PM PDT by John S Mosby (Sic Semper Tyrannis)
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To: John S Mosby
So, in that regard... assuming these greater intelligence aliens have studied us and this predilection for stupidity and self destruction, perhaps they just "check in" every now and then to see if we've done ourselves in.

You're not far from the truth.

The truth is that, humanity has not really advanced. Oh, yeah, we have advanced technologically, and knowledge-wise, but, we haven't advanced socially or governmentally or economically. We continue repeating the same mistakes of the past, which prevents us from moving forward and making the world a better place in which to live, socially and economically. Technology only allows us to destroy ourselves a lot faster, while we continue to pretend that, we are "progressing".
32 posted on 07/11/2012 3:50:35 PM PDT by adorno
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To: LibWhacker

Of course not! We’re not even getting pop-up advertising...


33 posted on 07/11/2012 4:33:45 PM PDT by Thorliveshere
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To: Charles Martel
Ha ha, sorry suckers, but I already assisted this man am currently waiting for the transfer.

However, I may need to borrow a few dollars to pay for internet since their was a banking glitch and the bank accidentally sent ALL of my money to Dr Tunde after I transferred the $3K. But don't worry, he seems legit and promised to return it.

34 posted on 07/11/2012 4:37:05 PM PDT by Repeat Offender (Why do cops have more lenient ROEs when facing us than troops in combat facing suicidal islamists?)
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To: dead

Yes, seems far-fetched, doesn’t it? I mean, if they are a billion years ahead of us technologically, they ought to be able to download their viruses directly to those wrinkly computers between our ears. Why bother with, what to them, must be primitive silicon-based technology?

It always gets me when people talk seriously about that ridiculous claim that a 100 billion years from now advanced “people” will be able to build a computer as large as the universe itself, using all the matter and energy in the univere, and resurrect everything that ever lived with it. Now, I do not know what the future will bring, but I can pretty much guarantee that the most awesome or wonderful or frightening or useful technology around in those far-distant days isn’t going to have anything to do with something primitive man (and that’s how we’ll be viewed) invented in 1950.


35 posted on 07/11/2012 5:08:59 PM PDT by LibWhacker
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To: Sudetenland

Sagan was a dreamer, we need dreamers, but we don’t need everyone making policy to be dreamers, we need realists too.


36 posted on 07/11/2012 5:13:18 PM PDT by GraceG
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To: LibWhacker

We use CISC chips, we are safe for now cause no sane species would use cisc chips.


37 posted on 07/11/2012 5:14:49 PM PDT by GraceG
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To: omega4179

The. Best solution if we find signals from apparently hostile aliens would be turn earth into “foretress earth” which would involve moving all life on earth underground while nuking the surface repeatedly and sending out fake news signals documenting a “world wide themonuclear war” then sucking all the air off the surface and leaving earth to be a “lifeless” rock and hoping the mothership finds mars a nicer place to pillage....


38 posted on 07/11/2012 5:19:53 PM PDT by GraceG
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To: GraceG

I hear IED’s work nicely.


39 posted on 07/11/2012 5:36:44 PM PDT by omega4179 ( el 0bama comio un perro)
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To: LibWhacker

“I am not able rightly to apprehend the kind of confusion of ideas that could provoke such a question.”
- Babbage (1864, father of computing)


40 posted on 07/11/2012 5:41:25 PM PDT by ctdonath2 ($1 meals: http://abuckaplate.blogspot.com)
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To: LibWhacker

“I am not able rightly to apprehend the kind of confusion of ideas that could provoke such a question.”
- Babbage (1864, father of computing)


41 posted on 07/11/2012 5:42:57 PM PDT by ctdonath2 ($1 meals: http://abuckaplate.blogspot.com)
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To: LibWhacker
Siemion speculated that, if an extraterrestrial intelligence had very deep knowledge of the software systems we use for our experiments and the architecture of our computers, they might be able to send a sequence of signals that would cause a memory buffer to overflow and perhaps allow arbitrary code execution.

Speculating without thinking is a common source of arbitrary stupid statement creation. Any signal describing a software system on earth can't propagate at more than the speed of light, so the information frontier for computers on earth is about 70 light years from where we are. Of course those machines used punch cards, and the information frontier for a Windows 7 machine is less than 5 light years out.

Assuming the aliens are only 10 light years from us if they write a virus and send it back we'll get it ten years from now, and it will be targeted at something like Windows 2000. I doubt it will have much effect on the SETI receivers. For the radio sources SETI is focused on the round trip time is measured in thousands of years. So the aliens are just getting signals representing the construction of the pyramids, or early Greek plays, assuming such signals could be detected by the aliens.

If we get directions for a better pyramid we'll know somebody is listening.

42 posted on 07/11/2012 6:44:42 PM PDT by freeandfreezing
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To: GraceG
Okay, I admit my view is rather pessimistic, but it appeals to my since of irony that we should rush out and broadcast to the universe, "Hey, everybody in the universe, here we are!" only to be wiped out by a super-paranoid predator race. We're out there announcing our presence without really knowing what we're doing or having a sufficiently advanced defense system to protect us from a civilization advanced enough to come to us--just in case.

Of course Sagan could be right . . . we (America) no longer walk completely rough-shod over primitive cultures--not since we became enlightened. :)
43 posted on 07/12/2012 5:23:20 AM PDT by Sudetenland (Member of the BBB Club - Bye-Bye-Barry!!! President Barack "Down Low" Obama)
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To: GraceG

Probably a wise strategy. Might be the Posleen coming. :)


44 posted on 07/12/2012 5:35:55 AM PDT by Sudetenland (Member of the BBB Club - Bye-Bye-Barry!!! President Barack "Down Low" Obama)
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To: KevinDavis; annie laurie; Knitting A Conundrum; Viking2002; Ernest_at_the_Beach; Mmogamer; ...
Probably not, because they wouldn't have adopted Windows in the first place. /rimshot! Thanks LibWhacker.
 
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45 posted on 07/16/2012 3:27:31 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
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To: SunkenCiv; LibWhacker

Back in the day a friend had male gray cockateil. Always screaming. One day we recorded it and played it back to the bird. It had a freaking MELTDOWN. Just sayin’.


46 posted on 07/16/2012 6:25:29 PM PDT by bigheadfred (MY PET TAPEWORM OBIWAN IS AN INSANE MILITARY HATING LEFTIST)
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