Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Where can I get a job like that??

NASA scientists (and I use the term scientist loosely) are being paid to come up with scenarios such as one included in a report that
"...speculates that aliens, worried we might inflict the damage done to our own planet on others, might "seek to preemptively destroy our civilization in order to protect other civilizations from us."
"Humanity may just now be entering the period in which its rapid civilizational expansion could be detected by an ETI because our expansion is changing the composition of Earth's atmosphere (e.g. via greenhouse gas emissions), which therefore changes the spectral signature of Earth," the study says.
"While it is difficult to estimate the likelihood of this scenario, it should at a minimum give us pause as we evaluate our expansive tendencies."
And it could be that aliens will show up and offer to solve all of humankind's problems, including curing cancer in order to fatten us up and transport us to their home planet in order to eat us...  Oh wait, that's been done....

But seriously, I've read enough sci-fi that I could come up with any numbers of alternate scenarios as laid out by the writers of the past, I don't need to be a highly paid "scientist"......


Old NFO said...

Nah, that wouldn't work... You actually HAVE a personality and deal with reality... Those scientists, not so much!

Midwest Chick said...

Thanks for the complement! In the far distant past, I used to hang out with geologists and such so these NASA guys are party-animals by comparison.

quizikle said...

NFO: but...but..."scientists" have to deal with Global Warming. What could be more real than that?

MC: Professionally and personally familiar with both. You must have known an exceptionally dull group of geologists. The ones I know are handicapped to the use of only 1 hand - the other seems permanently attached to a beer.

Side note: this was not a NASA study although a NASA employee - may or may not be a "scientist" - was third author. This was a university "what if" study. The original paper is here: http://sethbaum.com/ac/2011_ET-Scenarios.pdf

Problem is the Fox "News" interpretation of a story coming from a university.
Exaggeration of the absurd.

Old NFO said...

LOL- Good point MC, and quizkle too :-)

Midwest Chick said...

Q--I understand about the geologists. The ones I knew were getting up in age and had to slow down a bit. It was the mechanical engineers I had to watch out for--tricky little buggers.

Thanks for the info on the study. Still want to know how people get paid for stuff like that, when they aren't sci-fi writers.