“As I grow older I am more convinced than ever that we are not alone. After a lifetime of wondering, I am helping to lead a new global effort to find out. The Breakthrough Listen project will scan the nearest million stars for signs of life, but I know just the place to start looking. One day we might receive a signal from a planet like Gliese 832c, but we should be wary of answering back.”
While “we come in peace” is often the opening line for aliens in Hollywood movies, Stephen Hawking warns us to be wary about beaming back a response to advanced alien life forms.
Any extraterrestrial civilization tuning into planet Earth will likely be billions of years ahead of humans in technology. “If so they will be vastly more powerful and may not see us as any more valuable than we see bacteria,” he said.
These comments were made in a new online film where Hawking talks about his emotional past, his career, and greatest passion. (Here is the spellbinding trailer of the film.)
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