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Why We May Be Confused When the Second Alien Probe or Ship Arrives on Earth

If you were the leader of a country and you were choosing a vessel and a crew to travel on a tip across the ocean to a new land, would you send your best vessel and your top sailors? “Probably” is a good answer not knowing the mission. If the purpose of the trip was to find a new land to move to because yours was in danger of falling into the ocean, then would you send the best of the best? Of course you would. Now, what if, after a year, they hadn’t returned and you need to send another crew to either find them or try the mission again. Would you send last year’s model of boat or would you send the latest technology with sailors trained to use it? You know the latter is the answer. In fact, the smarter crew on the faster boat might even find the older boat, overtake it and reach the new land first. That is the logic a University of California astronomer used in a new paper proposing that the same thing might happen with aliens visiting Earth – those who left their planet first might be the last to arrive, while those showing up first might be the smartest the planet has to offer using its best technology. Would this be confusing? Could it really happen? Let’s see if he’s right.

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