Out of Contact

19 January 2016

It can't be easy being an alien invasion scriptwriter. You have the difficult choice of either an ending that knocks out the mothership or one that closes the portal. (Hint: Did the aliens arrive on a mothership?). Once that decision has been made, everything else is a spacewalk. Any remaining bad guys/drones/bugs are automatically de-hypnotised/deactivated/disorientated, then cut to the award ceremony on the remains of a previously significant building where hero(ine) finally kisses girl/boy/multi-tentacled love interest.

How long have we been buying that line?

Now think about human space missions; real or imaginary. Most of the planning/movie revolves around not having contact with the probe/astronaut. There's always the anxious wait for a response. And it's always late. It's never, "Oh thank god, we thought we lost you". "No, no, I'm still here, just had you on mute."

But maybe visiting Earth by your typical space faring race is like a trip to the shops. They would expect to have full Internet connectivity. After all, it's not like Earth is on the outskirts of the galaxy. So maybe in the not too distant future, we too will be completely lost if there's no cell phone signal. 

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