And now for something more or less unfigured-out yet

LizKat

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From Bloomberg: A Planet is Found. At Least That's What we Hope It Is

Just in time for summer movie season comes news that something huge is lurking out there at the edge of the solar system. It’s really big. It’s never before been detected. It’s warping gravity fields. No, it’s not the latest Michael Bay disaster-fest or the mothership from “Independence Day.” It’s not the hypothesized Planet 9 that everyone was talking about a little over a year ago. Probably it’s another planet. Or maybe that mothership.

...

Here’s the thing to remember about rogue planets: They’re not just wanderers; they can be destroyers, too. Simulations tell us that some 60 percent of rogue planets that enter the solar system would bounce out again. But in 10 percent of cases, the rogue will take another planet along as it departs.

Just like that, Neptune is gone. Or Mars. Or, you know, us.
Somewhere around the time of Americans setting foot on the moon, I remarked to my grandma that it seemed to me she and my grandpa were living in the most amazing times of human history, to have had grandparents who didn't even have electricity in their homes and yet to have grandchildren who could end up (as one has done) becoming aeronautical engineers. She said the most interesting times are always ahead, that we could never imagine far enough into the future to envision what it could bring us or what our human potential might be able to make of it.

Anyway it's pretty interesting that something -- no, several somethings-- are wandering around out there that are roughly the size of planet Earth and managing to mess up the orbital behavior of our solar system's planets, and we haven't nailed them down for an ID yet? I always figured my grandma was talking more about stuff like the iPods we hadn't the imagination to invent until Steve Jobs showed up. Now I'm starting to think she meant stuff like rogue planets.

Bring the funds to bear on further research! I am ready for something besides Trump on the front page, and why shouldn't it be the discovery of a couple rogue planets seeking to play billiards in our solar system. Of course I hope if these curious objects are rogue planets, or even if they're not, that they manage to continue their journey to the future without making a mess of our neighborhood.

Maybe they are intergalactic peace officers sent here in a kind of Trojan horse mockup of a rogue planet, and meaning to give Donald Trump a message: "Quit messing around with the planet or we'll show you what messing around with the planet can amount to." Heh. Making America great again, one rogue planet impersonator at a time.
 

Gutwrench

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I'm pretty sure it's my old partner's mother-in-law. She broke his toilet once.
 

darksithpro

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Here's something interesting. What's the difference between direct and indirect contact with aliens? What would you classify as indirect contact?




 
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localoid

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Here's something interesting. What's the difference between direct and indirect contact with aliens? What would you classify as indirect contact
I'm pretty sure indirect contact is when the aliens send us a card, phone us, or send email or e-postcards, like they sometimes do on Christmas, Valentines Day, and Fathers Day. I don't mind those so much, but when they leave a single black rose under my windshield wipers it really creeps me out.
 

LizKat

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Here's something interesting. What's the difference between direct and indirect contact with aliens? What would you classify as indirect contact?
Heh... Jimmy Kimmel is an alien trying to find out what the presidents know about him...

I don't know. I don't think aliens would likely have humanoid characteristics. So... it's possible any contact we make would either be undetectable or else maybe pretty much instantly fatal. Indirect or direct, how would it matter if we never really get to experience it?

Maybe there are ways we could deduce contact has occurred, as we now deduce that rogue planets are out there perturbing orbits of our solar system's objects.

We make a lot of assumptions when we speak of aliens, usually, e.g. that other "life" forms have to observe our laws of mathematics, physics, chemistry. Yet we still have various anomalies in our current understanding of the universe, situations for which we account only by making some other assumption, such as that our accounting of dark matter is true or relevant. Or that before the Big Bang there was nothing. Or that there's just one universe, or that we're not just a simulation of a universe, or that we are all actually in the same simulation of a universe.

I'm pretty sure the earth is more than six thousand years old,,,, past that I keep an open mind about the possibility of contacts with aliens. I tend to think they, like us, would have an initially hostile reaction to direct contact, unfortunately, if we could even detect that we were connecting with an alien force.

For all we know, perhaps it's true that fire, rain, ice and wind are alien gods, even if we think we know what causes them. We sure God don't control them very well, do we.
 

LizKat

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I refuse to believe any of this...

... until the Kids Learning Tube Channel has a catchy song for it. ;)

BL.
Hah, good one. Maybe they could adapt the T-Rex video for use in explaining rogue planet behavior.

Seems roughly on the money. A bit of a bully, goes where it wants to... still up for debate if it was a scavenger or a predator... bigger than a lot of stuff in the neighborhood at the time... :p