Dr. Hawking conjectured that three possibilities exist as to whether intelligent space aliens live out there in the universe.
1. Probably Not, no other intelligent life out there.
2. Yes, but if they are intelligent enough to send us signals they are probably also intelligent enough to have weapons of mass destruction (kinda like us humans here on Earth) and be a serious threat to Earth.
3. Yes, intelligent life exists in the universe but it is only fairly rare; however, primitive life is very much more common.
According to the April 23, 2010 Fox News article 'Primitive Alien Life May Exist, Stephen Hawking Says,' Dr. Hawking stated with respect to his third option: 'Primitive life is very common and intelligent life is fairly rare'¦. Some would say it has yet to occur on earth."
Page two continues with an extended comment from Dr. Hawking on why we should be cautious in contacting our neighbors out in space.
'To my mathematical brain, the numbers alone make thinking about aliens perfectly rational. The real challenge is to work out what aliens might actually be like.'
'We only have to look at ourselves to see how intelligent life might develop into something we wouldn't want to meet. I imagine they might exist in massive ships, having used up all the resources from their home planet. Such advanced aliens would perhaps become nomads, looking to conquer and colonize whatever planets they can reach.'
'If aliens ever visit us, I think the outcome would be much as when Christopher Columbus first landed in America, which didn't turn out very well for the Native Americans.'
Although Dr. Hawking believes that space aliens exist he also states that it is very unlikely that we've made contact with them here on Earth'”especially so many times as with people who say they have had alien abductions.
He stated in the lecture that people who state they have been abducted by space aliens are 'weirdoes.'
Though such abductions are unlikely to have occurred, Dr. Hawking warned'”just like someone should have warned the natives of the New World about Columbus' arrival'”that: "Watch out if you would meet an alien. You could be infected with a disease with which you have no resistance." [Fox News]
So, threats could come from biological infections and viruses, and also might come in the form of military weapons brought by aliens to our planet or found on their home planet if we should ever make it that far out from our home solar system.
Page three concludes with what is a good course of action for humans for the next million years or so, along with an exiting new series featuring Dr. Hawking.
Dr. Hawking will state these and other comments on a new Discovery Channel series called 'Into the Universe with Stephen Hawking."
The special series was first broadcast in the United States on Sunday, April 25, 2010, and will be broadcast in the United Kingdom starting in May 2010.
According to the Discovery Channel: 'Into The Universe with Stephen Hawking is an epic new kind of cosmology series, a Planet Earth of the heavens. It takes the world's most famous scientific mind and sets it free, powered by the limitless possibilities of computer animation."
"Hawking gives us the ultimate guide to the universe, a ripping yarn based on real science, spanning the whole of space and time -- from the nature of the universe itself, to the chances of alien life, and the real possibility of time travel.'