Yeah, it would be much better if we find them. If they have already found us we can assume they are benign. But that may not be the case for everyone that finds us.
Chances are that first contact will be benign by necessity. All hints point to the resources needed to move between the stars being considerable. Waging war at such distances would just be pointless stupidity for the most part. Neither side has anything to gain, nor a chance to win beyond what sense of accomplishment they get from destroying stuff the other side sent their way.
Edited: daishain on 27th Feb, 2017 - 11:37pm
If they are anything like us we can't rule out that pointless stupidity is in their DNA. I mean, Germany lost WW I by fighting a two from war. And then, about 20 years later they got into a war that ended being a two front war.
There is that, but under the circumstances, it can't really last. It'd be a very expensive and lengthy slap fight rather than a true war.
Unless they were so technologically advanced that they could destroy us with a single swat. Although that is unlikely and really to what end. Anything like that would probably render our natural resources useless too, so why do it?
You have to assume if they have the capability to reach us from light years away and we haven't reached past the moon.... We would have no chance. They could come here to take our resources or maybe they are looking for a new planet to colonize.
Kyr, we technically are capable of going to another star system now, its just so stupidly inefficient that it would be a matter of generational ships. Most of the feasible transport tech we can see in the future doesn't improve upon that situation by much.
Because of all that, I'm assuming that first contact with another race would be a handful of techy guys in a metal pod that cost a notable portion of their world's GDPG
But if we are talking about someone so far advanced that traversing the distance is easy enough to make war both doable and worthwhile… Nanites or bioagent, designed to wipe out humankind while leaving everything else intact. Sweep the planet clean of inhabitants for a colony.
And that's if they want Earth's ecology intact. If it is incompatible with their needs, they could just start terraforming and let us die off as the temperature changes significantly, or atmosphere gas mixture shifts.
Edited: daishain on 27th Feb, 2017 - 11:53pm
Let's hope they are like doctors in their thinking. You know, their first rule is do no harm. Or maybe like the Federation in Star Trek.