Take the 2-minute tour ×
Science Fiction & Fantasy Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for science fiction and fantasy enthusiasts. It's 100% free, no registration required.

I'm looking for the name of a short story about a human space ship who makes first contact with aliens. Because neither species is willing to trust the other they don't want to leave for fear that the other ship will follow them and discover their home world. In the end they decide to exchange ships and by doing so share all their information and technology.

Also I believe that the aliens eyes were adapted to much lower light than humans...

share|improve this question
2  
An oldie but a goody. And one I can never stick a title and author too. Very frustrating. –  dmckee Jun 29 '12 at 19:23
1  
I know this story. The solution was a novel one. I will hunt around and see if I have it somewhere. –  Thaddeus Jun 29 '12 at 19:24

3 Answers 3

up vote 9 down vote accepted

I read this in the Astounding Science-Fiction Anthology and I believe the story you are referring to is called "First Contact" by Murray Leinster (1945).

share|improve this answer
1  
Thanks, that is the one! –  Jonathan Miller Jul 2 '12 at 15:49
2  
One detail that I remember about that story -- they conclude their future dealings are likely to be positive due to similarities in certain mental aspects... Because two members of the crews (one from each), once able to communicate, spend time trading dirty jokes :) –  K-H-W Jul 3 '12 at 15:06

Could it be First Contact (novelette)?

The story ends with each crew taking over the other's ship. Naturally, before leaving their own ship they are able to remove everything which might point back to their home world. Each stands to benefit from the new technology on the other's ship. Each keeps the other race's fiction library to gain insight into their thinking. They agree to repeat the encounter at the same location some time in the future.

share|improve this answer
1  
Thanks, that is the one! –  Jonathan Miller Jul 2 '12 at 15:50

Just bougth a 1962 "analog [science fact -> science fiction] magazine at a used book store. It contains a very similar story - Sleight of Wit by Gordon Dickinson, where a human colonialist scout makes first contact with an alien colonialist scout. They don't trust each other, etc. And in the end they trade ships. The difference is that the human succeeds in capturing the alien, by using his ultimate weapon - his brain.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.