The Amazing Meeting 2014

Like it? Share it!

Sign up for news and updates!






Enter word seen below
Visually impaired? Click here to have an audio challenge played.  You will then need to enter the code that is spelled out.
Change image

CAPTCHA image
Please leave this field empty

Login Form



A UFO Explanation PDF Print E-mail
Swift
Written by Jeffrey Wagg   

As I've said before, UFO's are real! Yes, there are Unidentified Flying Objects. They may be extraterrestrial, but before we draw that conclusion, maybe we should look at some terrestrial explanations?

Consider this link. 19 articles refer to the UFO in the video at the right. What could it be? News articles appeared in India, Croatia, the UK, the US, and many other places. Seems like a big deal! Could this be the smoking gun that UFO buffs have sought for years? Do we finally have proof positive that we're being visited by otherworldly creatures?

Consider this bit from the Telegraph UK article:

... the unidentified black metal object stands out clearly against the blue sky, where it can be seen darting up and down for more than 10 minutes.

So they know its 1) black, 2) metal and, 3) darting.

Let's take these one by one.

1) Black. Well, it appears to be black, but from a video clip backlit by the sun, it could be any number of colors. A minor point, to be sure.

2) Metal. So, how do they know it's metal? Was it attracted to magnets? Did someone hit it with a photospectrometer? I can't see any way to determine the objects composition from this video.

3) Darting. Someone could have possibly described this behavior, but from the video they linked to, it's impossible to tell if the object is moving or if the camera is moving. The zoom is set to such an extreme level, the slightest shaking of the camera would make the object seem to move quickly.

Now consider this next video. Think that might explain it? I think it might.

I often ask ghost hunters how they know they're seeing ghosts and not aliens. I've heard things like "it feels like a ghost" and "someone died here, so ghosts make more sense" and even "it doesn't look like an alien." But honestly, we don't know what these things are, or what they look like. If something strange is happening in your basement, and you can't explain it, I posit that aliens are as likely an explanation as ghosts or gnomes, trolls, unicorns, or even snuffleupagus.

We love to have answers, and when answers aren't readily available, we tend to make them up. Undefined terms like "alien" and "ghost" are convenient scapegoats for explaining strange things. And yet assigning such labels should give us no comfort; the add no information, no predictablilty, and no course of action.

As an alternative, I suggest people learn to be comfortable with the phrase "I don't know." In fact, I think I might make some T-shirts that say that, just to get people aware of the idea.

Trackback(0)
Comments (26)Add Comment
...
written by daveg703, February 14, 2009
Well said, Jeff- as usual. I especially like your idea for the "I Don't Know" T shirts, and wish to place my order for two of them right now! I suggest that they might read "I Simply Don't Know", or "I Just Don't Know". You might produce a whole series of them. I'd like one of them to be in either Hebrew or Greek, for I'm going to give that one to a Fundamentalist friend who says the Bible is "really a science book", with the explanation and answer for everything. Eventually he may get around to translating that phrase- and will be absolutely furious with me. I smile with anticipation. ;-)

You're quite right about people wanting answers, and I'm among them, but I will not accept a wrong answer,(or a seriously questionable one) , just so that I can say I have one. I am quite willing to wait for a good one.

report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +3
...
written by MadScientist, February 14, 2009
I can't see any videos!

I like the bit about asking ghost hunters how they know it's a ghost and not an alien - that's an original one. On the other hand I think it makes more sense to be probed and molested by a ghost rather than an alien so perhaps I should ask victims of alien molestation how they know it's an alien and not a ghost.
report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +1
I'm so gonna do this!...
written by SheldonHelms, February 14, 2009
Arrgh! I'm so frustrated that I watched that video at 11:57pm. Now I have to wait until tomorrow to try this! To punish you, I'm concentrating on making you urinate, Jeff! I predict my curse will be effective within the next 24 hours. Let me know when my check is coming, btw. : )
report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +1
...
written by polomint38, February 14, 2009
Something similar from the natural history museum, ready made for lazy people (althouh a lotmor expensive.) smilies/cry.gif

http://www.bouncyhappypeople.co.uk/pages/product/product.asp?prod=indp100893&gclid=CN_e4J6H3pgCFQ0zQgodhhBwdw&cookie_test=1
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uswvFfpGovU
report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: -1
...
written by kenhamer, February 15, 2009
And for even more fun, tape a couple of these babies on ( http://tinyurl.com/d9q6yl ) and send it up at night. You can often buy these or similar trinkets at dollars stores.
report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +0
...
written by CryoTank, February 15, 2009
Even Data in Star Trek stated that "I don't know" was a perfectly reasonable (and scientific) statement smilies/grin.gif

Sign me up for the T-Shirts too smilies/smiley.gif
report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +1
A practical use
written by trawnajim, February 15, 2009
I couldn't help thinking, after viewing the second video, that anyone making these could actually put them to a practical purpose. Why not attach a note somehow, with the point of origin and a contact address so that if/when it is found the trajectory can be determined. At least that might mitigate the apparent environmental impact of having loads of plastic bags landing who know where. It could actually provide some valuable meteorological information.
report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +2
...
written by bosshog, February 15, 2009
Isn't it amazing the stupid things people will say and do to avoid looking stupid?
report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +1
And on the back..
written by rosie, February 15, 2009
I like the idea of the "I don't know" T-shirt, but I think there should be a second slogan on the back: "And neither do you".
report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +9
...
written by Mully410, February 15, 2009
"I often ask ghost hunters how they know they're seeing ghosts and not aliens." Nice job, Jeff. I love this question. I'm sure I'll get tons of mileage out of it. Thanks.
report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +1
...
written by Cuddy Joe, February 15, 2009
Ghosts and aliens are not mutally exclusive, of course. One could see the ghost of an alien. In theory. As a point of logic. Well, OK. It's all horse hockey.
report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +2
...
written by Willy K, February 15, 2009
they know its 1) black, 2) metal and, 3) darting


Wouldn't an astronomer say these are accurate descriptions?
Anything that does not emit light is black.
Anything made of elements heavier that helium is metal.
It's in the UK, every night they go down to the pub, get pissed and play darts?
report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: -4
...
written by Willy K, February 15, 2009
One night I saw a light in the sky, then it disappeared. Of course there can only one possible explanation that is scientifically valid.

It was an inter-galactic spacecraft piloted by an alien from a small planet somewhere in the vicinity of Betelgeuse by the name of Ford Prefect.

This is the only conclusion any rational, god-fearing, ghost-hunting, spirit communicating, non-evolved, person could make.

Now Randi will not only have to give me that $1,000,000 he will have to be my butler for one years time. smilies/grin.gif
report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +1
...
written by bigjohn756, February 15, 2009
@kenhamer

Good idea, except that these things need sunlight to work. Maybe if you launched one in the afternoon it would still be up after dark with its lights still blinking.
report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +2
...
written by MadScientist, February 15, 2009
Awesome! All with some large garbage bags. That makes more sense than my childhood attempts at a garbage bag hot-air baloon (which always ended with a molten smoldering blob that used to be a garbage bag).

The first video is pretty poor quality and at first glance it looks like something was deployed with a model rocket. There is what appears to be a parachute on the top end of whatever that cylinder was (garbage bag inflated with compressed gas, with the gas canister weighing down one end of the bag?)
report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +0
...
written by MadScientist, February 15, 2009
@trawnajim:

I don't know if tracking flying garbage bags will have any useful purpose. Meteorologists and others who do launch baloons are often very wary about the wind conditions at launch - it really depends a lot on the payload. If it's just a pressure/temperature/ozone sonde the entire unit might only cost $2000 or less and in some cases simple sondes like these are launched daily and automatically near airports. If an instrument costs $30k or more, the people launching it generally want to launch under conditions favorable to recovery. Folks at the JPL, for example, have launched huge baloons with about $500k or so worth of instrumentation and in most cases the instrument is retrieved. Some people have told me that there have been a few problems and an ocasional loss of a large instrument but I can't say I have any information to back up that claim. For an example of the larger variety of instruments that people launch, look for "MIPAS-B" (the baloon-borne version of the MIPAS instrument).
report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +0
...
written by Cuddy Joe, February 15, 2009
Not that I would ever perpetrate a UFO hoax, but I'd like to add that the garbage bag effect is greatly enhanced by the addition of reflective stickers, or the shiny side of pieces of aluminum foil, or even Christmas tree tinsel, and if you pinch-rig the four bag set-up in the middle it gives it a flying V look. Not that I would ever perpetrate a UFO hoax.

report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +1
...
written by cullen, February 15, 2009
Wouldn't an astronomer say these are accurate descriptions?
Anything that does not emit light is black.
Anything made of elements heavier that helium is metal.

Er, no. Things can reflect light (not emit) and not be black. And no one familiar with chemistry would say that elements like oxygen, carbon, silicon, or xenon (just to name a few) are metals.
report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +4
Useless to chide the MSM any more over UFOs...
written by Chris Long, February 16, 2009
We need to give up on the MSM already. They ain't ever gonna' change and we know that...

It was a trash bag thingie like in the video - or something very close - but to the MSM and the woo-woo crowd it will always be a UFO...to them, further 'proof' scientists "don't know everything" etc.
report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +0
Useless to chide the MSM any more over UFOs...
written by Chris Long, February 16, 2009
We need to give up on the MSM already. They ain't ever gonna' change and we know that...

It was a trash bag thingie like in the video - or something very close - but to the MSM and the woo-woo crowd it will always be a UFO...to them, further 'proof' scientists "don't know everything" etc.
report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +0
...
written by Cuddy Joe, February 16, 2009
We can separate UFO believers and other woos from media. Folks believe woo crap for all these reasons with which we're familiar, and while some in the media may also be believers, for the most part they put woo stuff up front because of the 'mystery' aspect - it sells copy (or raises online hits, or TV ratings, etc.).

Have you noticed how most TV weather predicts from the worst end of the spectrum of incoming weather probabilities? It is not lost on the producers of these shows that when there's a hurricane looming offshore or some other major weather problem, ratings go through the roof in anticipation, that the more negative the weather forecast, the more people tune it to check it out.

In a like manner, people love a mystery, a freaky narrative, so if some lady with 43 cats and stacks of newspapers all over her porch says she's a psychic witch, by golly, that's something they want to highlight. And if six people out of a city population of 200,000 mistook an ad banner towed behind an airplane for an alien scout ship, hey, get a reporter and a cameraman on that pronto - even if the reporter and cameraman and everyone else in town knows it was an ad banner being towed by an airplane. The outre, anomalies, weird claims, oddball people, etc., all sell.

Dog Bites Man = Not News
Man Bites Dog = News

My overall point is that though the media reports paranormal crap, it doesn't always believe it, and often knows the real cause of a mystery. They consider this stuff to be fluff stories and lower already dubious journalistic ethical standards even further. In that virtually all MSM is in recession and has been for many years, this dynamic is on the rise.
report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +1
The MSM lends an air of credence to woo-woo by reporting...
written by Chris Long, February 16, 2009
...all the UFO and psychic junk.

We have all heard woo-woos say things like "Then how come it was ON THE NEWS ?" -- as if that in itself somehow validates bogus assertions...AS SEEN ON TV !!!
report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +0
...
written by Cuddy Joe, February 17, 2009
I think it more accurate to say that some/most believers assume credence for anything appearing in the news.
report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +0
...
written by Habenero, February 18, 2009
If I were going to create a ufo, I would use a clear dry cleaner bag, a thin wire hoop, tinsel, a small balloon with butane, a couple of tea candles and a birthday candle with a fuse that is set to ignite when the candle burns low enough leading to the butane filled balloon. This provides a light source, small radar reflection, and more importantly, it goes out in a flash. Launch the hot air balloon near sunset or after dark in a damp area. Not that I would do such a thing. BTW, if you choose to be the perpetrator of this kind of hoax, be very sure to check that the air space you launch it in is not a restricted one near a military base. You could make the news, but not in a good way. Just because you can do something, is not always justification to do it.
report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +0
I Don't Know... shirts
written by w_nightshade, February 20, 2009
I would suggest the front of the shirt reads "I don't know..." and the back reads "...and that is OK".
report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +2
...
written by Haller, February 20, 2009
And four more garbage bags head for the North Pacific Gyre.
...8 more...12 more...
report abuse
vote down
vote up
Votes: +0

Write comment
This content has been locked. You can no longer post any comment.
You must be logged in to post a comment. Please register if you do not have an account yet.

busy