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UFOs Filmed Over London — Or Not

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For extraterrestrials notoriously shy about making their presence known to Earthlings, they have been making more and more appearances in home videos over the past six months.

One of the most famous was the UFO that appeared over the Dome of the Rock, an Islamic shrine in Jerusalem, on January 28. Discovery News writer Ian O’Neill published one of the first analyses of the video (based in part on my own investigation), demonstrating that it was “almost certainly a hoax.”

A more comprehensive analysis by the Mutual UFO Network (MUFON), one of the oldest, largest, and most respected UFO investigation organizations in the world, also later concluded that it was faked.

A few months later, on April 21, another ‘alien’ home video surfaced. This one, allegedly taken in Russia, showed two young men finding an alien body on a rural, snowy farm. It, too, was soon revealed to be a hoax.

Now, right on schedule, comes yet another UFO home video, this one taken in London, England. According to a report in the Daily Mail:

“In the video, the cameraman runs towards the corner of Bolsover Street and Clipstone Street where two other men are already standing, gazing skywards, one of whom is using a mobile phone camera. As the camera is pointed upwards, over the BBC’s Yalding House, three white dots flash across the sky at great speed in a triangle formation, they are very quickly followed by two similar sized white dots. As the camera pans down again, two people on the opposite side of the road can also been seen watching events unfold above them. Then one larger, bright and more slow moving disc-shaped white object appears, circles around briefly and zips off.”

The video, one of at least two similar videos, was posted to YouTube last week and soon went viral over the Web, stirring interest and controversy among believers and skeptics alike.

Though evidence may eventually validate the video, a preliminary analysis strongly suggests that this video, like the others, is a hoax. For one thing, it’s not clear who shot the video, or even when; anonymous eyewitnesses are a red flag.

Furthermore, the UFOs (like the one that appeared in the hoaxed Jerusalem video) are very easy to fake with video-editing software, mere spots of light without structure or detail.

Adding fuel for the skeptical grist, it seems that no one else on the busy London street near the British Broadcasting Building saw the many bright glowing objects in the sky. Logic suggests that there would have been thousands of eyewitnesses, yet the cameraman captured an event that apparently no one else saw.

It’s also suspicious that though the video shows others recording the amazing event, no other photos or videos from the same angle have surfaced. Surely one of the other UFO eyewitnesses present (and seen in the video) would have come forward in the past weeks to sell their own photographs or videos to a newspaper or television station — perhaps the BBC would be interested, since it occurred above their building.

Faked UFO videos may be fun for hoaxers (or as viral marketing), but even many people firmly convinced that UFOs are real are getting tired of the hoaxes. After all, how will we know when the real UFO videos surface? No one likes to be fooled, and the best preventative is to examine all the evidence with a sense of history and a skeptical eye.


Via Discovery

Sci-fi master turns into film character

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The latest movie based on Philip K. Dick’s offbeat science-fiction stories features one especially offbeat character … named Philip K. Dick.

“Radio Free Albemuth,” an indie film that is getting a sneak-preview screening tonight at the Experience Music Project and Science Fiction Museum in Seattle, incorporates some of the wilder parts of Dick’s biography — including his belief that he was getting information from a superintelligent, extraterrestrial entity called VALIS (Vast Active Living Intelligence System).

“Dick was very skeptical of these experiences,” John Alan Simon, the screenwriter, director and producer for “Radio Free Albemuth,” told me this week. “Some people think he was crazy. But if he was, he was a very lucid, skeptical kind of crazy.”

Simon will participate in a Q&A at the Seattle screening, which kicks off a weekend celebration for new inductees in the Science Fiction Hall of Fame. Dick, who passed away in 1982, is already in that Hall of Fame — in part because his works have been such a fertile ground for sci-fi film adaptations such as “Blade Runner,” “Minority Report,” “Total Recall,” ” A Scanner Darkly” and “The Adjustment Bureau.”

Unlike those tales, “Radio Free Albemuth” is set in an alternate-reality past rather than the future: a past in which a Nixon-like president burns the Watergate tapes and creates a conspiracy theory aimed at keeping him in office. Meanwhile, VALIS transmits messages down to a resistance movement. Philip K. Dick (played by Shea Whigham in the movie) is among those who are drawn into the resistance, along with the story’s protagonist (Nicholas Brady, played by Jonathan Scarfe) and a singer whose songs are encoded with subliminal messages.

The singer’s role is filled by Alanis Morissette, the Canadian-American singer/actress who just happened to play God in the 1999 film “Dogma.” Whigham is best-known for his role in the HBO series “Boardwalk Empire,” while Scarfe has appeared in a number of TV series including “E.R.” and “CSI: Miami.” Most of the actors have had meaty roles in films and on TV, but Simon said “Radio Free Albemuth” is more about Dick’s vision rather than about big-name movie stars.

“The movie asks a lot of very, very interesting questions about ‘What is religion,’ and ‘What is God,’ and ‘What do you do if God begins sending messages to you?'” he told me. “What if God were an alien, and what if all the great religious movements of all time were inspired by the same over-intelligence in the universe? I found that a very intriguing notion. … The movie is skeptical of answers, the same way Philip K. Dick was skeptical of religion.”

Another theme in the film is sparked by the conflict between the government and the resistance. “It’s the message of ‘1984,’ the message of Huxley’s ‘Brave New World,’ which is the importance of the individual over the supremacy of the state,” Simon said. “That’s a timeless message.”

But the director also emphasized that the film wasn’t just a philosophical treatise. “It is, at the end of the day, an exciting science-fiction thriller. … not that dissimilar from ‘The Da Vinci Code,'” Simon said.

“Radio Free Albemuth” has been making its way through the film-festival circuit, and so far it’s gotten awards as well as accolades for staying true to the spirit of Dick’s work, even if that means the movie gets a little talky at times.

“While watching ‘Radio Free Albemuth’ has made me wonder whether stage or radio may be a better platform for a Dick adaptation, I came away from the film with that unique Dickian sense of unease, insignificance and wonder, and it’s good to see his work reproduced so faithfully on the big screen, flawed or not,”Quiet Earth’s” Ben Austwick wrote.

Simon said he hopes “Radio Free Albemuth” will build on the same sort of grass-roots interest that turned “What the Bleep Do We Know” into such a phenomenon seven years ago.

The movie seems certain to win over the sci-fi master’s hard-core fans, who call themselves “Dick-heads.” But will the wider public dial in to “Radio Free Albemuth” as well? Stay tuned. …



Are we alien life forms ?

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A meteorite that exploded above Canada 11 years ago has provided strong evidence that life’s building blocks came from space.

Fragments of the rock that landed on Tagish Lake, British Columbia, yielded a mix of organic compounds.

They included amino acids and monocarboxylic acids, both essential to the evolution of the first simple life forms on Earth.

Analysis of the chemicals revealed information about their history on the asteroid from which the meteorite came, and lent weight to the theory that organic material originates in gas and dust clouds between the stars.

We are star dust: Lake Tagish in British Columbia yielded fragments of space rock that have led scientists to conclude that the building blocks of life originated in clouds of dust and gas between the stars

We are star dust: Lake Tagish in British Columbia yielded fragments of space rock that have led scientists to conclude that the building blocks of life originated in clouds of dust and gas between the stars.

If the theory is right, the building blocks of life would have been spread throughout our developing solar system.

They may, for example, also have provided a foothold for life on Mars.

Lead researcher Dr Chris Herd, of the University of Alberta, said: ‘The mix of pre-biotic molecules, so essential to jump-starting life, depended on what was happening out there in the asteroid belt.

‘The geology of an asteroid has an influence on what molecules actually make it to the surface of the Earth.’

The findings were published today in the journal Science.

Proof: Scientists now believe there is compelling evidence that human beings owe their existence to organic compounds found in deep space

Proof: Scientists now believe there is compelling evidence that human beings owe their existence to organic compounds found in deep space.

Experts are confident that the chemicals they analysed were not the result of contamination from the Earth.

Mark Sephton, a geochemist at Imperial College London, who was not involved in the study told The Scientist: ‘It’s real evidence of hydro-synthesis occurring in asteroids and creating compounds that might be biologically useful,’

Meteorite expert: Dr Chris Herd of the Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Alberta
The four-metre-wide Tagish Lake meteorite exploded after heating up as it passed through the atmosphere 30 to 50 kilometres above the Earth.Pieces of the rock rained down on the frozen, snow-covered lake where they were preserved in sub-zero temperatures.

Water in the parent asteroid altered the organic compounds buried within it, leaving signatures that could be read in the meteorite fragments.

They indicated that the organic material had existed and undergone chemical processing since the birth of our solar system.

A man found nearly two pounds of the space rock in 2000 after the meteorite had exploded.

In order to preserve them and prevent any contamination he kept them frozen until 2008, when a consortium of Canadian research institutions bought them for $850,000.



Via DailyMail

Squadron of UFOs flying over California?

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The Internet is abuzz over an alleged UFO sighting in the night sky over Oakland, California.

Three fast-moving dots of light can be seen travelling close together in a video posted on YouTube by a KevinMC360.

The ‘UFO squadron’ shows the three lights in a triangular pattern spotted on May 26.

Scroll down for video

Spotted: Three fast-moving dots of light can be seen travelling close together

Spotted: Three fast-moving dots of light can be seen travelling close together

Cynics claim the cameraman has merely captured a flock of birds, but Kevin insists the sighting was genuine.

In the film, he follows a plane as a point of reference.



‘For all you bird lovers out there you can call them geese, if you like, but I will only laugh at you,’ he said.

The UFO video has already attracted more than 2,500 viewings.

He posted it a year after claiming to have filmed ‘a group of spacecraft’ over Oakland.

‘I got them. There was a squadron of spacecraft,’ he claimed in the video, which shows five lights in a V-formation.

That video has been viewed more than 23,780 times.


Via DailyMail

Detecting wandering worlds that host life

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Some planets that roam the galaxy without a star to call home still may be able to host life. Finding such rogue planets is difficult, but new research suggests these wandering worlds could be detected by their atmospheric auroras.

Interstellar planets — those without stars to orbit — could serve as havens for . They are often thought to be nearly invisible, since they are much dimmer than stars and do not have any suns nearby to illuminate them. Now, however, research suggests these worlds might be detected by their auroras.

Interstellar planets might either be rogue planets that were originally born around a star and were later cast out by gravitational tugs of war, or sub-brown dwarfs that formed alone in interstellar space. Scientists have suggested that interstellar planets could support life under or even on their surfaces.

“It has been speculated that Earth-like rogue planets could have very thick atmosphere that keeps them relatively warm, or moons of giant rogue planets could experience tidal heating and have oceans beneath their icy surface,” said planetary scientist Heikki Vanhamaki at the Finnish Meteorological Institute in Helsinki.

Detecting wandering worlds that host life

Planets reflect light from their host star, making them visible in the blackness of space. A new study says that planets can be detected from their auroras even if a planet has no reflected starlight, does not have a gravitational influence on a star, and does not pass in front of a star from our point of view. Credit: ESO

Planet hunters have used a variety of methods to detect the indirect effects extrasolar planets have on their host stars, because the planets themselves are too small and dim to be seen by our telescopes. For example, the slight gravitational wobble an orbiting planet induces in its parent star — called the radial velocity method — is one way to detect a far-off world. Another way to find a planet is when it passes directly in front of its star from our point of view, causing a momentary dimming of starlight.

Scientists recently suggested that alien worlds around distant stars could be detected by looking for radio waves given off by their auroras. Now Vanhamaki calculates the same technique might work for interstellar planets.

Auroras occur when charged particles interact with magnetic fields. There are two ways that detectable auroral radiation might emerge from interstellar planets — either from the worlds passing through interstellar plasma, or from moons of interstellar planets as they zip through fields of plasma trapped in that planet’s magnetic field, as is the case with Jupiter and its moon Io, Vanhamaki said.

Vanhamaki found that auroral emissions linked with moons were roughly 100 times stronger than that from interstellar planets colliding with interstellar plasma.

“Motion of the moon through the planet’s magnetic field creates an electric potential across the moon,” Vanhamaki explained. The electrically charged moon then accelerates electrons in the plasma around the interstellar planet, which give off radiation when they move in the planet’s .

Detecting an interstellar planet the size of Jupiter using radio telescopes that either exist now or in the near future “may be theoretically possible, but extremely unlikely — perhaps practically impossible — in the foreseeable future,” Vanhamaki told Astrobiology Magazine.

Detecting wandering worlds that host life

Voyager 1 took photos of Jupiter and two of its satellites (Io, left, and Europa). The new study says that moons orbiting a gas giant planet greater than 8 Jupiter masses could help astronomers detect a rogue planet. Credit: NASA/JPL

Still, in very favorable conditions, he noted that an interstellar planet more strongly magnetized than Jupiter — for instance, far more massive and faster spinning — with a large nearby moon could be detected up to 185 light years away with the Square Kilometer Array radio telescope planned for either Australia or South Africa. There may be about 2,800 interstellar planets within that distance, he added.

“My results show that there is a real, although small, chance of detecting moon-induced emissions from giant rogue planets that weigh more than eight Jupiter masses,” Vanhamaki said.

Vanhamaki detailed his findings online April 17 in the journal Planetary and Space Science.

Via Astrobio

Apollo 18 (2012)

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Starring: TBA

Director: Gonzalo López-Gallego

U.S. Opening Date: January 6th, 2012

Another “found footage” movie like Paranormal Activity and Blair Witch Project.

This time the footage involves Apollo 18 – a mission to the moon in the 1970s which NASA claims never happened. However the newly discovered footage which NASA has been keeping under wraps all these years proves the existence of, er, killer aliens on the moon.


Hopefully they release the film this time rather than continue to change the release date.

Written by Nokgiir

May 6, 2011 at 11:02 pm

Cowboys and Aliens (2011)

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Starring: Harrison Ford, Daniel Craig, Abigail Spencer, Sam Rockwell, Olivia Wilde
Director: Jon Favreau

U.S. Opening Date: July 29th, 2011

Based on the Malibu Comics graphic novel that mixes Western and science fiction genres.

Set in 1800s Arizona, a skirmish between cowboys and Apaches is interrupted by the crash landing of a space ship. The alien commander plans to tame the Old West and enslave everyone, but the cowboys and Native Americans turn their six-guns against the alien invaders.  

Written by Nokgiir

May 6, 2011 at 10:52 pm

Transformers: The Dark of the Moon (2011)

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Starring: Shia LaBeouf, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, Julie White, Kevin Dunn, Josh Duhamel
Directed by: Michael Bay

U.S. Opening Date: July 1st, 2011

The Autobots Bumblebee, Ratchet, Ironhide and Sideswipe led by Optimus Prime, are back in action, taking on the evil Decepticons, who are determined to avenge their defeat in 2009’s Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen. In this new movie, the Autobots and Decepticons become involved in a perilous space race between the U.S. and Russia, and once again human Sam Witwicky has to come to the aid of his robot friends. There’s new characters too, including a new villain in the form of Shockwave, a longtime Transformers character who rules Cybertron while the Autobots and Decepticons battle it out on Earth.

Mass Recent UFO Sightings 2009-2011

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Most may have seen this already but there may be a few who haven’t…still interesting.

How Many Intelligent Aliens are Out There?

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The River Nile from space highlights the intelligent species that lives on Earth. But how many other civilizations are in our galaxy that we could communicate with?

OK, I’ve had enough. I’ve been looking up at the night sky for 20 years and not once have I ever seen anything that has aroused my suspicion that an alien visitor has popped by Earth to take a look.

The thing is, I am contacted far too often by people saying they have seen an unidentified flying object, or UFO. Being terribly literal, they probably have seen something “unidentified,” and it may look like it’s flying; whatever it is, it certainly is an “object,” but it doesn’t mean it’s aliens.

I’ve never seen anything that makes me think UFOs are alien in origin.But ask me if I think aliens exist, somewhere, anywhere, and I answer with a loud and affirmative yes. Whether UFOs are alien or not will be a discussion that rages for decades, but the question about microbial life in the solar system or intelligent life in the Universe at large, is a different and fascinating one. If “they” are out there — and for the purpose of this article let’s assume they are — then how many alien civilizations can we expect to come across?

In the 1960’s, U.S. astronomer Frank Drake started the first real search for alien radio signals being beamed across the Universe. Off the back of this work, he came up with an equation that is at best, an educated stab at the number of civilizations in our Galaxy with which we might actually be able to communicate right now.

This is a fascinating possibility, and one that has an interesting relationship with the Fermi Paradox. This paradox explains that there seems to be a distinct lack of evidence of such communicating civilizations regardless of the final number that drops out of the bottom of the equation. Perhaps technologically advanced civilizations have a habit of blowing themselves up before getting the signal out?

Let’s get down to some mathematics. The equation, in its pure form, looks like this:

N = R* × fp × ne × fl × fi × fc × L
It looks horrible, but it’s really easy to understand. Its purpose is to take some numbers we can estimate from our existing knowledge rather than totally guess, plug them all together and come up with the magic number “N” — an estimate on the number of contactable civilizations.

We can start by taking the average rate of star formation (R*) in our Galaxy, the Milky Way. A strange factor to consider perhaps, but understanding how many stars form each year allows us to ultimately consider how many civilizations are born each year. Current theory suggests this number, in the Milky Way, is about 10 new stars per year.

The second item fp defines the fraction of those stars which have planets and, according to current scientific values, is something like 50 percent.

Of the remaining values, we can actually look closer to home and learn from our very own solar system. Taking ne and fl, which explain the number of planets that can support life and the fraction of those planets where life actually evolves, and applying to the Solar System, will suggest a couple of possible options.

Obviously, Earth can support life (as we know it) and perhaps in the past so has Mars, this gives us an answer of 2 for the first point but we should also perhaps consider Europa and Titan as they, too, may harbor conditions where life, however primitive or weird, may be able to evolve, giving us an answer of 4 instead. The fraction where life evolves is at least 1 but it’s thought that if the conditions are right, then life will evolve to some degree, at some time, leaving fl as 100 percent.

We can then apply some decent and pretty reliable numbers to the final factors in Drake’s equation. fi is the fraction of those life bearing planets where intelligent life evolves. From our own Solar System we know of only one place where intelligent life has evolved (although sometimes I do wonder) leaving us with 25 percent.

According to the SETI organization, fi refers to the “fraction of civilizations that develop a technology that releases detectable signs of their existence into space” and comes in at a meager 1 percent.

Finally comes “L,” the length of time that the civilization releases detectable signals into space, which, using humans as an example, this technological advancement can be estimated at 10,000 years.

So this is the exciting bit, plug those numbers all in to the equation and you come up with… (drum roll please) …50!

Is that really it?

The number of contactable civilizations in our Galaxy, right now, that we might communicate with, is just 50… fifty? It’s estimated that there is around 400 billion stars in our Galaxy and, according to my numbers (which, by their nature are educated guesses), there are just 50 alien civilizations that we could communicate with.

You only have to think about the vast scale of the Galaxy spanning 100,000 light years diameter (that’s big) to realize the chances of us actually being within communicable distance seems pretty small. A depressing thought.

But does it mean we should give up our attempts at finding ET? After all, with so few of them in our Galaxy, finding a needle in a haystack would be relatively easy by comparison. No, quite the opposite, I think we absolutely should, indeed must, continue our search for our alien cousins (and before you infer it, I’m not suggesting we are related).

One of the great things about our species is the unswerving desire to explore and discover. Though the task is daunting, it is in our nature to try. If the alternative is to sit on our bums and mope, assuming we are alone (or worse, not even caring) then I know which direction I would choose.

– Mark Thompson

Via  How Many Intelligent Aliens are Out There?

Written by Nokgiir

May 6, 2011 at 2:48 am