Author Topic: UFO - Rational Analysis, Explanations & Speculations  (Read 3006 times)

Offline Lar

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Re: UFO - Rational Analysis, Explanations & Speculations
« Reply #20 on: 12/26/2017 09:27 PM »
Look up Rocket Wasps on Facebook  ... sealed lenses or not, bugs do get in pictures.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/246228265738245/
"I think it would be great to be born on Earth and to die on Mars. Just hopefully not at the point of impact." -Elon Musk
"We're a little bit like the dog who caught the bus" - Musk after CRS-8 S1 successfully landed on ASDS OCISLY

Online RotoSequence

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Re: UFO - Rational Analysis, Explanations & Speculations
« Reply #21 on: 12/26/2017 09:36 PM »
Look up Rocket Wasps on Facebook  ... sealed lenses or not, bugs do get in pictures.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/246228265738245/

Any alternate sources? I try to avoid Facebook when I can  :P

Offline Lar

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Re: UFO - Rational Analysis, Explanations & Speculations
« Reply #22 on: 12/26/2017 09:48 PM »
Look up Rocket Wasps on Facebook  ... sealed lenses or not, bugs do get in pictures.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/246228265738245/

Any alternate sources? I try to avoid Facebook when I can  :P
Group's moderated by The Roadie, you'll be OK. 

My point was merely that bugs in pictures of rocketish things are not at all uncommon.
"I think it would be great to be born on Earth and to die on Mars. Just hopefully not at the point of impact." -Elon Musk
"We're a little bit like the dog who caught the bus" - Musk after CRS-8 S1 successfully landed on ASDS OCISLY

Online RotoSequence

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Re: UFO - Rational Analysis, Explanations & Speculations
« Reply #23 on: 12/26/2017 09:56 PM »
Group's moderated by The Roadie, you'll be OK. 

My point was merely that bugs in pictures of rocketish things are not at all uncommon.

I don't have a Facebook account. I intend to keep it that way.  ;)

Any examples of insects in infrared systems?

Offline sanman

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Re: UFO - Rational Analysis, Explanations & Speculations
« Reply #24 on: 12/27/2017 12:11 AM »
Maybe an example of one on an airborne reconnaissance camera would be more relevant.

Offline Lar

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Re: UFO - Rational Analysis, Explanations & Speculations
« Reply #25 on: 12/27/2017 01:01 PM »
Maybe an example of one on an airborne reconnaissance camera would be more relevant.

(Fan:off - Mod:on)

Not convinced this *thread* is relevant after that long ranty post about how the government surely is hiding something.  See what you can do to fix that by posting actually relevant, meaningful, non-conspiracy-theory things...
« Last Edit: 12/27/2017 01:03 PM by Lar »
"I think it would be great to be born on Earth and to die on Mars. Just hopefully not at the point of impact." -Elon Musk
"We're a little bit like the dog who caught the bus" - Musk after CRS-8 S1 successfully landed on ASDS OCISLY

Offline the_other_Doug

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Re: UFO - Rational Analysis, Explanations & Speculations
« Reply #26 on: 12/27/2017 02:23 PM »
Maybe an example of one on an airborne reconnaissance camera would be more relevant.

(Fan:off - Mod:on)

Not convinced this *thread* is relevant after that long ranty post about how the government surely is hiding something.  See what you can do to fix that by posting actually relevant, meaningful, non-conspiracy-theory things...

Especially when every bit of "proof" of alien spaceships that gets trotted out is of inferior resolution and/or general quality, shows very little detail, and depends only on verbal context (which can be skewed, either accidentally or on purpose) to try and prove its point.  I am reminded of all these "popular" TV shows these days about ghosts and Bigfoot, which have all these IR-camera sequences with people saying "Wow, look!" and the camera always pans over and just misses whatever was supposedly just seen or heard.  Obvious fake, scripted BS, but it pulls in the super-gullible... who are the people being targeted by these programs.

And who are also the people being targeted by these skewed news reports.  Running "eyewitness" reports of incidents that happened more than a dozen years ago.  Right.

Quick -- describe a traumatic Christmas day incident from 15 years ago.  In detail.  I guarantee you are not recalling the facts -- just how your experience hit you emotionally.  You'd be lucky to correctly identify the individuals involved, much less be able to remember the supposed details these "eyewitnesses" are spouting.

Of course, being an "eyewitness" to such a thing has no value at all -- until it gets you on NATIONAL TELEVISION.  At which point, your memories are encouraged to become lurid and sensationalistic, so they are worthwhile enough to get you your promised fifteen minutes on NATIONAL TELEVISION.  (You can see what motivates such "eyewitnesses" -- and it ain't making sure the story gets told correctly.  Or else they would have been on NATIONAL TELEVISION more than a dozen years ago, while their memories were still fresh...)

Add to that the fact that the UFO crowd rejects, as a whole, all rational thinking and explanations.  I will reference the many, many posts throughout cyberspace about the Iridium Next Four launch's contrail with such messages as "SpaceX's lame explanations are BS, THIS IS A UFO AND NOW HOW ARE THEY GONNA HIDE THE TRUTH???!!!"  As much as I appreciate the OP's desire to start a rational discussion about the subject, I'm not sure it's possible.  There is a much higher percentage of irrational people who wish to toss in their opinions about this subject than about most every other subject out there.  It's awfully hard to weed out the irrational posts in such a thread.

I'd say all this argues for locking it.  I wouldn't just pull it, though.  Leave it out, but locked, to illustrate that such a rational discussion just doesn't appear possible, in the current public environment... :(
-Doug  (With my shield, not yet upon it)

Offline sanman

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Re: UFO - Rational Analysis, Explanations & Speculations
« Reply #27 on: 12/27/2017 08:08 PM »
Maybe an example of one on an airborne reconnaissance camera would be more relevant.

(Fan:off - Mod:on)

Not convinced this *thread* is relevant after that long ranty post about how the government surely is hiding something.  See what you can do to fix that by posting actually relevant, meaningful, non-conspiracy-theory things...

Alright - so given that there have been so many alleged sightings of UFOs with evidence that seems ambiguous at best, what kind of technologies/methodologies might be best to clarify and resolve ambiguity in future sightings which are inevitably bound to occur in the future?

There are already legitimate projects like SETI which seek evidence of life elsewhere in the distant universe, in the form of intelligent radio signals. There's no guarantee that such signals will be found, but efforts are nevertheless underway.

Similarly, there have already been efforts to look for evidence of extraterrestrial visitation by investigating sightings - but there hasn't yet been any irrefutable proof turned up yet.

Based on what we know, what would be the best chance of finding solid/irrefutable proof of extraterrestrial activity or spacecraft, if any exist?

Is it a matter of simply improving camera and/or radar technology?
Are there any other detection methods that might be brought to bear?

Recently I'd been reading about the new development efforts for "Quantum Radar" - ie. use of multiple entangled photon emission streams to greatly improve radar imaging by measuring local light field information to interpolate details about an object. Could Quantum Radar enable long-distance detection and imaging of UFOs to resolve their ambiguous nature?

If "alien spacecraft" are by definition characterized as vehicles observed to be operating beyond conventional engineering physics (eg. no exhaust, maneuvering non-aerodynamically), then what types of technology and what telltale traces of it should we be trying pick out?
Gravity sensors are routinely used by survey aircraft to uncover mineral deposits and other hidden features.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gravity_gradiometry
Could these or something like them be used to detect some kind of unconventional propulsion physics?
Also, if aliens in the vicinity of Earth presumably communicate with each other, and whereas we've not yet detected any noticeable activity on conventional radio frequencies, what other useful things should we be looking at that might bring any communication to light?

AI has been brought to bear to in watching the skies and parsing through large volumes of data generated from telescopes, including even spacecraft like Kepler, finding pattern correlations that would escape human notice. Could AI be used to discern something we human beings have been unable to out of all the various seemingly random UFO sightings?

Also, we're increasingly a planet full of people constantly carrying portable cellphone/camera devices with us at all times, which have been collectively described as a sort of sensor network, so that all kinds of sudden random events are captured and shared with the rest of the world. Sudden meteor events or other phenomena are routinely recorded and put up on the internet.
Most standard cellphone cameras are even able to pick up the infrared spectrum not visible to our eyes (if you aim your TV remote at your eyes while looking into it, you won't see anything, but if you aim it at your cellphone camera while pushing buttons, it will pick up the flashes)
Could simple inexpensive enhancements to cellphone technology provide critical information in resolving what might otherwise be ambiguous sightings?

Lastly, will spacefaringness and development of associated technologies help to solve the UFO mystery?
When man ventured out into the oceans, there were many encounters with the bizarre and the unfamiliar, but these eventually passed from lore into explainable things. Will an increased human presence beyond Earth - some people in the "new space" industry want us to have "millions of people living and working in outer space" - then give us greater or lesser clarity on UFO phenomena?
« Last Edit: 12/27/2017 08:19 PM by sanman »

Online RotoSequence

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Re: UFO - Rational Analysis, Explanations & Speculations
« Reply #28 on: 12/27/2017 08:18 PM »
We all know that discussions about the subject tends to be emotionally charged. I don't know what good is meant to come about discussing why that's the way it is, though.  :-\

Regarding bugs in lenses, I concede that they can in fact make their way in. Are there any examples of infrared systems with insects in them?
« Last Edit: 12/27/2017 08:21 PM by RotoSequence »

Offline missinglink

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Re: UFO - Rational Analysis, Explanations & Speculations
« Reply #29 on: 12/27/2017 10:06 PM »
On occasion, I will indulge in a guilty pleasure and head on over to Youtube to wallow in the stark, raving madness emitted by the UFO-vid commenters. Whatever my own shortcomings, I invariably feel better about myself afterward. This NSF thread, however, does not serve that purpose, and I'm not sure what else it could be useful for.

Numerous reports and studies -- academic and government -- have analyzed UFO sightings and their conclusions are always the same:
- natural phenomena (misinterpreted)
- man-made phenomena (misinterpreted)
- hoaxes and frauds
- a very small number of uncategorized sightings due to lack of conclusive data

These findings were widely reported in the media. Without checking to make sure, I confidently predict that these reports and studies are cited and linked on Wikipedia, because this is the kind of thing that WP is good at. Politicians, on the other hand, are good at wasting taxpayer funds. If a Nevada senator considers pouring tens of millions of dollars down the drain to investigate UFOs a good use of resources, then so be it. There are more egregious examples of mis-spending.

On NSF, what I'd prefer to see instead is a thread on old magazine cover art showing buxom females in various stages of undress beset by bug-eyed space alien monsters. Not that I expect to get it  :P

Offline sanman

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Re: UFO - Rational Analysis, Explanations & Speculations
« Reply #30 on: 12/27/2017 10:14 PM »
What's the most plausible explanation for the 2004 Nimitz incident?
(and please don't mention time-travel to 1941)  :P

Online RotoSequence

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Re: UFO - Rational Analysis, Explanations & Speculations
« Reply #31 on: 12/27/2017 10:28 PM »
What's the most plausible explanation for the 2004 Nimitz incident?

The Final Countd-

(and please don't mention time-travel to 1941)  :P

Aw. :(

The video itself corroborates to an unidentified aircraft. What's missing is video corroboration of the most extraordinary claims, which makes them unreliable, at best. I don't think there's any firm conclusion we can draw about the nature of the aircraft itself, with the most reasonable explanation, based on the available footage, being a terrestrial aircraft.

Offline gosnold

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Re: UFO - Rational Analysis, Explanations & Speculations
« Reply #32 on: 12/28/2017 10:49 AM »
Numerous reports and studies -- academic and government -- have analyzed UFO sightings and their conclusions are always the same:
- natural phenomena (misinterpreted)
- man-made phenomena (misinterpreted)
- hoaxes and frauds
- a very small number of uncategorized sightings due to lack of conclusive data

This is factually wrong. See the statistics of the unidentified aerospatial phenomena group of the French Space Agency:
https://translate.google.com/translate?sl=auto&tl=en&js=y&prev=_t&hl=fr&ie=UTF-8&u=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.cnes-geipan.fr%2F%3Fid%3D196&edit-text=&act=url

Quote
Category A:Perfectly Identified Phenomena
20%

Category B: Probably Identified Phenomena
39%

category C: Non-Phenomena (lack of data)
34%

Category D: Unidentified Phenomena (after investigation)
7%

Note the number of category D cases has been divided by 3 in recent years due to better investigative methods. However there remains something like 3 cases/year of unexplained aerospatial phenomena in France, that the agency cannot attribute to a lack of data. These case probably include unknown exotic atmospheric phenomena (like https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Upper-atmospheric_lightning, which are a relatively recent discovery). They could also include other stuff. The Nimitz case would argue for a solid object (moving, repeatedly detected radar signatures across multiple wavelength, correlated with infrared and visual detections).

Offline gosnold

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Re: UFO - Rational Analysis, Explanations & Speculations
« Reply #33 on: 12/28/2017 11:35 AM »

Alright - so given that there have been so many alleged sightings of UFOs with evidence that seems ambiguous at best, what kind of technologies/methodologies might be best to clarify and resolve ambiguity in future sightings which are inevitably bound to occur in the future?

I would argue it's the same as any detection problem. You want a detection system that is sensitive (ie detects what you are looking for) and specific (it does not detect anything else). Since we don't know what we are looking for, there is not much we can say about the sensitivity part.

For the specificity part however, you want to have a false positive rate so low that if you have a detection, you can be confident it's not a false positive. That means having 0 false positives during you observation time, at some level of certainty. So you have to set up measurement systems, and filter those measurement to get rid of false detections. That could be done using simple rules, to take into account only observations that:
- are made by different instruments, to get rid of single instrument malfunctions
- are made by different models of instruments, to get rid of design issues common to a class of instruments
- are reported by trustworthy people who have a reputation to lose if they fake observations

That would filter out a lot of noise, but leaves a lot of atmospheric/astronomical phenomena in the result (rocket plumes for the recent falcon launch would pass the filter for instance). So if you are interested in artificial objects, you may want to restrict more to observation that:
- are precisely localized (through ranging or triangulation), to get rid of astronomical observations
- are made using several physical phenomena (for instance using very different wavelengths)
- are mobile and have high speed (over the maximum speed of winds for instance), to get rid of atmospheric phenomena carried over by wind
- are resolved (ie a shape can be distinguished)

That kind of rules leave a lot of interesting observations on the side (the Chilean Helicopter now-identified "UFO" would not pass because it's single-sensor), but the ones that do pass would be worthy of consideration. However I'm sure they can be improved, all you have to do is find a false positive that passes though the filters to prove it's not perfect.

Offline deaville

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Re: UFO - Rational Analysis, Explanations & Speculations
« Reply #34 on: 12/28/2017 12:42 PM »

So, if you or him were a member of an undiscovered tribe living in the jungle, cut off from all of the rest of humanity, and one day you saw an Airbus A380 fly over, what would you say to your tribe mates?  Now maybe more than one person saw the A380 but most didn't being cooking in the huts or out hunting.  The tribal elders say there are no other tribes, they would have arrived if they did.  So does the A380 not exist?  The members are human, but why can't they build one and not just spears and harnessing fire?


You miss the point Sagan was making. Might I suggest you watch this -

Light travels faster than sound, which is why some people appear bright until they speak.

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