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UFO: What does it mean?

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posted on Mar, 20 2009 @ 03:01 PM
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Originally posted by dhatz
"If we come to the case of flying saucers, for example, we have the difficulty that almost everybody who observes flying saucers sees something different, unless they were previously informed of what they were supposed to see. So the history of flying saucers consists of orange balls of light, blue spheres which bounce on the floor, gray fogs which disappear, gossamer-like streams which evaporate into the thin air, tin, round flat things out of which objects come with funny shapes that are something like a human being."

i.e. that everyone is describing something different, i.e. that Feynman claimed there was no pattern to the reports.


I can personally attest to this. The human mind sees what it wants to see.

I have been right next to someone, when we both saw a bright meteor. I perceived the color to be completely different to that seen by my companion.

Simple example, but it demonstrates how bad at observing people really are, and it does not matter if you are a trained observer or not. We all have very similar brains/eyes.




posted on Mar, 20 2009 @ 03:52 PM
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reply to post by Xtraeme
 


Yes, the word UFO is overloaded with too many meanings.

Among my pet peeves is the application of "Flying", which you did not include in your list.

To me, an object is flying if its path of motion suggest intelligence. For example, objects in the tether incident are not UFO's because they are not flying, instead they are drifting (maintaining their velocity). Over the period of time a person observes, say a satellite, it is indistinguishable from a drifting object.

Finally, there is the distinction that Robert Anton Wilson glosses over when he says jokingly that he even sees many UNFO's (unidentified non-flying objects) all around him.

While he is attempting to highlight the limits of our perception, nobody reports an object that is merely hard to identify, but also *REMARKABLE*.

And an object is remarkable if it somehow stands out for some reason, subjective to the person that has experienced the sighting. A UFO sighting is remarkable if the behavior of the object is unlike other objects known to the observer.

Finally, there is another aspect of UFO sightings that the word fails to embody: The amount of raw data leading a person to report a sighting:

A person may see a distant light in the sky that may or may not be moving... that is a very minimal data sighting.

On the other hand, a person could find themselves under the shadow of a quarter mile long boomerang shaped object with lights so bright that they need medical attention for skin burns.

Clearly, in one case there is hardly any data to make anything out of the report, while in the other case, objections of misidentification clearly do not apply.

The term UFO is far too often associated by most people with the low data observation, which is in fact true for the largest volume of the reports. But it is the high data observations that I find the most interesting

-rrr



posted on Mar, 20 2009 @ 04:27 PM
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This is a reply to both Gazrok ...


reply to post by Gazrok
There's no way anyone will change common parlance that's been in use for over 60 years...

Technically, any object you see in the sky but can't explain is a U.F.O., but that won't change the common mental substitution for "spaceship"....


and Internos



reply to post by internos
 

In my humble opinion UFO stands for Unidentified Flying Object, but something deserves this definition after serious assessments, after everything, mundane or celestial body (not to mention hoaxes) has been ruled out


Personally I don't think we should ever use the word UFO without first adding a descriptor. There are (visual, radar, etc) UFO detections, confirmed UFOs, UFO positions, and IFOs. Without the modifier the word UFO is so broad as to be meaningless.

Even if we succeeded in rebranding UFO to something less suggestive like UAP, it would ultimately get hijacked, because people can just as easily hypothesize about what a UAP represents as they can a UFO.

The reason I think this works is because we're not changing the word people use to describe unidentified aerial objects – we're simply modifying it.

For example, if a coworker comes up to me and says, "Man I heard you believe in UFOs, are you nuts?" I'd say, "Are you talking about my UFO position or are you asking me if I believe there are confirmed UFOs in the sense that they can't be explained even by experts?"

This would instantly reduce stereotyping because it reduces confusion.

[edit on 20-3-2009 by Xtraeme]



posted on Mar, 20 2009 @ 04:27 PM
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Originally posted by dhatz
Xtreame, if the wiki @ razing.net is yours, you've been doing some interesting work. However, intellectual arguments don't always work very well with people.

What worked for me personally, was when I started to make some "technological sense" out of UFO reports. When I realized that people like the famous physicist R. Feyman was wrong when he said:

"If we come to the case of flying saucers, for example, we have the difficulty that almost everybody who observes flying saucers sees something different, unless they were previously informed of what they were supposed to see. So the history of flying saucers consists of orange balls of light, blue spheres which bounce on the floor, gray fogs which disappear, gossamer-like streams which evaporate into the thin air, tin, round flat things out of which objects come with funny shapes that are something like a human being."

i.e. that everyone is describing something different, i.e. that Feynman claimed there was no pattern to the reports.

Have a look at Paul Hill's book, or (since it's mostly unavaible from bookstores) read UFO technical overview (in particular sections #7 - #9 on Propulsion, Radiation and Illumination)


R. Feyman always spoke of UFO's in a way that reveals he hadn't spent much time looking into it.

-rrr



posted on Mar, 20 2009 @ 07:46 PM
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reply to post by The Undertaker
 

How many times have we heard the Military/Gov. state, "The Military does not investigate "UFO's" Seems to me that I've heard that excuse whenever the Mil/Gov. is confronted or questioned about a sighting and apparent lack of response. It's like a play on words or something, an excuse they use to blow off the sighting.


Excellent point!

I would love to publicly put a USAF or FAA official on the spot and ask, "If I have a sighting of something that I think might be a foreign aircraft, but I can't positively identify it, are you telling me even in light of 9-11 you're NOT going to investigate it? So clarify for me under what circumstances does the government investigate UFOs and when does it not?"

Obviously the FAA and the military are saying they don't investigate sightings that presuppose an alien UFOP. If it's a MIL-UFOP they'll happy get-right-on-it.

This deeply bothers me. Our government is making a judgment call about what they will and what they will not investigate based on a persons position (their UFOP) rather than based on the facts as they relate to the sighting.

[edit on 21-3-2009 by Xtraeme]



posted on Mar, 21 2009 @ 06:55 PM
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Originally posted by Xtraeme

reply to post by The Undertaker
 

How many times have we heard the Military/Gov. state, "The Military does not investigate "UFO's" Seems to me that I've heard that excuse whenever the Mil/Gov. is confronted or questioned about a sighting and apparent lack of response. It's like a play on words or something, an excuse they use to blow off the sighting.


Excellent point!

I would love to publicly put a USAF or FAA official on the spot and ask, "If I have a sighting of something that I think might be a foreign aircraft, but I can't positively identify it, are you telling me even in light of 9-11 you're NOT going to investigate it? So clarify for me under what circumstances does the government investigate UFOs and when does it not?"

Obviously the FAA and the military are saying they don't investigate sightings that presuppose an alien UFOP. If it's a MIL-UFOP they'll happy get-right-on-it.

This deeply bothers me. Our government is making a judgment call about what they will and what they will not investigate based on a persons position (their UFOP) rather than based on the facts as they relate to the sighting.

[edit on 21-3-2009 by Xtraeme]


I don't believe that they don't investigate - of course they hop right on it. They don't officially admit "foreign" flying objects exist. How could they admit to investigating them?



posted on Mar, 21 2009 @ 07:59 PM
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Originally posted by Pilot
I don't believe that they don't investigate - of course they hop right on it. They don't officially admit "foreign" flying objects exist. How could they admit to investigating them?


This is the problem with belief. I shouldn't have to believe my government is doing the right thing. The government should confirm to its people, the citizens they've sworn to serve and protect, that they are investigating any and all cases that call in to question violation of our territorial airspace.

The more a government lies to its people the more it puts itself at jeopardy.

So to answer your question, how could they admit to investigating them? By changing their position and being forthright especially with issues of national security.



posted on Mar, 27 2009 @ 09:38 AM
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I think I may be one nut short of a full tree.
Heh. I just created a mapping between most of the remaining UFO hypotheses and UFO positions (not as easy as it sounds).

Some of the new UFOPs are:

  1. NHT-UFOP – Non Human Terrestrial
  2. MYTH-UFOP - MYTHological entity, one can think of mythological creatures in three different ways, concrete, partially transcendent, and wholly transcended. Ezekiel's wheel neatly illustrates this:
    1. C-MYTH-UFOP – Concrete MYTHological entity, the concrete or literal translation portrays the Cherubim as aliens or inter-dimensional species (physical) that are occupants of the wheels, representing an extra-solar, time-traveling, or inter-dimensional craft (physical).
    2. PT-MYTH-UFOP – Partially Transcendent MYTHological entity, the partially transcendent view represents the Cherubim as divine agents of God (transcendental) as the occupants of a literal chariot or inter-dimensional transport (physical)
    3. WT-MYTH-UFOP – Wholly Transcendent MYTHological entity, the wholly transcended religious belief imagines the Cherubim as divine agents of God (transcendental) using flaming projections as illusionary vessels (transcendental) or the illusionary vessel simultaneously representing the Cherubim.

  3. BIB-UFOP – BIBlical mythological entity, think angels, demons, God, Jesus, the Holy Spirit, and other divine beings (with sub-categories of concrete, partially transcended, and wholly transcendent)
    1. C-BIB-UFOP – Concrete BIBlical mythological entity. Angels, demons, God, as physical beings. Common belief amongst cults like Raelian Religion, Heaven's Gate, etc.
    2. PT-BIB-UFOP – Partially Trancendent BIBlical mythological entity. Angels, demons, God, as divine beings, in physical crafts, or having corporeal forms. Not aware of any religions that fall in this category.
    3. WT-BIB-UFOP – Wholly Transcendent BIBlical mythological entity. Angels, demons, God, as divine beings, capable of defying (or transcending) every aspect of our reality. This is the mainstream religious belief position.

For those interested, I find this worth doing, because as Nohup commented,


"I like to imagine the above aliens meeting with our leaders and being shown photos of other UFOs, and them saying to us, "You got those things flying around, too? We don't have the foggiest notion what they are, either!"


Which is to say while any unrealized UFO hypothesis exists there's the chance it might occur. Thus until all UFO hypothesis's are proven or disproven (brute force, exhaustion) they're still valuable to the greater understanding of what is to come.


[edit on 27-3-2009 by Xtraeme]



posted on Apr, 8 2009 @ 03:27 AM
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Originally posted by rickyrrr
reply to post by Xtraeme
 


Yes, the word UFO is overloaded with too many meanings.

Among my pet peeves is the application of "Flying", which you did not include in your list.

To me, an object is flying if its path of motion suggest intelligence.


I concur!

Trying to label the observation or detection of a UFO as a visual / radar UFO is problematic because it's still suggestive in the sense that if a person doesn't understand ontologically that UFO represents 'the steps in the process to identify an unidentified aerial sighting' then the modifier doesn't help to clarify the usage of UFO. So IMHO the 'detection stage' should be referred to as a UAP (more correctly UAPD or 'Unidentified Aerial Phenomenon Detection'). This way there's no stigmatization.

Once the object is confirmed (ie/ atmospheric, astronomic, photographic, misidentification, and hoax-based explanations are ruled out) then we can refer to the 2nd stage as a CUFO or 'Confirmed UFO', the third stage as a UFOP or 'UFO Position', and the fourth stage as a 'IFO.' This also has the happy side-effect of removing UFO as a word to describe a sighting!

If the object is ruled out in the early stages before reaching a CUFO it would be an IAP or 'Identified Aerial Phenomenon.' During the analysis, theories used to possibly explain the observation would be referred to as UAPP's or 'Unidentified Aerial Phenomenon Position.'

Unfortunately this is a bit complex. So often I find myself simply lumping what should be a UAP into UFO (or more correctly UAPD in to UFOD), UAPP into UFOP, and IAP into IFO.

Realistically I think that's the best we can hope to accomplish, though it would make me very happy if we did away with UFO as a legitimate synonym for "sighting."


For example, objects in the tether incident are not UFO's because they are not flying, instead they are drifting (maintaining their velocity). Over the period of time a person observes, say a satellite, it is indistinguishable from a drifting object.


Interesting distinction. However, most satellites do have methods of propulsion that allow them correct their orbit. Thus it's still technically flying. It only drifts because it's in a constant state of falling. Without the propulsion system it would eventually re-enter the atmosphere and burn up.


Finally, there is the distinction that Robert Anton Wilson glosses over when he says jokingly that he even sees many UNFO's (unidentified non-flying objects) all around him.

While he is attempting to highlight the limits of our perception, nobody reports an object that is merely hard to identify, but also *REMARKABLE*.

And an object is remarkable if it somehow stands out for some reason, subjective to the person that has experienced the sighting. A UFO sighting is remarkable if the behavior of the object is unlike other objects known to the observer.


I disagree. I've read several cases where a child was reported to the police because it was unclear whether or not the kid had a real or toy-gun. Though it's true people only report incidents where something is 'somewhat hard to identify,' 'remarkable,' and has safety implications.

However the same is also true of unidentified aerial objects. Originally people interpreted these sightings as possible enemy aircraft.

These 'somewhat hard to identify objects,' 'remarkable' objects had defense implications and were therefore reported to the media and USAF.


Finally, there is another aspect of UFO sightings that the word fails to embody: The amount of raw data leading a person to report a sighting:

A person may see a distant light in the sky that may or may not be moving... that is a very minimal data sighting.

On the other hand, a person could find themselves under the shadow of a quarter mile long boomerang shaped object with lights so bright that they need medical attention for skin burns.

Clearly, in one case there is hardly any data to make anything out of the report, while in the other case, objections of misidentification clearly do not apply.

The term UFO is far too often associated by most people with the low data observation, which is in fact true for the largest volume of the reports. But it is the high data observations that I find the most interesting


Absolutely agreed! That's why I wish the detection stage had the nature of the sighting appended to the word UFO. Ie/ visual UFO (or visual-boomerang CE2), radar UFO (or visual-boomerang/radar CE1).

[edit on 8-4-2009 by Xtraeme]



posted on Apr, 8 2009 @ 03:41 AM
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Originally posted by spy66

Originally posted by internos

Originally posted by spy66
Whats this. This is taken from Iraq. Night vission camera.

IS this a a formation of fighter jets!

www.liveleak.com...

I didn't know that fremont, CA was in Iraq.
www.youtube.com...

Anyway, migratory birds flying in classic "V" formation, if you ask me



Since your the expert what Birds migrate at night ?

I thought it was only very small birds that migrate at night at low altitude.

[edit on 27.06.08 by spy66]



Bird migration has been studied by a variety of techniques of which ringing is the oldest. Color marking, use of radar, satellite tracking and stable Hydrogen (or Strontium) isotopes are some of the other techniques used to study migration.[41]

An approach to identify migration intensity makes use of upward pointing microphones to record the nocturnal contact calls of flocks flying overhead. These are then analyzed in a laboratory to measure time, frequency and species.[42]
Emlen funnel

An older technique to quantify migration involves observing the face of the moon towards full moon and counting the silhouettes of flocks of birds as they fly at night.[43][44]

Obviously birds can migrate at night small birds wouldnt show on radar would they?



posted on May, 24 2009 @ 01:07 PM
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Bringing part of a conversation from this thread over here, as it's highly relevant ...



The problem at the moment is there are very few bodies that are willing to do "official" evaluations to complete the "official escalation of explanation" loop.

What I find compelling is that the US government was confronted by many scientists who agreed average people were reporting a "true unknown" phenomenon throughout the '40s and '60s (Drs. Mirarchi, La Paz, Hynek, Thayer, Shough, J. E. McDonald, R. Leo Sprinkle, Garry C. Henderson, Roger N. Shepard, Robert Hall, James Harder, Robert M. L. Baker, Frank Salisbury, Seymour Hess, Charles B. Moore, Al Cameron, Robert M. Wood, Eugene Epstein, Gordon MacDonald, Robert Wilson, etc). In response to this the USAF / AFSAB started Twinkle and escalated to Project Sign, Grudge, Blue Book and finally the Condon Committee.

Unfortunately Dr. Edward Condon's report was "official" enough to render all opposing viewpoints moot despite 30% of the reviewed cases remaining unknown after spending $500,000 of taxpayers money. Even scientists with an anti-UFO position considered the report rubbish (ie/ Thornton Page) because the "Conclusions and Recommendations" and "Summary of the Study" didn't accurately reflect the contents of the study.

Sadly I think history is going to have a very poor view of Dr. Condon for one simple reason. As humans we know that we don't understand all of reality and thus we accept the following Venn diagram as true (obviously the percentages vary).



Effectively by shouting down the study of UFOs Condon was stating that there was nothing new in our skies that is "truly unknown" that could be learned through the anecdotal testimony of the average person. In Dr. Condon's words,


As indicated by its title, the emphasis of this study has been on attempting to learn from UFO reports anything that could be considered as adding to scientific knowledge. Our general conclusion is that nothing has come from the study of UFOs in the past 21 years that has added to scientific knowledge. Careful consideration of the record as it is available to us leads us to conclude that further extensive study of UFOs probably cannot be justified in the expectation that science will be advanced thereby.
(Source: (1969) Scientific Study of Unidentified Flying Objects. Boulder, Colorado: Bantam Books. ISBN NA, pg. 1)


With the help of hindsight we can prove Dr. Condon wrong.

Sprites, large scale electrical discharges that occur high above thunderstorm clouds, were documented "with anecdotal reports since 1886." (1) It wasn't until 1989 that scientists photographed the phenomenon! Colin Price, a geophysicist at Tel Aviv U., believes Sprites have resulted in numerous UFO reports. (source: space.com)

Now some might argue that Condon was using a different definition of UFO (ie/ alien craft). I'll quote the Condon Report's definition verbatim,


An unidentified flying object (UFO, pronounced OOFO) is here defined as the stimulus for a report made by one or more individuals of something seen in the sky (or an object thought to be capable of flight but seen when landed on the earth) which the observer could not identify as having an ordinary natural origin, and which seemed to him sufficiently puzzling that he undertook to make a report of it to police, to government officials, to the press, or perhaps to a representative of a private organization devoted to the study of such objects.

(Condon 1969, pg. 9)


Since we have an example where Condon was incorrect, does that not also suggest there are other 'true unknowns' being observed that could account for yet other sightings? Obviously!

I've been trying very hard to impart to friends in the scientific community that the scientific method is benefited by using the above process to locate genuine unknowns so they can be studied and deductively analyzed. However without people to confirm or debunk sightings the "official escalation of explanation" loop is non-existent and therefore the process degrades into conspiracy theories.

Furthermore the USAF is roped into this study whether they like it or not.



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