reply to post by jkrog08
I agree with you, most of the time, most people can tell a meteor from a UFO, and meteors "do not change direction in midflight multiple times, nor
do they stop in midflight and take position in a constellation" as you say. However, meteors being identified as UFOs is still quite a common
occurrence, especially with brighter meteors. It's been well documented how many people ring the emergency services to report an aircraft crash after
larger events seen over wide areas for instance. At the same time, many also report events like these as UFOs.
You sound as though you have observed a few meteors before... would you have known what a point meteor was before I mentioned it, or would you
recognize an "earth grazer" if you saw one?
It's actually quite easy to misjudge the true speed/distance/direction/size of objects in the sky, even for seasoned observes, since there are
usually few visual points of reference which can be used to determine these quantities, and on top of that it's not uncommon for people to see
movement where there is none.
Our brains are not particularly good at processing data correctly when there is "missing information" (visual cues that we are used to seeing on the
ground are not present in the sky), and this applies just as much to this thread as it does to the subject of meteors or any object/light in the sky
for that matter.
Add to that the variables that may be present on some occasions (differing observing conditions, weather, transparency, etc, etc), and even something
mundane can seem unusual. Meteors are not exactly mundane to begin with, at least they still have the capacity to surprise me, and I've been
observing them for over a decade!
Not saying this or meteors, or any of the other points I made explains all UFOs, but I think it may do in a small but significant portion of cases.
As I said before, it's not quite as straight forward as it seems at first, and the more you dig ,and hopefully spend time actually observing, the
more you will see that. I recommend trying meteor observing techniques if you want to see more UFOs, and at the same time become better at identifying
meteors. There is no such thing as a "perfect observer", and there is always room for improvement.
Apologies to the OP for going a little OT. Thanks for listening jkrog.