Monday, July 03, 2006

Ixtapa the presses...what's that?!

[Click image to read initial post]

The image to the left was taken on a plane by someone who described it as something that zoomed up to the plane from a distance.

I can't say for sure but I think it is far more likely an object of very small size within inches of the camera and probably held by its left end.

Notable in the shot is the fact that the left edge of the object is out of the camera frame. Also, neither the top, bottom or right edges of the plane window are visible. I think this is likely a cropped section of a larger photograph.

One very good reason for cropping something out of a larger photograph is to hide something that would make the photograph less..."strange". Hiding the left edge would also make sense if there was a human hand holding the object at that point.

If the object was outside the plane and lit as it is, the sun would have to be directly above or behind the plane (ergo the photographer). But if the sun was behind the plane the plane would cast a shadow on the object, and in fact the entire object would likely be in full shadow. And if the sun were directly overhead, you would expect the bottom or underside of the object to be far darker than it appears. No, the light reflecting off the object appears to be coming from the direction of the a flash. The flash would not appear so bright on a large object some distance from the camera...especially after passing through the plane window. Far more likely that the object is inside the plane and illuminated by the flash, while the camera is focussed on the clouds below, causing the object to be out of focus.

Besides this, the object appears to be blurry not so much because it is in motion, but because it is too close for the camera to focus. Note that the left and right "edges" of the object are not "smeared", but simply blurred.

Also, note that the clouds in the distance are quite in focus and not so brightly lit. Again, this could indicate that the object is very close to the camera and that the camera flash was used.

My guess is that this is a crushed aluminum can photographed on edge while being held by the extreme left end of the can. Or perhaps a plastic wrapper which has been crumpled and photographed edge-wise and again held by the left end.

UFO from outer space? Unlikely, IMO. But let's see what an eminent UFO authority thinks of this very sincere-sounding sighting.

Per Richard Hall...

"That's supposed to be a real UFO? Give me a break! Better yet,
give me a couple of witnesses swearing statements that they saw
this thing in flight doing anything remotely UFO like. Then I
might waste 30 seconds taking a closer look at this... obvious
non-UFO until proven otherwise."

- Dick
Ouch. Well, I probably wouldn't ever say that something is an "obvious non-UFO until proven otherwise", since that's a rather ridiculously...err...illogical...statement. I mean, is there ANY UFO photograph that has been proven to be anything other than a "non-UFO"? Hmmm...let's see, have the (possibly hoaxed) Heflin photos Dick defends so vehemently been "proven otherwise"?, not so much. :)

But hey, this is freaking Dick Hall we're talking about here, so it's a dang obvious "NO-FO" until "proven otherwise"...GOT IT?


[h/t to UFO Updates]

Still... you don't have to squint your eyes at all to have this sentence make adequate sense.

"...Then I might waste 30 seconds taking a closer look at this... obvious non-UFO... ...until proven otherwise...(...those witness statements are tendered? ...then I'd waste the time...")

I suspect that a presumption regarding the ability of Mr. Hall to make logical statements will be rewarded, Kyle... and you make a lot of very little here... like raising hell with me for missing a comma or a period, dude. He "quick-wrote (hipshot)" on a message board, hoss. His logical enough bullet found its mark regardless, I think you have to agree.

Why, ...I didn't suspect better I'd think you were channeling the dear departed "R" Cubed, or something. LOL!

No points, man. Moreover, and disappointingly, it makes your smirk delivered cold-light assessment ironically illogical in its _own_ right, I suspect, eh?
AVG Blog --
Hi Alfred -

Point completely taken, and agreed to.

My issue is that this story was presented by someone seeking more information, and instead he gets a derisive dismissal. He is told in essence, "How stupid could you be to think for one second that this could be a real UFO?". How helpful, how instructive, how "logical".

If this person ever sees another questionable photograph, what are the chances that he bothers to post a question about it on Updates?

Nil, my guess.

What has he LEARNED except not to wake the sleeping giant?

It just galls me that Dick clings so passionately to cases with zero "proof", while denigrating not only a different questionable case, but the person asking the question.

Compare what he wrote to what I wrote about the same photo. On one hand you can see WHY I reach a conclusion of "non-UFO", while on the other you get a knee-jerk reaction completely devoid of any analysis, evidence, or...umm...logic.

Seriously, do you honestly think that Dick can dismiss a case on sight because he's seen so many?


His message in this case may well be right. Mis manner and method however are disgraceful, IMO.

Do we want people to ask questions, be curious, seek the truth? Or just be in awe of the divining (divine?) powers of the great ones?

Frankly I expect more of a supposed authority.

Thanks as always for stopping by. I had written this post in its entirety before I read Dick's post btw. Only then did I feel an edit was in order.
"Seriously, do you honestly think that Dick can dismiss a case on sight because he's seen so many?


Wow! You don't? Don't you get to a point where, well... you've seen so many you find _yourself_ dismissing them out of hand? I do.

Jeez -- at this point I don't even go over and look at the one that's been reported, many times.

The temporal density is becoming such that I have to ignore most reports just to have time to write about the ones that other people are seeing... [g].

Also -- when I'm over 80 after a lifetime of dealing with knuckle-heads like you and me... ...and the other guy... I hope I have half the collegiality Richard Hall has. You buy his book yet...? It's an all timer, great in a pillow case at a CSICOP convention, too!

His Journal of UFO history is an all timer also...
AVG Blog --
Hi Alfred -

You don't get a second chance to make a first impression.

Richard Hall, if he is to be regarded as the pinnacle of UFOlogy, should encourage critical thought, curious inquiry, and help to cure the naivete' to which so many fall prey upon seeing an odd photo.

But no matter. If decades looking at "real" UFOs allows one the extreme gift of being able to discern "real" ones from "nons" at a glance, we should have this whole UFO thing licked real soon, huh?

I'm and stuff.

What a waste of time to try to explain to people how normal things can often look odd, and how it isn't stupid to think that a photo could actually BE a real UFO.

I'm sure Dick would gladly recant any support for those ridiculous Heflin photos since they have also never been "proven"...right?

Not to do so would be downright hypocritical...if not illogical.

I concede the point.

In the future I'll await the edict from on high before I waste my time explaining birds and kites and crumpled dixie cups...or not. :)

Thanks for writing. Of course I see your point, but jiminy, if the price of years investigating UFOs is to be rendered so damn cynical and irritable, isn't it perhaps about time to become an "emeritus" or something and let the younger, less bitter types do the PR and the investigating? I mean, he called the guys doing all this rather intriguing re-investigation of the Heflin photos (not a small segment of the "science-based" UFOlogical community) "amusing". Doesn't that seem a little trite and condescending to you?
Nice Deductions! I'm curious what you guys think of a couple of vidoes. I've seen one a number of times but the second one I haven't seen before,

What do you guys think?

I enjoyed your site and found a couple of videos that you may find interesting. You have probably already seen these but just in case, here's the link. Enjoy!!!
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