• SUPPORT THE SHOW AND ENJOY A PREMIUM PARACAST EXPERIENCE! Welcome to The Paracast+! For a low subscription fee, you will receive access to an ad-free version of The Paracast, the exclusive After The Paracast podcast, featuring color commentary, exclusive interviews, plus show transcripts, the new Paracast+ Video Channel, Classic Episodes and Special Features categories! We now offer lifetime memberships! You can subscribe via this direct link:
    https://www.theparacast.com/plus/

    The Official Paracast Store is back! Check out our latest lineup of customized stuff at: The Official Paracast Store!

    Subscribe to The Paracast Newsletter!

June 10, 2018 — Ryan Sprague with Goggs Mackay



USI Calgary

J. Randall Murphy
Staff member
#21
"meteoroids have a diameter of less than one meter, whereas asteroids have a diameter of greater than one meter." here see note 4.
Interesting, I just went through this in some detail while updating the USI website and found several definitions that described them as ranging in size from grains of sand to hundreds of miles. So it looks like I may have to do some more cross referencing. Thanks for the head's up!

Follow up:

I may have just happened upon outdated papers and references. This article says they changed the definition in 2006: "

The term ‘asteroid’ had been loosely used to refer to almost all small bodies that go around the Sun. It was not until in 2006 when the term was limited to what it means today due to the introduction of the term ‘small solar system body’ or SSSB that covers both comets and minor planets." Definition & Answers About Asteroids – Terms in Astronomy Asteroid

Here's an example where they say most are the size of gravel. Asteroids

Here's another one out of NASA saying that they can be as small as pebbles: https://nssdc.gsfc.nasa.gov/planetary/text/asteroids.txt

I've been trying to avoid using Wikipedia, but obviously I should cross reference there too. What's really weird is now I can't find any of the articles that said, "ranging in size from grains of sand to several hundred kilometers" It's like I've been Mandelafied or something. I mean there were several articles that came up with the same description, and now I can't find any of them. Why me? I really must start tracking my sources so I don't have to relocate this stuff when there's an inconsistency like this.

As an aside, here's an interesting PDF on the definitions controversy for planets: https://arxiv.org/ftp/arxiv/papers/0810/0810.0993.pdf
 
Last edited:
#22
Well, some good news then: As you know I'm a mix of old and new school thinking, both of which ultimately distill down the most reasonable explanation for UFOs to the ETH. I'm not even sure that most people have a clear idea about what the ETH ( or the word UFO ) actually means. It seems to me the ETH is assumed to be the same as the Interstellar Hypothesis, which is just one among a variety of possibilities for the ETH. It's even debatable whether or not the other ETH ( Extratemporal Hypothesis ) also called the TTH ( Time Travellers Hypothesis ) is actually terrestrial, even if such travelers come from Earth's distant past or future.

But that's typical in ufology. People are making claims and assumptions about ideas that they aren't clear about ( but think they are ), and when someone like you or I points that out, they tend to get all defensive, as if what they think is as good as what anyone else thinks. Unfortunately, that's not how it works. Not every idea or concept is as coherent as the next, and as a consequence may carry more or less weight than others. Yet there is still this tendency in the ufology community to disregard that fact. Why is that? Maybe I'm just cynical, but part of me thinks that it's because then anyone can sell whatever nonsensical BS they want and claim it's as good as anyone else's ( when it's not ).
That's one of the reasons why I think we need to establish a science of ufology with a peer-reviewed journal and multi-disciplinary panels of experts from the fields of astronomy and astrobiology and physics and perceptual psychology and image analysis and other pertinent fields, so we can establish some definitions and parameters, and start sifting the wheat from the chaff with regard to specific cases and the scientific viability of the various proposed hypotheses.

Because without that, people are operating under the illusion that all ideas are equally valid, and old debunked cases keep rearing their heads, so we can't make any progress: it's like we're just spinning our wheels in the mud. And the good work gets lost in all the noise.

It just seems crazy to me that more people don't understand that we need the scientific method to be applied to this field: that's how we solve problems and advance our understanding of everything. And this is a legitimate phenomenological problem: if it can be seen, or even simply experienced, then it can studied scientifically and we can start to make some progress.

A huge part of the problem that I'm seeing in this field is confirmation bias (and outright delusional and illogical thinking). Time and again I find myself debating with someone, which is usually a civil debate but occasionally not so much, and they'll look at the same evidence that I'm looking at, but they're so blinded by their bias that they think it means something radically different than what I'm seeing. Sometimes it's downright surreal, akin to going over the electric bill with your roommate and having them angrily point to it and say "look at that tax line - it proves that the ETH is BS and you're a liar and mangos come from Canada!" And you're like "Whussat? No that's just the 9% state tax, dude - wth is wrong with you?" And without a vetted resource like a reputable peer-reviewed journal, I can't point to any credible rigorous work to settle the disparities in perception between one viewpoint and another. Imagine what the field of biology would be like without academic standards or peer-reviewed journals: there would be some online websites where every Tom, Dick and Sally would post their opinions about it and you'd have a handful of actual researchers getting mired down in arguments with creationists and random people off the street and unhinged lunatics frothing at the mouth calling them charlatans and accusing them of being a part of some bizarre conspiracy. That's exactly where we are with ufology right now.

On a side note, I've been working on a paper about relativistic kinematics and I'm finding some fascinating and unexpected implications: for example, it appears that backwards time travel (at least within the context of special relativity) is impossible. And since SR is the foundation for general relativity, it appears to rule out backwards time travel in all scenarios (and quite possibly wormholes as well). Personally I find that disappointing; I've always loved the idea of time travel. But what I'm seeing appears to rule it out very elegantly. And on another related note, it also appears to describe a future that's as fixed and as immutable as the past. As far as I can see that rules out our ideas about free will and indeterminism: from the full 4D perspective, the future is set, and we only think that it's fluid because we can't see into the future. Again, that's not what I was either hoping to find, or expecting to find, but it fell out of this work as naturally as an apple falling out of a tree. I'm still coming to terms with the idea that from the 4D perspective we're all just basically automatons following a rigid architecture of causality, but it does solve all kinds of problems with quantum field theory, which suddenly becomes very elegantly symmetrical and sensible if the future boundary conditions are as well-defined as the past boundary conditions. It kinda sucks when your own brainchild steals your illusion of free will and your hopes for time travel the moment it stands up and starts walking around, haha.
 

USI Calgary

J. Randall Murphy
Staff member
#23
That's one of the reasons why I think we need to establish a science of ufology with a peer-reviewed journal and multi-disciplinary panels of experts from the fields of astronomy and astrobiology and physics and perceptual psychology and image analysis and other pertinent fields, so we can establish some definitions and parameters, and start sifting the wheat from the chaff with regard to specific cases and the scientific viability of the various proposed hypotheses.
There's an important distinction between applying science to ufology and attempting to make ufology a science unto itself. The field of ufology is far too wide in scope to fit it all into a strict scientific framework. You might recall the flow chart I put together last time we touched on this. The solution that fits best with the problem is to treat the field academically and apply science where and when it's possible, preferably from a mainstream scientific perspective at arm's length from the field itself. That eliminates allegations of pseudoscience and partiality, while adhering to respectable standards.

This approach also doesn't require anything special other than cooperation among people willing to do the work, and that's why I started USI. We've got lots of members who back this approach in principle, but they're either busy doing their own thing in a compartmentalized fashion, or too busy with their everyday lives to contribute to the common site. There's also a resistance to a unified approach, which in my mind is partly because the players want to be be the big fish in their little ponds where they can make their own rules without it conflicting with a consensus of representatives from the field.

Because without that, people are operating under the illusion that all ideas are equally valid, and old debunked cases keep rearing their heads, so we can't make any progress: it's like we're just spinning our wheels in the mud. And the good work gets lost in all the noise.
In addition to the TTSA story I'd like to do bios on the bad actors and their cases. But one thing at a time. It's easy and cathartic to editorialize on a forum. Not so easy to create well researched objective content. I just got corrected by @O'Rilly on the outdated definition of an asteroid I was using. I'm thankful for that. It adds usefulness to the forum. It also goes to show how without a second set of eyes on the content, seemingly simple things like that can fall through the cracks and embarrass you.
A huge part of the problem that I'm seeing in this field is confirmation bias (and outright delusional and illogical thinking). Time and again I find myself debating with someone, which is usually a civil debate but occasionally not so much, and they'll look at the same evidence that I'm looking at, but they're so blinded by their bias that they think it means something radically different than what I'm seeing.
Part of being objective is in being able to describe the views of other people in a neutral manner that leads the reader to a logical conclusion themselves rather than trying to change the views of the people you're writing about. This is all stuff I think would be better discussed over a Skype session. In the meantime I posted a message in our private conversation thread about using Google Docs and Drive for collaborating on articles.
Sometimes it's downright surreal, akin to going over the electric bill with your roommate and having them angrily point to it and say "look at that tax line - it proves that the ETH is BS and you're a liar and mangos come from Canada!" And you're like "Whussat? No that's just the 9% state tax, dude - wth is wrong with you?" And without a vetted resource like a reputable peer-reviewed journal, I can't point to any credible rigorous work to settle the disparities in perception between one viewpoint and another. Imagine what the field of biology would be like without academic standards or peer-reviewed journals: there would be some online websites where every Tom, Dick and Sally would post their opinions about it and you'd have a handful of actual researchers getting mired down in arguments with creationists and random people off the street and unhinged lunatics frothing at the mouth calling them charlatans and accusing them of being a part of some bizarre conspiracy. That's exactly where we are with ufology right now.
I think the best we can do is to create islands of sanity where we can, which is why I've made the recent appeals here to start focusing in that direction instead of getting mired down in personality wars. Let's concentrate on being constructive. The USI site isn't an open forum and there's no open comments. So it can't be contaminated by all the forum noise. However The Paracast forum is where discussions about its content takes place, so they can work together as useful tools.
On a side note, I've been working on a paper about relativistic kinematics and I'm finding some fascinating and unexpected implications: for example, it appears that backwards time travel (at least within the context of special relativity) is impossible. And since SR is the foundation for general relativity, it appears to rule out backwards time travel in all scenarios (and quite possibly wormholes as well). Personally I find that disappointing; I've always loved the idea of time travel. But what I'm seeing appears to rule it out very elegantly.
Well you know what the Vulcan Science Directorate had to say about time travel. Logically I have to side with them. However nothing prevents the possibility of phenomena that seems like time travel.
And on another related note, it also appears to describe a future that's as fixed and as immutable as the past. As far as I can see that rules out our ideas about free will and indeterminism: from the full 4D perspective, the future is set, and we only think that it's fluid because we can't see into the future. Again, that's not what I was either hoping to find, or expecting to find, but it fell out of this work as naturally as an apple falling out of a tree. I'm still coming to terms with the idea that from the 4D perspective we're all just basically automatons following a rigid architecture of causality, but it does solve all kinds of problems with quantum field theory, which suddenly becomes very elegantly symmetrical and sensible if the future boundary conditions are as well-defined as the past boundary conditions. It kinda sucks when your own brainchild steals your illusion of free will and your hopes for time travel the moment it stands up and starts walking around, haha.
Great stuff for a person-to person conversation. Let me know your Skype name on the private thread or just send me an email, and we'll setup a time to talk.
 
Last edited:

ChrisJohnsen

Paranormal Adept
#24
I'm late to this thread, as I'm behind a few weeks on the show, but I simply wanted to add my two cents of an opinion to say that Ryan Sprague was a refreshingly terrific guest for The Paracast. He's great on every podcast he appears on - Radio Misterioso, Open Minds, Where Did The Road Go? and a few others I'm forgetting.

I also want to comment that it would be a tremendous loss for the forum, and me personally, if @Thomas R Morrison takes his ball and goes home. He's consistently been my favorite poster since his participation started in earnest, especially with @Burnt State reduced participation on a show-by-show basis since last year. I am simply blown away by the time, effort and insight in all of his posts. He's single-handedly pulled me back towards the thinking that ETH is the primary answer to the phenomena observed. As an interested and engaged spectator, I love his continued full-throated, unapologetic advocacy for the ET hypothesis against the growing trend to embrace multiple, or alternate, hypotheses in the complete absence of anything one could call "proof," to the degree that you can for the ETH. I don't subscribe exclusively to a single theory, but I lean strongly to the ETH. I'm fascinated in hearing and reading about all different ideas as to what is clearly being seen and experienced, so 3 "anti-ETHers" in a row doesn't annoy me as much as it does others. If anything, I find that these guests (if credible) can strengthen and hone the case for ETH after listening to their alternate takes, that are great as thought experiments (I approach this entire question as a thought experiment), but don't have the bulwark of "evidence" that ETH does, IMO. Anyway, this paragraph isn't about me but about acknowledging and appreciating Thomas' contributions to the forum and the show. I hope there are many more posts and appearances for all of us to enjoy and learn from in the future. I mean, we JUST got Randall back, we can't lose someone else!

With regards to this episode's ATP, I love me some @Paul Kimball. Unlike so few guests, or guest co-hosts, or hosts, he "just doesn't give a fuck" and says exactly what's on his mind and if he's got beef with someone he'll say a name. I find that kind of transparency, and honesty, goddamn refreshing. His Esotericon is on my bucket list to attend one of these days, as it features most all of my favorite researchers and "characters" in this paranormal arena. Added plus, Nova Scotia is insanely beautiful, and my second choice in Canada to live when I can afford to move out of the United States for reasons obvious to those of us horrified by the last two years (and counting).
 

Top