UFO UpDates
A mailing list for the study of UFO-related phenomena
'Its All Here In Black & White'
Location: UFOUpDatesList.Com > 2012 > Feb > Feb 24

Re: UFO Morphology Issue Revisited

From: Michael Tarbell <mtarbell.nul>
Date: Thu, 23 Feb 2012 12:36:01 -0700
Archived: Fri, 24 Feb 2012 06:29:30 -0500
Subject: Re: UFO Morphology Issue Revisited


Sorry for abandoning my post, so to speak. There have been some
very interesting comments, here are some tardy ones of my own.

Proceeding from the premise that some UFOs are of ET origin and
represent nuts-and-bolts 'devices', occupied or not, consider
our apparent circumstance in which, based on verbal accounts,
drawings, and photographs, these objects are extraordinarily
diverse, perhaps even individually unique (or, alternatively,
are morphologically dynamic, i.e., size/shape changing with

A pertinent question is, why is this troubling (as it clearly is
to many, including myself)? Certainly some degree of diversity
of form would not be surprising, but the actual set of
observations indicates extreme rarity, if even any existence, of
repetition among cases where detailed morphology can be
resolved. I think many find this abhorrent in the Occam sense,
i.e., it seems so _uneconomical_ , and calls for some rather
contrived scenarios, some of which put us in the untenable
position of imputing human motives to alien life form(s).

A few examples of attempts to make this situation more palatable

(a) ETs do this because they can, i.e., they aren't constrained
by our production-line methods of manufacture, so why _not_ make
each device unique, e.g., as a matter of artistry?

(b) ETs do this to deliberately modify or direct human
interpretation of the phenomenon, e.g., to instill doubt about
its reality/objectivity, thereby averting panic, social
upheaval, etc.

(c) These devices, although nuts-and-bolts in nature, are
actually manifested/perceived in a subjective or non-uniform
way, (perhaps even to the extent that inert, passive
instruments, e.g., cameras, are affected.

There are no doubt additional, better formulated options, and I
do not mean to present these as strawmen. They are not overtly
absurd, but I personally find them pretty difficult to swallow.

Perhaps this is because there is a fairly straightforward and
Occam-friendly way out: namely, that the vast majority of (but
not necessarily all) UFO sightings and/or photographs that are
sufficiently detailed to distinguish geometric features are
_not_ ET-related, but rather, are either hoaxes,
misidentifications, or internal, subjective experiences (e.g.,

For better or worse, this would obviously encourage the standard
rebuttal to virtually any class of anomalistic phenomena, i.e.,
"If that large a fraction of cases are prosaic, shouldn't we
just presume that they all are?"

To which my own answer is "no", because I remain intrigued by a
small fraction of cases that do not admit any tenable prosaic
explanation, or at least no explanation that is more plausible
than, say, the ETH. But if the non-prosaic fraction of UFOs are
as diverse and non-repetitive as the total UFO dataset
indicates, I would have to consider that one of several warts to
be found on the ETH.


Listen to 'Strange Days... Indeed' - The PodCast



These contents above are copyright of the author and
UFO UpDates - Toronto. They may not be reproduced
without the express permission of both parties and
are intended for educational use only.

[ Next Message | This Day's Messages ]
This Month's Index |

UFO UpDates Main Index

UFO UpDates - Toronto - Operated by Errol Bruce-Knapp

Archive programming by Glenn Campbell at Glenn-Campbell.com