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Old 07-23-2008, 09:30 AM   #276
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http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-en...nd-870520.html

Does the world need another indie band?

It's the height of the festival season, and across Britain Identikit groups of tight-trousered, floppy-haired boys with guitars are taking to the stage, to thrash out a homogenous jangle. Critics have dubbed their sound 'indie landfill'. Is it the death knell of a once-vibrant underground scene?
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Old 07-23-2008, 09:47 AM   #277
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http://cryptogon.com/?p=3021

Toy Company Developing Weapon that Fires Variable Speed Bullets for U.S. Military
July 23rd, 2008

Via: New Scientist:

A gun that fires variable speed bullets and which can be set to kill, wound or just inflict a bruise is being built by a US toy manufacturer. The weapon is based on technology used to propel toy rockets.

Lund and Company Invention, a toy design studio based near Chicago, makes toy rockets that are powered by burning hydrogen obtained by electrolysing water. Now the company is being funded by the US army to adapt the technology to fire bullets instead.

The US Army are interested in arming soldiers with weapons that can be switched between lethal and non-lethal modes. They asked Company Invention to make a rifle that can fire bullets at various speeds.

Sniper version

The new weapon, called the Variable Velocity Weapon System or VWS, lets the soldier to use the same rifle for crowd control and combat, by altering the muzzle velocity. It could be loaded with “rubber bullets” designed only to deliver blunt impacts on a person, full-speed lethal rounds or projectiles somewhere between the two.

Bruce Lund, the company’s CEO, says the gun works by mixing a liquid or gaseous fuel with air in a combustion chamber behind the bullet. This determines the explosive capability of the propellant and consequently the velocity of the bullet as it leaves the gun. “Projectile velocity varies from non-lethal at 10 metres, to lethal at 100 metres or more, as desired,” says Lund.

The company says that the weapon produces less heat and light than traditional guns. It can also be made lighter and could have a high power setting for long-range sniping.

Police already fire non-lethal projectiles from standard shotguns. These are known as “beanbag” rounds, bags of lead shot which will knock down a suspect at ranges of up to 10 metres. They are termed “non-lethal”, but can cause bruising or even broken ribs.
‘Handgun to Howitzer’

Lund says that the new weapon system will use different types of bullet for lethal and non-lethal use. Police forces already use separate shotguns for non-lethal loads – typically marking them with bright orange tape to prevent any confusion – so this shouldn’t be an issue.

The existing VWS design is a .50 calibre (12.7 mm) rifle weapon, but Lund says the technology can be scaled to any size, “handgun to Howitzer”.

Steve Wright, a security expert at Leeds Metropolitan University, UK warns of the potential risk of variable lethality.

“In a high-stress, high-personal-risk zone, there will be a real temptation for soldiers to turn the tuneable lethality switch up to ‘kill’ mode so that all doubt is removed.”

A demonstration version will be ready within six months, and the VWS could go into production within 18 months of approval, according to Lund and Company.
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Old 07-23-2008, 09:47 AM   #278
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Via Bloomberg:

Wachovia Corp., the U.S. bank that hired Treasury Undersecretary Robert Steel as chief executive officer two weeks ago, reported a record quarterly loss of $8.9 billion, slashed the dividend and announced 6,350 job cuts. The stock fell as much as 12 percent in early New York trading.

The second-quarter loss of $4.20 a share compared with net income of $2.3 billion, or $1.23, a year earlier, the Charlotte, North Carolina-based company said today in a statement. The loss included a $6.1 billion charge tied to declining asset values.

The writedown, job cuts and second dividend reduction in three months reflect Steel’s response to the worst housing market since the Great Depression, which cost former CEO Kennedy Thompson his job after eight years. Wachovia has dropped more than 75 percent in New York Stock Exchange composite trading since it spent $24 billion two years ago to buy Golden West Financial Corp. just as home prices were peaking.
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Old 07-23-2008, 09:57 AM   #279
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Music Went With Cave Art In Prehistoric Caves

ScienceDaily (July 5, 2008) — Thousands of years later, we can view stone-age art on cave walls, but we can't listen to the stone-age music that would have accompanied many of the pictures. In many sites, flutes made of bone are to be found nearby.

Iegor Reznikoff of the University of Paris reports that the most acoustically resonant place in a cave -- where sounds linger or reverberate the most -- was also often the place where the pictures were densest.

And when the most-resonant spot was located in a very narrow passageway too difficult for painting, red marks are often found, as if the resonance maximum had to be signified in some way. This correlation of paintings and music, Reznikoff says, provides "the best evidence for the ritualistic meanings of the paintings and of the use of the adorned caves."

Proceeding into the direction of the best resonance (or echo) that answers to vocal sounds, one is naturally lead to panels with pictures. At the very least, in the dark caves, where hand-held light sources fall off in effectiveness, singing (and listening for resonant reactions) proved to be the best sonar-like way of exploring the caves. A significant returning sound gave some hint of a usable hall ahead in the dark.

On the 5th and 6th of July, Reznikoff will conduct a tour of a prehistoric cave where he will show some examples of the sound-picture relationship. He will also lead a visit to the Basilica of Vezelay where he will illustrate the magnificent resonance. (Talk 4pAAa1, " Sound resonance in prehistoric times: A study of Paleolithic painted caves and rocks" was presented July 3, 2008.)
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Old 07-23-2008, 09:58 AM   #280
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How the Galapagos Islands Changed the World
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Old 07-23-2008, 10:00 AM   #281
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http://en.epochtimes.com/n2/science-...ence-1339.html


do certain people really have a field of influence on electrical equipment? While there are motion detecting light systems designed, for security reasons, to switch on when it senses movement, public street lights are only triggered when daylight reaches a sufficient brightness. That is of course unless they come in contact with these electrically influential individuals.

Working with the Association for the Scientific Study of Anomalous Phenomena (ASSAP), Hilary Evans has been studying this subject since the early 90s. His book, The SLI Effect, profiles several cases of SLI in an ongoing project known as SLIDE (SLI Data Exchange). SLIDE compiles these testimonies and explores various possibilities that could lie behind such a curious phenomenon.

“…History demonstrates that there can be widespread belief in a phenomenon which is nonetheless nothing more than an artifact derived from an erroneous interpretation of witness testimony. However, SLI has a basis in physical reality which is amenable to investigation: street lights are physical objects and the SLI effect, if it exists, must be ultimately a physical process. By its nature, SLI lends itself to methodical observation and controlled testing,” writes Evans.

Although there are many reports of SLI experiences, the circumstances of each case can vary widely. Some report switching off a single streetlight close by; others say they have influenced a row of streetlights; and a few possess the capacity to randomly affect only certain streetlights, making it difficult to discern a pattern in SLI. People who supposedly experience SLI, known as SLIders, suffer from a lack of validation from doubtful friends and family, until they witness repeated occurrences themselves. With no sufficient explanation for the phenomenon they experience, SLIders are left to imagine their own ideas behind the influence they seem to possess.
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Old 07-23-2008, 10:18 AM   #282
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http://news.nationalgeographic.com/n...-missions.html

Rare Mummy Found With Strange Artifacts, Tattoo in Peru
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Old 07-23-2008, 12:45 PM   #283
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http://www.smithsonianmag.com/scienc...editation.html

Meditate on It

Could ancient campfire rituals have separated us from Neanderthals?

A couple hundred-thousand years ago—sometime after our hominid ancestors had controlled fire, but long before they were telling ghost stories—early humans huddled around campfires to meditate and partake in shamanistic rituals. Today, when we slow down for a yellow light, recognize a dollar sign or do anything, really, that involves working memory, we have these ancient brainstorming sessions to thank.

That's the somewhat controversial connection psychologist Matt J. Rossano is making. Ritualistic gatherings sharpened mental focus, he argues. Over time, this focus strengthened the mind's ability to connect symbols and meanings, eventually causing gene mutations that favored the enhanced memory we now possess.

"We have decent evidence that shamanistic rituals may go very deep into history, and that these rituals might have had positive psychological effects," says Rossano of Southeastern Louisiana University, whose theory appears in the February Cambridge Archaeological Journal.
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Old 07-23-2008, 12:48 PM   #284
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http://www.alternet.org/healthwellne...8f73eeb2caf5ba

After a 40-year moratorium, credible research for treating illnesses and addictions with psychedelic compounds has made a miraculous comeback.
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Old 07-23-2008, 12:51 PM   #285
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http://www.nationalpost.com/news/story.html?id=665015

Reality bites

Patients believe their lives are on TV: MDs



"...While Dr. Gold says they could have easily called their new disorder the EDtv Delusion or the Matrix Delusion -- both films that refer to an unreal existence-- three of the five patients he treated at the storied mental health hospital directly likened their plight to The Truman Show, the 1998 film about Truman Burbank, an affable suburbanite who slowly becomes aware that his every movement is broadcast 24/7 to voyeuristic viewers around the world.

The five patients Dr. Gold treated were white men between the ages of 25 and 34, the majority of whom held university degrees. "I realized that I was and am the centre, the focus of attention by millions and millions of people," explained one patient, an army veteran who came from an upper-middle-class upbringing.

"My family and everyone I knew were and are actors in a script, a charade whose entire purpose is to make me the focus of the world's attention."

The patient added that he planned to climb to the top of the Statue of Liberty, and if his true love were waiting for him, the puppeteer strings would be cut. If she failed to show up, he would jump to his death.

Another patient even had first-hand experience with reality TV: A 25-year-old New Englander with a bachelor's degree in film and communication studies worked as intern on a program where, he complained, cameras were secretly tracking him.

Thinking that he was also being filmed while at a polling station on Election Day in 2004, he felt that it was his duty to protest against the Bush administration by shouting that the President was "Judas." The outburst led to his admission to the Bellevue Center.

"Typically, the Truman Show Delusion is a combination of paranoia, grandiosity and ideas of reference, which means that patients believe they are receiving signals specifically meant for them from a newscast or something like that." said Dr. Gold, adding that since he started presenting these cases at conferences two years ago, colleagues have informed him of six more examples....."
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Old 07-23-2008, 02:32 PM   #286
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http://www.nationalpost.com/news/story.html?id=665015

Reality bites

Patients believe their lives are on TV: MDs



"...While Dr. Gold says they could have easily called their new disorder the EDtv Delusion or the Matrix Delusion -- both films that refer to an unreal existence-- three of the five patients he treated at the storied mental health hospital directly likened their plight to The Truman Show, the 1998 film about Truman Burbank, an affable suburbanite who slowly becomes aware that his every movement is broadcast 24/7 to voyeuristic viewers around the world.

The five patients Dr. Gold treated were white men between the ages of 25 and 34, the majority of whom held university degrees. "I realized that I was and am the centre, the focus of attention by millions and millions of people," explained one patient, an army veteran who came from an upper-middle-class upbringing.

"My family and everyone I knew were and are actors in a script, a charade whose entire purpose is to make me the focus of the world's attention."

The patient added that he planned to climb to the top of the Statue of Liberty, and if his true love were waiting for him, the puppeteer strings would be cut. If she failed to show up, he would jump to his death.

Another patient even had first-hand experience with reality TV: A 25-year-old New Englander with a bachelor's degree in film and communication studies worked as intern on a program where, he complained, cameras were secretly tracking him.

Thinking that he was also being filmed while at a polling station on Election Day in 2004, he felt that it was his duty to protest against the Bush administration by shouting that the President was "Judas." The outburst led to his admission to the Bellevue Center.

"Typically, the Truman Show Delusion is a combination of paranoia, grandiosity and ideas of reference, which means that patients believe they are receiving signals specifically meant for them from a newscast or something like that." said Dr. Gold, adding that since he started presenting these cases at conferences two years ago, colleagues have informed him of six more examples....."
i laughed when i first heard about this one
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Old 07-23-2008, 02:35 PM   #287
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i laughed when i first heard about this one
I did too - but i understand the validity of it. I have been fascinated for sometime about how people are in the "cyber" world vs. the "real" world. I noticed it with alternate personalities in gaming rooms with my friends - then onto message boards, etc.
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Old 07-23-2008, 04:12 PM   #288
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I did too - but i understand the validity of it. I have been fascinated for sometime about how people are in the "cyber" world vs. the "real" world. I noticed it with alternate personalities in gaming rooms with my friends - then onto message boards, etc.
Talk about a narccissitic(sp?) personality disorder
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Old 07-23-2008, 04:35 PM   #289
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Talk about a narccissitic(sp?) personality disorder
Just a tad. ;p
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Old 07-24-2008, 12:17 PM   #290
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The Soros Media "Empire"
The Power of Philanthropy to Engineer Consent
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Old 07-24-2008, 01:22 PM   #291
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http://ce399.typepad.com/weblog/2008...-miracles.html

A Course in Miracles has an interesting history and it all started when Dr. Helen Schucman, a non-religious Jew began working with Dr. William Thetford in 1958. It seems Dr. Thetford had ties with the CIA and was working on Project BLUEBIRD, which was later rolled over into the MK ULTRA Project. MK ULTRA was a program focused on mind control, it was created in the 1950s by the CIA with the goal to learn ways to manipulate people’s mental states, alter brain function and create Manchurian Candidates often through the use of drugs and hypnosis. Under the MK ULTRA umbrella there were over a hundred sub projects from the 1950s well into the 1970s and Thetford worked on Personality Theory, subproject 130. List of Subprojects
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Old 07-24-2008, 03:20 PM   #292
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http://www.alternet.org/drugreporter...7a4b642ee73c67

Synthetic Pot as a Military Weapon? Meet the Man Who Ran the Secret Program
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Old 07-24-2008, 03:21 PM   #293
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http://www.livescience.com/technolog...era-plane.html

World's Smallest Camera Plane Shows Off in Public

It has a 4-inch wingspan and weighs just over 3 grams. It looks like a dragonfly, and its flapping wings make it fly just like one. But it's a man-made aircraft which carries a tiny camera that transmits live video of what it sees — and it is intended to be merely the forerunner of much smaller aerial drones to come.

The DelFly Micro, which its developers say is the world's smallest camera-equipped aircraft, made its public debut today in a sports center at Delft in the Netherlands. The four-man research team from the Delft University of Technology that built the DelfFly Micro presented it to a media audience, conducting the first public demonstration flight of the tiny vehicle.

Team member Bart Remes said he and his colleagues Christophe De Wagter, Guido de Croon and Rick Ruijsink first flew the DelFly Micro on May 5. It represents the third generation of DelFly micro air vehicles (MAVs) developed by the team, coming after the much larger DelFly I that first flew in 2005 and the second-generation DelFly II that flew for the first time in 2006.

The team's primary goal in developing the DelFly family of MAVs has been to investigate the aerodynamics of ornithopters — aircraft that fly by flapping their wings like a bird or insect. The airflows round the thin PET films that make up the MAVs' wings "are so difficult (to model), no computer can simulate them," said Remes. "We can’t do it with calculations, so we can only do measurements."

In the course of its research the team measured the movements of smoke particles over the wings of the 11-inch-span, 16-gram DelFly II, and incorporated force sensors into its wings to determine how much lift the wings generated at different flapping frequencies.
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Old 07-24-2008, 05:00 PM   #294
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[url]The five patients Dr. Gold treated were white men between the ages of 25 and 34, the majority of whom held university degrees. "I realized that I was and am the centre, the focus of attention by millions and millions of people," explained one patient, an army veteran who came from an upper-middle-class upbringing.

"My family and everyone I knew were and are actors in a script, a charade whose entire purpose is to make me the focus of the world's attention."
This guy is dead and just doesn't know it yet. The show cannot be all about him, cuz it's all about me. My cat said so.

Regards,
m.
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Old 07-24-2008, 10:51 PM   #295
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This guy is dead and just doesn't know it yet. The show cannot be all about him, cuz it's all about me. My cat said so.

Regards,
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My cats name is maceo....... lol


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Old 07-28-2008, 12:46 AM   #296
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Worms Do Calculus to Find Food


Sun Jul 27, 10:21 AM ET


Like humans with a nose for the best restaurants, roundworms also use their senses of taste and smell to navigate. And now, researchers may have found how a worm's brain does this: It performs calculus.


Worms calculate how much the strength of different tastes is changing - equivalent to the process of taking a derivative in calculus - to figure out if they are on their way toward food or should change direction and look elsewhere, says University of Oregon biologist Shawn Lockery, who thinks humans and other animals do the same thing.
This research could one day benefit some of the more than 200,000 Americans who detect a foul smell or taste that is actually pleasant or have a weakened or depleted ability to appreciate the scent of a lilac or savor the flavor of a juicy burger.
"The more we know about how taste and smell function - not just at the level of primary sensory neurons, but downstream in the brain - the better prepared we will be to understand when the system is broken," Lockery says.
With the aid of salt and chili peppers, Lockery reached the calculating-worms conclusion by studying two anatomically identical neurons from the worm's brain that collectively regulate behavior. These two neurons function like "on" and "off" gates in a computer in response to changes in salt concentration levels. This dubiously delicious discovery, detailed in the July 3 issue of the journal Nature, hints at the method for smelling and tasting that is thought to be common among a wide variety of species, including humans.
Like human visual systems that respond to the presence and absence of light, Lockery and colleagues found that when the left neuron fires as salt concentrations increase, the roundworm continues crawling in the same direction. The right neuron responds when salt concentrations decrease, and the worm turns in search of a saltier location.
Lockery said this is similar to a game of hot-and-cold with a child. But there is one key difference: the worm doesn't need an observer to say if it's getting closer to or farther from the target - the worm calculates the change by itself.
Observing the worm responding to changes in concentration suggested an experiment to see if the worm's brain computes derivatives. The mathematical concept of a derivative indicates the rate at which something, such as salt concentration, changes at a given point in time and space. So Lockery tried to verify that these neurons recognize changes in salt concentration and then tell the worm where food is and where it is not.
To do so, he artificially activated each neuron with capsaicin, the spicy component in chili peppers, which worms naturally cannot detect. Worms with capsaicin applied to the left neuron crawled forward. When the worm's brain indicated that the current motion leads to increasing salt concentrations, it continues moving in its original direction. But when the worm's right neuron is activated by capsaicin, it is duped into thinking the salt levels are decreasing. So the worm changes direction, hoping to find salt elsewhere.
"We found a new way to do calculus with neurons," Lockery told LiveScience.
Previous studies have identified "on" and "off" cells in the brains of other chemosensory animals such as fruit flies, cockroaches, frogs, lobsters and rats. Given the strong similarities between the olfactory regions of the brains in rats and other mammals, Lockery says that humans should also be included in this list. So his work suggests that this circuit may be a universal derivative for smelling and tasting.
In response to the lingering mystery of why worms go toward salts in search of food, Lockery offers an untested theory that the decaying carcasses of invertebrates, like snails and earthworms, provide a common source of bacteria. Since animals are very salty inside, he thinks there could be a link between salt and bacteria in the wild.
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Old 07-28-2008, 09:29 AM   #297
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Cool article LABF.... Thanks man....


Off topic - but here is my new phone:

http://www.pantechusa.com/web/guest/duo
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Old 08-05-2008, 09:20 AM   #298
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Old 08-05-2008, 09:28 AM   #299
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http://www.newsweek.com/id/149006

Inside the Grieving Brain

Memories of the person they missed prolonged their grief, giving them pleasure as well as pain.


"...In a paper in the journal Neuroimage, O'Connor and her colleagues describe using an fMRI machine to probe the neurological basis for complicated grief among a small sample of women who had lost a close relative to breast cancer. Ordinary grief is apparent on a brain scan: show a bereaved daughter a picture of her mother, and areas of the brain that process emotional pain are activated. The women with complicated grief showed that pattern, but something else as well: activity in the nucleus accumbens, a brain region associated with pleasure, rewards and addiction. "When the women came out of the scanner, the complicated-grief group rated themselves as feeling more negative than the others," O'Connor said. "But they also said things like, 'Oh, it was so nice to see my mom again.' These are the ones who pore over picture albums, talk about the person all the time, almost as if she was still here." The women in that situation were unconsciously prolonging their grief, she concluded, because memories of the person they missed gave them pleasure—as well as pain...."
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Old 08-05-2008, 09:30 AM   #300
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Default Unidentified Flying Threats

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/07/29/op...in&oref=slogin

ON the afternoon of Nov. 7, 2006, pilots and airport employees at O’Hare International Airport in Chicago saw a disc-like object hovering over the tarmac for several minutes. Because nothing was tracked on radar, the Federal Aviation Administration did not investigate. Yet radar is not a reliable detector of all aircraft. Stealth planes are designed to be invisible to radar, and many radar systems filter out signals not matching the normal characteristics of aircraft. Did it really make sense to entirely ignore the observations of several witnesses?

A healthy skepticism about extraterrestrial space travelers leads people to disregard U.F.O. sightings without a moment’s thought. But in the United States, this translates into overdependence on radar data and indifference to all kinds of unidentified aircraft — a weakness that could be exploited by terrorists or anyone seeking to engage in espionage against the United States.
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