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SETI Institute chief offers his views on UFOs and alien visitors

By T.K. Randall
April 23, 2024 · Comment icon 171 comments

Is there anyone out there ? Image Credit: CC BY 3.0 Stewart Duff, CSIRO
SETI's Bill Diamond is not particularly convinced that we have ever been visited by members of an alien civilization.
If there's one organization that you would expect to be pretty open about the possibilities of extraterrestrials visiting the Earth, it's SETI - the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence.

While the institute has spent decades scouring the heavens for signs of alien signals, its current president and chief executive officer Bill Diamond seems less than enthusiastic about the idea that members of an advanced alien civilization have ever visited our planet.

"We don't have any evidence of any credible source that would indicate the presence of alien technology in our skies," he told "And we never have."

"The idea that the government is keeping something like this secret is just totally absurd."

"There's no motivation to do so."
Diamond explained that perhaps the strongest argument against the idea that aliens are visiting us is the vast distances between worlds.

"If you sent that spacecraft to our closest neighbor star, Alpha Centauri, it would take 80,000 years to get there," he said.

"Any civilization that has mastered the ability to traverse the incomprehensibly vast distances of interstellar space would have technology so far advanced from our own as to be beyond our comprehension."

Of course, this doesn't rule out the possibility, since any given extraterrestrial civilization may be thousands of years more advanced than us and may have discovered technologies and concepts enabling them to travel much greater distances through space at much greater speeds.

"Why do people have these beliefs? It is because they want to believe," Diamond added.

"Nobody really wants to think that this Earth is the only place in the vastness of space where life has emerged. Even that idea is also kind of absurd."

Source: | Comments (171)

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Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #162 Posted by astrobeing 6 days ago
My guess is that this shot was an accidental double exposure (or possible reflections) but every other similar shot of white blobs in late 1952 and 1953 were deliberate hoaxes done by photographers who saw Alpert's photo in the newspaper and thought, "Oh, that's easy." It really lowered the bar. Anyone with a camera could make a similar shot during an afternoon and sell it to the local newspaper for $50.
Comment icon #163 Posted by the13bats 6 days ago
My rub with accident would then mean he didn't know what made the reflection like lights in the room and in that case what did? Hum, I have a theory back after lunch.
Comment icon #164 Posted by the13bats 6 days ago
The joint we had lunch at had a wall with glass top waitress station and lights were reflecting "pepper ghost" in that glass thing is you could tell it was lights very good detail in the reflection. The light blobs in this thread pic do to me always seem like the same light repeated or a fixture of more than one light, Let me ask can the camera used do like multi exposure or just double?
Comment icon #165 Posted by astrobeing 5 days ago
They reminded me of the slats they used to put on fluorescent tube fixtures. This is a photo of a fluorescent light made in 1951. Note how the horizontal slats look very similar to the horizontal lines in the white blobs?
Comment icon #166 Posted by astrobeing 5 days ago
You can recock the shutter and take as many exposures as you want onto the sheet of film in the camera. Nothing will stop you.
Comment icon #167 Posted by the13bats 5 days ago
So just in educating me, I could take say 4 pics of one light moving the came each time a little bit then take a pic out the window of outside and those 4 lights would be there?
Comment icon #168 Posted by ChrLzs 4 days ago
Simple answer, yes.  Longer and more correct answer?  Yes, but also anything else that was captured by the film (or sensor) in *all* of the exposures would also show up - if the detail is bright enough. - you lose a LOT of light when reflecting in window glass.. Allow me to explain by referencing this (Salem) image. In order to get that effect, the only thing in the other exposures needs to be the lights - if they showed anything else (like the light spill immediately around the lights, the light fitting itself, or furniture or some other lights...) all of those would also appear in the doub... [More]
Comment icon #169 Posted by the13bats 3 days ago
Thanks for the 101 and it's weird how many such photos lose the negatives like Sandra's of champ lake monster, the negative in that case she felt was evil and ritually distroyed it. Perhaps when eot returns with the 60 witnesses reports we can learn more about this one.
Comment icon #170 Posted by astrobeing 3 days ago
Or by accident one of the exposures did blow out the lights without exposing any details around them. I can imagine those conditions in a dark office especially with a dark ceiling. Regarding the loss of light when shooting window reflections, remember that there was a screen on the other side and the exposure was at least three stops longer than what would be a normal exposure of an overcast day. The screen would even the indoor/outdoor light levels somewhat. We know that something was eating a lot of light coming through that window or Alpert remembered the exposure incorrectly.
Comment icon #171 Posted by ChrLzs 15 hours ago
Earl, where'd you go? On a previous thread on this topic, you said: Admirable ... but please cite those rather specific claims, because some of us rudely think that we do need that photo, and that eyewitness testimony counts for ****. However, if it is really 50+ witnesses, and they all 'march' {sic}, then I'll be suitably impressed. But, gotta be staright up - I think that claim is something other truth.  Citation required, or if not, I'll be most interested in the excuse.  Perhaps you may wish to apologise, as I will if you post the cite.

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