Acronym for Unidentified Flying Object. Sometimes referred to as flying saucers.

One of the most famous UFO incidents occurred at Roswell, NM in 1947. The little green men aboard that ship were really Quark, Rom, Nog, and Odo, but don't tell anybody...

Many sightings of these UFOs and other strange phenomena are contained in The X-Files.

There is a theory that suggests many UFO sightings are caused by volcanic and tectonic pressures under the ground. These (apparently) can cause electromagnetic discharges in the atmosphere that can look like hovering balls of light.

One well documented case of this was in New Zealand, where a glowing ball was seen on several occasions, moving north. This theory would make sense, since the whole country is basicly teetering on the edge of what has been imaginatively named the 'ring of fire', and has had more than its share of earthquakes and volcanic erruptions.

Although hard evidence is a little sketchy, another theory floats about in the conspiratorial ether. A 1994 book entitled "The Rainbow Conspiracy" by Brad Steiger quotes a man named Vladimir Terziski, author of another book, "Close Encounters of the Kugelblitz Kind". According to Steiger, Terziski "maintains that antigravity research began in the 1920s with the first hybrid antigravity circular craft, the RFZ-1, constructed by the secret Vrill society".

Also a man named W. A. Harbinson wrote a novel he claimed was based upon fact, "Genesis: Project Saucer, Part II" which featured an appendix containing results of his research linking the "foo fighters" spotted by US wartime pilots with German designers. Harbinson also linked SS founder Heinrich Himmler with the secret "saucer" projects, and on a similar vein, Max Amann, one of Hitler's oldest friends and controller of the Nazi Party's publishing system, was also known to have been affiliated with a secret group called the Society of the Vrill.

Whatever the source, stories abound which suggest that the Nazis did indeed endeavour to develop a highly maneouvrable antigravity based weapon. As we know, after the war ended, many German scientists were captured and taken back to America under Project Paperclip where they were put to work for the military. It is not inconceivable that they passed on their research to the US army who developed it further and who still work to perfect it. The popularity of the idea of alien spacecraft and abductions would obviously be encouraged because it merely draws the attention away from the truth, which is out there.

UFO is sort for unidentified flying objects. Which jokingly means that if I take a tea cup and throw it on the air and your eye catches while it flings rapidly, it is a UFO. A UFO doesn't necessary contain extraterrestrials. It can be something trivial, it could be also something spectacular like a secret aircraft, a strange natural weather phenomenon or a spherical lightning. If it flies and you can't identify it then it's called a UFO.

Many people say that UFOs doesn't exist but it is like saying that everything we can see on the skies is already identified and there is no such a thing as unknown. Of course what they mean by UFOs is alien spacecrafts. Many people confuse the notion of UFOs with something controlled by an intelligent entity from outer space. It could be anything..

Many people say that they believe in UFOs. Which is again the wrong notion. What they mean is that they believe that alien spacecrafts are flying in our skies. UFOs do exist, which means that something that someone have seen in the sky morningly and cannot logically explain does exist. But it can be anything. It's not provable whether it's aliens, secret aircrafts or anything really really out of the ordinary. But in some cases it's proven that many of them are hoaxes. However there are few strange cases out there that are worth to research I believe. UFOs is a huge world on it's own.

An unidentified flying object is exactly what it says on the tin: Something moving through the air which the observer can't put a name to. I've seen one... for about half a second, before my brain caught up with my eyes and said, "It's an aeroplane viewed from side on as it moves on a landing trajectory. You can't see the wings because you're exactly in line with them. The tail is the same colour as the sky".

It was hardly a thrilling scene from The X-Files. I just happened to be walking down a road that's high up in the middle of the afternoon, and looked to my left while the plane was descending. I could see something, and for a split second I could not recognise it. After my brain kicked in its logic circuits and I'd figured out what it was, and why it didn't look familiar, I waited and saw the aeroplane come into focus as it moved lower. Then I could see the detail - the tail was now visible against the hills, and the tips of the wings were outside the silhouette of the fuselage.

But wow, that's how it works: The eyes see something and the visual cortex processes it, while the brain tries frantically to work out what it is seeing. Because it's an image outside of previous experience, the brain hasn't worked out what it's seeing by the time the visual cortex has processed the image fully: Total confusion is the result until the viewer works out the optical illusion.

In this specific case, the likelihood of catching the exact right moment while passing the exact right spot on the exact right road and looking in the exact right direction is very small. Not to mention that everyone knows what an aeroplane is these days and thus can work out what they're seeing quickly if they do get lucky, so it's no wonder we don't see regular news stories about cigar-shaped flying saucers racing about Wellington harbour.

Of course, we really do hear about UFOs here, far too often. This is odd considering large nations like the United States of America probably have less (or less prominent) reports of "erratically moving lights in the sky" in the national media. Perhaps it's always a slow news day here on an island where sheep feature in the news more often than not - though not always on page three, despite what you've all heard. The news here is full of fluff pieces, which offend the sensibilities more often than not. Thankfully these days the reporters do some actual work when they hear about mysterious lights in the sky and phone up an astronomer or meteorologist to ask them what's going on.

The latest one consisted of people reporting lights moving slowly across the night sky and then disappearing. The fact that this comes at the same time as the police and coast guard are getting annoyed about sky lanterns being released on beaches - subsequently reported as flares, which means they're obligated to investigate - indicates an entirely earthly origin for these lights. I'm quite impressed that the journalists managed to resist the sensationalist urge and actually wrote it all up properly. There's hope yet for news reporting...

...at least, until they sensationalise the next Bigfoot hoax.

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