Friday, November 11, 2016

X-Zone Broadcast Network - John Shirley

John Shirley
This week’s show was with John Shirley, a noted science fiction writer who is also a songwriter and has had his songs recorded by some of the big names in the industry. John is also something of a skeptic and I believe that a skeptical point of view is essential for researching the strange, the paranormal and UFOs because it is way too easy to be sucked into a belief system. And while we did talk about the explanations for some UFO sightings and how human perception can be fooled, we also talked about some of the strange UFO sightings that seem to defy conventional explanation. You can listen to the show here:

I knew that John had thought about UFOs and investigated a few and I asked about alternative explanations. As a science fiction writer he liked the idea of time travelers, which has many appealing features for him. He mentioned John Keel and his ideas about interdimensional beings or phenomena as another theory, so we weren’t locked into one idea.

For the last segment of the show, we turned things around and John asked me some questions about the Roswell case. He leans toward the mundane because of the vast distances between star systems. In today’s world, we know of no way to defeat that which is not to say that we won’t someday figure it out. At any rate we talked about some of the things that are in my book, Roswell in the 21st Century.

Next Week’s Show: Rob Mercer

Topic: Project Blue Book and the Miami Valley UFO Society.


starman said...

So Shirley thinks "time travel" is more believable or more likely than interstellar travel? Even now an earthly craft, Pioneer 10, is in interstellar space. Fast interstellar travel--at speeds approaching c--may be beyond us, but given time we could reach Proxima Centauri, or farther, with just current knowledge (let alone what may exist 1-300 years from now). In contrast, "time travel" is a complete fantasy. The past doesn't exist anymore, and time would only go backwards if we moved faster than light, an impossibility. As for "interdimensional beings," have other dimensions been verified at all?? We know there are billions of other planets in just our galaxy. Shirley is full of it. The ETH remains the most parsimonious view by far.

Brian Bell said...

"Multiverses" is still just a theory. So far no confirmation as physicists quibble about how to test and verify their existence.

According to General and Special Relativity, slight time distortions are possible but only in the forward dimension. Going backwards, NASA explains, is not possible because we don't understand it.

An alternative theory that plays with a loophole in Einstein's theories states that space-time can be distorted to create a bubble where the object excellarating warps gravity and is held in the same time as when it departed, meaning superluminal speeds could take you to another galaxy and you would arrive in a just a few hours in the same time line as you departed - depart earth at 7:00 am and arrive at distant location at 9:00 am earth time. Same for return trip.

This is theoretically possible, but so far no one has been able to show how to generate enough energy to distort space-time to create this gravity well where time stays constant and linear.

However those who believe in Zero Point energy explain that we can tap the energy around us in unlimited fashion with the proper electro-gravitic mechanisms, and produce enough energy to make this possible.

Some believe the government has already done it.

Emerging science says gravity is the key to the whole thing.

David Rudiak said...

The "space is too big for them to get here" arguments lack imagination, and are even at odds with much current thinking. E.g., there is currently one project under investigation to send a fleet of tiny interstellar probes to Proxima Centauri, using lasers to accelerate them to 20% light speed, e.g.:

That would take 20 years to get there, not tens of thousands of years using current primitive chemical rocket propulsion.

The laser sail idea has been around for about 20 years. Obviously it would have to be scaled up considerably to send a manned probe. Although the engineering would be massive and prohibitively expensive at this time, robotics could change all that one or two hundred years in the future, a mere drop in the bucket given the age of the universe.

While 20 years is a lot out of lifetime to reach the nearest star, humans have historically traveled for long periods of their life. American whalers in the 19th century, e.g., would commonly go out on 5 year voyages, not once but several times. Considering the average lifespan was only about 35 years back then, that would eat up most of their life. I think life on a well-equipped "starship" could be made more comfortable and interesting than being on a tiny whaler for years. I think people would line up around the block for the opportunity to leave Earth and colonize a new planet.

Consider beings that have extended their lifespan to 500 years (something now thought possible for humans). 20 years or even a 100 year voyage would be no worse proportionately than what whalers would do. Maybe suspended animation could be perfected, making the journey considerably shorter and slowing down aging. Or consider something like cybernetic beings explorers, which would make it even easier to accomplish. There are a number of other possibilities (multi-generational voyages, robotic beings tending sperm/eggs not grown until they reach distant star systems, etc.)

Or maybe the speed of light barrier can be beaten. Some physical theories allow for this, such as Heim/Droescher theory, which also predicts antigravity propulsion. At some point, all home stars die or planets get wiped out by cosmic catastrophes. For species survival purposes, this would be strong incentive to eventually colonize other planetary systems.

Terry the Censor said...

> The "space is too big for them to get here" arguments lack imagination

Yet Hynek held that position shortly before his death, so...