Thursday, 21 June 2012
Mars One wants to colonize the Red Planet. To make it happen, they're harnessing the power (and money) of reality TV.
Private space flight has had quite a boom in the past few years, but until now, it's been funded by floods of IPO cash or the occasional promise of extraterrestrial minerals. But a Dutch entrepreneur named Bas Lansdorp has lit onto a new source of funding for his upcoming Mars One project: the world's first extraterrestrial reality show.
The plan is for a colonization mission, but the show would start even earlier, with months of rigorous screening and viewer voting to pick the four astronauts. (Think The Right Stuff meets American Idol.) The heart of the show would come once the astronaut contestants started to settle into their new Martian home. As Lansdorp told us, "Everybody watched Neil Armstrong land on the moon. But everyboy stopped watching." With the Martian equivalent of a Real World house, it's much easier to lock viewers in.
Also, there's no way back. Mars One says a return mission isn't workable with current technology, so the colonists will all be spending the rest of their lives on what they hope will be a growing Martian colony. The show, as they say, must go on.
There are many reasons to be skeptical. It would be the first time a human being has landed on another planet, much less permanently settled one, and it comes at a time when most private space shuttles are still struggling to make it into orbit. Then there's the price. Lansdorp estimates it will cost around $6 billion, but NASA's most recent moon landing proposal cost twice that, and it didn't involve building a permanent colony. Lansdorp has a good reputation with the TED crowd — his last project used drones to generate wind power — but there's no indication he's up for an engineering challenge like this.
Still, it would make for a hell of a TV show. Space travel has always made for great television, from the first moon landing to the SpaceX Dragon launch in May. And when the astronauts are public figures who have committed themselves to living and dying on camera, it's easy to imagine a network seizing on Lansdorp's pitch, even if it gets scaled down a bit along the way.
Unlike NASA, Mars One isn't interested in science, so the rockets and shuttles will be built entirely with currently available tech. Relying on television circa 2012 is a bit dicier. As Lansdorp told us, "nobody knows what the media will look like in 10 years," so pitching a television event a decade in advance is the trickiest part of the project.
In other words, the media is officially moving faster than rocket science.
In this Shropshire UFO casebook for shropshirelive.com, UFO researcher Phil Hoyle explains how one UFO witness was visited by a strange man.
In part 6 of my casebook I talked about an incident involving Roger Erdington who lived near Newport, Shropshire. He had contacted us after we had placed an advert in the local Newport newspaper in the hope people in that surrounding area might contact us regarding any UFO sightings or encounters. His response was very interesting yet disturbing.Roger related a very weird incident that took place in the 70’s at his nursery business that he ran for more than 35 years. One afternoon Roger had heard someone calling him from the lower level of his storage building, which was situated in an old barn. He politely asked the person to come up stairs to where he was working, after a few moments a short dapper little man, grey haired in a bank managers suit carrying a briefcase came up the stairs and asked, if he was Roger Erdington? “Yes I am” Roger replied, at this point he presumed the man was a VAT or Tax inspector. The man opened his briefcase and pulled out a manuscript, Roger was told that he must scrutinize the document, which was quite lengthy, digest it, and then destroy it. Roger asked what it was, telling the mystery man that if it was some sort of sales gimmick he didn’t want to buy it, and explained that if it was insurance he was fully insured. The man looked at Roger and said “no it’s neither of those”, it was at this point Roger asked who he was?
The man replied with his name and explained that he was a professor and had brought important documents for him to read.
Roger scanned the document and said it looked like “Political Treaties”, the man replied “I suppose you could call it that, but read it all and do as you’re told and then destroy it.” Roger wondered why this man was there, and asked him, where he was from? The man had an Australian accent and replied that he was a professor at Brisbane University, the man then looked at his watch and said he couldn’t stay long explaining ”You’re the last one I’ve got to do and I’m catching an aeroplane from Manchester shortly.”
Roger, who was rather confused by the incident, asked the man to leave the manuscript on the bench, which he did and then he left. From the upper window Roger can see anyone leaving the premises by the only access point below, but he never saw the man leave the building, he had just vanished, Ray’s wife was present also at the time and confirms this incident.
That night Roger started to read the manuscript and was dumbfounded by its content, it told of future earth events. Roger read the manuscript and as instructed, threw the manuscript on the fire!
The following year Roger did a lot of research on the man who had visited him; he discovered that the strange man had never worked at Brisbane University and that the mans name related to someone who had been dead for the past 70 years. Could the strange man belong to an alien race known as the “Watchers” it is believed that this benevolent human type race are responsible for overseeing the evolutionary development of humanity and appear at times of great trouble to guide man in the right direction.
Regarding the content of the manuscript-document it related to the political chaos of the world starting from 1971 to approximately 2022. It mentioned the events of 9/11 and that China would become a great world super power. It also mentioned trouble in Korea and great problems with Muslim nations.
This is only one of many similar incidents I have investigated over the past 30 years and makes me wonder what secret or forbidden knowledge has been passed to individuals that might still be lying in an old dusty cupboard or attic?
Rihanna's brother Rorrey has revealed that the 24-year-old singer was obsessed with finding unidentified flying objects as a child.
Apparently the performer was preoccupied with discovering life beyond Earth.
He said: "We used to spend all weekend watching movies and talking about UFOs, looking out for them. Ri really believes there are UFOs."
Rorrey, who is launching a rap career under the name GQ, said that his sister may be the coolest person in the music industry at the moment but she was known for being extremely diligent at school in Barbados.
Rorrey Fenty told the Daily Star newspaper: "We worked very hard and took it really seriously. We went to good schools and Ri was a good student."
He added that she was very self-motivated and made sure she only took time out to have fun once a week.
He said: "She is very self-motivated so Mum didn't have to push her to do homework.
"She had a lot of discipline. We only went to the beach on Sundays."
By Tom Rose
A fascinating UFO video on YouTube showing strange lights in the sky, which were first dismissed as farm equipment operating at night on a Texas farm, has been analyzed, raising more questions than answers. What is it?
The video compares the original segment with daytime photo views of the same field and elevation, juxtaposing the original with the new pictures. It shows that, if the unidentified object is farm equipment, it would have to be flying through the air.
The investigation uses fairly advanced imaging tools to make the case this is more than farm equipment, but the videographer stops short of actually labeling the sighting as a UFO.
The United Nations has instructions for what to do when contact is made with extraterrestrials. At least that is what Russian cosmonaut Gennady Padalka claimed during an interview on Chinese TV. Speaking from the International Space Station, Padalka stated, “The UN and representatives of China have developed detailed instructions in case of the first contact.” According to Russian media outlet RIA Novosti, Padalka shared his belief that humans are not alone in the universe, stating, “Sooner or later we will meet our like-minded brothers.”
Cosmonaut Gennady Padalka. (Credit: NASA)
The interview between Padalka and Chinese TV marked the launch of China’s manned space mission to the country’s Tiangong-1 space station.
Russian scientists are extremely interested in communication with extraterrestrials. For the past three years, the Russian Institute of Applied Astronomy (IAA) has hosted the Searching for Life Signatures symposium, where scientists meet to discuss both passive SETI (Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence) and active METI (Messaging Extraterrestrial Intelligence) efforts. The fourth annual Searching for Life Signatures symposium takes place in late September 2012.