Monday, November 07, 2011

Just the Facts? London River Monster -- 'Blade Runner'...Deux -- Underground Martians


River Monster Alert at London's Olympic Park

A mystery creature that eats geese in the blink of an eye has returned to haunt murky waters around the £9billion Olympic Park.

Six years ago there were fears a crocodile was stalking big birds as they were sucked from a river’s surface – never to be seen again.

Some experts then suggested a giant turtle was the culprit, but before the riddle could be solved the killer monster apparently vanished.

Now it seems to be back. Mike Wells, a boat-dweller living on the River Lea in East London, was last week sitting on his barge with a friend when their peace was shattered.

Mike said: “We were just passing the time of day looking at a Canada goose 30 yards away, but then it just suddenly disappeared.

“It went down vertically. There wasn’t any hesitation, it went straight down. It didn’t come back up. My friend and I looked at each other slack-jawed.

“Being a river person, I pieced together what we’d seen in seconds. The goose was prey to something.

“A Canada goose is not a small bird. They weigh about 16lb, so whatever took it was also large.”

Searching for answers, Mike then came across several similar incidents from 2005 when there was speculation a crocodile might have taken up residence in the River Lea.

Mike now wants the Environment Agency to investigate. A campaigner against the 2012 Olympics’ impact on East London, he also joked: “My hope is Lord Coe will fall in and the creature will have him for lunch.” - express

River Monsters: True Stories of the Ones that Didn't Get Away

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Ridley Scott Says He’ll Direct ‘Blade Runner’ Sequel

Film director Ridley Scott plans to make a follow-up to his groundbreaking 1982 classic, “Blade Runner.”

In an interview with Speakeasy, Scott said he is on board to direct a “Blade Runner” follow-up and has been interviewing writers who can help him with the screenplay. Scott says the new project is “liable to be a sequel.”

Scott, 74 years old, recently finished shooting the sci-fi movie “Prometheus” and is an executive producer of a new TV series on Discovery Communications Inc.’s Science Channel, “Prophets of Science Fiction.”

Earlier this year, production company Alcon Entertainment said it was planning a new “Blade Runner” project with Scott at the helm, but it didn’t reveal whether it would be a prequel or sequel to the original film.

“Blade Runner” devotees may not have to wait long for the new movie. “I think I’m close to finding a writer that might be able to help me deliver,” Scott says, “we’re quite a long way in, actually.”

The original film was inspired by sci-fi writer Philip K. Dick’s novel, “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?” and told the grim story of Rick Deckard, a “blade runner” who hunts down “replicants” — androids who long to live free lives. Scott says Dick, who he says was “stressed” when he met him, found a romanticism in his pessimism. And similarly, “Blade Runner” didn’t offer a romantic view of the future.

“That’s why I think I was so unpopular” when the film was released, Scott says, because at the core of the film is a story about mortality. “Even though people think it’s a cool Philip Marlowe film with Deckard played by Harrison Ford,” he says, “the film is very much about humanity.”

Scott says the new “Blade Runner” project is moving ahead “not with the past cast, of course.” No Deckard? “No, not really,” he says. - wsj


Blade Runner (Five-Disc Complete Collector's Edition) [Blu-ray]


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Owls attacking, eating pets

Residents in Albuquerque's foothills say a huge, hungry owl has moved into their area and is eating small dogs and cats.

"We've seen him 3 or 4 times. He's huge. One day when we were walking, he swooped down over my husband's head. He's a huge owl," said Cindy Hummel.

A lot of people who live near Tramway and Academy say the owl or owls have gone after their dogs. Regina Johnson says she thinks she found what were claw marks on her dog.

Marie Iverson says an owl who lives near a church behind her home killed her puppy. She says she let the dog out on the patio, then heard the puppy yelp. When Marie went outside, the puppy was gone.

News 13 contacted a zookeeper from the Rio Grande Zoo to ask about owls. The zookeeper says owls are night hunters so if an owl lives near you, it's a good idea to keep your pets in at night. - krqe

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Click for Irishman Talks About the Wall Street Wankers - I had to chuckle at this one...give that man a pint! Warning: NSFW

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Martians may have lived underground

If life ever existed on Mars, it's likely that its longest-lasting enclaves would be underground.

"If surface habitats were short-term, that doesn't mean we should be glum about prospects for life on Mars," says Bethany Ehlmann, the lead author of a new NASA report on the Red Planet, "but it says something about what type of environment we might want to look in."

The study, which examined different types of clays on the Martian surface, indicates that the most promising environments were likely subterranean – or, more probably, sub-Martian. "The most stable Mars habitats over long durations appear to have been in the subsurface," said Ehlmann in a statement announcing the findings.

"On Earth, underground geothermal environments have active ecosystems," she said, leaving open the possibility that such conditions may have existed – or may exist – on Mars.

The study was based on years of mapping Mars' surface minerals, conducted by both NASA and European satellites cruising around the planet, which examined more than 350 sites. From comparing the clays deposited at those sites by surface water, during a relatively brief period millions of years ago, with clays that were developed by subsurface waters, the researchers came to the conclusion that most of the action was underground.

"The types of clay minerals that formed in the shallow subsurface are all over Mars," said study co-author John Mustard. "The types that formed on the surface are found at very limited locations and are quite rare."

Clays, which form from the interaction of water and rock, were first discovered on Mars in 2005, thanks to the European Space Agency's Mars Express orbiter. Since then, scientists using that vehicle's OMEGA spectrometer and the CRISM spectrometer on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter have been busily mapping different types of clays at thousands of Martian locations.

Another indication of underground hydrothermal environments came with the discovery of the mineral prehnite, which is formed at temperatures of around 400°F (~200°C), typical of such environments.

Co-author of the study and CRISM's principal investigator, Scott Murchie, notes that there might be "limited exceptions" to the brief existence of surface water on Mars – and NASA is gearing up to investigate one of them, the Gale Crater, with the Curiosity rover that will land on the Red Planet as part of the Mars Science Laboratory mission, scheduled to launch this November 25.

While it's unlikely that Curiosity will find life in the Gale Carter, with the new evidence of long-term subsurface water on Mars we're still holding out hope for a possible meet-up with the Morlocks and Eloi – well, maybe just the Eloi. ® - theregister

The Case for Mars: The Plan to Settle the Red Planet and Why We Must

Landscapes of Mars: A Visual Tour

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White House: No sign of E.T. or UFO cover-up. No surprise

The White House has responded to two petitions asking the U.S. government to acknowledge formally that aliens have visited Earth and to disclose any intentional withholding of government interactions with extraterrestrial beings.

"The U.S. government has no evidence that any life exists outside our planet, or that an extraterrestrial presence has contacted or engaged any member of the human race," Phil Larson from the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy reported on the WhiteHouse.gov website."In addition, there is no credible information to suggest that any evidence is being hidden from the public’s eye."

The petition calling on the government to disclose any knowledge of or communication with extraterrestrial beings was signed by 5,387 people, and 12,078 signed the request for a formal acknowledgement from the White House that extraterrestrials have been engaging the human race.

“Hundreds of military and government agency witnesses have come forward with testimony confirming this extraterrestrial presence,” the second petition states. “Opinion polls now indicate more than 50 percent of the American people believe there is an extraterrestrial presence and more than 80 percent believe the government is not telling the truth about this phenomenon. The people have a right to know. The people can handle the truth.”

These petitions were sparked by an Obama administration initiative called "We the People." Initially, the White House said staffers would respond and consider taking action on any issue that received at least 5,000 online signatures within 30 days. The requirement has since been raised to 25,000 signatures.

Larson stressed that the facts show there is no credible evidence of extraterrestrial presence here on Earth. He pointed out that even though many scientists have come to the conclusion that the odds of life somewhere else in the universe are fairly high, the chance that any of them are making contact with humans are extremely small, given the distances involved.

"However, that doesn't mean the subject of life outside our planet isn't being discussed or explored," Larson wrote.

Larson mentioned that a scientific search for extraterrestrial intelligence is keeping an “ear” out for signals from alien civilizations, with none found so far. (He noted that this at first was a NASA effort, but is now being funded privately.)

He added that the Kepler spacecraft is searching for Earthlike planets in the habitable zones around other stars, and that the Curiosity rover will launch to Mars this month to "assess what the Martian environment was like in the past to see if it could have harbored life."

Regarding any evidence for alien life, all anyone has now is "statistics and speculation," Larson said. "The fact is we have no credible evidence of extraterrestrial presence here on Earth."

The Paradigm Research Group, one of the organizations promoting the petitions, said that the response by a "low-level staffer" was unacceptable and that it would begin a new petition campaign. - MSNBC

A.D. After Disclosure: The People's Guide to Life After Contact

UFOs: Myths, Conspiracies, and Realities

Unearthly Disclosure

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'CHICAGO PHANTOM' - FLYING HUMANOID SIGHTINGS

'CHICAGO PHANTOM' - FLYING HUMANOID SIGHTINGS
Have you had a sighting of a flying humanoid or huge bat-like creature in the Chicago, Illinois metro area or nearby? The entity has also been referred to as the 'Chicago Phantom', 'Chicago Mothman', 'Chicago Owlman' & 'Chicago Man-Bat.' Please feel free to contact me at lonstrickler@phantomsandmonsters.com - your anonymity is guaranteed. Our investigative group is conducting a serious examination of his phenomenon. We are merely seeking the truth and wish to determine what eyewitnesses have been encountering. Your cooperation is truly appreciated. You can call me directly at 410-241-5974 as well. Thanks...Lon Strickler #ChicagoPhantom

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