Terrified Brits reported almost 100 UFO sightings to the Ministry of Defence last year. Quite what they wanted the bowler-hatted ones to do about the lights whizzing through the skies is unclear, but the full report makes for entertaining reading. traffic lights Street furniture or harbinger of alien doom? Highlights include …
Traffic Light or Railway Signal
" ... "a triangular object with lights. One green, one red, and the other two amber." We're going out on a limb here and identifying this one as a traffic light."
Most Road Traffic Lights don't have two Amber lights.
Depending on the location, I would go out on a different limb, and say it was a railway signal. A number of Colour Light signals from the 1960's era are arranged with a Green above Yellow above Red with an offset Yellow next to the Red.
Only problem with both hypotheses is that neither a traffic light nor a railway signal would ever have all lamps lit at the same time.
Yet another hole in this country's porous borders. So our PC-brigade government doesn't care about aliens coming only for tourism? What's to stop them staying on and claiming benefits? When will our bleeding heart liberal government start thinking about the children and issue interstellar ID cards?
"Quite what they wanted the bowler-hatted ones to do"
1. Form a Parliamentary sub-committee
2. Have that sub-committee form a working group
3. Consult with representative groups of every ethnic strata of the population
4. Refer to the House of Lords for direction
5. Hold a Public Enquiry (in private)
6. Have the working group travel to several warm countries for 'research'
7. Question the PM on the progress of the Parliamentary sub-committee
8. Hold a public enquiry into the delay in reporting on the proceedings of the original (private) public enquiry
9. Engage in full and frank discussions with Treasury about the funding for the sub-committee
10. Consult America to get their 'input'
11. Er, what was the question again?
Watch the skies
'"...a triangular object with lights. One green, one red, and the other two amber." We're going out on a limb here and identifying this one as a traffic light.'
Assuming (not unreasonably this being a UFO report) it's an object in the sky, I'm guessing that's what we in these parts call an aeroplane - red and green wingtip lights and two amber warning beacons on the fuselage.
A trafic ( or railway ) signal with all lamps on
Of course, you underestimate the capability of al old plain short circuit to allow all the lamps on at the same time.
It wouldn't be the first time, nor the last, that a faulyt wire acomplishes a miracle ...
We're told here that alien tourists won't be chased away by officials but what effect does this policy have on the e-Borders project? I don't expect to see my taxes spent on a bunch of sponging aliens.
Traffic / Railway Signal
A short circuit in a set of traffic lights may lead to all lamps showing, however in British railway signalling practice this would not happen - instead, the interlocking would shut down all aspects on the signal leaving it "dark", and alert the signalman. (Incidentally, this would also cause the signal 'before' the one affected to show a red / danger aspect to the driver of any approaching train, thus maintaining the safety of the system).
Also, British practice is to have reflectors in the rear of road traffic lights, but to have no reflector in a Railway Signal - the back of each lamp case is painted matt black - to prevent a false proceed aspect being shown to the driver by reflected sunlight.
Obviously, I can't speak for practice in other countries...
I'm sorry to be the one to do this but...
Where's the IT angle? :)
I jest of course... keep up the inter-galactic watch
Not enough bureaucracy
JAB doesn't have quite enough steps in that list of proposed actions. After '2. Form a Working Group' there's
2.(i) Draft WG terms of reference
2(ii) Staff the WG TOR paper
2(iii) Agree Terms of Reference
2(iv) Draft a Stakeholder Management Plan
2(v) Submit proposals for a logo to the Main Committee
2(vi) Facilitate an away-day to brainstorm a mission statement
uh-oh, I think I just lost the will to live...
Unidentified Flying Object.
I've seen so many of these I don't bother to count them. No UFO is not a damned alien craft it is any 'flying' object that you can't identify. It really annoys me when it is used interchangeably for 'alien craft' 'secret military aircraft' or any other similar thing.
Some of the descriptions in the pdf are quite funny, several read as if they saw a shooting star.
Not enough bureaucracy?
Jonathan Richards, you've missed a few very important steps:
* Identify new offices in the most expensive part of London to renovate/redecorate
* Redecorate said offices with the most expensive materials possible, but don't leave any budget for mere incidental items. Such as telecoms, computer equipment or VAT.
* Spend many more millions converting the property so it meets whatever arbitrary disability rules could be applied. Neglect to do this for the entrace and website, but do offer to supply all materials in brail, or any non-English language (it's important that an English committee, reporting to an English department in Britain treats English as the "other" language).
* Decide on a motto and catch line as well as the mission statement
* Identify all spouses and friends and family who can be "elected" into the quango and "elect" them into it. Talent, ability, knowledge or anything else is not important
* Ensure expenses policy is not covered by the FOI
* Hire a token ethnic or female staff member - doesn't matter if they're at all competent or not, the aim is to be seen as equal employers, not equal *opportunity* employers
I see there is a sighting from East Linton in East Lothian...
"A big, round, swirly thing in the sky."
Sounds like a description from the Cat in Red Dwarf!
I think the lights seen in Torquay could have been boy racers in their chavved up Corsas on Torquay sea front.
"A big, round, swirly thing in the sky."
Dear God! They're waging war with Danish pastries?!
After reading the posts and the traffic light surmises
I am beginning to believe in aliens again though
the guy who stated it was an airplane was proabably
right people try to ascribe all sorts of foolish and inapplicable
things to UFO sightings it's no more valid than the
UFO's themselves (and much less interesting) if your
tiny intellect can't come up with anything better to
explain away the aliens stop trying it's embarassing.
well of course the government will dismiss it, they are bound to. Oh hang on, we are talking about Unauthorised Fighting Overseas here aren't we?
"1. Form a Parliamentary sub-committee"
"11. Er, what was the question again?"
<sputter> Damn. I just snorted Diet Coke out my nose.
Travel years at faster than light speed...
...just to do show some swirly lighting effects in the sky. Then, they bugger off home again! Probably just some alien boy-racers out for fun?
Jonathan and Nick
Damn, you've shattered my illusions - I was going to post telling JAB that I was suitably impressed - only 9 steps between forming the sub-committee and "err, what was the question again?" seemed far more efficient than anything we have over here.
@Rob Beard: "Swirly thing Alert!"
Of course, we may have to just change that damned bulb and go to "Red Alert"
Err, hang on a mo....
You are all missing the point. Elvis Presley left the planet 30 years ago next week, so it stands to reason that he's just popping in to do one last return tour!
Everyone knows UFOs are invisible.
RE: "Where's the IT angle? :)"
Erm, erm, erm ... Ah! It's a PDF, thus you need a computer to read it. IT-tastic! :oP
Hi I'm Dezmond (yes, I am little and green), I'm an alien developer. Alien GPS (Galactic Positioning System) software is bug ridden, created by software 'gurus' like yourselves.
Us little green chaps, always seem to end up at some dodgy, dead-end, out of the way place, inhabited by low-intelligence beings (a bit like you ending up in a river after following your in car GPS Sat Nav).
Ah, I've found the offending lines of code:-
10 On Error Goto Hastings or somewhere remote on Earth.
(I think its a catch-all, to take us somewhere safe and non-threatening).
20 Reset System (explains the flashing lights) and Goto Home.
Its funny how the responses from official sources are so vague in the comments of these "sightings" - so dismissive - coincidence?
Alan Donaly -
"explain away the aliens stop trying it's embarassing."
As is your punctuation. :)
Signals vs Traffic Lights
"Only problem with both hypotheses is that neither a traffic light nor a railway signal would ever have all lamps lit at the same time."
What makes you think the alien reporter saw them all at the same time? Remember, we're talking about people who report "lots of lights" in the sky on Dec 31st here :-p
All this immigration talk...
I used to be dead-set against immigration, especially all those spongers looking for asylum and messing up the place. That was until we got this Polish cleaner at work, and she was really, really hot.
I started going back to the gym so as she might notice me, and, let's be honest, I was pretty damn sexy to start with.
It would be good if these aliens could land and take up residence, because, once the Polish cleaner and I are married, we're going to need someone to clean our floors.