Saturday, June 07, 2008

Seeing might, or might not, be believing.

The photo above is straight from a digital camera. Unedited in any way. Okay, you have only my word for that because you can't all visit and examine the file directly on my computer, nor can you examine the camera. Then again, this is not a laboratory. It's a blog. So take my word for it.

This photo was taken at night at the limits of the camera's capabilities so it's grainy. The camera was set to monochrome. The only light source was a streetlamp behind me and to my left, and that faced the road, not this scene. No cars passed while I took the photo, no planes crossed overhead, nobody was around.

I think I see something here. I Emailed a clipped portion of this photo to someone, with no explanation, and that person responded that they'd seen something too. Our observations matched.

Some of you will try hard, too hard, to see something in this picture. Some will dismiss any apparent imagery as a camera anomaly or a trick. That's okay, the range of perceptions will form a curve and the distribution of that curve will let me know something important. It will let me know whether what I think I see in this picture is the same as what most others think they see. It will allow me to more accurately judge whether I'm seeing an optical illusion or something potentially real.

So have at it. I uploaded the full image so I hope you can click on it, enlarge it, download it and mess around with it to your heart's content.

What do you see?


Southern Writer said...

I'm removing myself from the running because you already know my answer, but I wanted to a) say hi, and b) ask where some of your regulars have been, like Thatgreenyflower and dr. brainiac, and tomsheepandgoats?

Romulus Crowe said...


Greeny was offline for a while. The Doc is around, but hasn't commented on this. Tom, as a JW, might not be able to get involved since JW's don't believe there are human spirits, only demonic ones. So the JW's will have nothing to do with ghosthunting.

Nobody has yet said 'I see nothing' which is interesting in itself.

Perhaps I should spend time prowling the blogs and attracting a cross-section here. It would be hard to do that without bias.

I could just mention UFO's again. That brought out a few lurkers.

Dikkii said...

I've got to be honest Romulus, I don't know what it is that you think you see in this one. I can't see a thing. Can you drop any hints?

Romulus Crowe said...

Dikkii - no, no hints at all. If I say what I'm seeing there, I'll get responses polarised into 'Oh, I see it' and 'No, I don't' - and I won't know whether the 'yes' votes are just saying so because they want to believe, and the 'no' votes are saying so because they don't.

What I hope to get (if anyone else looks!) is 'nope' - for which you are one datapoint, by the way, and a range of 'I see...' - which might coincide with what I'm seeing or might not.

See, every ghost photo out there has the ghost pointed out, circled, arrowed, whatever. Once that's done, anyone can see the formation in the image that might or might not be a ghost.

I'm of the opinion that it only counts if people see it for themselves, without prompting.

Ideally I'd have some kind of secret ballot to avoid one comment influencing another but I can't do that here. So this can't be a proper scientific study, more of a trial-run for a more controlled experiment.

Anyway, no hints. Dikki, your observation counts as it stands.

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