Stars Are Born



The Cygnus-X stellar nursery stars in a “stunning” infrared picture released May 10 by the European Space Agency’s Herschel space observatory.

The chaotic jumble of dust and gas is an extremely active region of giant-star birth in the Cygnus constellation, some 4,500 light-years from Earth. (See another infrared picture of the Cygnus constellation.)

Sun Is Moving Slower Than Thought

“Shocking” find may redraw picture of solar system’s cosmic shield.

The young star LL Ori forms a bow shock as it moves through the Orion Nebula.

Image courtesy STScI/AURA/NASA

Andrew Fazekas

for National Geographic News

Published May 10, 2012

The sun is moving through the Milky Way slower than previously thought, according to new data from a NASA spacecraft.

From its orbit around Earth, the Interstellar Boundary Explorer (IBEX) satellite measured the speeds of interstellar particles entering at the fringes of our solar system, 9 billion miles (14.5 billion kilometers) from the sun.

(Related: “‘Alien’ Particles Found Invading Our Solar System—A First.”)

Plugging the new data into computer models, the IBEX team calculates that the sun is moving at about 52,000 miles (83,700 kilometers) an hour—about 7,000 miles (11,000 kilometers) slower than thought.

The discovery suggests that the protective boundary separating our solar system from the rest of the galaxy is missing a bow shock, a major structural component thought to control the influx of high-energy cosmic rays.

(See “New Hubble Videos Show Star Jets in Action.”)

The sun is constantly sending out charged particles in all directions, forming a cocoon around the solar system called the heliosphere.

Like a boat moving through water, it’s long been thought that the “bow” of the heliosphere forms a crescent-shaped shockwave as our solar system plows through the surrounding cloud of interstellar gas. (See “Solar System’s ‘Nose’ Found; Aimed at Constellation Scorpius.”)

But the new IBEX findings mean the sun is moving so slow that pressure from material flowing around the heliosphere is 25 percent lower than expected—not enough for a bow shock.

Until now, “all the solar system models and theories included a bow shock,” said study leader David McComas of the Southwest Research Institute in San Antonio, Texas.

“Having learned for nearly three decades about it, I was literally shocked when we found it was missing.”

Cosmic-Ray Shielding Key for Life?

The absence of a bow shock is significant, McComas said, because it may indicate that the heliosphere is actually more robust than thought.

With less pressure from outside material, the boundary region isn’t being compressed and therefore weakened as much as expected, which means it should better repel cosmic rays.

(Related: “Solar System ‘Force Field’ Shrinks Fast.”)

And understanding exactly how the heliosphere acts as a gatekeeper for cosmic rays could help scientists evaluate the chances for life on other worlds.

According to McComas, some researchers believe that the cosmic rays that do get through the heliosphere can impact Earth’s climate, because the high-energy particles can ionize—or electrically charge—matter in the atmosphere, leading to heightened cloud formation and lightning generation.

Other experts think the particles could even be related to bursts of evolution or extinction in our planet’s history, because the radiation can influence DNA patterns.

(Also see “Ancient Mass Extinctions Caused by Cosmic Radiation, Scientists Say.”)

For now, the science behind how cosmic rays have influenced Earth is quite controversial, said Seth Redfield, an astronomer from Wesleyan University in Connecticut who was not involved with the new IBEX study.

Still, considering the rays’ expected effects, Redfield said, “it seems obvious to me that there will be scenarios or times when the cosmic-ray flux on a planet is important and [is] having a major influence on the evolution of the planetary atmosphere or even on biological processes on its surface.”

In that case, astronomers assessing the habitability of alien planets may need to start considering not only the chances for liquid water but also the strength of other stars’ protective cocoons, study leader McComas said.

“There is no doubt,” he said, “that questions about cosmic-ray shielding go right to the heart of some really important questions related to life as we know it.”

The slower-sun study appears in this week’s issue of the journal Science.

New Planet Found in Our Solar System?

Odd orbits of remote objects hint at unseen world, new calculations suggest.

Richard A. Lovett in Timberline Lodge, Oregon
National Geographic News
Published May 11, 2012

An as yet undiscovered planet might be orbiting at the dark fringes of the solar system, according to new research.

Too far out to be easily spotted by telescopes, the potential unseen planet appears to be making its presence felt by disturbing the orbits of so-called Kuiper belt objects, said Rodney Gomes, an astronomer at the National Observatory of Brazil in Rio de Janeiro.

Kuiper belt objects are small icy bodies—including some dwarf planets—that lie beyond the orbit of Neptune.

Once considered the ninth planet in our system, the dwarf planet Pluto, for example, is one of the largest Kuiper belt objects, at about 1,400 miles (2,300 kilometers) wide. Dozens of the other objects are hundreds of miles across, and more are being discovered every year.

(See “Three New ‘Plutos’? Possible Dwarf Planets Found.”)

What’s intriguing, Gomes said, is that, according to his new calculations, about a half dozen Kuiper belt objects—including the remote body known as Sedna—are in strange orbits compared to where they should be, based on existing solar system models. (Related: “Pluto Neighbor Gets Downsized.”)

The objects’ unexpected orbits have a few possible explanations, said Gomes, who presented his findings Tuesday at a meeting of the American Astronomical Society in Timberline Lodge, Oregon.

“But I think the easiest one is a planetary-mass solar companion”—a planet that orbits very far out from the sun but that’s massive enough to be having gravitational effects on Kuiper belt objects.

Mystery Planet a Captured Rogue?

For the new work, Gomes analyzed the orbits of 92 Kuiper belt objects, then compared his results to computer models of how the bodies should be distributed, with and without an additional planet.

If there’s no distant world, Gomes concludes, the models don’t produce the highly elongated orbits we see for six of the objects.

How big exactly the planetary body might be isn’t clear, but there are a lot of possibilities, Gomes added.

Based on his calculations, Gomes thinks a Neptune-size world, about four times bigger than Earth, orbiting 140 billion miles (225 billion kilometers) away from the sun—about 1,500 times farther than Earth—would do the trick.

But so would a Mars-size object—roughly half Earth’s size—in a highly elongated orbit that would occasionally bring the body sweeping to within 5 billion miles (8 billion kilometers) of the sun.

Gomes speculates that the mystery object could be a rogue planet that was kicked out of its own star system and later captured by the sun’s gravity. (See “‘Nomad’ Planets More Common Than Thought, May Orbit Black Holes.”)

Or the putative planet could have formed closer to our sun, only to be cast outward by gravitational encounters with other planets.

However, actually finding such a world would be a challenge.

To begin with, the planet might be pretty dim. Also, Gomes’s simulations don’t give astronomers any clue as to where to point their telescopes—”it can be anywhere,” he said.

No Smoking Gun

Other astronomers are intrigued but say they’ll want a lot more proof before they’re willing to agree that the solar system—again—has nine planets. (Also see “Record Nine-Planet Star System Discovered?”)

“Obviously, finding another planet in the solar system is a big deal,” said Rory Barnes, an astronomer at the University of Washington. But, he added, “I don’t think he really has any evidence that suggests it is out there.”

Instead, he added, Gomes “has laid out a way to determine how such a planet could sculpt parts of our solar system. So while, yes, the evidence doesn’t exist yet, I thought the bigger point was that he showed us that there are ways to find that evidence.”

Douglas Hamilton, an astronomer from the University of Maryland, agrees that the new findings are far from definitive.

“What he showed in his probability arguments is that it’s slightly more likely. He doesn’t have a smoking gun yet.”

And Hal Levison, an astronomer at the Southwest Research Institute in Boulder, Colorado, says he isn’t sure what to make of Gomes’s finding.

“It seems surprising to me that a [solar] companion as small as Neptune could have the effect he sees,” Levison said.

But “I know Rodney, and I’m sure he did the calculations right.”

RIP Joel Goldsmith

The world is changed. I feel it in the water. I feel it in the earth. I smell it in the air. Much that once was is lost, for we are living yeat to remember it …RIP Joel Goldsmith

The Master of Sound

         Dupa durerea cauzata de intreruperea brusca a celui mai iubit serial Stargate Universe, am supravietuit, dar am ramas cu rani grave, profunde cicatrici in inima mea mult prea albastra, ca sa trebuiasca sa pot primi inca o lovitura, disparitia marelui compozitor Joel Goldsmith, el va continua sa compuna acolo, langa J.S. Bach, Mozzart,Brancusi, acolo in al saptelea cer, acolo unde doar cei ce s-au ridicat dincolo de conditia de muritor ajung, doar cei care au tentat creatia, si care au adus darurile lor pentru a ne vindeca suferinta si pentru a umple golurile din inimile noastre cu putin frumos. Odihneste-te in pace, Maestre al maretiei, muzica ta va continua sa se auda in inima mea si a celor care te-au iubit.

Desi nu am cunoscut personal nici unul din cei care au luat parte la crearea marelui proiect STARGATE, pot spuna ca-i cunosc, ca mi-au fost prieteni apropiati in tot acest timp, pentru numele lui Dumnezeu, au trecut deja 15 ani, in care am trait si respirat Stargate intr-o forma sau alta. Prieteni, am mai pierdut un Zeu, am ramas acum orfani de Joel Goldsmith, filmul sf nu va mai cunoaste curand un compositor atat de profund si valoros ca titanicul Joel.

Acum imi ridic privirea catre Destiny cum aluneca prin univers, mai repede ca lumina, si totusi nu prin hiperspatiu, catre punctul in care a inceput totul. Pace si iubire, lumina si muzica ta ne vor calauzi pe drumul nostru prin viata. Fie ca Dumnezau sa-ti odihneasca neobositul suflet in pace.

The world is changed. I feel it in the water. I feel it in the earth. I smell it in the air. Much that once was is lost, for we are living  yet to remember it …RIP Joel Goldsmith

After the pain of abrupt discontinuation of the most beloved series SGU, I survived, but I was left with serious injuries, deep scars are crossing my blue heart,  yet I have to receive another blow, the disappearance of the great composer Joel Goldsmith, he will continue to compose there, near J.S. Bach, Mozart, C.Brancusi, there in the seventh heaven, where only those who have risen beyond the reach of mortal condition, only those who are tempted creation, and who brought their gifts to heal our pain and to fill the gaps in our hearts so beautiful. Rest In Peace, Master of greatness, your music will continue to hear in my heart and in tha hearts of those who loved you, who had the privilege to know you as a human in flesh and blood. The world will no longer be the same without you. Thank you for the creations you gave us, thank you Master .
Although I personally knew none of those who where taking part in creation of the great project, STARGATE, I can say that I know them all, because we had been close friends during this time, for God’s sake, 15 years has already passed in,  and I lived and breathed Stargate in one form or another. Friends, We lost a God, we are now orphaned by Joel Goldsmith, the Sci-fi world just lost a limb, a composer we shall remember as the Titanic Joel Goldsmith, profound and truly universal.
Now I look up to the Destiny, how she fly deep in the universe faster than light, and yet not  through hyperspace, to the point where it all began. Peace and love, your light and your music will guide us on our journey through life. May the gods rests your tireless soul.

IGR J17091-3624: NASA’S Chandra Finds Fastest Wind From Stellar-Mass Black Hole

Chandra observations have found the fastest wind ever coming from a disk around a stellar-mass black hole.
This record breaking wind is about 20 million miles per hour – about 3% the speed of light.
This wind may be carrying away much more material than the black hole is actually capturing.
This artist’s impression shows a binary system containing a stellar-mass black hole called IGR J17091-3624, or IGR J17091 for short. The strong gravity of the black hole, on the left, is pulling gas away from a companion star on the right. This gas forms a disk of hot gas around the black hole, and the wind is driven off this disk.

New observations with NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory have clocked the fastest wind ever seen blowing off a disk around this stellar-mass black hole. Stellar-mass black holes are born when extremely massive stars collapse and typically weigh between five and 10 times the mass of the Sun.

The record-breaking wind is moving about twenty million miles per hour, or about three percent the speed of light. This is nearly ten times faster than had ever been seen from a stellar-mass black hole, and matches some of the fastest winds generated by supermassive black holes, objects millions or billions of times more massive.

Another unanticipated finding is that the wind, which comes from a disk of gas surrounding the black hole, may be carrying away much more material than the black hole is capturing.

The high speed for the wind was estimated from a spectrum made by Chandra in 2011. A spectrum shows how intense the X-rays are at different energies. Ions emit and absorb distinct features in spectra, which allow scientists to monitor them and their behavior. A Chandra spectrum of iron ions made two months earlier showed no evidence of the high-speed wind, meaning the wind likely turns on and off over time.

Fast Facts for IGR J17091-3624:
Credit Illustration: NASA/CXC/M.Weiss
Category Black Holes
Coordinates (J2000) RA 17h 09m 07.92s | Dec -36° 24′ 25.20″
Constellation Scorpius
Observation Dates 2 pointings on Aug 1 and Oct 6, 2011
Observation Time 16 hours 40 min
Obs. IDs 12405, 12406
Instrument ACIS
References King, A. et al, 2012, ApJ, 746, L20; arXiv:1112.3648
Distance Estimate About 28,000 light years
Release Date February 21, 2012

Abell 520: Dark Matter and Galaxies Part Ways in Collision between Hefty Galaxy Clusters

A clump of dark matter has apparently been left behind after a violent collision of galaxy clusters.
This dark matter clump contains far fewer galaxies than would be expected if the dark matter and galaxies hung together.
Astronomers used Chandra, Hubble, and the Canada-France-Hawaii, and Subaru telescopes to observe Abell 520, which is 2.4 billion light years away.
This latest result agrees with a similar conclusion that was announced in 2007.

This composite image shows the distribution of dark matter, galaxies, and hot gas in the core of the merging galaxy cluster Abell 520, formed from a violent collision of massive galaxy clusters that is located about 2.4 billion light years from Earth.

Data from NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory show the hot gas in the colliding clusters colored in green. The gas provides evidence that a collision took place. Optical data from NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope and the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope (CFHT) in Hawaii are shown in red, green, and blue. Starlight from galaxies within the clusters, derived from observations by the CFHT and smoothed to show the location of most of the galaxies, is colored orange.

The blue-colored areas pinpoint the location of most of the mass in the cluster, which is dominated by dark matter. Dark matter is an invisible substance that makes up most of the universe’s mass. The dark-matter map was derived from the Hubble observations, by detecting how light from distant objects is distorted by the cluster galaxies, an effect called gravitational lensing. The blend of blue and green in the center of the image reveals that a clump of dark matter (which can be seen by mousing over the image) resides near most of the hot gas, where very few galaxies are found.

This finding confirms previous observations of a dark-matter core in the cluster announced in 2007. The result could present a challenge to basic theories of dark matter, which predict that galaxies should be anchored to dark matter, even during the shock of a powerful collision.

Fast Facts for Abell 520:
Credit NASA, ESA, CFHT, CXO, M.J. Jee (University of California, Davis), and A. Mahdavi (San Francisco State University)
Scale 8.5 arcmin across (about 5.4 million light years)
Category Groups & Clusters of Galaxies
Coordinates (J2000) RA 04h 54m 03.80s | Dec +02º 53′ 33.00″
Constellation Orion
Observation Date 7 pointings between Oct 10, 2000 and Jan 11, 2008
Observation Time 148 hours 38 min. (6 days 4 hours 38 min)
Obs. ID 528, 4215, 7703, 9424-9426, 9430
Color Code Optical (Red, Green, Blue); X-ray (Green); Mass (Blue); Luminosity (Orange)
Instrument ACIS
References arXiv:1202.6368; Jee, M. et al, 2012, ApJ 747, 96
Distance Estimate 2.4 billion light years (z=0.201)
Release Date March 2, 2012

Everything you do will help us


I’m Jill Tarter, the Director of the Center for SETI Research.  Since we launched at TED last Wednesday, I’ve been reading what you’ve been writing.  There have been a bunch of comments on SETILive about not knowing what to do or what to mark or whether you are getting it right. We’ll work on making the tutorial more accessible and more informative as you’ve suggested, and over time we will implement some better marking tools as you’ve requested – but the ‘getting it right’ part is a bit more dicey.  That’s because we really don’t know yet exactly what ‘right’ is.

As Lou Nigra (thanks, Lou!) and the tutorials have described, the SETILive data that are coming from the ATA originate in the crowded bands; small portions of the terrestrial microwave window that we have historically skipped over.  That’s because our SonATA system gets confused there – it detects LOTS of signals, but it cannot finish clustering them, and classifying them by comparing them to signals that are detected in the other two (or maybe one as is now the case) beams on the sky being observed simultaneously, or finish looking them up in a database of all the signals that have been tagged as RFI in the past week.  Rather than conduct our observations with non-uniform sensitivity, or continuously restart software modules that have given up in exhaustion, we have chosen to ignore these crowded bands – at these frequencies we’ve been blind and deaf.  Ultimately that might turn out to be the best strategy – after all, why are those bands crowded?  They are crowded because they have been allocated to different types of terrestrial communications services.  We are the ones making all those signals.  Or are we?

IF (of course it’s a huge if) there is a technological civilization near enough to us – its distance in light years is less than half the time over which our technology has been transmitting at a particular frequency band – perhaps that civilization has noticed that the Earth is very ‘radio bright’ at certain frequencies. Perhaps it has transponded back a reply at the same frequencies, knowing that we would have receivers that work there.  A bit more speculation suggests that their message may be crafted to be detectable against this background of terrestrial transmissions.  With this scenario in mind, we could try to code and implement all sorts of clever, non-linear anomaly detectors that inter-compare the signals received from the multiple beams on the sky – but remember we are trying to do this in near-real-time.  The detector has to finish this task significantly before the observations move on to the next frequency band, because the system still needs to match whatever the detector has found against recently detected RFI from other directions on the sky.  We don’t know what we are looking for, but we do want to invoke logical constraints that insure that the signal is only coming from one direction on the sky and not many.

Before we throw a whole lot of new computing resources (that we actually don’t happen to have) at this problem, we should take a look at what’s actually going on in the crowded bands as a guide to what might be the most effective strategy – that’s where you come in!  We are hoping to use the amazing pattern recognition of your eyes and brains to look for signals (patterns of some sort) that appear in only one beam and not in any of the others.  We hope you can help us set up a sort of rogues’ gallery of signal patterns detected over the past week (fortnight, month, 3 days ??) that can be collectively ‘remembered’ to assess whether this particular signal pattern has been seen before from other directions on the sky. That’s why we want you to mark the RFI in multiple beams as well as any pattern that only shows up in one beam.  And then if enough of you mark the same single-beam pattern (so we are fairly confident it’s real, not noise), we’ll decide that it’s an interesting candidate signal and follow up on it immediately.  That means that instead of moving on to the next frequency in the observing sequence, we will reobserve in the same directions, at the same frequency.  SonATA is still blind, so you will have to tell us whether the pattern persists – is it still there?  Is it still only in one beam?  If so, the next observation will observe at the same frequency, but looking at different directions.  Is the pattern still there? Well, that’s too bad, it means it really was some form of interference and isn’t associated with the target we were pointing at on the sky. BE PREPARED – WE THINK THIS WILL HAPPEN A LOT.  Just like your eyes have peripheral vision, a radio telescope has ‘sidelobes’ into which signals can scatter and be confused with signals entering from the direction the telescope is pointing.  The sidelobes are complicated in the way they cover the sky; it may appear that a signal is coming from only one beam out of three, but moving ‘off source’ can reposition the sidelobes so that the interference is once again detectable.

But what if the signal/pattern persists when we reobserve ‘on source’, and disappears when we go ‘off source’? That’s getting interesting! We’ll start up a cycle of ‘ons’ and ‘offs’ that will stop when the signal fails to be detected, or not be detected, at the right time, or when we’ve completed five cycles.   If the system successfully completes five cycles, then the team at the Center for SETI Research will be alerted and we’ll be right there with you using our eyes and brains to figure out what to do next.  Since we’ve begun SETI observing on the ATA this has not happened in the less crowded bands that SonATA has been exploring automatically.  Now that we are trying to probe the crowded bands, we’ll have to see how it goes.

By now I hope you are convinced that your efforts can only help us.  There’s a slight chance that you just might discover a signal from another technology buried underneath all the terrestrial interference and we will all celebrate.  But at the very least you’ll help us better understand what it is that humans are doing as they manage to look at complex patterns and isolate sub-patterns that are unique to one of multiple samples.  There may well be neurologists or psychophysicists out there who already know that answer, but my team doesn’t.  If we can learn from you, we can be better equipped to train future automated detectors.  And if it turns out that this is not a task at which humans are particularly adept, well we haven’t lost anything.  After all, our previous strategy was to ignore the crowded bands.  There is only an up side to your participation.

Thanks for being willing to help out, and good luck!

5 March 2012 by

Reverse-Engineering Roswell UFO Technology

Computer company chief Jack Shulman argues that the transistor could never have been invented so suddenly at AT&T in late 1947 without input from top secret Government projects, that some have identified to him as being from alien spacecraft.

Extracted from Nexus Magazine, Volume 6, Number 4 (June-July 1999).
PO Box 30, Mapleton Qld 4560 Australia.
Telephone: +61 (0)7 5442 9280; Fax: +61 (0)7 5442 9381
From our web page at:

Edited from a lecture given by
Jack Shulman
American Computer Company
at the Global Sciences Congress
Florida, USA, 11-17 March 1999
(Audiotape transcribed by Ruth Parnell)

Hi, I’m Jack Shulman. I’m the head of the American Computer Company. American Computer Company is part of the Technology International Group and Bell North America group of companies. I’m also one of the owners of the group of companies. I’ve been in the computer industry for about 28 or 29 years. I’ve worked for IBM as a professional services management consultant. I worked on the development of the personal computer in 1978 for FIT [Fashion Institute of Technology] and Simplicity Patterns, later adopted by IBM. I developed something called the “pattern creator”. That’s where we got the term “PC”. Prior to that, I’d developed what you might call the first windowing operating system in 1975 for Citibank, and before that there were earlier versions I did for a company called Vydec. I’m a serious computer person – very, very serious – and also someone who’s not generally inclined to leap to great predispositions about any unusual subject.

Well, as it turns out, a few years ago I got my dose of reality. It was in the form of a visit from a friend of mine. When I was very young I’d got involved in technology, partly by virtue of the influence of a friend’s father. I grew up in central New Jersey, which is around where AT&T and Bell Labs originated, and my friend’s father was the head of Bell Labs. I ended up at a private school and ended up living at the household of the head of Bell Labs, going to that private school and going to college with his son as a roommate, and I kind of grew up around the various projects at Bell Laboratories in the late 1960s and early 1970s.

I’d always held out that AT&T was this rather magnificent institution. Anybody here worked for AT&T in the past? So, you know when I say Bell Labs research, I’m speaking Holy Grail; and in certain parts of the defence community and in government I’m also speaking Holy Grail. Anyone here realise that AT&T and Bell Laboratories ran our nuclear arsenal for 45 years? Anybody who knows that, raise your hand. Not a one of you. I didn’t really even know until a little bit later in my career, but I knew something strange was going on because it always seemed to me that AT&T always had what it needed to make innovations in technology, and subsequently such technology would migrate to an IBM or a Sarnoff Research or to an RCA.

And I could never really figure out, in the course of my young life, who were these magnificent, incredible scientists, other than that I frequently met them…like a fellow by the name of William Shockley. He was quite a frequent friend to Jack Morton’s household, and I knew him, and I knew some of the other folks that he knew, like a fellow by the name of – well, I guess not too many people would know him – Bob Noyce, and Jack Kilby who was an acquaintance of theirs, and so forth. These names, if you’ve ever worked for AT&T or in the electronics industry, are also Holy Grail names. These are Mount Rushmores of the technology industry. Jack Kilby is credited with the invention of the integrated circuit.

I was rather shocked when, about late 1995, a dear friend came to me. He was at one time one of the very well known generals in the Pentagon, a member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and is now a consultant. I’d known him a very long time through the Morton family and Bell and when working for IBM. He asked me to analyse some documents that he had in his possession. He showed me some pictures. I kind of turned up my nose. I said, “I don’t believe this.” He suggested they were pictures of an alien craft. I said to him, “Well, why do you come to me and ask me this?” “Because there are some documents that fell into my possession that I would also like you to see, that go beyond these drawings, these pictures, these photographs, that describe some technology; and I would like you to analyse this technology and make a determination for me of the veracity of these documents, help me to authenticate them.” I said, “Fine. I don’t believe this is real. I’m sceptical. I don’t believe in aliens, I don’t believe in UFOs, I don’t believe in any of that.” And he said, “Okay, well, I’d still want you to take a look at them, Jack.” And I agreed.

I met with him at his home. I met a woman by the name of Mrs Jeffrey Proscauer. That’s not her real name, but it’s the name she goes by; she does not want her true identity revealed. And I got a chance to piece and look through some 28 boxes of materials that had come from Western Electric Laboratories in the late 1940s, 1947, early 1948 and beyond, and some subsequent documents.

Now again, if you’ve ever worked for AT&T, you know that the laboratories at Bell Laboratories are often quite distinct, and the documentation from a laboratory is kept in an ongoing, growing tome called a “Lab Shopkeeper’s Notebook”. It turns out that even in the super-secret laboratories, the ones in the part of Western Electric or Bell Laboratories that manage the nuclear arsenal, these notebooks are kept, and they grow and they’re ongoing and they become almost like a living representation of what that laboratory did for a living.

Well, such as it is, I was rather shocked at what I had to see there in these boxes of materials, and I convinced them to let me look at them over the course of about three-and-a-half weeks. They were kept at the consultant’s house during that time period, and he actually kept a security guard with them at all times because he was afraid that someone might come and steal them. Now of course, I wasn’t sure why he was afraid, because at the time I didn’t realise the full magnitude of what I was looking at.

In any event, after about two or three weeks of looking at them, I came back to him and we sat down over what turned out to be a Christmas Eve dinner, and I said to him: “I’ve got to tell you something. I’m having a real problem with this because what you’re showing me looks like technology that we have not yet developed, that humanity has not yet developed, yet the documents you’re showing me appear to be forty-eight, forty-nine years old. This would put them in 1947, 1948, 1949.”

I suggested to him that before I could proceed I would have to have someone verify the age, carbon-date or come up with some other means to verify the age of the documents, and he agreed. So, with the help of a mutual acquaintance – a private investigator formerly with the Justice Department – we were able to take fragments of the documents without damaging them.

We sent them to an expert who formerly consulted for Scotland Yard; he’s a fairly well known forensic expert at…I believe it’s the University of Edinburgh in Scotland today; he was at a different university at the time. He analysed these fragments of these documents for me, and came back and told me that the ink, the paper, even the presentations were valid; that this was in fact a book or series of books from the 1947, ’48, ’49, 1950 time period. That took him about four and a half weeks of analysis, and I was for four and a half weeks, as you can imagine, holding my breath.

The things that I saw described in this Lab Shopkeeper’s Notebook consisted of things that today would be more powerful than the Intel Pentium processor, for instance, or the Cray supercomputer. There were communications devices that were described; there were ways to sandwich-in very, very thin, micrometre-thin layers; special metals to produce moving parts for things like…from the descriptions that I read, the nearest thing I could describe…an anti-gravity propulsion unit for a spacecraft. They included dynamic electronic and power-control technology that even to this day we have not yet developed. They included communications technology that was described only as having been taken from an object of unknown or unearthly origin. The documents were very carefully worded not to reveal what was, in reality, in these boxes of materials.

I was sort of at a loss at that juncture, because even though we had forensic information at the time from this particular forensic expert that would date these boxes back to the late ’40s, and even though they said “Western Electric, Bell Laboratories”, part of them said something called “Z-Division” on them. We knew of the Z-Division: it was a segment of the United States Army, formed in 1947 and 1948. The implications were that this project was operating on the fringes of the nuclear bomb development project – then known as the Manhattan Project Group.

It turns out that in 1947 – between ’47 and actually late ’48 – Harry Truman decided he was going to grant a contract to AT&T to go through the overseeing and management of our nuclear arsenal and the commercialisation of derived product technologies from the nuclear bomb, from the bomb project: the physics, the electronics, the control systems, even the ballistics, the radar that was used, the ICBM technology that was under development in the late ’40s after we got a hold of the V-series rockets from the Nazis, and so forth. The contract was inked by Truman in early 1949, if I recall correctly, but during the prior two-year period there was an informal relationship, during which AT&T played a greater and greater role in the organisation of super-secret military weapons-grade projects for the federal government and eventually got pretty much control of what was then known as the Z-Division.

Z-Division, believe it or not, originated in Roswell, New Mexico. I guess the reason is, that is where the original nuclear bomb armada was formed – the first bomber wing that carried the nuclear bomb – and it migrated over to Kirtland Air Force Base during the time period when Orlando Lawrence, the Lawrence Berkeley Laboratories fellow, was called in. He was called in by Teller, Oppenheimer…all those folks responsible for the nuclear bomb…Leo Szwilard. Lawrence was called in at the time because he could make accelerators, or “cyclotrons” as they were known at the time. Those cyclotrons were capable of refining uranium, refining plutonium…well, actually, back then, they weren’t working with plutonium but with uranium.

I guess you could imagine what it must have been like in the time period. They were in the middle of a war when they were building the nuclear bombs and they had to do everything secretly, so this Z-Division was created with super-secrecy as its fundamental core.

Ultimately Lawrence was called in because they had to build enough of an accelerator to refine enough uranium to make the bomb possible, and, in spite of all the greatest minds of nuclear physics assigned to the Z-Division in the Manhattan Project, none of them could figure out how to refine enough uranium to make the nuclear bomb a possibility. This was before the first bomb was exploded. So Lawrence was brought in because he knew how to make a cyclotron; but his cyclotron, the biggest one he’d ever created, was about the size of this white board over here, and it could produce about a thimbleful of refined uranium – which would have been about enough to make a nuclear bomb capable of blowing off your left foot.

In any event, Lawrence one day is called in and he’s asked: “How do we build a cyclotron big enough?” He makes a few calculations and hands a requisition order to Harold Ackerman – today a federal judge, and who was the chief supply clerk for the Manhattan Project – to requisition enough silver to build a big silver racetrack; something like 12 million tons of silver. In fact, he took it to the United States Treasury, handed it to the then Secretary of the Treasury – I guess it was Morganthal – and Morganthal was asked to fill a 12-million-ton order, which also necessitated the relocation of Z-Division to some place where they could put all this silver and build this racetrack.

We decided one day at American Computer Company that we were going to be brave. I talked with my board and I talked with some of the people at the company and they agreed. “Yeah, we can try this; let’s see what happens.”

We decided that we were going to take the story that had been conveyed to me about this unusual Shopkeeper’s Notebook with these unusual technological artifacts in them, and naively and blithely put a panel on the Internet, describing in black and white and colour what we had found, and raise the question. However, the picture that we put up was a picture of Testor’s model of the so-called Roswell Lander. It’s a picture of what looks like a spacecraft with wings and a jet propulsion system, with a pod in the front to hold alien occupants who were piloting it. We superimposed the picture over an image from the Thunder Range – of course, we picked the wrong place; the Plains of San Agustin was the right place, actually – and we put a little bit of rhetoric on this panel and just placed it right in the middle of our American Computer Company website.

Now that probably was the stupidest thing we ever did. Here’s this picture of a Roswell alien lander sitting on a panel in the middle of a computer company website, and on it it said something like: “Did AT&T receive stolen alien technologies from the US Government in 1947 and thereby invent the transistor, the laser, the integrated circuit, and…on and on and on…different technologies?” Well, we figured the reaction we would get from the public would be one of, “Oh gee, isn’t that cute? That’s funny, X-Files, you know…” The reaction we got was not one we had anticipated.

Three days after we placed the image onto our website, we received a very strange series of military faxes to our tech support fax machine, referring to a piece of hardware known as “Sky Station”. Anybody ever hear of anything called Sky Station? Never heard of it, have you? Well, it’s up there. It’s an orbital platform of some kind. We were receiving live messages from Sky Station for a day or two and we decided this wasn’t right; we were going to call the Pentagon and tell them about it.

So I picked up the phone and first I called Fort Monmouth; then I called down to Langley Air Force Base. They wanted to know, “Why are you calling Langley Air Force Base?” Well, where else would I call about a satellite that’s sending messages to our fax machine…talk about sounding strange…that say this satellite is about to crash, it’s coming down, its communications systems are breaking down. Well, finally we got to somebody who was of authority. It was Colonel James that we got to, and he gets on the phone with me…I’m in my car, on my car phone…and he says: “Mr Shulman, please secure these faxes. Do not let anyone see them. We’ll take care of it. We’ll let you know what to do with the faxes.” It’s like…the military goes silent.

That next day our offices were broken into. Our front door was smashed, our glass was smashed to smithereens all over the place, and everything was taken out of the file cabinets in our offices. My office was a wreck when I got in there. It was awful. We came in the next day to work and it was like: what happened, what happened?

I had these faxes in my briefcase. I’d taken them with me, home. So apparently, by not leaving them there, I probably worsened the situation. It might have been better if I’d left them there, to be frank; if they’d found them and had just come and arrested us, taken us away. They were top level, five-level clearance. We’re not supposed to even see or even know such a thing, but inadvertently, as a result, we became aware of the fact that there’s an orbital DSP [Defense Space Platform], called Sky Station, which is nuclear-hardened and equipped to carry nuclear weapons, because it was described in these faxes.

It is not a very pleasant place to be, to discover that now, here we are at the end of the Cold War with an agreement that there will be no nuclear weapons in space in orbit, and there is apparently a platform up there that the United States secretly put up back in the ’60s or ’70s or ’80s, that’s equipped; it’s nuclear-hardened, it’s one of the Star Wars SDI series, based on Spacelab, equipped to handle and carry nuclear weapons.

So now, not only did we have a picture of an alleged alien craft on our website, talking about alien technologies being transferred to AT&T, but we also were in possession of very high level, Level Five, Top Secret security clearance military faxes describing something called Sky Station.

That week we had visits from the Air Force Office of Special Investigations. They came up and they interviewed us. They put me through a day-long third degree. We didn’t want it happening in the middle of our customers coming in and seeing us or selling personal computers and servers, so I took them to an out-of-the-way part of the office, down the hall, down the elevator to a little office downstairs, and I got a query about everything just short of…well, it included my shoe size, when I was born, names of parents, names of grandparents, when they entered the country, driver’s licence number. They went through a Q&A with me and with my staff, that just came short of asking me the wrong question – if you know what I mean.

We were very startled, naturally. We weren’t certain what in fact was going on, but we’re not ones to back down at American Computer so we decided that instead of running for cover and taking the picture down off of our website…because we kind of connected that the two things might have something to do with each other…instead of backing down and turning it all off, we would go the other direction. So we moved the picture to a separate section of our website and created an entire website within our website, called American Computer Company Special Investigation. This is what happens when you grow up in New Jersey! Of course, we couldn’t have rubbed salt into a deeper wound: “Some have claimed that alien technology was found on board a UFO crashed in Roswell, 1947. Very dramatic. Is it true? Did the US military discover something strange in the desert near Albuquerque, New Mexico? Did they alter human history? Was the transistor one of those alien marvels? Click here for the original story.”

We tried to be a little cute. We put up a picture, and if you go to our website it’s still there. If you go to our main website,, at the bottom of the page is a nav bar with a pointer in the middle of the corporate info products, catalogue, features, tech support, Roswell 1947, help. You can go to that link and click on it and it’ll take you to this special page which, of course, has now grown tremendously. It has something like, we estimate, about 9,000 messages and articles now stored within it. We started off on one Internet server and moved it to five Internet servers, and now we are on one of our super-servers which consists of four groups of four Pentium XEONs and three different service-provider carriers and a whole lot of communications just to handle the load.

We get about, we estimate, three million to three and a half million visitors a month to the site. And they’re not necessarily people like yourselves, open-minded, interested; they’re kids from college, kids from high schools, military people from countries like Iran…I’m serious! I mean, we can track some of the addresses that show up in our logs. I didn’t even know Iran had Internet! We’ve got a very strange reaction to our story.

What we did in the story was we isolated a few pointers, some of which only I was privy to. One of them was that there was some relationship between the government and AT&T that resulted in the transistor’s invention. I mentioned I grew up in the household of the head of Bell Labs, so I knew that there was something strange about the transistor because I knew Bill Shockley, and Bill Shockley was something of a witless buffoon. There’s no way he could have invented the transistor.

The symbol for the transistor is made up of three pieces: positive, positive and negative; or negative, negative and positive…silicon dioxide doped with arsenic and boron, in 1947. Now, in 1947, doping things with boron was not easy. It required the sort of equipment that even Bell Labs in 1946 did not possess. They had this type of equipment at Lawrence Berkeley Laboratories – but it would have taken thousands and thousands and thousands of man-hours to invent the transistor.

If you look back at it historically, what AT&T was claiming was that one day this “genius”, William Shockley, was working with a rectifier; he looked at it and he noticed it had unusual propensities, and there, bingo, he invented the transistor! He figured it out right there! And to verify that, the two other “geniuses” that they got to help work on the transistor, Dr Bardeen and Dr Brattain, both said: “Oh yeah, I remember a guy by the name of Case was [allegedly] talking about transistors in 1931, and I knew back then we were going to have them.”

That is the history of the transistor at AT&T prior to 1948, other than claiming it was invented in December of 1947 by Dr Shockley. Anybody believe that story? Me neither. And I knew, because the administrative head of the transistor project was Jack Morton – the man at whose house I was staying to go to school and whose sons I was friends with – and he often commented on the fact that it was really a shame that those three idiots got responsibility for the transistor and he didn’t. And I always wondered, because he too didn’t possess the scientific ability to develop the transistor. He was a brilliant man who had invented the radiobroadcast vacuum tube, the close-spaced triode, but it appears as if he was brought in to head up the project to try to draw back the transistor in time to radio tubes and the things that Shockley talked about; and it was as if the whole thing was just a ploy and he might as easily have been given responsibility and got the Nobel Prize as Bill Shockley. Professional jealousy?

In any event, for most of my young life I believed that the transistor had come from a government project and that they were just hiding its origins. Which government project, I did not realise until I saw the Shopkeeper’s Notebook in the possession of my friend, the consultant.

Now, I’d heard a lot about Roswell in my life and I’d read the Project Blue Book books and I’d read a lot of books like Berlitz’s books and so forth, but I was not someone who believed in Roswell, who believed that a UFO had crashed at Roswell at the time, in any event. There I was, stuck with all this information and having created this rather minor scandal on the Internet…well, maybe not minor, with the Air Force coming to visit us.

Next thing I know, radio talk show host Art Bell sends science reporter Linda Moulton Howe to my office. She has to be there because she has to see whether or not our offices were actually broken into. A beautiful woman, very intelligent…she shows up at the office with a tape recorder. I’m exhausted…the weeks have been going not so good lately, and we’re still picking up the pieces of glass out of the sofas in the lobby. She sees the windows are broken in the front and we have a wooden partition set up to try to keep the air out of the building, and she records me answering questions about all this. I try to be as vague as I can and answer the questions about what’s going on here, and she talks about the story. And next thing I know, she plays the tape on “Dreamland”, on Art’s show. I swear to God, it was the strangest thing we had ever seen happen!

That very next day we got well over 3,000 phone calls from people all trying to get in to see me personally; they had to come to see me personally, to tell me about Roswell. We received mail and e-mail by the 10,000 pieces. Our normal 2,000 visitors a day on our World Wide Web site jumped up so high that one of our carriers refused to carry us anymore.

At that point I realised there’s more than just a casual interest on the part of the public, so we decided we would carry the original ACC Roswell story right through to its ultimate conclusion. We have been for several years now.

So, we have publicised the fact that Dr Morton met his untimely death and that Dr Morton was one of the few people who knew the true history of the transistor at AT&T – aside from Bill Shockley who would never have talked because that would have meant the end of his Nobel Prize, along with Drs Bardeen and Brattain, and Dr Kilby who subsequently went on to bigger and better things, and he’s dead now.

It looked like Dr Morton was breaking camp with AT&T and was very, very outspoken, very angry with AT&T over this whole thing. Professional jealousy, I guess. One day in 1972, Dr Morton was found knocked unconscious and set afire in his Volvo P18 sports coupé, devastating the Morton household and family – my friends – and for reasons that nobody seemed to know.

Well, we decided to see whether or not there might be any link, any reason to link Dr Morton’s possible migration to a Japanese firm, and we tried to make an inquiry about it with the corporate security department at AT&T. That’s when we discovered that there are people working in corporate security at AT&T who don’t want to talk about Dr Morton’s untimely death. Now, you’ve got to understand, we’re talking about something which happened 25 years ago.

So we were investigating further, and I interviewed a member of the Morton household who was talking about the transistor project and got very, very teary-eyed when I talked about the transistor. I said, “Oh, did you ever wonder where the transistor really came from?” It was as if I had cut a jugular. The conversation ended right there. “Can’t discuss this further with you.”

We looked into it a little bit further and it became clear to us that Dr Morton was probably responsible for this Shopkeeper’s Notebook working its way outside of AT&T – probably, because he was the principal investigator. Everybody knows what a principal investigator is. Involved in any government project you have a principal investigator. They have to name somebody to take the blame. When AT&T screws up, they have to have someone to fire, and they’re certainly not going to pick someone important enough in their view; they’re going to pick the one that everybody doesn’t like. He was a tough guy; very, very strong-minded; and everybody didn’t like him that much, so they made him the principal investigator.

There were other people involved, apparently. There was a fellow by the name of Ramey. He was a figure at the Department of the Army. He was named in the documents. There were quite a few other people named in the documents. We’re not revealing all of the people at this particular juncture because of Mrs Proscauer who won’t allow us to give out certain things. And in order to continue on an ongoing basis having access to these documents and so-called Notebook, we’re very cautious about the information we give out.

In any event, we decided to depict in a series of pages on the Internet the entirety of the story of what we’d been going through, going on the theory that one of the ways you can protect yourself from, for instance, being assassinated by having information in your possession that’s dangerous to others, is to publicise it as widely as you possibly can – which is what we did. Of course, there’s a certain drawback to that approach. The drawback was that within no time the attacks, the onslaughts, the assaults, the death threats, the credibility attacks, the undermining of credibility, the public humiliation, pain and suffering began.

We found ourselves besieged by what I can only describe as a multilateral black project, which included death threats on myself and my family, death threats on our employees, pictures of me with bullet holes and blood dripping out, on the Internet, out of the blue…a really, really strange thing to have happen. We had people come up and claim they had been hired by us to verify the claims that technology like this originated on an alien spacecraft.

And you’ve got to understand, we didn’t say that it originated on an alien spacecraft. We asked the question, “Did it originate…?” Would you run around on the Internet saying this technology came from an alien spacecraft? No. You’d ask the question. You’d say, “Let’s put together the evidence; let’s find out.”

We decided we would approach a higher authority, ask the question to the higher authority and make it a matter of public record. So, who is a higher authority, other than, say, Bill Clinton, that you might go to to ask the question: Did the transistor and subsequent technologies fall into the hands of AT&T from the Nazi Germans, the Japanese? Well, neither of them had any of this stuff. Secret government project? Well, the United States Government couldn’t build any of this stuff. Half this stuff that we saw in the Notebook…even today we don’t even have some of the minerals, some of the chemical materials, necessary to create them.

We decided we would ask the Secretary of Defense, William Cohen. In fact, we got William Cohen and then his administrative assistant on the phone, and the head of the Air Force OSI instantly on the phone with us, and sent them a kit and kaboodle of stuff to take a look at. We asked them to come down, take a look at things that we wanted explained in their original context. Well, we’ve never heard from them about it. We haven’t heard from the Air Force or OSI – we filed OSI 9001 pages, demands, with them. We’ve never heard a single word back from the OSI, the Air Force, the Pentagon. They’ve kept their distance, accepted the requested requests and violated the law, because under the law, when you give them these demands, they have 30 days to respond. Not a single response. As if to say, “You’re not influential enough to get us to respond to these.”

In any event, we got nowhere with them so we decided we might embarrass them a little bit. Now, how do you embarrass the Air Force? I mean, sometimes they do a pretty good job of embarrassing themselves! But how do you embarrass the Air Force, how do you embarrass William Cohen, the Secretary of Defense, particularly in a time period when we’re in the middle of an ersatz situation of war with Iraq, when the Cold War is over? You publish your findings; you have to have findings.

I was invited to appear a total of 15 times on radio shows, including Art Bell again, Sightings, the Mike Jarmus Show, ABC News, and finally I turned down the Larry King Live show. I’d just about had enough. I was on ABC News, though, about three weeks ago.

We built two of the devices we saw in the Lab Shopkeeper’s Notebook. One of them was a semiconductor device. This semiconductor device we called the “Transfer Capacitor”, and it has actually shocked the industry. People called me “lunatic” and “liar” and every conceivable name in the book for a period of 11 months as we described the transfer capacitor’s unusual capability. It can be made about the size of a molecule, it can be controlled by microvolts of electricity, it produces no heat and it switches at 12 terahertz.

Does anyone know what a terahertz is? Intel Pentium’s transistors switch at 500 megahertz or some small multiple thereabouts. This thing is 12,000 times faster than the fastest transistors we’ve ever built. We tested it. We actually went out and got some silver alkane from a company in Pennsylvania that makes semiconductor materials. We built one, we tested it. We then realised that we could build it very dense.

We got some friends who operated a company called InMos, who had some semiconductor materials, and over six months – this is two years ago – we built an 8-gigabyte solid-state hard drive in a space about ‘yay’ big…poker-chip-sized…operating at the same speed, 12 terahertz, capable of replacing the memory of a PC. We subsequently built 2,500 of them and sent them out in the form of test kits for people in industry to evaluate – people who refused to believe that such a thing could exist. We sent them to Rohm & Haas; we sent them to Intel. We got some of them back. People didn’t even want to look at them: “What is this nonsense?” Motorola wouldn’t take one, interestingly. Texas Instruments took one.

In any event, for six months I had to put up with some of the most obnoxious, insulting, nasty comments you could imagine, even when I was at meetings of my own professional conferences. “The crazy alien guy with his flying-saucer transistor” – that was typical.

Ultimately what bailed us out was that a friend of mine who used to work for IBM, now for Lucent, managed to convince his private funding agency to give Lawrence Berkeley Laboratories a grant to check us out at ACC. He picked Lawrence Berkeley because they probably have the highest integrity of all the physics laboratories in the world – the ones who had the 10,000-foot racetrack, made out of 12 million tons of silver, that in 1947 must have knocked Henry Morganthal right out of his leather chair when it was requested. They tested using the same procedures, but they had a much better laser than we did. We only had a little laser at Princeton. They had a big laser with which they could watch the movement of electrons, and they verified not only the function but the speed. So, Lucent managed to double-check our work, even though it won’t officially admit it.

What the “T-cap” or Transfer Capacitor really is, is a metal-insulated dielectric junction semiconductor based on silver alkane. It works on the principle whereby electrons strike the bond in question, elevate its energy level and, boom, what was an insulator becomes a conductor in a half of a millionth of a billionth of a second! Very fast! It persists for about two thousandths of those millionths of a billionths of a second and turns itself off. We use two of them in a pair, one to refresh the other, and they nearly never lose any electrons. Once we charge them up, they stay charged for an hour. So we only need a tiny bit of power to power them. They produce no heat. We can’t measure heat from these things because the heat, if it were there, is absorbed back into the substance, the silver alkane, because of its unusual propensities.

Now, everyone who has ever owned a PC knows how much heat today’s computer microprocessors generate. It’s unearthly! And the faster they get, the more heat they generate. The power they consume is being turned into heat, like a toaster oven. That’s why people call PCs “video toasters”. This thing, if it were used to replace the transistors, the 130 million or so throughout your PC, would produce no heat. Instead of consuming 150 watts, it would probably consume one-thousandth of a watt. And it’s been sitting on the shelves for nearly 50 years!

In any event, we’ve got this story, and 9,000 messages and news items about it. Really strange things and people that come on: a fellow by the name of Wang on the private alleged web identities of two very public figures; fraudulent publications about ACC; hackers who hack into our website.

If you go to our website and read through it, you’ll be truly amazed. You’ll be stunned, you’ll be shocked. You will also walk away no longer a sceptic, if you were. If you’re someone who believed, you will now see what I call “third party circumstantial evidence” that verifies that something very unusual happened in New Mexico in 1947.

We recently received, courtesy of the Russian Federation, a transcript of a statement on the subject by Leonid Alexiev. Leonid Alexiev, a Russian General, chaired a blue-ribbon committee to look into this in 1997, when it was brought to their attention when Bill Clinton went to Russia and some students stood up and said, “We saw this website called American Computer, and there it was said that the Defense Department has a UFO in the United States. Is this true, Mr Clinton?” Bill got up and said, “I don’t know. No, no, it’s not true. But wait a minute. I tried to ask the Defense Department, but they wouldn’t tell me.”

In any event, the Russians decided to put together this committee, and I don’t know if they spent the millions of dollars on our account; they might have. They sent us a copy of the transcript of the report by Alexiev, which was also carried on The Learning Channel, TLC, last week. The Russians have decided there’s an alien presence in our solar system, based on all the evidence, on these things they’ve examined.

They’ve somehow got a hold of pictures of our transcapacitor from our lab. I don’t know how, because we’ve never taken any. Leave it to the Russians! The KGB doesn’t exist anymore; it’s called the MSB now, right? And Alexiev has gone public, as have the Russians, and as a result of his report he has now been appointed by…what’s the name of the head of the Russian Republic, the drunken guy? Yeltsin…Boris has appointed him head of the Russian Space Command.

As an aside, we thought we would solicit a few senators’ opinions. We solicited the offices of Senator Kennedy – another man who likes the glass of wine occasionally. In any event, we got a very strange reaction from the office of Senator Kennedy. They sent us a folio about a study that was done on funding, that was publicised by the Senator’s office. In the middle of it they had yellowed out a section that talked about the deep space probe series that NASA is sending out – the Deep Space 1. I think they’re naming them after that Star Trek show, Deep Space 9. When they get to nine, I don’t know what they’ll do!

In any event, Deep Space 3 or Deep Space 4 is slated to receive a piece of equipment called a “laser cannon”. At Lincoln Labs there’s a funded project afoot to develop, on a rush basis, an offensive weapon based on laser technology, because wherever this deep-space probe is going, they believe they need it. Deep space is the space outside of the solar system, or at the extreme ends of the solar system.

Apparently Senator Kennedy was one of the sponsors, but the senators and congressmen do not hold the same opinion as the Defense Department and the Air Force about whether there’s an alien presence in or right outside of our solar system.

So, right now, that’s about where we’re up to. We’re starting to commercialise the transfer capacitor and look at partners; we’re going to get it out there. We figured, why not? We’ve spent so much money on the research investigation, we might as well see if we can sell these things to people.

British Telecom has jumped in and stated they’ve placed a letter-of-intent order with us. They’re using it in a product they call the “Soul Catcher” chip [see Global News, NEXUS 3/06, Oct-Nov 1996]. We’ve had some preliminary discussions with a company called Shipley, the world’s largest manufacturer of semiconductor materials.

We’ve had discussions with Intel, IBM. Just in the last few months, a guy from IBM said, “You should have been dealing with us all along.” “Well, why didn’t you come to us?” “Well, I’m coming to you now.” “There are a lot of people who are interested.” “Well, we’re IBM.” “So? You had these in your lab all along and couldn’t get them to work!”

We’re not sure what direction it’s all going to go in, but I just wanted to end with this. This morning, as I was going up in the elevator, I felt like I was hanging upside down, holding the world up with my feet. The next time you get in the elevator out there, think about that. That’s how we feel at ACC.

Un sat numit Tartaria

Dupa ce parasesti Sebesul, pe soseaua spre Orastie, la 6-7 km, printre colnicele dulci ale Podisului Transilvan, în depresiunea râului Strei, un drum secundar, spre stânga, te duce într-o localitate cu nume ciudat, desprins din legenda si mit, Tartaria (com. Saliste).

O bruma de case nu foarte aratoase, de-a lungul ulitei principale, si alte câteva raspândite printre lanuri de porumb si fânete, strajuite de pomi fructiferi, nu spun mai nimic în plus despre aceasta asezare, satul Tartaria fiind asemenea altor sute de localitati rurale românesti. “Satul nost, asta pe care îl vedeti, este vatra mai noua, vechea Tartarie – dupa cum povesteau mosii – aflându-se dincolo de sosea si de calea ferata, unde e santierul arheologic” – ne spune, cu voce calda si plina de miere, Ioan Lupu, un batrân la 80 de ani, drept ca bradul si mândru ca stejarul în costumu-i taranesc dominat de alb si negru, asa cum sta bine vârstei si omului cumpanit. “Pe-acolo, prin vale, si pâna aici, unde începi sa urci dealul, era o mândrete de asezare, care – zice-se – colcaia de viata, mosii si stramosii nostri, Dumnezeu stie pâna la ce vita, poate pâna la Adam, ocupându-se cu olaritul si cu fieraritul… Asa spuneam mosii, care stiau de la mosii lor, ca aici erau multe cuptoare si ateliere pentru ars pamântul si pentru topit si prelucrat metalele, si era asa o caldura în hangaralele alea ca gândeai ca te afli în Iad, în Tartar, de unde ar veni si numele satului nost… Sigur, ocupatia asta cu lucrul fierului si a teracotelor era a bastinasilor, la noi în sat nefiind niciodata tigani, decât de-astia, cu cersitul”…

Ca Tartaria este o asezare straveche, cu radacini preistorice, o demonstreaza si descoperirile arheologului Nicolae Vlassa, care atesta o continuitate de locuire, aici, databila între anii 4500-200 î.d.H., si o cultura puternica, de tip Turdas.

O descoperire senzationala

Poate, niciodata, Tartaria n-ar fi atras atentia asupra ei, eventual prin interesul iscat de numele atât de straniu, invitând la fel de fel de speculatii lingvistice, daca…

Da, exista un mare daca în istoria acestei localitati!

În anul 1961, în ultima zi a cercetarilor sale arheologice în aceasta asezare (începute în 1942), Nicolae Vlassa face o descoperire care avea sa produca senzatie în lumea stiintifica. El scoate la lumina un mare complex de cult si un depozit unitar de resturi ale unor schelete omenesti, între care si trei tablite de lut, de mici dimensiuni, din vatra culturala neolitica Vincea-Turdas (sec. VII-VI î.d.H.), pe care, doi ani mai târziu, le reproduce si le comenteaza într-o revista de specialitate, care aparea în mai multe limbi straine, fapt ce, indubitabil, salveaza de la “înmormântare” senzationala descoperire, pentru care vor arata un interes de-a dreptul surprinzator specialisti din Ungaria, fosta Iugoslavie, Bulgaria, SUA si fosta URSS, care au încercat descifrarea si datarea lor, pe baza ultimelor cuceriri stiintifice în domeniu (Carbon 14 etc.). Modestele tablite (teracota) neolitice de la Tartaria fac sa treaca în plan secund “o teza si o carte care facusera înconjurul lumii: Civilizatia începe la Sumer”! Academicianul bulgar Vladimir I. Gheorghiev afirma ca “tablitele de la Tartaria sunt (…) mai vechi cu un mileniu decât monumentele scrierii sumeriene” si ca “scrierea, sub forma pictogramelor, a aparut în sud-estul Europei si nu în Mesopotamia, cum se credea pâna atunci, desenele si semnele de pe cele trei tablite reprezentând “cea mai veche scriere din lume”, mai ales ca scrierea sumeriana, din sec. IV î.d.H., “a aparut cu totul pe neasteptate si într-o forma dezvoltata”, ceea ce înseamna ca ea a fost ori adusa acolo, ori a fost ameliorata în scriere cuneiforma. La fel, orientalistul si poetul din Leningrad, Andrei Nadirov, se entuziasma în fata minunii de pe tablitele de la Tartaria, care transmiteau, peste vremuri, “solia fratilor pre-daci”, pentru ca Marija Gimbutas, o eminenta cercetatoare americana, sa încadreze scrierea acestor tablite într-o straveche scriere sacra, venind înca din paleolitic, cu manifestari mai bogate în neolitic, si apartinând civilizatiei Vechii Europe. Cam la aceleasi concluzii ajung si investigatiile unor cercetatori maghiari (Makkay Janos, Erzen Nustupny), iugoslavi (Jovan Todorovici), americani (S. Hood, David Whipp), sovietici (T.S. Passek, V. Titov, Boris Perlov) etc.

Daca nu sunt respinse ca falsuri sau pur si simplu ignorate, tablitele de la Tartaria nu trezesc aproape deloc interesul cercetatatorilor (istorici, arheologi, lingvisti) români, cu exceptia lingvistului Ariton Vraciu si a etnologului Romulus Vulcanescu, o uitare suspecta asternându-se peste ele si peste discutiile cercetatorilor straini, situatia ramânând aceeasi si dupa 1989, chiar daca, pentru prima data, tratatul de Istoria Românilor (Ed. Enciclopedica, 2001) consacra aproape 2 (doua) pagini Tartariei, discutabile si acestea prin concluziile cel putin nefericite pe care le propune. Deh, “complotul bubei” nu se stinge!…

A ramas pe umerii altor cercetatori, unii “nespecialisti”, abordarea fenomenului, ca si formularea celor mai îndraznete întrebari pentru elucidarea lui, în vederea alcatuirii unui corpus al textelor stravechi pastrate pe stânci, morminte, statui, vase de cult etc.

“Oare nu credeti ca a sosit timpul sa ne respectam patria, istoria, neamul?”

În perioada 23-29 octombrie 2000, la Milano, are loc simpozionul stiintific international ORIGINILE SCRIERII, în cadrul caruia cercetatorul Haral Harmann, de la Research Centre on Multilingualism din Bruxelles, reia, pe noi baze documentare, aparitia inciziilor scrieriforme pe diferitele obiecte descoperite în arealul carpato-balcanic. Concluzia dizertatiei sale este aceea ca tablitele de la Tartaria sunt primele semne de scriere incizata, care preced pictogramele mesopotamiene (3500-3300 î.d.H.), hieroglifele egiptene (3200-3000 î.d.H.), pictogramele cu inscriptii de pe Valea Indului (2500 î.d.H.) sau pe cele din China (1500-1200 î.d.H.), ca si enigmaticele mesaje ale zapotecilor mexicani (600 î.d.H.), ceea ce-l va determina pe Marco Merlini, câtiva ani mai târziu, sa rasuceasca teorema clasica “Ex Oriente Lux” în “Ex Occidente Lux”. Este vorba aici, în fond, despre statuarea teoriei, rezultata din cercetarile arheologice, potrivit careia spatiul carpato-danubiano-pontic avea, în neolitic, cea mai densa populatie, care a generat culturile Cris-Starcevo, Vincea-Turdas, Petresti, Pre-Cucuteni, Cucuteni, Boian, Gumelnita etc.

În fata acestor realitati, istoricii si oficialitatile române ramân oarbe, surde si mute. Se trezeste, însa, un american de origine româna, dr. Napoleon Savescu, care arunca – din dragoste pentru neamul sau si dintr-o pasiune devoranta pentru cercetarea preistorica si istorica – “manusa”: “Oare nu credeti ca a sosit timpul sa ne respectam patria, istoria, neamul?” Domnia-sa înfiinteaza fundatia “Reînvierea Daciei”, publicatia “Dacia Magazin”, “Dacia TV”, la New York, si, la Bucuresti, congresele de Dacologie: Sarmizegetusa-2000, Burebista-2001, N. Densusianu-2002 si Tartaria-2003. Pe un ton polemic, cu argumente de o simplitate si adâncime dezarmante, interventiile publice ale domniei-sale, inclusiv volumul Noi nu suntem urmasii Romei, încearca sa implementeze tezele potrivit carora “noi, dacii, nu am pierit”, ca “poporul carpato-pontico-danubian constituie poporul-matca al Europei”, ca acest popor “poarta în el cele mai vechi vestigii ale existentei si activitatii omului în Europa, indicând apartanenta lui la marea arie a antropogenezei”.

“Cum, ei, pre-dacii, sa scrie înaintea tuturor? Cum sa scrie daca nu stiau sa citeasca?”

“Nu putem trece prin viata mergând cu ochii închisi si astupându-ne urechile la un adevar evident – spune dr. Napoleon Savescu. Nu putem sa refuzam sa auzim comentariile celor ce refuza sa accepte dogma: crede si nu cerceta, eu sunt profesorul, pe mine trebuie sa ma asculti! Nu putem accepta faptul ca pâna în anul 106 d.Hr. n-am existat, pentru ca asa învatam la scoala sau la facultate. Nu putem accepta faptul ca legiunile romane au patruns în Dacia, au cucerit 14% din teritoriul ei pentru o perioada istorica de neglijat, 165 de ani, si, peste noapte, toata populatia Daciei, ocupata sau neocupata de romani, a început sa vorbeasca o alta limba, romanica (fara ca în 86% din teritoriul Daciei sa fi calcat picior de soldat roman)… Ce or fi avut dacii atât de special ca romanii sa-i învete numai pe ei limba latina, în 165 de ani, si “au refuzat” sa-i învete pe maltezi în 1088 de ani, pe greci în 641 de ani, pe egipteni în 425 de ani, pe britanici în 450 de ani sau pe evrei în 325 de ani?”… “Rasfoind publicatiile lumii, îl gasim pe sumerologul american John A. Halloran întrebându-se: Cum se poate explica faptul ca într-o regiune din vestul României, înconjurata cu nume sumeriene ca: URASTIE, SIMERIA, KUGIR, s-au gasit trei tablite din lut local cu pictograme sumeriene, dar mai vechi cu 1.000 de ani decât cele din Mesopotamia?! (…) “Asumându-ne o origine triviala, recenta, romana, sigur ca acestea nu ne mai apartin”…

Si, totusi, lectiile arheologiei, chiar daca nu sunt asumate oficial, ramân si, mai devreme sau mai târziu, triumfa. Descoperirile arheologice de la Turdas, realizate de cercetatoarea arheolog Sofia Turma (Sophia Torma), în a doua jumatate a sec. XIX, desi neglijate si “date uitarii”, atesta, cu peste 1500 de ani înaintea semnelor pictografice de pe tablitele de la Tartaria, semne ideografice devenite litere si cifre cu caracter latin (C mare, D mare si d mic, I, L, O, S, T, U, V, X, precum si cifrele III, V, VI, X), printre acestea fiind descoperite si semnul crucii si cel al zvasticii.

Ca traco-geto-dacii cunosteau scrisul, o confirma si autorii antici: Aristofan (450-385 î.d.H.) mentioneaza ca “tracii cunosteau scrisul”, iar Cato cel Batrân (234-149 î.d.H.), în Originile Romei, apreciaza ca “Getii, cu mult înainte de întemeierea Romei, au proslavit în Ode scrise faptele de vitejie ale eroilor lor, acompaniati de flaut, ceea ce la romani, acest lucru a avut loc mult mai târziu”; Berosus (sec. III î.d.H.) spune ca si-a adunat Istoriile din cartile caldeenilor si ale celtilor (tracilor), pentru ca Ovidiu, exilat la Tomis, sa declare ca “am învatat sa vorbesc limba getica si sarmatica”, ca “am scris o cartulie în limba getica”, ca fiul si mostenitorul tronului trac, Cotys, i-a citit poeme scrise în limba geta etc.

Cum sa acrediteze, atunci, circumspectii istorici români, tablitele de la Tartaria altfel decât un fals? Precis, “niste negustori sumerieni au trecut pe la noi si le-au pierdut (asta, înainte cu 1000 de ani ca Sumerul sa existe)! Cum, adica, ei, pre-dacii, sa scrie înaintea tuturor? Cum sa scrie daca nu stiau sa citeasca?”

“Vom întelege importanta acestei zile doar peste câtiva ani”

Incet, dar sigur, aceste pamânturi îsi recupereaza istoria, continuitatea de locuire, fondul uman. Demnitatea si locul între popoarele si neamurile lumii. Dupa secole si secole de agresiune. Cu rare sclipiri. Dar auguste. Cu uriase rezerve de potentialitate.

Un moment, în aceste recuperari, îl reprezinta si ziua de 22 iunie 2003, zi în care, prin eforturile dr.-ului Napoleon Savescu si ale prietenilor sai, între care si marele arheolog si cercetator Gh. Lazarovici, satul Tartaria intra si în constiinta româneasca, dupa ce a facut înconjurul lumii! Un monument impresionant, din granit de Baia Mare, care marcheaza primul mesaj scris, cunoscut pâna acum, din istoria omenirii, a fost dezvelit – pentru eterna aducere-aminte si pentru un mereu recurs la vechime, la faptele celor dinaintea noastra, atunci când sufletul, mintea si mâinile noastre rostuiesc si faptuiesc.

Ceremonialul de la Tartaria, programat pentru ora 11, a adunat circa 2000 de poporeni, de la taranii locuitori ai celebrei asezari, pâna la oameni politici, istorici, ziaristi si scriitori, ca si pe participantii la cel de-al 4-lea Congres International de Dacologie, care au fost sufletul si motorul acestei extraordinare manifestari. Cuvântul scurt, marcând evenimentul si cursul festivitatilor, rostit de primarul comunei Saliste de Alba, Ioan Scutaru, sfintirea monumentului de catre un sobor de preoti si diaconi au prefatat adevaratele comunicari stiintifice prezentate multimii de dr. Napoleon Savescu si Marco Merlini (Italia), dar si de prefectul de Alba, Ioan Rus, si de presedintele Consiliului Judetean Hunedoara, dr. Mihail Rudeanu. Au fost momente emotionante, traite plenar de participanti, între care si vreo 10-15 bihoreni atrasi de magia cuvântului scris, ale caror suflet si gând sunt în consonanta cu ideile consacrate de N. Densusianu.

Ce s-ar putea spune mai mult despre esenta acestei manifestari, decât cuvintele lui N. Savescu? “Le place, nu le place unora dintre noi, despre Tartaria se vorbeste în lume din 1961 si pâna azi, continuu. Nu exista o întâlnire stiintifica internationala în care sa se aminteasca despre scris, despre civilizatie, si cuvântul Tartaria sa nu apara”… Sau ale italianului Marco Merlini: “Domnilor, peste tot în lume se stie ca romanii au plecat de aicea, si nu invers” (…) Vom întelege importranta acestei zile doar peste câtiva ani. Veti putea spune ca ati participat la un eveniment nu important numai pentru acest loc, nu numai important pentru România, ci pentru întreaga Europa. Pentru ca recunoasterea unui scris vechi de 7.000 de ani înseamna recunoasterea ca aici nu traiau oameni primitivi, preocupati numai de existenta, de supravietuire (…) Scrierea din Tartaria nu este rezultatul unei singure persoane, geniale, ci al unei întregi culturi. Vreau sa va spun, apoi, ca alaturi de cultura egipteana, mesopotamiana, era si cultura danubiana, si din multe puncte de vedere se poate spune ca aceasta cultura danubiana este cea dintâi… În acesti urmatori ani, România va intra în Uniunea Europeana. Eu cred ca este important ca România sa faca o buna prezenta culturala si politica, pentru ca toata Europa sa recunoasca cultura danubiana, una dintre mamele identitatii Europei”…

Pentru un Muzeu al Scrierii Europene

Înaltat pe un soclu de beton si marmura, monumentul de la Tartaria, închinat primei scrieri atestate din lume, a fost realizat de sculptorul Ioan Seu si ridicat, dupa cum retine si placa de pe partea nordica, cu sprijinul Dr. Napoleon Savescu, presedintele Fundatiei “Dacia Reviav International”, av. Ioan Rus, ec. Eugen Popa, dr. Mihail Nicolae Rudeanu, Dr. Nick Stoian, prof. Dumitru Malin, preot dr. Ioan Rudeanu, av. Lazar Cutus, Vladimir Brilinsky, si cu un aport material remarcabil al lui George Constantin Paunescu.

Pentru noi, bihorenii, prezenta eminentului avocat oradean, dl Lazar Cutus, pe “placa nemuritorilor”, este prilej de reala bucurie si mândrie. Si, ca fapt divers, trebuie spus ca domnia-sa este socrul Dr.-ului Napoleon Savescu si omul care, în ultimul moment, a adus granitul de Baia Mare, dupa ce andezitul initial pentru realizarea monumentului cazuse din ghearele unei macarale si se sparsese.

Nu putem încheia aceasta sumara prezentare a unei manifestari de o importanta capitala si speciala pentru istoria si cultura acestor pamânturi fara a pleda, alaturi de Marco Merlini: “Cred ca acest loc minunat de la Tartaria, un loc unic în lume, ar trebui sa posede si un muzeu, un muzeu al scrierii europene, un muzeu unic în toata România. Si daca dumneavoastra decideti sa construiti acest muzeu, veti gasi un sprijin deosebit la universitatile din Roma, din Londra, din New York, chiar si din Australia, de unde veti dobândi si prieteni de o inestimabila valoare stiintifica si sufleteasca”…


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