Thu, Dec 27, 2012 - Page 4 News List

Skeptics, believers debate photo of ‘alien’ creature

SUPERIMPOSED?A photo imaging expert said the photo does not appear to have been edited, but thought the so-called ‘alien’ looked too human

By Yang Chiu-ying and Jason Pan  /  Staff reporter, with staff writer

A close-up image of a photo taken by policeman Chen Yung-huang near Jiaming Lake in Taitung County on May 14 last year shows a seemingly transparent bipedal figure walking.

Photo courtesy of the Taiwan Ufology Society

A local UFO association has released a photograph taken at a high mountain lake which it says shows the image of an “alien being,” but skeptics say it may be a digitally edited or multiple-exposure photo.

The Taiwan UFOlogy Society (TUFOS) announced on Saturday that a photograph taken by a policeman at Jiaming Lake (嘉明湖) — located at an altitude of 3,310m on the southern section of the Central Mountains in Taitung County — shows what appears to be a large alien creature, with a transparent body and webbed hands, walking in the distance.

Due to its strange features, TUFOS executives say it does not look like a human being, but must have come from outer space.

TUFOS chairman Huang Chao-ming (黃朝明) said the policeman gave them the photo, which was taken on his iPhone 4 mobile phone, for examination.

A close-up image of the so-called “alien being” shows double-exposure lines at the bottom. To determine whether the photo is genuine, TUFOS spent a year having experts on mobile phone technology, computer imagery and camera photography inspect the photo, but it has yet to make a conclusive finding.

Some experts have said it may be a leftover image from the mobile phone’s flash memory that was superimposed on the scenery shot.

Huang said if it was a faulty superimposed image, why did the “alien being” just happen to be at the top of the mountain ridge line?

The photograph was taken by Chen Yung-huang (陳詠鍠), a policeman who went on a hiking trip to Jiaming Lake with his colleagues on May 14 last year.

Chen told Huang that he did not notice anything unusual, and only discovered the strange figure in the picture after coming down the mountains.

Chien Jung-tai (簡榮泰), an expert on photo image processing, was shown the photograph on Saturday. Chien initially said that a shaking motion when the shot was being taken might have produced the double lines in what might be a leftover image.

However, it was interesting to see that the double lines in the leftover image appear only in a small section of the photo, he said.

Chien also compared the pixel elements of the double lines below the “alien being” and the image above it, and said they do not differ much, adding that it does not appear to be an edited photo.

However, he said that if it were an “alien being,” then it should have a body structure and composition different from that of a human being.

Judging from the photo, the creature appears to have a huge body, but if it is transparent, it would not have an outline and a shadow, he said.

“If it was an alien being from another planet, with its own special biological structure, then we would be unable to interpret its shape and appearance, based on what we see from creatures on Earth,” he said.

When asked if the image might be caused by a superimposition of a leftover frame image from the mobile phone’s flash memory, Chien said that was a question that can only be answered by experts in optical imaging technology for flash memory devices.

Based on his experience with digital cameras and mobile phones, he said the probability of having a multiple-exposure image superimposed at just the right place in an outdoor scenery picture was low.

Huang said there have been reports from other countries of cameras capturing images of beings and objects that are invisible to the human eye.

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