Thursday, February 09, 2006

An Interview with Jacques Vallee

Vallee
by Brent Raynes
Alternative Perceptions Magazine
February 2006

     Jacques Vallee authored such UFO classics as Anatomy Of A Phenomenon, Challenge To Science (which he wrote with his wife Janine), Passport To Magonia, Messengers of Deception, Confrontations, Dimensions, and Revelations. This distinguished French born scientist received his B.S. in mathematics at the Sorbonne, an M.S. in astrophysics at Lille University, and after moving to the U.S. received his Ph.D. in computer science from Northwestern University. Vallee worked closely with the late Dr. J. Allen Hynek, former astronomical consultant to the Air Force's Project Blue Book. Their dialogues together in The Edge of Reality (1975) are a thought-provoking delight to read. Vallee also co-developed the first computer-based map of Mars for NASA, he later directed a project to build Arpanet, the prototype for the Internet, and since 1987 he has been a venture capitalist with Euro-America, serving as an early-stage investor and director of many companies including SangStat Medical, a biotechnology firm in Menlo Park, California and Nantes, France; Accuray, a medical device company specializing in robotic surgery; Ixys, a power semiconductor firm, and others.

For more information on Jacques Vallee and his extensive background, visit his website at: www.jacquesvallee.net

Editor: In the October-November 2001, UFO: The Science & Phenomena Magazine (Vol. 16, No. 5) your attendance at the 20th annual Society for Scientific Exploration was detailed. In this article, which was a summation of a conference that also included perspectives of scientists in a variety of avenues toward unexplained phenomena, including crop circles and parapsychology, it was noted how your public appearance was a rare event. Furthermore, the article quoted you saying: "I'm not interested in talking to ufologists any more, because I don't learn anything from them." Recently, you made another rare appearance to talk about UFOs. The UFO conference sponsored by the Association for Research and Enlightenment in Virginia Beach, Virginia, on December 2nd and 3rd, 2005.

Could you generally sum up for us the reasons why you have come to have little tolerance towards mainstream ufologists and avoid participating in their conferences, but would take part in these other two conferences just mentioned?

Jacques Vallee: There was another part to what I said at the time, namely that I learned more from witnesses than I did from ufologists. That remains true today. When I began this research in the 1960s I learned a lot from groups like NICAP and APRO, that were trying to document and publish cases, and promoted an open minded approach. This changed in the late 1980s when ufology turned into a set of dogmas (Roswell, abductions) with little room for open-minded research, and almost no field investigation any more. Much independent UFO research today has gone underground and is done by isolated individuals, outside of the organized groups, as was the case with the “Invisible College” in the days of Allen Hynek. The ERA conference was a rare opportunity to compare notes with colleagues I respect, in a sober setting.

More . . .

See Also:Famed Ufologist 'Jacques Vallee' Speaks!

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