June 2004...The Beginning Of The End?
June 3, 2004 12:19 PM   Subscribe

this is the end as we know it. Aussie Bloke describes upcoming catastrophic meteor showers. A mysterious Australian astronomer is ranting about something earth shattering in on the horizon, odd naval fleet movement, strange economic activity and interesting meteor activity. Truth or hoax, What does it all mean?
posted by lsd4all (51 comments total)
Well, we have a timeline, so we'll see:
  • June 8-9 Dust Cloud begins to reach the Earth and darkening of the skies.
  • June 18-20 1st impact
  • June 24-25 2nd impact
  • June 27-28 3rd impact of the "anomaly"
Are we in meteors season by any chance?

OTOH, some tinfoils are sitting on their Y2K bunkers and would like to see the EOTWAWKI not to have to repay their loans I guess...
posted by NewBornHippy at 12:34 PM on June 3, 2004

I'm sorry, between this and this, I was wondering when exactly Art Bell bought Metafilter from Matt.
posted by keswick at 12:37 PM on June 3, 2004

It means that people looking for conspiracy will find it whether it's real or not.
posted by Argyle at 12:38 PM on June 3, 2004

June 24-25 2nd impact

What a drag. Guess it's going to be a shitty birthday.
posted by Skot at 12:43 PM on June 3, 2004

Hi lsd4all,

This topic was just covered in this fpp.

Also, Sequential very kindly did some research and declared this story debunked:

"Towards the end, his tale fell apart completely. He had personal contact with some of the anomalies.net board mods and promised far more than he could deliver. After repeatedly stepping on his own story (in examples given above and those I didn't go into) he promised a video would be made of his 'jump' home. Word had it that the video was made...then it simply never arrived. The final breakdown of his story appears in this link, as the moderators discover that he is indeed still with us...posing as an alien on another board."
posted by PigAlien at 12:45 PM on June 3, 2004

thanks for the links, pigalien. my first thought on this whole story was why astronomers from all over the world haven't said anything about the possible threats of any meteors coming towards us anytime soon. I recall quite a few asteroids false-alarms within the last few years and this is supposed to happen in the next couple weeks.
posted by lsd4all at 12:53 PM on June 3, 2004

PigAlien, the story Sequential was debunking was the John Titor time-traveller hoax, not this (probable) hoax.
posted by jbrjake at 12:53 PM on June 3, 2004

I may be confusing John Titor with Aussie Bloke, but Sequential seemed to link them.

Ok, without doing any research on this and not being a scientist, this would be my logic:

Scientists are constantly issuing warnings that asteroids are heading our way and then saying, there's a chance the asteroid might strike the earth. Then a few days or weeks later they come back and say, "don't worry, it won't be close".

We also have close encounters with asteroids all the time that come very close but don't hit the earth. The thing about it is, we often have very little warning because it is difficult to detect such small objects in space ahead of time.

Chances are, if we are ever struck by a large asteroid, we probably won't have much warning.

It seems to me a cloud of meteors out in space would be hard to detect, and even if we could detect it, why is it that we can suddenly predict with such accuracy that we're going to have 3 impacts? Have they isolated and calculated the individual location of every meteor in the cloud?

If we are so certain there are going to be 3 impacts, then it would seem we should also know the date and perhaps even time. How can they say for sure a meteor will hit us, but we don't know if it will be on June 18, 19 or 20th? The earth is moving fairly quickly through space, and if a meteor is going to hit us, it is going to have to hit us at a particular point in space. If it misses its 'rendezvous', there won't be any earth to hit.

So, logically speaking, either we know the location and trajectories of these meteors and when they're going to hit, or its just guesswork, in which case 3 separate impacts sounds rather too specific to me.

Ok, I can breathe more easily now! :)
posted by PigAlien at 12:59 PM on June 3, 2004

Chances are, if we are ever struck by a large asteroid, we probably won't have much warning. - PigAlien

... If any of the remaining 400 are found to be on a collision course, McNaught said we would likely have decades to deal with the crisis.
posted by tomplus2 at 1:11 PM on June 3, 2004

Fireball Near Grover´s Mill, N.J.

You mean, the town where the "War of the Worlds" aliens landed???

Okay. Sure.
posted by briank at 1:14 PM on June 3, 2004

Skot - I know how you feel, I turn 30 on June 8th. I've always heard it's all downhill from 30....
posted by jonah at 1:15 PM on June 3, 2004

"The butterfly counts not months but moments, and has time enough."

--Rabindranath Tagore
posted by specialk420 at 1:18 PM on June 3, 2004

Fireball Near Grover´s Mill, N.J.

Where have I heard that before?
posted by jaronson at 1:19 PM on June 3, 2004

Oops. briank gets the gold.
posted by jaronson at 1:20 PM on June 3, 2004

thanks, tomplus, I think I really meant to say 'large meteorites' instead of asteroids, and large meteorites (the kind that we wouldn't detect much ahead of time) aren't likely to be earth shattering.

In any event, my point was that this report of 'collisions' and 'anomolies' sounds quite far-fetched from a logical, scientific perspective (although I'm not an astronomer). I was hoping someone with more knowledge on the subject might back me up.
posted by PigAlien at 1:26 PM on June 3, 2004

large meteors...
posted by PigAlien at 1:42 PM on June 3, 2004

Ha, Skot, the skies'll be darkening just in time for my birthday! Sweet.
posted by DrJohnEvans at 1:49 PM on June 3, 2004

Bruce Willis, hope me!
posted by matteo at 1:49 PM on June 3, 2004

This has been one of my favorite internet nut-cases of late. Just enough unrelated happenings to make you think twice (apparently the mention of the observatory burning down is true). His or her diatribes also feature the classic "I'm sprinkling my facts with bogus information to test you" gambit to cover any and all inconsistencies in the "calculations."

Most of all I like the fact that our timeline is so near (none of this "The world’s going to end in 2084!") so we'll get instant gratification when the dates come and go. Or, ya know, die in a hail of meteorites - whatever.
posted by jalexei at 1:51 PM on June 3, 2004

From today's news:
Seattle — Witnesses along a 60-mile swath of the Puget Sound region from the Tacoma area to Whidbey Island and as far as 260 miles to the east said the sky lit up brilliantly, and many reported booms as if from one or more explosions.

So it's started already!
posted by mediaddict at 1:57 PM on June 3, 2004

(oops - double post. sorry)
posted by mediaddict at 1:59 PM on June 3, 2004

There is no "season" for meteors. Although there will be many small showers this month, just about like any other.


This "Aussie" idiot is just preying on the known facts that we are entering or about to enter a dustier part of our galaxy and that there was recently three naked eye visible comets at once, which is pretty damn rare.

The dust cloud part, not much of a big deal. We're already going through a dust cloud as it is, albeit not as thick and we're doing quite fine thanks.

The solar system is being bombarded by comets all the time. We're just now actually discovering more of them with the use of things like SOHO, LINEAR, and NEAT.
posted by yupislyr at 2:32 PM on June 3, 2004

I saw what appeared to be meteors, missiles, crashing planes or space debris last year in Virginia Beach. I was with my family and we were sitting out on the beach at around 11pm, when my brothers and sisters and I (all in our 20s and 30s) saw a bright object falling from the sky over the ocean and leaving a trail. It is difficult to say how far away it was, it could have been a mile or 50 miles. We didn't see any bright flashes, it just kind of petered out. Then, oddly enough, just a couple of minutes later, we saw another one in the same spot and identical to the first, except the second one began to do a spiral. It also left a spiral trail behind it which glowed eerily in the moonlight. We were all kind of freaked out by it. We thought if a meteor (or two) had crashed into the ocean that we might be sitting in front of a big tidal wave. We speculated it might have something to do with the naval base in Virginia Beach, perhaps they were having tests of some sort.

Anyhow, its not uncommon for meteors or space junk to fall to earth now and then and even to be quite bright. I'm sure there's a meteor hitting the earth somewhere every few days or weeks that is fairly well visible, but maybe somebody with a better background can attest to that.
posted by PigAlien at 2:37 PM on June 3, 2004

"The butterfly counts not months but moments, and has time enough." --Rabindranath Tagore

A beautiful quote, and so I thought I'd repeat it.

It's quite impossible, unfortunately, to discern the absolute truth of such rumors but - I'd note - one can ALWAYS find some currently floating absolutely menacing prediction of world doom. Especially on the Net

This is probably a feature of human nature.

There's always dire net gossip of some approaching object - a meteor, or a cloud or a comet, or whatever....Niburu! - which will devastate the Earth.

As in Orwell's 1984, Niburu is always approaching and we are always at war with Niburu.

Niburu may get us one day, too. I'd support spending some serious federal bucks on monitoring for the approach of objects and space junk, and the development of methods maybe to neutralize such threats.


I may eat my words as the skies darken. And I have noticed some curious financial developments of that which have fueled all sorts of speculation. But, I'll first look to the Earth for explanations of such harbingers.

Niburu's approach is chancy at best, and if Niburu should make her long heralded entrance we will be able to do little but pull up our lawn chairs and go out in style amidst the ensuing cataclysm.

The End of the World is usually only a relative affair - until that one time when it is not - and over that we likely have little power but the preparations of our best guesses.

But on human greed, avarice even, and lust for power one can always rely - and yet disasters brought on by these sins have always passed and given way to another day.
posted by troutfishing at 2:41 PM on June 3, 2004

A friend of mine has the misfortune of a father who traffics in these sorts of rumors. He told her that Niburu - or something! - would soon pass by the Earth and cause the Yellowstone Caldera to blow (or, if not, cause some equally world shaking disaster).

She was, understandably, upset - she has a young toddler, and her father offered no practical advice at all ! So I told her - "look, if something really bad happens and you need to get up to higher ground (she lives by the sea) to get away from the tidal waves (or for whatever reason) you can drive up to my house - it's about 500-750 feet higher. You'll be safe from tidal waves, anyway." She liked that advice, and said so - to the effect of "God Damn it! Why didn't my father ever give me any practical advice or help like that?"

And it was true - after dispensing all of his dire prophecies, he neglected to mention "And - of course - should any of this happen you and your family are always welcome to take refuge at my house." The guy has some sort of bunker too. Sheesh. Some people.
posted by troutfishing at 2:54 PM on June 3, 2004


The quote you've used is a quote from the LJ entry which does a reasonable job bringing together various bits of information about John Titor.

Here's some video from the event in Washington last night:
Montage of six different video shots from various locations (1) (quicktime)
Two separate security camera views from Harborview Medical Center (1) (2) (AVI)
View from Silver Reef Casino in Ferndale (1) (WMV)
Local news article with explanation of meteorites.

Local news coverage.

More tinfoil hat.

There's an archive of the posts by "Aussie Bloke" here. As proof, he offers this bit of information:
I will post a SWAN pic of the three comets (the third one is an anomaly - not certain what it is).
He then links to this static image and this gif.

What "Aussie Bloke" fails to tell you is that your looking at images of the sun, not the earth. Though I can't be one hundred percent certain because I am not trained in this field, I draw my own conclusions. These objects don't appear to be traveling toward earth.
Activity on the Sun, detected as ultraviolet rays lighting up the hydrogen gas in space and seen by SWAN on SOHO, is here projected onto a map of the whole Sun including the far side. Red lines denote the far-side/near-side boundary. Active regions already observed on the near side are denoted with numbers. Black areas are regions not observed by SWAN.
By comparing the black regions of the picture described above with the image "Aussie Bloke" links to, you can see they are virtually identical, just displayed differently.
I admit I am an amateur, at best, in this field, so someone please correct me if I am wrong.

You can read about Dr. Grant Gartrell, supposedly "Aussie Bloke", in this PDF. It is unrelated to the topic at hand as near as I can tell, however it does give up a postal address, email address and telephone number where you might reach "Aussie Bloke". From the author of http://www.prophecykeepers.com/:
My read on Aussie Bloke is that he was trying to direct us to the source of the problem, as well as telling us the details of what is going to happen in the near future. I think I have uncovered some evidence pointing to the source... http://www.enterprisemission.com/_articles/05-14-2004/Interplanetary_1.htm
The same author also keeps track of the "Prophetic Threat Analysis Advisory System":

The PTAAS was recently elevated to "SEVERE" from "GUARDED", with the kind reassurance:
We are not joking around friends... if you want to know why all of the major world governments, the major armies atre on alert, and navies of the world are all at sea, and the Federal Reserve Bank are all preparing for a disaster of biblical proportions...
posted by sequential at 3:14 PM on June 3, 2004

How about the fact that it's on friggin' bushcountry.org?

I mean, "Aussie Bloke" is just a low-grade loon--his delusional fantasies are the last thing I'm worried about. What really concerns me is that our C-in-C gives credence to "The Rapture".
posted by LairBob at 3:20 PM on June 3, 2004

Googling a Grant Gartrell in Australia:
cave explorer,
blueberry farmer in Mount Compass, South Aust. (page 32), notice the email address...
I suspect he is an innocent bystander, but he will soon need to go into hiding, further fulfilling the predictions. Poor guy.
posted by mediaddict at 4:40 PM on June 3, 2004

I take back 'innocent bystander'. Googling on Gartrell+meteor is interesting
posted by mediaddict at 4:59 PM on June 3, 2004

Wow, those videos are pretty impressive - considering that if it's a meteor burning at their usual altitude - 80 miles plus - you can see that it is moving extremely fast across the sky by the changing angle of the shadows in the brief flash exposure.

If we could get measurements of the ground objects in the videos, we could use the shadow angle and rate of change thereof to determine estimates of velocity, given educated guesses of altitude. It's a pretty good guess that it was burning out very high up because there don't seem to be any reports of hellacious sonic booms or other sounds associated with the flashes - as there certainly would have been for something that fast in the stratosphere or troposphere. (For instance the Shuttle's characteristic "double sonic boom" - which I've heard myself - happens miles up in the stratosphere, but still thumps your chest solidly at ground level even 50+ ground miles away from its descent track.)

After seeing lots of meteorites and even a satellite burning up in the atmosphere, my take is that sucker was REALLY cookin' - solar-system relative object velocity, 30 miles/sec or better (as opposed to orbital velocity of 5 miles/sec or so).

Doomsday this month? Unlikely... but if it happens I won't need to worry about paying off my car or getting my art career going. Let's see if the skies darken next week... ;)
posted by zoogleplex at 5:34 PM on June 3, 2004

Hmm, reading more links and more links... It does seem odd that what looks like pretty much the entire US Navy is putting to sea all at once. That info seems to be public. If, as the tinfoil hat page says, the rest of the major navies are also heading out to deep water at once, that raises my hackles a bit... end of the world or no.

Won't hurt us to keep on top of the tinfoil reports, will it?
posted by zoogleplex at 5:45 PM on June 3, 2004

You know, and not to go on about it, but this subject seems to have me real tense...

Catastrophic meteor impacts occur very rarely, on the order of hundreds of thousands and millions of years. The odds of having 3 catastrophic meteor impacts within a space of days is ridiculous. 3 separate objects in space would have to be on needle-in-haystack trajectories directly towards the earth. Even if the earth were standing completely still in space, the odds of this must be barely measurable. However, the earth isn't standing still in space. If a matter of days pass between collisions, then that means each of the 3 objects has to coincidentally be on its own collision course. I mean, how likely is that, really?

Even if these 3 bodies were very close to each other in space, the likelihood of more than one of them striking the earth must be almost impossible.

[I must believe, I must believe]
posted by PigAlien at 7:17 PM on June 3, 2004

PigAlien, I don't want to add to your sense of unease, but recall when comet Shoemaker-Levy collided with Jupiter in 1994, there were a series of fragments that collided at separate times.
posted by pardonyou? at 7:59 PM on June 3, 2004

Umm, but Jupiter's a hell of a larger target than Earth, plus it's got one heck of a pull in the local area. And there's also a lot of amateur astronomers looking to be first to catch the next comet or small asteroid - somehow I think that three objects large enough to cause problems would have a hard time slipping through that net unnoticed, and if they WERE seen, to have no remarks on the net would be rather unlikely.

This just doesn't pass the smell test, to me. Could be wrong - but I'll make the house payment anyway.

posted by JB71 at 8:34 PM on June 3, 2004

I think that what AussieBloke believes is that the entire solar system will be passing through a very dense clump of dust cloud and debris - implying that we're heading into a "cosmic gravel storm" which would be filling the whole system with stellar-velocity particles, pebbles, and planetoids. A stellar "shotgun," if you will. Thus giving the implication that there's a whole lotta rocks incoming, and the "big 3" that he mentions are on what he's determined to be dangerously earth-nearing courses. One would assume that there are lots of other such big rocks that might be hitting other planets.

PigAlien, according to astronomers, our early solar system collapsed and formed from a big ol' cloud of gas, dust, and planetoidal bodies. During that formation, catastrophic colllisions were commonplace as random bits of material spiraled around and fell towards the center, and aggregated into larger bodies that became our planets. When the sky is full of rocks whipping around at dozens of kilometers per second, there's going to be a lot of head-butting. Take a good look at a photo of the moon, especially the dark side; according to our most accurate dating, most of those craters date back to the final stages of the moon's original formation some 4 billion years ago. The evidence is plain that there was a whole lotta pounding going on up there. Mercury bears similar cratering of a similar age.

In terms of interstellar dust, as was mentioned above it's known that we're passing through some even now; most such dust is extremely diffuse and is only "dark" or obscuring when you're seeing a whole lot of it from light-years away. Of course, it's conceivable that there could be much denser knots or clumps of matter, such as what they are calling stellar EGGs, or collapsing clouds of denser stuff on their way to forming new solar systems as I describe above. On the remote chance we plowed directly through one of those, it's quite possible we might run into some high-speed shrapnel. But the odds are still low... astronomically low (I love to use that word where it actually means it, hehe).

This site here says our sun's orbital velocity relative to galactic center is 19.4 km/s in the direction l(ii)=51 degrees, b(ii)=23 degrees from "local standard of rest"... I don't know what that is, I wish an astrophysicist or orbit specialist would come in here to help... the 23 degrees number bothers me, because 23 degrees is exactly the amount that the earth's North/South (rotational) axis is inclined to the plane of the Ecliptic; Aussie's rants swear loudly that the danger is coming from "DUE SOUTH" as observed in our sky from the ground. It seems somehow possible that our South Pole is currently pointing directly along the Sun's projected orbit in space?

Of course it's more than equally possible that a mad hoaxer seized on that 23 degrees number to spook me and others. ;) I wish I knew more about how these coordinates are measured.

Any of our Australian Mefites got a good telescope and can make a time exposure pointing due south?

Let me see if I can do a little very crude math... if the sun is moving at 19.4 km/sec (12.2 miles/sec), it covers 1,676,160 km/day (86,400 sec) (1,047,600 miles/day). Counting from tomorrow, that means that if we are entering a cosmic debris field so dense that something is going to hit us in 14 days (June 18), that means the field is currently about 23,466,240 km (14,666,400 miles) away... not very far at all by astronomical measure, WELL within the bounds of the solar system. I don't even think Mars or Venus is that close to the earth at the moment; remember we are roughly 150,000,000 km (93,000,000 miles) from the sun (or 1 A.U.), so this mess is supposedly mighty close already; there are lots of amateur scopes around the southern half of the world that should be able to pick it out with a time exposure. Certainly the plethora of orbital observatories would see the thing.

Of course, this is a very crude bit of thinking, not taking into account any possible "toward us" velocity of the supposed Doom Rocks.

However, a pre-stellar EGG of collapsing gas & dust is quite a bit larger than a solar system like ours, so if something only 20 million km away is about to hit us, our system would already be enveloped by the EGG anyway, which I would think we'd probably notice. Again, there's the question of relative velocities of course.

Anyway, now that I'm putting a little actual number crunching toward this, it seems like a silly hoax.

Well, I'm out of my dilettante astronomical steam, anybody who knows this stuff want to speak up?
posted by zoogleplex at 8:39 PM on June 3, 2004

Even if these 3 bodies were very close to each other in space, the likelihood of more than one of them striking the earth must be almost impossible.

If they're coming near, they'll get pulled by gravity, won't they? BAsically if they make it past Jupiter, which saves us from a lot of space junk through its significant gravitational force, it has a reasonable chance of hitting us. Some astronomers say a jupiter-like planet is necessary for any solar system that is going to sustain life, for just this reason (otherwise the planet would be bombarded constantly & would never reach a state that could support complex forms of life).
posted by mdn at 8:43 PM on June 3, 2004

This is a Hoax.

7th post on this page has lots of info.
posted by Stuart_R at 8:46 PM on June 3, 2004

And here's the "Ha Ha, we fooled you!" message.

"You are all to be commended for your exemplary performance these past several weeks. Your unwitting participation in BLIND SKIES has proven most informative, and quite frankly entertaining to many project members. To say that it got out of hand would be an exercise in understatement. We picked GLP precisely because it was out of the way, off the beaten path of usual internet surfers. It suited our needs perfectly. Unmoderated. Anonymous posting. We couldn´t have asked for a better testbed unless we had built it ourselves.

Rest assured, Elaine is in no way part of this. She is/was as unaware of the true nature of our experiment as the rest of you.

Our initial hypothesis was straightforward enough: Given the barest minimum of verifiable evidence, ordinary citizens of average to above-average intelligence could be duped into wholesale belief in a catastrophe scenario, provided there was ample corroboration from equally ambiguous, non-credible sources. "

From this page
posted by Stuart_R at 8:52 PM on June 3, 2004

Well a little more steam... pardonyou, Shoemaker-Levy 9's fragments were strung out in a long line, but were all following almost exactly (within meters or maybe a kilometer at most) the same orbital track; in astronomical terms they made what a rifleman would call an "extremely tight group." Had Jupiter not been rotating, they all would have hit the same spot within a few kilometers at most - the equivalent of putting 10 rounds thru the first one's impact hole.

JB, I paid my rent and motorcycle and insurance payments too, hehehe. :)

However, since Aussie seems to be talking about something "extrasolar" on its way to whack us, and coming from "due south" or BELOW the plane of the ecliptic, it might not be so easily noticed by comet-hunters. There are statistically fewer 'scopes in the southern hemisphere for one thing (most of the population is north of the Equator), and for another, most comets aren't easy to spot until they get pretty close to the sun - they are very small and don't reflect a great deal of light until they start blowing off their tails. So, I'm guessing that most of them are discovered within a relatively narrow swath of sky above and below the Ecliptic as they near the sun - which means that comet hunters may not be pointing their scopes directly south. There's a lot of sky to survey, and you can only time-expose a few arc-seconds at a time.

It still doesn't pass my smell test. But, I have my "California Earthquake/Disaster/Terrorist Attack Preparedness Supplies" all laid aside anyway, so I'm not too worried. :)
posted by zoogleplex at 9:02 PM on June 3, 2004

Umm, I hate to tell you guys this, but as I was checking up on Niburu, I found this site.

Apparently, the government, under direction by the Queen of England, is digging tunnels under the world with giant nuclear borers, and that the new world order HQ will be located under the Denver airport, where we will be under the control of the reptilian aliens (to which species the Georges Bush belong). A man that went to the future in the Philadelphia Experiment has told us so but we refuse to listen. But that's probably because of the mind control. Oh, and the Rapture actually refers to the upcoming "Alien Thanksgiving", where they will eat many human children, as they are untainted.

Worry all you want about meteors, I'm a little more concerned about what the Queen has in store for all of us.
posted by loquax at 9:52 PM on June 3, 2004

Well, Captain Archer beat the crap out of the reptilians last week in the future, so the past (now) is saved!

Besides, they didn't win in "V" either.

posted by zoogleplex at 10:03 PM on June 3, 2004

Yay! A hoax! I can go to bed now!

Ok, I haven't been up late worrying... I've just been to see the new Harry Potter and it ROCKS!

No, I'm not a teenager, do I sound like one?

Loved it!

And thank you for the sweet goodnight message, Stuart_R. Even though I knew it must be bogus, these end of the world scenarios always bug me for some frustrating reason, despite my best attempts to dismiss them. (Great fear of death and nothingness, I suppose.)
posted by PigAlien at 12:02 AM on June 4, 2004

It's not the meteors you have to worry about, its the blindness and the triffids that'll get you...
posted by ewkpates at 8:24 AM on June 4, 2004

Stuart_R (and PigAlien) - if you read further, it turns out that the post announcing the hoax was, in fact, a hoax...
posted by jalexei at 8:34 AM on June 4, 2004

It's too early for Third Impact. We haven't even built any giant robots yet.
posted by darukaru at 10:04 AM on June 4, 2004

Speak for yourself, daru. I've got one.... MUAHAHHAHHA!!!
posted by zoogleplex at 11:56 AM on June 4, 2004

zoogleplex -

Guess there's only one amateur astronomer in Australia, then. Or for that matter, south of the equator. (grin) And aren't we lucky he 'found' these things heading right toward us?

posted by JB71 at 12:39 PM on June 4, 2004

Worry all you want about meteors, I'm a little more concerned about what the Queen has in store for all of us.

I am the Lizard Queen!
Now, all you puny humans, bring me chocolate...or DIE!
posted by dejah420 at 1:04 PM on June 4, 2004

Hoax, hoax or not hoax, I don't believe it. It's mathematically impossible to predict that something is going to impact the earth without specifying a time. You can't have one without the other. If the speed of the earth were variable or the speed of the meteors were variable then perhaps you could give a time-frame for possible impact, but if those numbers aren't variable then you can predict an exact impact. Unless you don't know the exact numbers, in which case you also can't predict anything more than a possible impact. Case closed :) Man didn't get two rovers to the planet mars by playing guessing games. We are very accurately able to predict the movement of bodies in space with enough observational data. If we don't have enough observational data to predict a bodies movement through space, we also can't predict whether or not a body will collide with something or not because that would mean possessing data that we don't have.
posted by PigAlien at 2:39 PM on June 4, 2004

a body's movement through space...
posted by PigAlien at 2:40 PM on June 4, 2004

Oh, I don't believe this either - just wanted to point out the "fun" various participants were having with hoaxing the hoaxers. As if you'd need some sort of study to prove that people who hang out at tin-foil sites are gullible...

(and having read through far too much of the fine links here, I can say that the object even now winging it's way toward the penguins is apparently speeding up/slowing down as it encounters gravity from the various heavenly bodies it's passing. At least that what the "experts" are telling me.)
posted by jalexei at 3:18 PM on June 4, 2004

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