Project Archetype.
UAPs. The Psychological Factor

What's your opinion? How did they affect your mind?

ARCHETYPE: "(in Jungian theory) a primitive mental image inherited from the earliest human ancestors, and supposed to be present in the collective unconscious". Project Archetype arises because we cannot dismiss the psychological aspect of UAPs and the search for intelligence beyond Earth. Yes, the technological part of this topic is very interesting, but knowing how our mind interacts, copes and responds to it could be even more. Social Sciences represent a key domain in this endeavor. UAP stands for unidentified aerial phenomenon or "anomalous phenomena", as noted in the title of the National Aviation Reporting Center on Anomalous Phenomena (NARCAP). "Anomalous aerial vehicle" (AAV) or "unidentified aerial system" (UAS) are also sometimes used in a military aviation context to describe unidentified targets. The Pentagon has confirmed as authentic a series of previously known videos of UAPs captured by F18 FLIR (infrared) cameras at different occasions and locations. During a long time, these videos generated a controversy because the objects in the videos apparently maneuver at impossible speed and G forces.  After an official report made public a few months ago, questions populate the social networks, press and media in general, including the scientific community. Recent Project Galileo rapidly becoming the reference into this new scientific interest in UAPs but also NASA has recently showed some interest on this topic. Why is people fascinated about this topic? How does our mind cope and handle this? What impact these UAP events, subsequent official reports, press articles, media debate, etc. may have in both scientific community  and general population? Is there a psychological component in the UAP phenomena?


To assess the psychological impact, perception and impressions of UAPs in the population and scientific community we request your kind collaboration to participate in this anonymous survey. The data collected will be kept and will be processed for research purposes within the framework of the Project Archetype to evaluate the impact, impressions and scope of UAP psychological implications. By participating in the survey, you consent to the processing of that data by the participating and research team of this project. In no case will data other than that requested be saved by researchers, nor will data be intended to identify participants, such as online identifiers, device identifiers, or fingerprints, be collected by project members. This is a voluntary survey. You must be 18 or older to participate. Please note that this survey can only be done ONCE and at ONCE, NO SAVE to finish later option is available. The survey will take around 15 minutes of your time. If you have any questions you can send an email to: Coordinator of the study: Gabriel G. De la Torre, PhD Neuropsychology and Experimental Psychology Lab University of Cadiz. Spain


Would you like to participate?


Artificial Intelligence and SETI

Did an AI Computer Vision model help to discover something on Ceres?

Today, we live in the midst of a surge in the use of artificial intelligence in many scientific and technological applications, including the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI). However, human perception and decision-making is still the last part of the chain in any data analysis or interpretation of results or outcomes. One of the potential applications of artificial intelligence is not only to assist in big data analysis but to help to discern possible artificiality or oddities in patterns of either radio signals, megastructures or techno-signatures in general. In this study, we review the comparative results of an experiment based on geometric patterns reconnaissance and a perception task, performed by 163 human volunteers and an artificial intelligence convolutional neural network (CNN) computer vision model. To test the model, we used an image of the famous bright spots on the Occator crater on Ceres. We wanted to investigate how the search for techno-signatures or oddities might be influenced by our cognitive skills and consciousness, and whether artificial intelligence could help or not in this task. This article also discusses how unintentional human cognitive bias might affect the search for extraterrestrial intelligence and techno-signatures compared with artificial intelligence models, and how such artificial intelligence models might perform in this type of task. We discuss how searching for unexpected, irregular features might prevent us from detecting other nearside or in-plain-sight rare and unexpected signs. The results strikingly showed that a CNN trained to detect triangles and squares scored positive hits on these two geometric shapes as some humans did.


The Cosmic Gorilla Effect

SETI is mediated by our cognitive and physiological nature.

The Cosmic Gorilla effect refers to a cognitive (perceptual/ attentional event) inspired by the original experiment carried out by the researchers Christopher Chabris and Daniel Simons in the 90s (Simons & Chabris, 1999) to show the inattention blindness of the human being. In the Chabris and Simons experiment, a boy in a gorilla costume could walk in front of a scene, gesticulating, while the observers were busy in something else (counting the ball passes of players in white shirts), and more than half did not notice the boy in the gorilla costume. The cosmic gorilla effect represents this same effect in relation to SETI (Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence). We are so focused trying to find certain type of signals of Extraterrestrial (ET) origin that we might miss the "gorilla" in the room, meaning other type of signs of ET presence. According to the neuropsychologist Dr. De la Torre from University of Cadiz in Spain, who coined the term "the cosmic gorilla effect" (De la Torre & Garcia, 2018), this can be due to 3 possible factors: 1) Due to limitations of our physiology and consciousness development, 2) because of a wrong technological approach (e.g. using mainly radio signal detection in detriment of other types of signals and 3) intentional avoidance by ET. The original cosmic gorilla effect experiment consisted of a task where people had to distinguish aerial photographs with artificial structures (buildings, roads, etc.) from others with natural elements (mountains, rivers, etc.). In one of the images, a tiny character disguised as a gorilla was inserted to see if the participants noticed it. Again more than a half of the participants did not notice the gorilla.

This experiment has potential serious implications for SETI and indirectly for other astronomical scientific tasks since our own neurophysiology, mind and consciousness may be mediating and conditioning the task itself and the results due to its nature and limitations. Another explanation according to the cosmic gorilla effect is that ET may be some form of dark matter, unknown form of life or using other dimensions to enter and leave this reality at will(De la Torre & Garcia, 2018). The article about the cosmic gorilla effect, published in Acta Astronautica in 2018 produced a big impact and controversy in the SETI community and worldwide media (see references). The article reached a 382 score in altmetric placing it within the top 5% of all research output ever scored by this tool. The new search for techno-signatures SETI (Wright, 2019)approach including tasks performed with the help of artificial intelligence (AI) may offer new insights away from previous described limitations or not. AI may bring us to a new reality we are not ready to apprehend or understand and AI may also commit the same errors and present the same bias humans do (De la Torre, 2020)

The paper can be read here: