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Creature Suit Analysis - Part 9 - A Study of Probability


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Creature Suit Analysis Part 9

A Study in Probability, as applied to the PG Film

When you have a mystery, a contridiction, an unresolved controversy, and you try to resolve the matter to some reliable conclusion, ultimately, the facts should prevail in the resolution. But those investigating the matter need some direction in how to allocate the investigation resources, as well as some reasoning of what is probable or improbable to guide or determine the direction to the investigation.

In a criminal investigation, for example, you look for motive, means, and opportunity in deciding if a suspect is worth further investigation. This requires some value judgment based on probability, and your initial investigative resources will be allocated toward those probable suspects, simply because one among those probable suspects is in fact the likely perpitrator of the crime. You go to the unlikely suspects when the usual suspects investigations have been exhausted with no result.

Well, with the PG Film, we have a mystery, a filmed event that has endured for 40 years without conclusive resolution, and much heated debate as to the issue of whether the figure on the film is a real species of unknown primate, or a human wearing some kind of costume or fur suit, simply pretending to be an unknown species of primate.

So far, I have contributed some notes on the specifics of how such fur costumes are designed, built, worn and cared for during filmmaking events, to hopefully clear up some of the misconceptions that abound, and to hopefully give one and all a better perspective on what can and cannot be done by this suit technology (particularly of the time).

But as I personally continue to study the issue and try to arrive at a conclusion in my own mind, I approach this issue not just from a factual basis of what the technology of the time could do, or how, but on the issue of probability, the likleyhood something was done. And in this analysis, I see a pattern emerging which I feel has sufficient merit to warrent further investigation.

The Deductive Method

The methodology I have used is a deductive reasoning that draws from a legal principle called "the Presumption of Regularity", as well as from a well known philospohical reasoning called Occam's Razor.

The "Presumption of Regularity" is a weighted system of making value judgments, whereby the usual method or process is expected to yield the usual result. If you put a document letter in an actual US Mail letter collection box, properly addressed and with correct postage, you may usually presume it will reach the intended recipiant. If a medical doctor treats you, and the doctor is properly licensed to practice, the presumption is you will have received correct or proper treatment. If you dispute either result, without proof, the presumption of regularity will decide the issue in favor of the person mailing the letter the regular way, or the doctor treating you the regular way.

In general, we may look at any human endeavor and see certain practices and conditions which are sufficiently common, widespread and usual that we may presume those practices are the standard or expected practices, and so to argue for anything different may require an explanation, justification, or rational for that different event to happen.

Using Occam's Razor (generally paraphrased to say "The simplest solution is the most likely"), we may apply this deductive reasoning to problem solving if we give weight or probability to the alternatives, in terms of the complication of each alternative. And here, it appears to me, the Presumption of Regularity can be applied to that issue of probable weight or likelyhood. One way of doing something which is common, regular or industry standard, for example, is a simpler solution than an uncommon event that deviates from or contridicts industry standard or conventional practice. For the uncommon event, you must explain the conditions that caused the diviation from industry standard practice. You must add a "condition", which by Ockham's Razor, makes that event more complicated and less likely.

In computer terminology and usage, for example, if you are installing a new software, you may choose to accept the "default" install, with one click, or you can choose "custom", which will prompt you to set more conditions or settings to accomplish. The presumption of regularity is that most users will choose the "default" setting, and it is the simplest process with the least conditions (the least clicks and the least decisions on the part of the person doing this). Occam's Razor will verify that of any given group of people installing the software, the simplest solution (a default install) is most likely to be done because it has the least conditions, the least hassle.

Creating a "creature suit" worn by a human actor or mime for the purpose of pretending to be something other than a human, to be filmed, is an established industry, and it does have its standards and common practices. These standards and common practices have evolved over time for convenience, ease of fabrication, more likely success in the finished appearance, more likely success in the performance of the human inside, and more likely what the persons paying for the suit want.

So within this industry of "creature suits" (the makeup special effects & prosthetics profession, more formally described), there are well established industry standards and practices more common and more professional in that they tend to yield more satisfactory results, and demonstrate a higher level of artistry to attain. There are presumptions of regularity, in the design, fabrication, and filming use of these suits, which we can reference in the investigation of the PG Film, and which may give weight to any investigation of a human dressed in a suit as being the figure in the PG film.

The Odds.

Assigning any numeric weight or ratio (the odds, in gambling) for a usual or probable outcome is obviously conjectural at best. Anyone can assign any odds they choose. So any discussion of odds or probability as specified by a numeric ratio is just an illustrative concept, not a conclusion. I use this herein simply to show how a sequence of events, each with some ratio of probability, becomes less probable as more and more conditions need to be met.

So, for example, let us say, in my list below, for one item, the usual industry practice is twice as likely to occur as an unusual or different practice, so the odds of the unusual occuring are half as likely as the usual occuring (odds of 1:2).

But now add a second occurance or specification and say it also has a 1:2 likelyhood of the irregular occuring. Then the likelyhood of both irregular things occuring in this one situation is now 1:4.

Adding a third condition brings the likelyhood of all three unusual conditions being satisfied at 1:8.

So while the exact numbers themselves are conjectural, we can see a pattern of decreasing likelyhood as the number of condition of unusual occurance add up. I've used the 1:2 odds (unusual to usual) just to illustrate how the improbabilities pile up as the list gets longer. In most cases, the odds of the unusual are actually even less likely, but we will use the conservative 1:2 as a cautious illustrative value.

The Individual Circumstances.

Now we will examine the specific circumstances individually, as to what is common, industry standard, or what has the presumption of regularity, and what may be the exception to the rule, the difference or uncommon specification that will not usually occur and needs explanation or ratiionalization.

1. A Creature suit tends to be made genderless (as defined as not showing any secondary sexual characteristics or genital anatomy) unless specifically dictated by some strong plot specific necessity.

The extreme examples are such Hollywood classic creatures as "The Creature From The Black Lagoon", a reptilian/fish hybred creature, shown clearly head to toe without any fur to hide anything, and emphatically not possessing any genitalia or excretory organs. A fur covered creature has the additional advantage of the fur actually obscurring any potential sexual/excretory anatomy, so a fur suit may have an even higher degree of realism and still be gender neutral. Because gender-neutral creatures have been made so commonly and nobody has made any strong objection or criticism of such, and because a fur creature has an excellent cover for any genitalia, the genderless form is particularly appealling as the norm.

So if you order a fur suit of a "creature", chances are the question "Boy or girl" never comes up. "Unspecified" is the default option.

And creature suits are for movies kids can go to (or they were in the 50's 60's and 70's) so you'd better not put anything on a suit you wouldn't want kids to see. So the idea of a fur suit with fluid, jiggling humanlike breasts (or any indication of male genitalia) is almost unheard of in the creature business of the 50's to the 70's. I was even asked in 1980 to put male genitalia on the Swamp Thing suit, and upon inspection of the sculpture by director and producers, the organ was removed because it may have pushed their anticipated film rating from PG to "X", and they were under contract to deliver a PG rating for US audiences. 1967 times were even more conservative on this issue.

So a genderless creature look is the expectation, the norn, the presumption. And a genderless suit would have sufficed for the filming if it was a hoax, the intent to show a live creature, not specifically a live female of the species. Aquiring an existant suit would have, in all probability, been a genderless one. Aquiring a second hand suit so designed as to being conspicuously "female" would have had some prior industry usage, and thus some chance of being recognized as an industry created suit. So the argument of the figure in the PG film as being some type of industry used suit which was sold off second hand after its industry use, is improbable.

A custom ordered creature suit with a specific anatomy including secondary sexual characteristics, detailed quite realistically, requires a justification, a specified reason to stray from the norm, the usual, the default. Such a suit would also have piqued the interest, been unforgettable, to any industry person who saw it, because such gender obvious suits were so rare. So a custom fabrication order, done for a "secret" filming and striving to not draw attention to the custom order, would have stayed less noticable, more secretative, if it were the default, gender neutral.

Odds for a suit with gender characteristics 1:2 (reminder here: actual probability would likely be even less, but 1:2 is used as a conservative probability for illustrative purposes)

2. A creature suit tends to be tailored to a generic body unless a person with a specialized body is contractually locked into the commitment to wear the suit.

There are two concerns here. One is the practical probability of substituting the intended suit wearer with another person if the intended person is injured or otherwise unable to continue. The second consideration is the vulnerability of the producers to the prospect the mime (suit wearer) may fake illness or injury while renegotiating for more money, since the suit wearer, being of unusual physique, is not easily replacable.

As an example, in 1988, I was working for a theme park robotics company and a client wanted a stroller costume for a human to wear, along with the robotics for the same alien figure for a theme park dark ride. In my planning with the client, they wanted a little person (formerly referred to as a dwarf or midget) to wear the costume, and they found many available people who were 3' 10" tall. But they found only one person who was 3' 2" tall. The design would clearly have been better with the 3' 2" tall person, but they chose to go with the 3' 10" specification, because of the exact concerns above. By this choice, they had more people available in case the mime had to be replaced due to injury, and more options to replace if a mime wanted to hold out for more money.

So the conventional business wisdom was go with a design where substitutions of the human inside are easier, making the intended venture less dependent on a specific person for success.

In reference to the PG Film, I did a study of how a human mime might fit into the anatomical proportions of the figure in the film (Thread titled "Creature Suit Analysis Part 6 - Comparative Anatomy"). My conclusion was that a human with an armspan about equal to the person's height could not fit the hands correctly, and that a person of unusual proportions, with armspan at least 112-115% of body height was necessary.

As others contributing to the thread commented, finding humans with that proportion was possible, but uncommon as compared to the general population. For reference, they also referred to armspan as "wingspan".

If you consider that a person hypothetically making a suit to fake the PG film is under no design constraint to match any specific anatomy of a known animal, design issues such as exact arm length are at the designer's discretion. And that discretion favors the presumption of regularity, that you are more likely to have a successful production if you design to the more common physique of the human inside, so you are capable of substituting the mime with another human if required by unexpected circumstances to do so.

So a suit designed to fit a person with normal proportions of height to armspan ratio of 1:1 would be the presumption, if there is no contract for a mime of irregular proportions to be reliably committed to the venture.

Odds of both above (gender specified suit and uncommon physique of actor) occuring 1:4

3. A creature suit tends to be designed with a simple and effective way to seperate the head from the body, for both dressing/undresing and for giving the mime a break (head off) between filming segments. Similarly, the human body, with it's erect head on a column-like neck, is condusive to a design with a straight neck split for a neck seam or blend into the body. So a straight neck seam design has all presumption of regularity.

The PG Film figure has a massive humped neck, making the conventional neck seam impossible, and posing specific design problems on the two design options that remain (as detailed in the Creature Suit Analysis - Part 7 Notes). So this design of the neck, the humped back, and the low forward head, is an unusual or challenging design.

Odds of all above unusual 1:8

4. In general, creature suits are designed to be seem most, and to look best when viewed from the front. All conventional industry usage expects the suit to look good "coming" instead of "going", best on the front, moreso than the back, if they can't have perfection all around. But any suit has compromises in seams, closures, and motion restrictions that may need to be cheated. One ambitious solution is to build a front-perfect suit, and a back-perfect one if one suit cannot do it all.

If only one suit was made at the time, all presumption of regularity would be that it was designed as a front-perfect suit, and any suit acquired as an industry relic or second hand cast off would almost certainly have been a front perfect suit. The PG Film figure, if a suit, was a back-perfect design, because the entire back, neck, and head blend is flawless.

Odds of all above unusual 1:16

5. Partially a derivitive of #4 above, but seperate because of additional functional advantages, a suit traditionally has a zipper/closure up the back, for ease of dressing as well as yielding a better appearance in the front.

Simply put, a back zipper provides the easiest way for a person to dress into and out of a suit, so any industry suit sold second hand to others would almost assuredly have been a back zipper suit. To custom design a suit without a back zipper greatly compounds both the design and especially the dressing of the human into and out of it. If it were done, most likely it was for a special purpose, and would have more likely been retained in case of future need.

If custom ordered that way (no back zipper), it would have more costly, as well as more likely needing some wardrobe assistants to go with it for filming.

Odds of all above unusual 1:32

6. Creature suits that are fur covered tend to be designed with consistant fur (even color, density and length). It's an odd thing about creature creations, especially with hair or fur. The usual challenge is to get everything to smoothly blend together, so both the director and producers approving an effort, and the audience watching the film, will tend to criticize a fur suit if the hair looks irregular for no explained or justified reason.

If you have multiple fur characters and want to distinguish between them, then variations and irregularities are believable. If you have some scene showing how fur is damaged or otherwise messed up, then you can show it irregular after that exposition of events. Or if you are matching a specific real animal, and may use the real animal filmed as part of the footage, and the suit must match that film, every irregularity in the real animal's fur must be perfectly matched.

But absent any of those three conditions, fur is expected to be smooth, consistant in color and density. Irregularities are perceived as poor workmanship of the fabricator.

The PG Film shows many irregularities of the fur, but has none of the known or usual justifications for someone deliberately doing so. So the irregularities are unusual.

Odds of all above unusual 1:64

7. A raised neck hackle is the worst type of grooming effect one can maintain.

My notes in Part 8 of the Creature Suit Analysis elaborate on this, but for a suit, brushing the neck hair down smooth would be the usual practice, to be expected. The raised neck hackle is the hardest effect to achieve and sustain, as well as the one most likely to be messed up by the neck turn.

So this fur styling, for a suit, is highly unusual.

Odds of all above unusual 1:128

8. Hollywood suit makers tend to go with a suit onto the filming situation, to finish the job and make sure their work is represented in the best way.

There are several potential reasons for this. The job really isn't done until you film the suit, and it is not professional to do the fabrication as professionally as possible and then allow amateurs to take it to the filming, and perhaps put it together wrong, embarrassing the professional who made it. The usual practice is for a profesional who builds something to take it to the filming, or allow a trusted colleague to take it to the filming. It is highly unusual for a professional to make something and allow unknown amateurs to "finish the job" by taking it to the filming.

Further, a professional may be concerned with potential misuse by amateurs, and some liability reflecting back on the maker for that misuse. Imagine, as an example, somebody wants to have their human in the suit run around in the woods, to look like a real creature while they film, and a nearby hunter shoots the suited man, killing him. The family of the dead actor could conceivably sue not only the hunter and the stupid filmmakers who did nothing to protect the actor by making the filming event more obvious to uninvited onlookers, but they might sue the suit maker as well, as a contributor to the negligence.

Or some fools could wear the suit and just try to scare people driving along a forest highway, for fun, and one driver, so scared, accidentally crashes the car, resulting in human fatality. Again, the investigation into this act of possible negligent homicide may cause the suit maker to also be investigated for culpability in negligently giving such to amateurs.

While these hypotheticals may seem remote, the general presumption of regularity is that the people who make creature suits go with them to the filming, to insure first that the performance is done well, and second, as a business and legal precaution, to insure the suit is not misused by amateurs in any manner than may result in tragedy (and liability).

So the usual practice is for the team making the suit to take it to filming, and it's unusual for a suit to be handed off to amateurs for their own use as they choose, in perhaps amateurish or unsafe ways. But all descriptions of the PG film event as a suit exclude any participation of the suit makers during filming. This would be unusual.

Odds of all above unusual 1:256

9. Staging a film using a person in a suit usually requires creating a setting condusive to the limitations of the mime, thus assuring their performance will be more successful, despite the hindrances the suit itself causes. Control of terrain the person walks on is one such consideration.

We know suits may limit a person's time wearing it, may limit the person's ability to walk, may limit the person's vision, and may limit the person's ability to even safely break their fall if they trip. Working the suit in a controlled environment is the usual manner or method. Having support people close to the suited person is usual and wise. Having the person travel on any natural outdoor terrain usually involves walking the person through the path, "blocking the scene", and even "preparing the ground" by walking through it first for a safety check, removing anything the suited person might bump into, trip over, slip on, or otherwise have a problem with. All of which leaves a lot of footprints.

This is simply good professionalism, the usual way.

Putting a person into a suit and having them go into natural terrain without preparation and extensive safety review by both the mime and helpers, is highly unusual, more likely to result in accidents the filmmakers would be liable for, or accidents that ruin the filmed performance.

The PG Film sequence appears to have been filmed in an outdoor setting not very condusive to the safety of a mime wearing a suit, and reports of the scene do not suggest a lot of film personal footprints. This includes the end sequence footage, with the figure apparently stepping over some branches and going into more dense wwooded hill terrain, an unusual and potentially unsafe action for a person in a suit, unless extensive practice in the terrain was done.

And casts of footprints were made subsequently to the filming by people not attributed as being part of the hoax. This "blocking of a scene", and the number of times the suited actor walks through the scene to familiarize himself with the terrain, would result in an extensive number of footprints needing to be erased, before a final single set of prints were made to match the walking seen on film. Thus finding only one set of footprints would be unusual, in any location where a suited human was used.

Odds of all above unusual 1:512

10. Availability of stretch fur - The use of a standard flexing but non-elastic type artificial fur, or real skins or hides, to produce a suit would result in the fur bending and buckling in unnatural ways, cloth-like ways rather that living anatomy ways. The film does not give any evidence of such. Stretch fur introduced in the 80's can stretch and compress more realistically, but may not have existed then. One contributor to the forum has offered testimony that the fabric industry had technical capability to make such stretch fur, while the one known current manufacturer today acknowledges they did not make it until the 80's. So while there is a theoretical argument that such could exist in the late 60's, there is no proof as yet that any such stretch fur actually did exist at the time, and so the default or usual assumption must go to the fur proven to exist as a common product, known to have been used at the time for creature suits. A stretch fabric not proven to have existed then, with specified size, cost, and manufacturer, must be presumed the unusual.

Odds of all above unusual 1: 1024

11. The Look Back sequence would be one of the hardest gestures to accomplish with the rigid furcloth of the time. Better to just show the figure more facing camera (the whole body toward camera) and then let the performer turn and walk away.

If a sequence is prepared , blocked or scripted, and you have a suit that has a rigid furcloth neck not very condusive to a strong head turn, and such a turn is likely to reveal flaws that would increase the prospect of discovering the film is hoaxed, the usual way is to plan the actions to the limitations of the suit. So you can plan to come upon this creature, as it faces toward camera, and then it turns the full body to walk away, no look back.

This would be a more usual blocking of the scene, a script of action the suit is more likely to do without revealing any suit flaws. The look back, in this sense, is a highly unusual action for a suit of the time, if you couldn't stop the camera and let a grooming assistant step in and brush out the fur for the walk away part of the sequence.

Odds of all above unusual 1:2048

12. Production convenience usually dictates that filmings in the wilderness (like forests) will be cheated to roadside locations whenever possible, to insure the logistics of getting to the site are not complicating the effort.

Going far into the wilderness to film anything is a challenge, and any person who's filmed locations knows a roadside station for the cars, trucks, equipment, can park is far better than carrying lots of equipment and crew people miles into the woods.

So if you need to fake seeing a furry creature in the woods, why not film it near a forest highway, maybe a 1/4 mile in from the road? It's plausable to see such a creature not that far from a highway.

If you are going to choose a location to fake a sighting and film a person in a suit, why go far into the forests, where the simplest problem becomes a potential for ruining the venture, because support is so far away?

The usual is to film closer to street or road access, and just go deep enough into the woods to look right. The unusual is to go far into the woods, far away from support, supplies, assistance and convenience.

Odds of all above unusual 1:4096

13. Success begets sequels.

A hoax is a business, with a plan and a goal usually. If it succeeds, the conventional business wisdom is that you continue with what succeeded. You have a suit that fooled Hollywood and the scientific community, and so why not film it again? Maybe wait awhile, bring along some unsuspecting fellow researchers, go a week or so without any luck seeing anything, and then, just when you're all about to give up, "WOW, there it is again". You hoax a second sighting, maybe from across a revene, so nobody from your group can easily give chase. and you now have more eyewitnesses who would truthfully say what they saw seemed real.

Then your second set of footage is worth even more than the first, and your business continues to profit.

In the film business, any film regardless of what the original intention was, if successful, tends to spawn a sequel. The sense of greed, to exploit a successful film or event, is the usual practice. To never attempt to repeat a successful film or event, when you have all the necessary tools (like a suit that fooled everybody before) is unusual.

If the person doing this is ill and needs money for medical care, it's highly unusual to not follow one success with another attempt.

Odds of all above unusual 1:8192

So I look at this sequence of events, as compared to descriptions of how the supposed hoax was pulled off, and by whom, and I compare the stories to the above list of probabilities as I know from industry experience, and I see an ever increasingly improbable prospect the filmed figure was the product of a planned hoax. I see absolutey no credibility for the common or most prevelant description of how the supposed hoax was accomplished.

The most generous odds I can give for all the above unusual things happening is less than 1 in 8000. If the individual odds of any specific item are less than 1:2 (and many of the specific considerations reasonably should be even less likely than 1:2), the odds of all the above occuring can easily go upward to more like 1 in 20,000, or even higher odds against the sequence happening.

A skeptic may say the odds of winning the lottery are less, yet people do. But that is because the number of people buying tickets is greater than the odds any one person might win, so probability favors someone winning. But there aren't 8000 people trying to get suits to film hoaxes, so any lottery comparison is not valid.

Each person investigating this film may list their own specific items of circumstance and the usual and unusual variations, but the generalized concept stands as logical. The more unusual circumstances you list, the less the chances or probability are that such a list of events occured together in one filming.

I've posted this one day before my scheduled interview on "Let's Talk Bigfoot" (Wed. Feb. 13) so if we do discuss this, you will have had some opportunity to read through it first, and know better what's being discussed.

Bill Munns

Reference to Occam's Razor, from Winkpedia

Occam's razor (sometimes spelled Ockham's razor) is a principle attributed to the 14th-century English logician and Franciscan friar William of Ockham. The principle states that the explanation of any phenomenon should make as few assumptions as possible, eliminating those that make no difference in the observable predictions of the explanatory hypothesis or theory. The principle is often expressed in Latin as the lex parsimoniae ("law of parsimony" or "law of succinctness"): "entia non sunt multiplicanda praeter necessitatem", or "entities should not be multiplied beyond necessity".

This is often paraphrased as "All other things being equal, the simplest solution is the best." In other words, when multiple competing theories are equal in other respects, the principle recommends selecting the theory that introduces the fewest assumptions and postulates the fewest entities. It is in this sense that Occam's razor is usually understood.

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Very detailed listing of odds. I'd tend to say that the 1/20,000 number points TOWARDS it being a hoax. When you consider the odds of the other option.

What are the odds that Roger Patterson filmed a living, breathing, unclassified, bipedal, female, hairy creature?

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Guest Remember November

Bill, if the film subject is indeed a mime in a suit, it makes perfect sense that they would make several practice runs through the terrain. Would it be safe to assume then that Patterson filmed several takes of this practice run to familiarize himself with the film sequence? If this is the case, there should be more than one Patterson Gimlin film right?

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Drew:

I'm not sure how exactly to calculate odds Patty is real, but obviously the odds of filming any true cryptid is small, considering how many people are trying with no result.

Remember November:

I can't speak of the mentality of a hoaxer. Some are methodical and meticulously plan everything, and if such resulted in the PG film, yes, there would have been many tries, takes and rehursals.

But some hoaxers are daredevils who just set up the starting marks and "go for it", one take, one try.

So I think any speculation of more Patterson film showing other tries or takes can be argued either way and so I wouldn't favor either option.

:)

Bill

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Guest rolando

This Creature Suit Analysis Series that you have put together is a very fine piece of work. I hope that it can be used in the future to tempt some wealthy idividuals or research foundations to pursue the verification of the film subject as a real living creature and not a man in a suit. This study of probability gives a very good perspective on why the validity of the film subject as a real creature should be considered as the most likely scenario.

For me, I have learned simply to trust my senses. And what I see on the film is clearly not a man in a suit. For most others, the idea that a real live sasquatch was actualy caught on film is too radical to consider, no matter how real it looks. Your series goes a long way towards giving a rational and methodical way of coaxing people to simply believe what their senses are telling them anyway.

Thanks for the great work!

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bipedalist
BFF Patron
Drew:

I'm not sure how exactly to calculate odds Patty is real, but obviously the odds of filming any true cryptid is small, considering how many people are trying with no result.

Remember November:

I can't speak of the mentality of a hoaxer. Some are methodical and meticulously plan everything, and if such resulted in the PG film, yes, there would have been many tries, takes and rehursals.

But some hoaxers are daredevils who just set up the starting marks and "go for it", one take, one try.

So I think any speculation of more Patterson film showing other tries or takes can be argued either way and so I wouldn't favor either option.

:)

Bill

Great work, looking forward to tomorrow nights interview, good luck

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Bipedalist:

In your quotes at the bottom of your post, I suppose we should give all credit for that last quote to Winkpedia and their article on Occam's Razor. So maybe you should re-write the attribute a bit to reflect more the article as the thought behind the quote, and me (if mentioned at all) as merely a messenger bringing it to others' attention through my article.

I don't mind taking credit for what i really do think through and figure out, but I like to see others properly credited as well for their contributions.

:)

Bill

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bipedalist
BFF Patron
Bipedalist:

In your quotes at the bottom of your post, I suppose we should give all credit for that last quote to Winkpedia and their article on Occam's Razor. So maybe you should re-write the attribute a bit to reflect more the article as the thought behind the quote, and me (if mentioned at all) as merely a messenger bringing it to others' attention through my article.

I don't mind taking credit for what i really do think through and figure out, but I like to see others properly credited as well for their contributions.

:)

Bill

AOK done, whats the difference between Wikipedia and Winkpedia, and yes you can joke about it if you want

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Bipedalist:

The difference is in my lousy spelling.

:)

Bill

Thanks for the quote adjustment.

Edited by Bill
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bipedalist
BFF Patron
Bipedalist:

The difference is in my lousy spelling.

:thumbsup:

Bill

Thanks for the quote adjustment.

:)

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Rolando:

Apologies for not responding to your comment earlier.

It would be very nice if this note series did indeed inspire some funding for studies to conclusively determine a lot of the issues I've mentioned, because everyone would benefit by such conclusions.

The intuitive sense you speak of is of tremendous value when we try to sort out mysterious things, and resolve controversies, because out initial reactions and intuitive responses can often be very clear and correct. The simple truth is that absolute deductive reasoning (and the scientific method) do actually sometimes fail us, because the methods cannot sometimes deal with a problem where an element of faith or presumption "connects the dots" so to speak, where a more analytical process might go round in circles trying to connect every dot to every other and never get finished.

It's like the occasional story we read in the papers of a person who goes into the Social Security Offices and tries to prove he/she is alive, when a system glitch has declared them dead. It's nearly imposible for them to prove they are who they say they are, by the contrived rules the agency uses. Similarly, some things we know are real, science still seems incapable of accepting, like accupuncture. The medical community still seems to be incapable of accepting the reality of it.

So there are times when intuitive faith is all we have to guide us.

Thanks for your kind words about my efforts.

Bill

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Guest Texas Bigfoot
Very detailed listing of odds. I'd tend to say that the 1/20,000 number points TOWARDS it being a hoax. When you consider the odds of the other option.

What are the odds that Roger Patterson filmed a living, breathing, unclassified, bipedal, female, hairy creature?

Why automatically assume it could not be an animal. It's not like unknown animals that were known through myth and story haven't been proven real before. It has happened, and as unlikely as it may be, it can and will happen again. Maybe not with BF, but it will happen again.

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Drew:

I'm not sure how exactly to calculate odds Patty is real, but obviously the odds of filming any true cryptid is small, considering how many people are trying with no result.

Right, I agree, I thought about trying to come up with some numbers, but then there would be a huge argument over how I arrived at those odds, and that's not what I want to do, it's your thread so feel free to if you have the urge.

Also, in addition to the people trying with no result, consider the number of people who AREN'T trying to accidentally capture one on a game cam, or Hit one with their car.

Also, consider that those that ARE trying, do not have access to the equipment, and funding that people looking for tigers, for instance, have access to.

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Guest Sam Farris
What are the odds that Roger Patterson filmed a living, breathing, unclassified, bipedal, female, hairy creature?

One in a million (maybe more), but as more information is gathered; it's beginning to appear on that day both he and Mr. Gimlin 'won the lottery'.

It's a sad day for the suitniks.

Sam

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Drew:

A second thought about your interest in trying to put some odds or probability on a real creature.

The system I used above relies on Presumptions of Regularity to define what's more probable, so the less probable can be determined by comparison. But with the real creatures, we don't have any presumptions of regularity yet, no comparative baseline, so to speak, to use to set odds or probability.

So the probability issue, as related to the real thing, remains a question we can't answer yet. All we can say is that as the probability of a suit goes down, the probability of a real creature goes up as the most credible alternate explanation.

And I, for one, see the odds of a suit going south, on a one way ticket.

Sam

Suitniks?

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