The following are edited emails sent out about my first EVP maker Experiments. They are not formal reports, but several points are raised which should be of interest to any technical investigator
Although I have not yet used my copy of EVPMaker, there are some points I want to clarify from my previous remarks - besides which I promised Lisa I would further comment on some of these points.
Re: users of EVPMaker getting 'lows' - (that is, swearing and cussing - rude -entities).
As I think I mentioned previously, this may be due to the fact that perhaps for the first time in their lives they are hearing 'EVP that you can hear'.
Those cussing and swearing entities were what I got first with the Alpha. But that phenomenon gradually decreased in frequency of occurrence and now they are quite rare. Sarah Estep has an explanation for this and I think it is in her Appendix to my book.
In normal EVP (not Alpha or EVPMaker) there are two problems,
* The poor signal/noise ratio of traditional EVP makes accurate understanding difficult, especially if the person is not a 'trained' listener, (and I think that Lisa and I both agree that one can improve enormously as a listener).
* The other is that unlike most other major religions or spiritual/philosophical movements Spiritualists seem to actively disbelieve that there are other discarnate wrong-intended beings around, or at least they disbelieve that such 'low' beings could be around them - so it must be the equipment that is wrong.
It's not the dog it's the owner.
I may have given the impression that I did not believe that the EVPM produced EVP.
I dont like the fact that you can slice-up a voice message into segments of length more than 100 ms, in fact in slices of more than one second - that can be very misleading. And I can see that there could be difficulty in determining what was EVP and what was not when you use actual huge chunks of a word or even words.
Other than that I applaud Stefan Bion for his enterprise and courage and refusal to play EVP-politics with the subject.
At the same time I will re-iterate what I said before about impulse and step cross modulation products going way beyond a simple phoneme explanation - instead there is a broad-band acoustic signal devoid of the total randomity of white noise and thus
providing an efficient conversion into new speech. As for standing waves - these would be primarily in the cochlea - and would not record - maybe I over-emphasised that point.
As I was writing the above, I wondered if in fact EVPM was an acoustic system -
And so I started up EVPMaker to see what the instructions said, and then I decided to do them to get more reality on it ....
And so I have taken time out from my overloaded schedule tonight to do my first EVPM experiment.
I recorded the following on tape - "Should I sell Grianan, Yes or No, Should I sell 319 Yes or No, or should I just GET the money?"
Very important questions to me. The recorded section of tape, included silent periods, ran to 37 seconds. I set the slicer to give 90 ms, Zero crossing, and non-overlapped slices.
I am AMAZED! ASTOUNDED! I cannot believe it! This is straight out of Stefan's software.
It is full of utterances!
And - guess what - no rude words - no audio nasties - (maybe it's my clear conscience!).
I am attaching only one sample here, the first one - tidied up with Cool Edit, it says 'Research' followed by 'Feedback off'.
There was also 'This much caught up', 'Peter', 'Follow me', and still have more of the 37 seconds to go. If anything this feels a very spiritual method.
The Amazing EVPMaker
Born in a place where most of the topsoil can be measured in mm, where winter storms disrupt the fishing and deaths on the mountains and sea happen each winter, even to this day, makes for a bleak outlook on things. Trained then as a technologist where you base your designs on worst-case analyses or you fail, it was perhaps natural that when I came to EVP it was as a cynic.
I treated my own Alpha results, initially, with the greatest suspicion - even though I had already proven, mathematically, that EVP was not a fortuitous or random event but an actual definable phenomenon.
I drew the line at computer EVP however. After all, one knew, (as someone who had designed computers), that there was such a thing as the Noise Immunity Threshold. A binary digital computer deals in Ones (1s) and Zeros (0s).
1s are represented by one voltage, say 3volts - and 0s are represented by another voltage, say 1 volt. The difference between them, 2 volts, is the noise immunity threshold. What this means is that background fluctuations could not make a 1 appear to be a 0 or vice-versa without crossing that 2 volt threshold. And it would have to be an unusually noisy circuit to create that much noise.
If on the other hand a 1 was 2.8 volts and a 0 was 2.7 volts then the noise immunity threshold is only 100 mV (0.1V), and this is much easier for environmental electrical noise to exceed.
Well, that is one thing. I could accept that the subtle forces that cause EVP could alter the tiny energies involved in acoustic signals - but now we are talking about - possibly - volts - a signal level of volts - to change a 1 into a 0, or a 0 into a 1.
Furthermore, digital signals spend most of their time in storage - each bit, each 1 or 0, in its own little separate "memory cell", as it were. Now to change a 1 into a 0, or vice versa, there - you have to have another signal present called a Write Enable or something similar. And this Enable signal may have defined characteristics required - such as how long it will last for, for example. In your typical audio (.wav) signal you may have 16 or 32 bits for each sample. That is, each sample is represented by 16 bits, for example, (say) 1000100011001100. Each of these bits has to be housed in its own "memory cell", and can only changed by the presence simultaneously of a Write and a Write Enable signal - and you have to know whether a Write Enable should be a Low or a High voltage for that particular chip. Some chips its High, some chips its Low - get it wrong and it doesn't work.
If you are sampling at 44 kHz, then that situation will only be true for less than 25 microseconds.
And even furthermore, the 16 bits are not all in the same place. And still furthermore, when you alter one sample you will have to take into account how you altered the previous sample.
Na. No way. I just could not see it happening. Computer EVP - not possible.
I saw the demos at NI but was not impressed - there were other factors that intruded too that increased my unwillingness to accept anything from this source.
Having spent the last 15 years trying to convince people that the Alpha really did work, (read my book), having "lost" over $800, 000 (gross) at the last count (1997) in doing so, and turning a successful career into a series of 6 month sprints for more money - one does not take too kindly to being told that 'This is the only way'.
This attitude carried over too into my pre-assessment of the EVPMaker. I am sorry and apologise Stefan if I have caused you any of the hurt and rejection I know too well.
But I should have known. I was shown the signal earlier.
I tried to throw doubt on reported results - how can you tell what is EVP and what is not? I asked.
The reply - not what I expected - was, 'What do you call EVP?'
Now let us look at what happened in this first (for me) experiment with the EVPMaker.
Well, as you know I got some speech samples. Not answers to my questions but very relevant to the area being addressed,
But is it EVP?
· Several phonemes (overall) that were not in the original sound track.
· There is no reason why words should be in English as compared with any other language that shares at least some of our speech sounds. There should be more words in all the other European languages present than there are English words - but there isn't.
· There is no reason why the words should be in the right order - there should be many more examples of words in the wrong order than there are samples of words in the right order.