Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Simon Shack Pushing Video Fakery Falsehoods

Simon Shack, aka Social Service, is the creator of September Clues. In September Clues, he promotes the false idea that the 9/11 videos were created with some sort of 3D animation. As evidence, he points out the Verrazano Narrows bridge, which claims is too large and which appears to move in some videos.

He's recently posted some data points he says point to 3D animation, rather than real video with airplane images composited in.

Simon Says:

(1) : "Are the 9/11 live broadcasts otherwise normal footage with animation planes added on top"


(2) : "Are the 9/11 live broadcasts for the most part composed with digital renderings of the landscape"

My reasoning for ruling out hypothesis (1) is :

- no satisfactory explanation for the various 'pastel' color schemes. Top range broadcast cameras have ISO standard automatic white balance settings for daylight conditions.
- no satisfactory explanation for the plastic, cartoon-like texture of the landscapes conspicuously evident even in the highest archive resolution footage available.
- no satisfactory explanation for the 'mask linings' seen around buildings in a wide range of shots. No explanation for observed black/transparent ghost contours.
- at least 4 newschoppers were allegedly in the air, yet all seem to be hovering roughly in the same area (views almost always from Northern vantage points). The few shots we have (ABC) of a chopper sweepingly circling and filming from South never catches any of the other choppers supposedly hovering in the airspace North of the towers.
- virtually all choppers seen in the 9/11 broadcasts simply zap by at sustained speed from one side of the screen to the other. No newschoppers, to be sure...
- some of the alleged NBC chopper shots have the towers swaying alarmingly, causing TV anchors to wonder aloud if the towers are leaning... That pendulum movement is precisely what gyroscopic cameras are designed to impede.
-some of the alleged ABC chopper shots show the chopper landing gear rotating in front of camera lens while the NY scenery remains perfectly static.
- perspective problems with foregrounds/backgrounds (and disappearing backdrops) not reasonably explainable by cinematic dollyzoom special effects. Newschoppers are supposed to and will film aerial sceneries in normal fashion.

There's much more one could add to this list of observations, but let's try an Occam's razor-style argumentation to rationalize the entire issue :


Color Schemes

Indeed the color balance from some 9/11 videos is wrong. Some have too much blue, some have too much red and green. By looking at the archive videos, we don't know when these color adjustments were done. Perhaps they were done live, and were broadcast that way. Perhaps the archive footage was tweaked. Either way, the strange color balances are evidence for someone tweaking the color balances, nothing more. 3D animations are not prone to strange color.

Color matching is a common problem in video compositing. Natural lighting will have a particular shade to it, and real objects of any color will naturally reflect that tone. Composited objects often must be color-adjusted to blend into a shot and look legitimate. Perhaps the 9/11 videos were intentionally adjusted so as to help hide color matching problems with the overlaid airplanes. But I doubt it.

More likely, the colors were tweaked after the fact, as the videos were being prepared for the archives, just to serve as a distraction.

Cartoon-like Textures

The textures and details do not look cartoon-like on any 9/11 videos. Video compression will cause adjacent areas of video which are nearly the same color, to become exactly the same color. Perhaps this is what Shack is looking at. I have seen nothing at all in any 9/11 video that doesn't look like video. 

Mask Linings

The "double vision" effect Shack refers to as a "Mask Lining" is probably a ghosting effect. Ghosting is a well-known old artifact of broadcast TV, where an imperfect signal causes an offset doubled image. 

Used correctly, a luma key mask will not create a doubling effect such pointed out by Shack. Even if this doubling effect is somehow caused by pulling a less-than-perfect key, this is evidence for composting, not for total animation. 

Choppers Are Positioned

All of the news helicopters were positioned such that none of them could see the south face of WTC2. This is because making a real-time composite of an airplane going through the wall of a tower is impossible. They carefully planned to position the cameras in such a way as to make live compositing possible, as I have explained

Other Choppers

Yes, what are all those other Choppers? That's a great question. I suspect they were perpetrators, keeping a close eye on developments, and reporting the status of the floor melting and such going on in the towers. 

Swaying Towers

Here Shack just flat makes something up. No 9/11 news video shows "swaying" towers. The NBC shot has the camera at an angle, so that the towers appear crooked. It's quite suspicious that they would leave the camera "Dutch" like that for so long, but it doesn't mean the video is animated, it means the camera was tilted. 

Helicopter Skids Rotate, but Camera Remains Still

Yep. Gyroscopic camera mounts are pretty cool. A rotating wheel has a very interesting property of exerting tremendous force in all directions, within one plane. Moving the spinning wheel within that plane is easy, no more difficult than would be if the wheel was not spinning. But attempting to turn the wheel into a different plane is met with great resistance. This is the principle of a gyroscope. 

TV news cameras are mounted to the underside of the helicopter. It's like a ball, free to spin independently of the helicopter movement. The ball then has an array of spinning gyroscopes, which keep it very still, no matter what the helicopter does. 

Ordinarily, the camera points in such a way that you do not see the helicopter skids, but the camera can rotate 360 degrees around. That's what happened. The helicopter was turning, while the camera was holding still. 

Perspective Problems / Disappearing Backgrounds

Stop it. There are no perspective problems or disappearing backgrounds. The Verrazano Narrow bridge appears large behind the towers in those shots because the helicopters are about 5 miles away from the towers, and the camera is zoomed in . This is exactly what zoom lenses do. 

Alfred Hitchcock made the effect so popular, it's called the "Vertigo Effect". By moving the camera back, while zooming in, the subject can be kept at the same apparent size. But the background will appear to grow larger. 

The "moving bridge" effect occurs when you pan one way, while moving the other way. The subject will stay in the center of the shot, while the background appears to drift. 

The "missing background" is sky. Shack compared one view of the towers looking down, and sees the New Jersey coastline. Another view is from much lower, and is looking upwards, so the background is sky.


I've been over and over this material for more than one year with Shack, Fred BS Registration, and others. In my opinion, they are doing for two reasons:

1. They are giving critics ammunition to make no-planers look stupid. 
2. They are trying to destroy the credibility of the 9/11 tower videos, which in fact show them being disintegrated by nuclear weapons. 


Anonymous said...

You are absolutely correct on this, Ace.


Anonymous said...

I have a question for them. If it was all animated, why would the perps commit mistakes!? They would have full control! Bridges in the wrong place? Why!? It makes no sense...

Anonymous said...

"1. They are giving critics ammunition to make no-planers look stupid."

As you are doing. Nuff said Ace?
If you truly cared about proving your ideas, you would pursue proving your theory beyond doubt, launching a legal case against the perps. Instead you're attacking others with broadly the same opinion as yourself. Is that more important? And if so, why?

Anonymous said...

Nice as usual.

I looked at the thread on Movement where you got Shack's list from... funny how he's pretending to be civil and respectful of your work while refusing to answer any of your questions. You've obviously got these pricks on the ropes. Keep swinging.

L.L. said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

You are all welcome to comment on this :