Project Blue Book Collection
From the webpage:
This site was created by The Black Vault to house 129,491 pages, comprising of more than 10,000 cases of the Project Blue Book, Project Sign and Project Grudge files declassifed. Project Blue Book (along with Sign and Grudge) was the name that was given to the official investigation by the United States military to determine what the Unidentified Flying Object (UFO) phenomena was. It lasted from 1947 – 1969. Below you will find the case files compiled for research, and available free to download.
The CNN report Air Force UFO files land on Internet by Emanuella Grinberg reports Roswell is omitted from these files.
You won’t find anything new here, the files have been available on microfilm for years but being searchable and on the Internet is a step forward in terms of accessibility.
When I say “searchable,” the site notes:
1) A search is a good start — but is not 100% – There are more than 10,000 .pdf files here and although all of them are indexed in the search engine, the quality of the original documents, given the fact that many of them are more than 6 decades old, is very poor. This means that when they are converted to text for searching, many of the words are not readable to a computer. As a tip: make your search as basic as possible. Searching for a location? Just search a city, then the state, to see what comes up. Searching for a type of UFO? Use “saucer” vs. “flying saucer” or longer expression. It will increase the chances of finding what you are looking for.
2) The text may look garbled on the search results page (but not the .pdf!) – This is normal. For the same reason above… converting a sentence that may read ok to the human eye, may be gibberish to a computer due to the quality of the decades old state of many of the records. Don’t let that discourage you. Load the .PDF and see what you find. If you searched for “Hollywood” and a .pdf hit came up for Rome, New York, there is a reason why. The word “Hollywood” does appear in the file…so check it out!
3) Not everything was converted to .pdfs – There are a few case files in the Blue Book system that were simply too large to convert. They are:
undated/xxxx-xx-9667997-[BLANK][ 8,198 Pages ]
undated/xxxx-xx-9669100-[ILLEGIBLE]-[ILLEGIBLE]-/ [ 1,450 Pages ]
undated/xxxx-xx-9669191-[ILLEGIBLE]/ [ 3,710 Pages ]
These files will be sorted at a later date. If you are interested in helping, please email email@example.com
I tried to access the files not yet processed but was redirected. I will see what is required to see the not yet processed files.
If you are interested in trying your skills at PDF conversion/improvement, the main data set should be more than sufficient.
If you are interested in automatic discovery of what or who was blacked out of government reports, this is also an interesting data set. Personally I think blacking out passages should be forbidden. People should have to accept the consequences of their actions, good or bad. We require that of citizens, why not government staff?
I assume crowd sourcing corrections has already been considered. 130K of pages is a fairly small number when it comes to crowd sourcing. Surely there are more than 10,000 people interested in the data set, which would be 13 pages each. Assuming each one did 100 pages each, you would have more than enough overlap to do statistics to choose the best corrections.
For those of you who see patterns in UFO reports, a good way to reach across the myriad sightings and reports would be to topic map the entire collection.
Personally I suspect at least some of the reports do concern alien surveillance and the absence in the intervening years indicates they have lost interest. Given our performance since the 1940’s, that’s not hard to understand.