Re: Stuff & Nonsense
« Reply #9030 on: Aug 27th, 2013, 09:27am »
CIA: UFO Sightings in 50s, 60s Were of Spy Planes
Aug 26, 2013
Dayton Daily News by Barrie Barber
WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE -- A recently declassified CIA report on the development of the U-2 and SR-71 spy planes said the high-flying jets were mistaken for UFOs more than half the time in the late 1950s and 1960s during Project Blue Book, a Wright-Patterson Air Force Base operation that investigated reports of UFOs.
Not everyone is convinced, however, of the explanation.
"There's no question that a lot of the sightings that take place are in fact our own aircraft, secret military projects or whatever it happens to be," said David P. MacDonald, a Cincinnati area resident and executive director emeritus of the Mutual UFO Network. "Whether or not 50 percent can be attributed to one or two aircraft, I don't know if I could go along with that or not just because of the diversity of what people were seeing."
Blue Book investigated 12,618 UFO reports, and 701 of those remain unidentified, according to the Air Force.
Project Sign and Project Grudge preceded Blue Book in the late 1940s and early 1950s.
"The Air Force was concerned back in the 1940s that some of the UFO sightings might be related to the Soviet Union," said Robert Young, a National Air and Space Intelligence Center historian at Wright-Patterson. The concern was the Cold War adversary might have "something that we didn't have. That's really what drove a lot of it."
Area 51 and Wright-Patterson
The 1992 report, entitled "The Central Intelligence Agency and Overhead Reconnaissance: The U-2 and Oxcart programs, 1954-1974," was publicly released last week in more detail at the request of a George Washington University archivist.
The document was credited in media reports with CIA acknowledgement of Area 51, a secret testing site in the desert at Groom Lake, Nev., where popular lore claims the U.S. government has tested UFOs and hidden aliens, much the same claims made about Wright-Patterson.
The report also gives a nod to the Wright-Patterson managed Project Blue Book, which examined UFO incidents across the nation.
"After World War II people became increasingly concerned," said Jeffrey Underwood, a National Museum of the U.S. Air Force historian. "They saw things in the air and they didn't know what they were."
The U-2 was one of those strange craft, the report said.
The glider winged jet capable of flying above 70,000 feet was often spotted high above airliners in the 1950s before the secret spy aircraft was publicly disclosed.
"High altitude testing of the U-2 soon led to an unexpected side effect -- a tremendous increase in reports of unidentified flying objects (UFOs)," the report said.
Commercial airliners then flew at 10,000 to 20,000 feet, and it wasn't believed an aircraft could fly as high as the U-2 did.
Airline pilots and ground observers wrote letters about the sightings to the Wright Air Development Command in Dayton, which led to the start-up of Blue Book, the report said. "Air Force investigators then attempted to explain such sightings by linking them to natural phenomena," the CIA document said.
The SR-71 Blackbird flew above 80,000 feet before the jet was retired more than two decades ago. Both spy planes stand on display at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force.
Other UFO sightings turned out to be surveillance balloons high in the Earth's atmosphere, Underwood said.
In an age before reconnaissance satellites orbiting Earth, the U.S. launched giant surveillance balloons with listening devices to detect telltale signs of a nuclear explosion overseas to determine if the Soviet Union had tested an atomic bomb, he said. The Air Force program was called Project Mogul.
UFOs, aliens and Wright-Patterson
Books, TV shows and popular cultural lore for decades have linked aliens, UFOs and Wright-Patterson as one and the same. A History Channel documentary in 2006, for example, called "Hangar 18: The UFO Warehouse," reported UFOs and alien bodies were hauled to the base to a secret hangar and underground tunnels from crash sites throughout the country, including the infamous July 1947 crash of a reported UFO near Roswell, N.M.
"No matter where a UFO lands, it seems all roads lead back to Wright-Patterson and Hangar 18," a narrator declared.
MacDonald said there's "boxes and boxes" of eyewitness testimony and sworn affidavits to suggest something other than a balloon, as authorities claimed, crashed in the desert near Roswell, and was brought to Wright-Patterson for examination. NASIC and its predecessors had the responsibility to disassemble and examine foreign aerospace technology that landed in U.S. hands.
"At some point you have to scratch your head and say, 'Man, they're all not making this up,'" said MacDonald. "I think it's plausible this material did start at Wright-Patterson and where it went from there is anybody's guess."
While acknowledging the base doesn't have a Hangar 18, but a Building 18, MacDonald said the truth is out there, somewhere, about Wright-Patterson and UFOs.
"I do think there's elements of truth involved there," the veteran pilot said. "The problem is one side is trying to cover it up and the other is trying to ... discover what the facts are so because of that you get a lot of speculations, you start getting rumors involved, and that trips things up a lot."
The Air Force ended Project Blue Book in December 1969 after a University of Colorado report concluded extensive study of UFOs could not be justified because it was unlikely to advance science. Blue Book found no threats to national security or evidence of extraterrestrial vehicles, the Air Force said.
Nearly three decades ago, the Air Force issued an official denial that Wright-Patterson housed alien space technology and the bodies of beings from another planet.
"Periodically, it is erroneously stated that the remains of extraterrestrial visitors are or have been stored at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base," the January 1985 statement said. "There are not now nor have there ever been, any extraterrestrial visitors or equipment on Wright-Patterson Air Force Base."
The Air Force museum, NASIC and the base's chief public affairs office still receive questions about hidden aliens and their space ships, despite the official denial, officials said.
"I just tell people we have nothing," Underwood said. "If we ever do get something that would be great because this would probably be the first place it would be displayed, but I'm not counting on it."
Re: Stuff & Nonsense
« Reply #9031 on: Aug 27th, 2013, 11:02am »
Yet another lame rehash of a tired old story. It seems to be a law of the universe that periodically somebody looking to fill pages has to cobble together another load of crap based on skewed "revelations" and questionable opinions. Yes, I know there is some supposedly new revelation in there, but it's the same old bs as always.
The Blue Book numbers are interesting, in that there is a large percentage of "unexplained" cases. What's most interesting is that those were the ones that some facile nonsense couldn't be dreamed up to "explain" to readers who really were not paying attention. How many of the ones explained away as Venus were really something else? Venus was blamed if the witnesses said they were looking west and they described something that included bright lights. The whole sorry mess is full of that kind of childish baloney.
Re: Stuff & Nonsense
« Reply #9032 on: Aug 27th, 2013, 1:41pm »
Tiresome old “baloney” – I have to agree.
As you no doubt know, that classic “secret weapons” argument was put forward in 1997 by the historian Gerald K. Haines, who prepared a paper called “A Die-Hard Issue: CIA’s Role in the Study of UFOs, 1947-90” for the CIA publication Studies in Intelligence. In his paper, Haines claimed that “over half of all UFO reports from the late 1950s through the 1960s were accounted for by manned reconnaissance flights (namely the U-2) over the United States. This led the Air Force to make misleading and deceptive statement to the public in order to allay public fears and to protect an extraordinarily sensitive national security project.”
As for statistics, on 25 October 1955, the Battelle Memorial Institute released its analysis (called Project Stork) of 2,199 Blue Book object sighting reports. Of course, in the end, they concluded that “there is a low probability that any of the UNKNOWNS represent observations of a class of “flying saucers”,” but on the way to that general conclusion they did encounter and set aside some statistically significant characteristics, among them that the more reliable the observer and the more detailed and extended the observation, the more likely the reported object was to be deemed a true UNKNOWN. In that connection, Battelle went to great lengths to evaluate the reliability of the observers and the content of their observations objectively and consistently on a case-by-case basis. Identifications were subjected to both a preliminary evaluation and to an evaluation by a four-person panel. An object was coded as an UNKNOWN only when “the description of the object and its maneuvers could not be fitted to the pattern of any known object or phenomenon.” Following that rigorous process, a remarkable 19.7% of the 2,199 object sightings were deemed UNKNOWN regardless of witness reliability. Moreover, inasmuch as the proportion of reports by “excellent” observers included twice as many UNKNOWNS (33.3%) as did the sample of “poor” observer reports (16.6%), as well as about five times fewer “insufficient information” reports, the data did not support a skeptical stance that insisted on viewing the UNKNOWNS as a mere subset of the KNOWNS. It was also noteworthy that in excess of 70% of the UNKNOWNS were under observation for more than one minute, and that more than 45% were observed for more than five minutes. However, those are points that did not find their way into either of Project Stork’s summary or conclusion. (Donald Soryu)
Re: Stuff & Nonsense
« Reply #9034 on: Aug 27th, 2013, 8:09pm »
Who deleted an NSA thread from a UFO online discussion?
The sensitive thread disappeared on Saturday only to reappear on Sunday.
By: Jewish Press News Briefs
Published: August 26th, 2013
A thread in which posters explored the National Security Agency, Edward Snowden and similar subjects just up and disappeared without any explanation last Saturday at UFO Casebook, an online discussion forum, the Orlando Paranormal Examiner reports. The thread, containing more than 500 entries and an estimated 3,700 page views, was restored later, on Sunday afternoon, but website moderators and administrators could not explain why the discussion thread of highly sensitive issues was temporarily deleted.
“No one associated with the forum removed the thread,” UFO Casebook administrator B.J. Booth informed the OP Examiner on Sunday, adding: “We are trying to find out what happened.”
Booth tends to blame the strange disappearance on a server glitch, a common malfunction on Internet message boards and publishing sites, but considering the context of the removed discussion, and the fact that some forum members had become seriously invested in the thread, there is increased suspicion in the ranks regarding an intervention from big brother, the American intelligence community.
“This thread was not deleted by anyone,” an administrator from Conforums insisted, “but for some reason, and I can’t fathom how it happened, it ‘dropped’ out.”
Re: Stuff & Nonsense
« Reply #9037 on: Aug 27th, 2013, 10:26pm »
Newyorklily found this:
Researcher controls colleague’s motions in 1st human brain-to-brain interface
Doree Armstrong and Michelle Ma August 27, 2013
University of Washington researchers have performed what they believe is the first noninvasive human-to-human brain interface, with one researcher able to send a brain signal via the Internet to control the hand motions of a fellow researcher. Using electrical brain recordings and a form of magnetic stimulation, Rajesh Rao sent a brain signal to Andrea Stocco on the other side of the UW campus, causing Stocco’s finger to move on a keyboard.
While researchers at Duke University have demonstrated brain-to-brain communication between two rats, and Harvard researchers have demonstrated it between a human and a rat, Rao and Stocco believe this is the first demonstration of human-to-human brain interfacing.
“The Internet was a way to connect computers, and now it can be a way to connect brains,” Stocco said. “We want to take the knowledge of a brain and transmit it directly from brain to brain.”
The researchers captured the full demonstration on video recorded in both labs. The following version has been edited for length. This video and high-resolution photos also are available on the research website.
On Aug. 12, Rao sat in his lab wearing a cap with electrodes hooked up to an electroencephalography machine, which reads electrical activity in the brain. Stocco was in his lab across campus wearing a purple swim cap marked with the stimulation site for the transcranial magnetic stimulation coil that was placed directly over his left motor cortex, which controls hand movement.
The team had a Skype connection set up so the two labs could coordinate, though neither Rao nor Stocco could see the Skype screens.
Rao looked at a computer screen and played a simple video game with his mind. When he was supposed to fire a cannon at a target, he imagined moving his right hand (being careful not to actually move his hand), causing a cursor to hit the “fire” button. Almost instantaneously, Stocco, who wore noise-canceling earbuds and wasn’t looking at a computer screen, involuntarily moved his right index finger to push the space bar on the keyboard in front of him, as if firing the cannon. Stocco compared the feeling of his hand moving involuntarily to that of a nervous tic.
“It was both exciting and eerie to watch an imagined action from my brain get translated into actual action by another brain,” Rao said. “This was basically a one-way flow of information from my brain to his. The next step is having a more equitable two-way conversation directly between the two brains.”
Re: Stuff & Nonsense
« Reply #9039 on: Aug 28th, 2013, 08:57am »
"Researcher controls colleague’s motions in 1st human brain-to-brain interface
Doree Armstrong and Michelle Ma August 27, 2013
University of Washington researchers have performed what they believe is the first noninvasive human-to-human brain interface, with one researcher able to send a brain signal via the Internet to control the hand motions of a fellow researcher. Using electrical brain recordings and a form of magnetic stimulation, Rajesh Rao sent a brain signal to Andrea Stocco on the other side of the UW campus, causing Stocco’s finger to move on a keyboard...."
Re: Stuff & Nonsense
« Reply #9040 on: Aug 28th, 2013, 09:03am »
Twitter and New York Times still patchy as registrar admits SEA hack
Images on Twitter, and New York Times website, still not appearing for some after domain name server hack by Syrian Electronic Army on Melbourne IT
by Charles Arthur theguardian.com, Wednesday 28 August 2013 05.52 EDT
Twitter's inline image service remains out of action hours after the site's domain name server (DNS) record was hacked, apparently by the hacker group Syrian Electronic Army (SEA), as part of a cyber-attack against the registrar for sites including the New York Times.
Images and some avatars posted to Twitter's twimg.com domain are not appearing when viewed on the web or in Twitter applications because the domain where the pictures are posted, twimg.com, had its domain name details altered on Tuesday.
The New York Times is also affected by the hack, which was carried out against an Australian registrar, Melbourne IT, which separately confirmed that it had been the cause of the failure.
The SEA acquired the user login and password for a US-based reseller via a "spear phishing" email - closely targeted to the user to fool them into passing the details into a fake site. "The attack has been sent to a variety of staff of our reseller," Theo Hnarakis, Melbourne IT's chief executive told Australian AP. "A few of those staff have responded inadvertently."
Armed with the login and password, the SEA hackers were able to change the details of the NYT and Twitter registration so that they pointed to servers of its choice.
They crowed about their success - ironically, on Twitter, where they have had their account deleted 15 times in the past year or so.
Some local Twitter sites - including its India site at twitter.co.in - appear to be still controlled by the SEA. "How Twitter looks when the twimg.com was down", it tweeted - linking to a picture hosted on the twimg.com domain, which therefore didn't appear.
A posting on the Twitter status blog noted that
"At 20:49 UTC, our DNS provider experienced an issue in which it appears DNS records for various organizations were modified, including one of Twitter's domains used for image serving, twimg.com. Viewing of images and photos was sporadically impacted. By 22:29 UTC, the original domain record for twimg.com was restored. No Twitter user information was affected by this incident."
However it could take some time for the correct information to re-propagate to other DNS server. DNS updates are not passed on immediately, and can take a day or more to be passed among the DNS server systems used to direct traffic to websites around the web.
Twitter users and some people trying to view the New York Times are still being affected because DNS (domain name server) detail changes are not sent immediately to other computers, which use DNS services to look up the physical address of websites: when they are passed a URL such as "theguardian.com", the systems check the records held on the nearest DNS cache to see which internet address to connect to.
A data security source said that there had been a rise in phishing attacks relating to domain names in the past two weeks, with a number appearing to come from Chinese registrars saying there had been a "domain name dispute" and asking domain owners to re-enter their details.
Hnarakis said that "all passwords have been changed, the right blocks have been established, so we're fairly confident this won't occur again."
But Chester Wisniewski of the security company Sophos cautioned: "You are only as strong as your weakest link, which in this case appears to be an external internet service provider."
Re: Stuff & Nonsense
« Reply #9041 on: Aug 28th, 2013, 09:16am »
World’s Smallest Drone Autopilot System Goes Open Source
By Klint Finley 08.28.13 9:30 AM
The Lisa/S chip, perched on the front of an aerial drone. Photo: 1bitsquared
The Lisa/S chip is 4 square-centimeters — about the same size as a Euro coin. But this 1.9-gram sliver of silicon includes everything you need to autopilot an aerial drone.
It’s the world’s smallest drone autopilot system — over 30 grams lighter than its predecessor — according to the chip’s designers at the Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands. And best of all, both the hardware and the software is open source, meaning anyone can copy and use it — for free.
“The main reason we chose open source is that we want to make it available for society,” says the project’s leader, Bart Remes. He envisions open source drone technology enabling a wider range of civilian drone applications, from agriculture to search and rescue.
“Before, only the military had access to this type of technology,” he says. “My vision is that within a few years, every fireman [will have] a drone in his pocket.”
Remes says he’s been flying remote-controlled aircraft since he was six years old. About 10 years ago, as a student at Delft, he started building his own drones, attracted to the challenges of programming and electronics. It turned out that very small drones — called micro air vehicles, or MAVs — are a great way to teach aerospace engineering because they’re relatively cheap, safe and easy to program.
“At university, a lot of students are working in a compute simulation and never see the real world,” Remes says. “With MAVs, they get to see the real world.” His student work turned into a full-time job as the head of the university’s MAV Laboratory, which is responsible for projects like DelFly, a small wing-flapping drone that resembles a dragonfly.
The Lisa/S is the MAV Laboratory’s latest project. The chip’s software is based on Paparazzi, an open source drone autopilot system that’s been around since 2003. The real innovation is the hardware. The tiny chip packs in everything you need for an autopilot system, including a gyroscope, accelerometer, altimeter, GPS, and an ARM processor — the same sort of CPU you might find in your smartphone. The Lisa/S can be used with any type of drone, from quadcopters to fixed-wing systems, Remes says.
The one limitation, he says, is that it can’t provide a continuous data link to its operators. “For us, it’s not a limitation, because it’s autonomous,” he says. “But I can understand that some people need constant data connection to the autopilot, so they’d need a slightly larger link.”
The chip was designed with the help of a U.S.-based electronics company called 1Bitsquared, which will sell Lisa/S chips starting in January 2014. But since both the hardware and software is open source, Remes says any company will be able to sell chips based on the technology.
Re: Stuff & Nonsense
« Reply #9042 on: Aug 28th, 2013, 09:20am »
Randomized Treatments May Be More Effective at Stopping Disease Outbreaks
Mathematicians have found that by varying the timing of treatments, doctors may be able to increase the odds that a disease outbreak will die off suddenly
By Calla Cofield August 28 2013
Herding cats is a cakewalk compared with getting people to take flu vaccine shots in the last weeks of summer—work, school, limited pharmacy hours, beach days and countless other factors conspire to interfere. As a result, vaccinations tend to trickle in over many months. Rather than resisting this tendency, some mathematicians now think that public health officials may one day embrace it. A bit of randomness in treatment schedules may actually help manage a disease outbreak.
This conclusion comes from an analysis of treatment options in infectious disease outbreaks through the lens of complexity theory, which attempts to make sense of systems that are fundamentally unpredictable. Researchers using complexity theory to study disease outbreaks have identified rare instances when the outbreak will die out suddenly. Say, for instance, health workers administer antibiotics to fight an outbreak of bacterial meningitis, causing infections to decline. A classic disease model would suggest that every infected person must be isolated and treated before the disease can die out. But complexity theory shows that occasionally, the disease will die out due to random and unpredictable factors.
Such a “random extinction event” is impossible to predict, but new research shows that judicious timing of treatments can increase the odds of one occurring. Knowing how to vary them to make random extinction events more likely could be particularly helpful in developing nations, where pharmaceutical supplies are often limited and treatments are not available year-round, but are given in bursts a certain number of times per year. This is often the case when an aid organization administers treatments remotely.
Ira Schwartz, an applied mathematician and physicist at the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory, and his colleagues utilized a computer simulation that models the general behavior of infectious diseases in a population of 8,000 people. The simulation took into account the element of randomness and compared the outcome of two different scenarios: one in which treatment is delivered at regular intervals in time and another at random intervals. They compared these two scenarios for infectious diseases such as bacterial meningitis, venereal disease and plague, which are treated largely with antibiotics.
The results show that in cases where treatment bursts could only be administered between two and eight times per year, the random schedule created an exponential decrease in the time to a random extinction event: in other words, a disease died out faster. “The research demonstrates why randomized treatment schedules work,” says Schwartz, a co-author on the paper, which was published in PLoS ONE in August.
In 2008 Schwartz co-authored another paper that used similar models to test the effect of random vaccination on incoming members of the population (infants), and showed similar decreases in disease extinction time.
In the new paper the researchers speculate that if disease treatments are delivered twice per year, six months apart, a disease may have time to regain strength between doses. In a random schedule, however, those doses might come closer together, increasing the likelihood that the second dose would attack the disease while the latter is in a weakened state. Such a one–two punch increases the possibility that a random extinction event will occur. (Although researchers can calculate the odds of such an event, they remain ultimately unpredictable.) For this reason, the researchers conclude that when resources are limited, treatment should be distributed to a larger percentage of the population in a few random, closely distributed pulses, rather than many smaller pulses distributed to fewer people.
With more research into the random interplay between treatment and disease, it is possible scientists will provide more suggestions for how to best administer treatments, particularly in locations where supplies and manpower are limited.
Charles Doering, acting director of the Center for the Study of Complex Systems at the University of Michigan, says Schwartz’s team is one of few groups exploring how randomness in treatment schedules can affect infectious disease progress. Although the researchers used well-established models of how diseases spread and survive in human populations, their mathematical techniques for taking randomness into account, developed from quantum mechanics, is difficult to apply to disease models. “You never quite know,” he says. “If you changed any of the structure of the model, maybe the conclusions would change.” But the work may inspire further investigation with larger computer simulations or laboratory experiments that test these theories on live populations of microorganisms. “This gives a starting point; a working hypothesis to investigate,” he adds.
Re: Stuff & Nonsense
« Reply #9043 on: Aug 28th, 2013, 09:32am »
Uploaded on Jul 8, 2010
63 years ago today the Roswell Daily Record ran a front page story regarding the recovery of a Flying Saucer by the Army that had been taken to the Roswell Army Air Field. Intelligence officer Jesse Marcel was the first military man to get a look at the material, and one of many at the Air Field to believe that the debris was not of this world. His testimony to researchers in 1978 sparked the public's fascination with Roswell, and without it we may have never known about this extraordinary event.
Re: Stuff & Nonsense
« Reply #9044 on: Aug 29th, 2013, 09:34am »
Testosterone Boom: Pharma Firms Spread Male Menopause Myth
By Jörg Blech August 29, 2013 – 02:56 PM
"Man, oh man," read the words emblazoned on a white tent set up in the pedestrian zone of the German city of Erfurt. Those who ventured inside received information on a dramatic scientific finding: One in three men over the age of 60 suffers from "testosterone deficiency syndrome." If left untreated, this dastardly condition can cause excess weight, anemia, hot flashes, osteoporosis, lowered sex drive and bad moods.
This same tent will be making appearances through November in Augsburg, Saarbrücken, Hanover and other German cities. Here, men over the age of 40 can have their testosterone level checked at no cost. They can also learn how to counteract testosterone deficiency: either get more exercise, or apply testosterone gel to their skin.
This traveling testosterone counseling service provided by the "German Society for Men and Health" was not born out of a purely charitable impulse -- there is a marketing angle at work here as well. The organization is funded by pharmaceutical company Jenapharm, the leading manufacturer of testosterone gel.
It's one of five companies that sell the male sex hormone, which is rubbed into the skin, and business couldn't be better. This can be seen in the number of prescriptions issued through Germany's statutory health insurance funds. The Scientific Institute of AOK, one of Germany's largest insurers, analyzed this data on behalf of SPIEGEL and found that prescriptions for testosterone gel more than tripled between 2003 and 2011. The most recent statistics show 390,000 daily doses per year. In Germany, a month's supply of the product costs around €60 ($80).
These gels are also doing a roaring trade in other countries, such as Switzerland and the United States. A survey of over 10 million members of one American health insurance company showed that nearly 3 percent of all men over 40 are now prescribed testosterone. At the same time, this analysis also revealed that, medically speaking, most of these prescriptions were unnecessary.
The testosterone trend comes with attendant risks. Used in excess, the male hormone can promote the growth of prostate cancer and increase the risk of heart attacks and strokes. American doctors Lisa Schwartz and Steven Woloshin recently warned in the medical journal JAMA Internal Medicine that this widespread use of testosterone is "a mass, uncontrolled experiment that invites men to expose themselves to the harms of a treatment unlikely to fix problems ... that may be wholly unrelated to testosterone levels."
The booming business in testosterone gel provides a prime example of the ways in which pharmaceutical companies exaggerate illnesses to create new markets for their products.
Experts agree that men with hypogonadism -- in which the testicles produce little or no testosterone -- do indeed benefit from receiving supplements of the hormone. But few men actually suffer from serious hypogonadism. So when the newly developed testosterone gel hit the market, doctors and pharmaceutical companies looked for other symptoms the product might treat -- and found them in male menopause.
The idea of male menopause -- also known as andropause or male climacteric -- existed even in ancient times. The Romans considered age 63 to be a dangerous moment of change, and congratulated one another for having survived this "annus climactericus maximus."
Salt Baths and Cold Rubdowns
Around 100 years ago, some neurologists observed a menopause-like change in men. Berlin neurologist Kurt Mendel, for example, believed he had diagnosed a "very noticeable tendency toward emotional reactions and crying, which had not previously been present" among his older male patients. He prescribed salt baths and cold rubdowns.
Later, with advances in the study of glands, this supposed andropause was explained as being a hormone deficiency. Chemists at first obtained testosterone by extracting it from bulls' testicles by the ton and male human urine by the hectoliter, before achieving laboratory production of artificial testosterone in 1935.
"But it wasn't until the late 1960s, as the field of andrology expanded, that medical attention began to turn once again to the male climacteric," says medical historian Hans-Georg Hofer, 41, at Bonn University. Neologisms such as "andropause" and "PADAM" -- for "Partial Androgen Deficiency in Aging Men" -- started to catch on.
The idea of andropause took off in earnest a few years ago, when scientists developed a way to administer testosterone as an easy-to-use gel, rather than through shots and patches. Suddenly there was a new epidemic, too, to match this new product. In March 2003, pharmaceuticals company Jenapharm announced that male climacteric affects "at least 2.8 million Germans, according to epidemiological estimates."
Jenapharm then hired Hermann Behre, director of the Center for Reproductive Medicine and Andrology at Halle University Hospital, to speak at a press conference about testosterone gel. Behre will also speak at an upcoming "Jenapharm Symposium" on testosterone in Münster this December.