Roger Knights informs me that The Witch of Napili, Michael Schmicker's fictionalized account of Eusapia Palladino's mediumship, is now available for free as a Kindle ebook.
Stephen E. Braude has published a follow-up report on the Felix physical mediumship circle. The credibility of medium "Kai" (a pseudonym) took a hard hit when it was revealed that he had cheated in some earlier sessions. Braude discusses the cheating in detail, but also explains his reasons for thinking that Kai was still worth studying. Unfortunately the new investigation was inconclusive, and the hoped-for infrared video of table levitations was not obtained. Braude's balanced, scrupulously fair report is well worth reading (as is everything he writes).
Update: Actually I meant to say that clear, unambiguous IR video of a table levitation was not obtained. There was video of a purported levitation, but it was not the iron-clad evidence the researchers were hoping for.
A pair of neuroscientists tried to see if contemporary approaches to understanding the brain would allow them to successfully interpret a simple computer program — in this case, the vintage Donkey Kong game. They found that they were unable to learn much at all about the program, calling into question the efficacy of the current computer-based model for studying brain functions.
Some years ago I used to argue with a Skeptic on the comments threads of this blog about the evidence for life after death. One point he liked to make was that evidence for UFOs was at least as good as evidence for an afterlife, so why would I believe in one but not the other? At the time I could only say that I hadn't studied UFOs and had no opinion on the subject, an answer he found unsatisfactory.
I still haven't studied UFOs in any depth, but I've read a little on the subject. My tentative conclusion now is that, while many of the reports are hoaxes or errors, some are probably valid. It doesn't follow that UFOs are physical spaceships that have crossed lightyears to visit us. Scott Rogo in his book The Haunted Universe makes the point that there are often close connections between psychic phenomena (premonitions, etc.) and UFO sightings; his suggestion is that UFOs are in some sense a psychic phenomenon in their own right. Carl Jung and Jacques Vallee seem to have had a similar notion. My best guess is that legitimate sightings of "flying saucers" could involve a glitch in the system, a sort of information leakage from one plane of reality to another, perhaps triggered by, or at least accompanied by changes in consciousness on the part of witnesses. This is vague, but it's the best I can do. They are "real," but maybe not physical, or only transiently physical. This would account for the known tendency of UFOs to behave unlike physical objects— to wink in and out of existence, for example.
As for alien abductions, I would see them as out-of-b0dy experiences misinterpreted as events in the physical world. Many "abduction" experiences start out with a sense that the body is vibrating uncontrollably; then the body levitates off the bed and floats through the wall. This is identical to descriptions of OBEs. The only difference is that OBErs look down and see their physical body left behind, while "abductees" apparently do not. Both experiences also have much in common with shamanic vision quests and with drug-induced experiences involving ketamine and DMT.
Incidentally, I don't think it's actually true that evidence for UFOs is as good as evidence for life after death. The advantage of afterlife studies is that some can be performed under controlled conditions (e.g., scientific tests of mediums) and others can be performed prospectively (e.g., hospital and hospice studies of deathbed visions and NDEs). UFOs can be studied only in the field and only after the fact, on the basis of eyewitness reports and occasional technological evidence such as videos or radar readings.