It seems that with all of the technological advances in science comes another piece of equipment that can be adapted to help validate the evidence that we gather in the paranormal field. In the past, starting out for Thomas Edison, I'm sure he was using the most up to date technology for the time. Some say that Edison is the leading pioneer in the seach for evps or disembodied human voices. Electronic Voice Phenomena has blasted into the fore-front as of late with the numerous ghost hunting television shows such as, Ghost Hunters, Paranormal State, and Ghost Adventures, among many others. Some say that Edison was working on a "telephone to the dead". There's no blueprints, no schematics, or anything found that correlates with this theory, but only a quote by Edison himself:
"Nobody knows whether our personalities pass on to another existence or sphere, but it is possible to construct an apparatus which existence or sphere who wish to get in touch with us in this extince or sphere, this apparatus will at least give them a better opportunity and Ouija boards and mediums and the other crude methods now purported to be the only means of communication."
The above statement seems like Edison was in fact, trying to construct a device to speak with the dead. Imagine what our efforts would be, if Edison had been able to fully develop this "apparatus". How far would we be from where we are now?
Another leading EVP researcher, Friedrich Jurgenson, while listening and watching birds, would occasionally bring an anolog recorder along to record the tweety bird songs. Upon listening to his recordings one time, he noticed what seemed to be an actual human voice. The voice that Jurgenson heard, he believed, to be his own mother.
As of more recently, paranormal investigators have been using mostly tools developed to the electrical field: Gauss meter, K2 meter, ELF meter, Trifield meter, magnetic field sensor, digital thermal hydrometer, and the like. It is believed that spirits generate a disturbance in the electromagnetic field when trying to manifest, speak, or interact with the living. Many skeptics believe that these tools hold no validation at all in the paranormal field.
When it comes to video and photography, with all of the digital cameras used in the paranormal field today, it is easy to falsify evidence with the many photo editing software available. The best way, I believe, is the older 35mm type of camera. If someone questions your photo, you have the negative to fall back on. If you are using a digital camera, most of the newer digital cameras have a format known as RAW format. These RAW files are uncompressed and any RAW image that you believe to have anything interesting in, can be authenticated somewhat easily. Another good thing about digital photographs, is the data stored within them. Most state the camera make and model, as well as, the time and date the picture was snapped.
I recently started using a "Ghost box" or "Spirit box". Popularized by Frank Sumption, his creation of the "Ghost box" is what he says is a direct link to the other side. His version of the "Ghost box" is of course extremely more advanced than the one that I am currently using. The one I own is a regular as/fm radio modifed to constantly scan the band. One theory of paranormal research is that spirits speak on a different frequency than humans can hear. So if the radio is constantly scanning the many radio frequencies out there, it will be able to pick up the voice of a spirit that is trying to communicate. On one occasion, I had some interesting results. I was using my "Ghost box", and met a spirit named Jeff. He stated his age, his mothers name, his mothers city of residence, along with a message for her. He also was able to give me a full ten digit telephone number for his mother. The entire experience was unbelievable. It truly was as if I were on a telephone with him. I would ask a question, and get an almost immediate response. The last thing he said to me, after letting me know what he wanted me to pass along to his mother, was "I have other business to take care of now" and just like that, he was gone; or he quit speaking with me.
You may not believe the veracity of the "Ghost box", but after that session, I do. I would advise anyone even vaguely interested in paranormal research to buy a regular am/fm radio and go to youtube.com and modify it for use as a "Ghost box". It has paid for itself several times over as it related to the advancement of paranormal research. While listening to a "Ghost box", you do have to remain skeptical. You will hear bits and pieces of radio fragments and you have to build an ear for it just as you do for your EVPs in your audio.
So I ask you this, if the project that Edison was working on was in fact something like a "Ghost box" as we know it, how far could we have come if he had produced one? Who knows what the future holds. Many people say that there will never be proof of the afterlife. I believe that we, as a paranormal community, are not too far away from proving, without a doubt, that spirits are around us, and that they are trying to communicate with anyone who will listen. Even with the many paranormal researchers across the world constantly doing everything they can to help prove the existence of spirits, we may never know until we're on the other side.