Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Comments Enabled!

You can now leave comments on the Cydonian Imperative (beginning with "Emphatically Still a Face," below). I won't "moderate" reader comments, per se, but I welcome your input and feedback.

More Mars anomaly news items forthcoming.

Saturday, April 09, 2005

Emphatically Still a Face

NASA's Mars Odyssey craft has returned an impressive new photo of the Face on Mars. The short of it: It's still a face.

A face? Yes.

This image lobs a challenge into the laps of critics who maintain the Face is merely an un-face-like mesa. Taken with the THEMIS camera in visible-light, the new snapshot of the Cydonia Mensae region (which includes a portion of the controversial D&M Pyramid in the lower-left) shows a scattering of amorphic mesas and knobs in the Face's vicinity, none of which approximate the Face's defining symmetry and anthropomorphism.

In recent years, debunkers have seized on high-resolution close-ups of the Face to demonstrate the feature's age-ravaged surface, implying the Face is a natural formation. This tactic completely neglects the hypothesis that the Face, if artificial, was constructed perhaps hundreds of thousands of years ago, in which case some degree of erosion is inevitable.

In return, advocates of the Artificiality Hypothesis have pointed to known artificial ruins on Earth (including the Pyramids and Sphinx) which, seen sufficiently close-up, can look tantalizingly natural. By providing a contextual view of the controversial "Martian Sphinx," the THEMIS image effectively "removes" superficial damage, underscoring the formation's anomalous humanoid appearance.

The conclusion is quite plain: The Face, whatever its origin, is very much face-like, despite the repeated "scotchings" doled out by the mainstream skeptical establishment.

The "nostril" in this early image is a transmission error. But better photos show an actual candidate nostril where one belongs if the Face is an anthropomorphic sculpture.

A popular debunking myth is that an early Viking image of the Face shows a dot thought by "Face enthusiasts" to be a nostril-like surface feature. While digital imaging processors intrigued by the Face knew perfectly well that the so-called "nostril" was simply a data transmission error, the prospect of an anthropomorphic "nose" appeared to be vindicated in 1998, when the Mars Global Surveyor took its first picture of the Face -- there actually is a nostril-like "pit" on the Face. More interestingly, it coincides with the Viking transmission error, suggesting the "will to believe" in a facial likeness is based in morphological reality.

In the new image, the candidate "nostril" on the Face's western half can be seen, along with further detail in keeping with the Artificiality Hypothesis.