Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Pictograms From the Edge

A few years ago, a debate ensued between Richard and me and the self-anointed “serious Cydonia researchers” over at SPSR. The debate, which included the late lamented Dr. Tom Van Flandern concerned the perceived presence of “pictograms” on the Martian surface. Van Flandern even went so far as to bring up these patterns in the Martian sands at his ill-fated “Artificial Structures on Mars” press conference in 2001. We also covered the issue in chapter 8 of Dark Mission.

We had always argued that these pictograms were only real in the minds of the SPSR researchers, who just couldn’t bring themselves to align with the much better arguments of a couple of rogue conspiracy theorists like us. Some of the most egregious examples of their ideas are shown below.

The "Dolphin"


The "King" (no, it’s not Farouk El Baz)

The "Fat Man"

At any rate, when I saw a recent Time magazine piece on the best objects spotted on Google Earth, I couldn’t help but hearken back to this old debate. Obviously, this mesa as seen from above looks like an Aztec Indian figure with a feathered headdress. He also seems to have acquired a pair of iPod headphones. In looking at it closer, I also noticed what appears to be a second whooping Indian face behind the first one.

The point is, these are both optical illusions. They are, like most of SPSR’s “pictograms” only recognizable in profile, like the Old Man of the Mountain in New Hampshire. This differentiates it from the Face, which is a face on view with 3 dimensional relief, a high degree of bi-lateral symmetry, and it resides in the midst of a series of other anomalous objects which have significant mathematical relationships to each other. All of which just goes to illustrate the danger of Face hunting without applying the proper scientific protocols, as was done in the original early Cydonia investigations.
On a personal note, it has never ceased to amuse me that certain members of SPSR rip us over “NASA conspiracies” or Data’s Head on the Moon, but then buy into these silly Rorschach tests.

Oh well, it’s tough to be us I guess…


  1. Nice humility. Open mindedness. The one pic "the King" looks like something H R Giger would paint.

    Cool quick post Mike.

    Peace and respect.

  2. To bad that Thomas Van Flandern past away so early. I'm not sure but I think I recall that RCH knew Dr Van Flandern and they have some interesting debates regarding Mars....and the asteroid belt...something about a catastrophic disaster...a war between some very high alien civilization....

    If I'm wrong please apologize me.

    But, nevertheless, even if Richard did not met Thomas Van Flandern, is such a pity to lose a men like him because there are such a few ppl who trying to explain SCIENTIFICALLY strange things like you and Richard actually do in DM.

  3. Dr. Tom and Richard knew each other extremely well. In fact, after Tom's passing, Richard said that Tom was the one that really got him to start looking into Cydonia and other anomalies.

  4. Well, if so, please transmit to Richard that I wanted to let him know that he have my greatest sympathy, and regrets for the loss of such a great friend.


  5. I'll put it on my to-do list...


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