[[UPDATE: There’s now a fifth alternative interpretation — one not listed below. Alfred McEwen, a planetary geologist at the Lunar and Planetary Lab at the University of Arizona, postulates that, “It looks like a linear streak artifact produced by a cosmic ray,” noting that “cosmic energy from the stars can interfere with a camera’s image sensor, depositing electric charges in pixels. If it hits at the right angle, it can affect several pixels in a row, forming a bright streak.”  That sounds more coherent than a camera glitch, though maybe it’s the same thing but just more comprehensible to me. I don’t know anything about geology or astronomy. But it leaves me with three questions:

1. Why the streak at only this location in this image? Why aren’t there accompanying streaks?

2. Why does it appear three dimensional? If you look at the video (or check it for yourself), at close range, using Google Earth’s rotation wheel, the object looks three dimensional.

3. Does Dr. McEwen have comparable examples?  It would be nice to see some known streaks for comparison.

I’m willing to move this explanation to the top of the heap, but I’d like these issues addressed. Hopefully more input will come over the next few days.]]

Original Post:

Has an amateur astronomer discovered proof of intelligent alien activity, and perhaps life? This one looks like it could be for real. No, this isn’t a mountain, cliff, or other structure that depends on lighting for its coherence. It’s clearly artificial — if it is indeed structural. I say “if” because NASA has already suggested that the object “would most likely be determined to be a glitch in the digital imaging or an unusual feature on the surface of the planet.” For my money, NASA is going to have to do better than that. My guess is that it would more likely be a hoax than this poor explanation. But I really don’t know how it could be a hoax, since I was able to find the structure on my own using Google Mars, via the Google Earth software (coordinates = 71 49’19.73″N 29 33’06.53″W). Before I’m persuaded that this isn’t artificial (or some hoax), I’d really like careful, cogent evidence to that effect, not a suggestion that plays on unlikelihood of the alternative. And thus far, NASA isn’t returning the emails of the discoverer, David Martines.

So, for me, the more realistic options are (random order): (1) a hoax; (2) NASA just got caught in a very secret project (and so, why the secrecy?); (3) NASA really didn’t know — and it’s a project run by some other (earthly) government agency – ours or another one; and (4) it’s a real structure not of human origin (no longer in use, or currently being maintained). Let’s go, NASA — put up something better than an “imaging glitch.” I’m not easily taken by BS on either side of this question. I smell a weak response.  You can view the YouTube video here.