THE GREAT DEBATE - CYDONIA
submitted by Frank Knize
|Date: Mon Jul 29, 2002
Subject: Debate on Martian Anomalies
The time is right to contact you in reference to a major ongoing debate with top NASA, NSF, OSTP, and NAS officials to open the doors of science here in America. Please read correspondence below conducted between myself and Dr. Stephen Saunders, concerning an issue of utmost interest to the public, the right to debate the Martian anomalies phenomenon, despite what some in our government would like to suppress. We are hoping that you will honor American "right to know" and that you became aware of the latest in this saga and maybe do something active; essentially that NASA must communicate with the public by virtue of its Outreach mandates on this.
Those who have political connections are urged to contact me.
I am working with Rich Hoagland on this project and Steve Bassett is showing interest in supporting efforts to get politicians to hear our contentions.
Check out this link for more: http://uplink.space.com/ubbthreads.php
I thank you,
Last week: CONCERNING ORIGIN OF MARTIAN FEATURES (and questions about anomalies found in Probe Photos) :
Subj: JPL Model not able to erase the arguments...
Dear Dr. Saunders,
This is surely getting interesting. But the bottom line is that the debate remains open. Why am I so sure? First we'll review your analysis today:
"The 3-km long "face" knob was first imaged by the Viking spacecraft in the 1970's and was seen by some to resemble a face carved into the rocks of Mars. Since that time the Mars Orbiter Camera on the Mars Global Surveyor spacecraft has provided detailed views of this hill that clearly show that it is a normal geologic feature with slopes and ridges carved by eons of wind and downslope motion due to gravity. Many of the knobs in Cydonia, including the "face", have several flat ledges partway up the hill slopes. These ledges are made of more resistant layers of rock and are the last remnants of layers that once were continuous across this entire region. Erosion has completely removed these layers in most places, leaving behind only the small isolated hills and knobs seen today." END
So basically, we have the classic erosion model here, where harder rock persists and softer rock washes away, much like what often happens on Earth. This is actually quite staight-forward Geology as I understand it. I am awaiting independent analysis from a well-established Geologist, who maintains an open mind on the artificiality issue. Dr. Bruce Cornet, who has gained limited notoriety with some within JPL for his SETV project, but functions primarily as a professional Geologist (and has submitted in science journals as such); spoke to me over the phone today and again, without me even bringing it up, reinforced what would have been my counter argument, that though the Geology model shows readily explained natural activity, it does not erase the arguments of Society for Planetary SETI Research and others. Natural "knobs" are shown to exhibit rather course attributes, as water sweeps to round off edge features, yet the public awaits explanation about the precise angles held by the D&M Pyramid features. This would not be a result of water erosion, would it Dr. Saunders? And downslope motion due to gravity cutting such perfect angles for the pyramid sides, not likely.
Yet there are artificial mound features here on Earth that could be interpreted, long after the human race has disappeared, by little green men as natural formations. Unless they would dig them up and maybe find artifacts like broken pottery (back to Archeology).
But in the case of Mars, until we are there with a planetary archeology team, we won't know 100%. The case remains open for artificiality. However, we can, in the meantime, ponder that there may exist mathematical relationships between several close-by anomalous structures, as an ancient Mars civilization, if ever to exist, would know to make placements to be seen from the sky. This would be logical if we consider the mind of other thinking creatures out there wanting to leave a sign for us.
So yes, you are probably correct in all your determinations about the basic Geology of the Cydonia area. But it does not override potential analysis for the features being the mark of intelligent beings as well.
We have to consider greater possibilities for life having visited our Solar System today, as now SETI Institute head, Jill Tartar has told Space.com recently in an interview.
So as one of NASA's top Space Geologists, I hope you can understand that the questions remain to be more complicated, and that you are much needed to be present at our Videoconference to have the ongoing lively debate. Since you now have established your model for the formation of these said Mars features, you must now come to defend your position among your Peers, which is that Cydonia is a natural result and nothing else. We, the public absolutely insist you be there. And so do your mandates. Must we make this into a political issue?
We then still await your answer for including your magnificent presence. Please write back soon.
A SECOND OPINION:
Subj:Re: JPL Model not able to erase the arguments...
As I discussed with you over the phone, I think the Cydonia features on Mars are still open to debate. I understand the arguments on both sides, and there is scientific merit on both sides. As a geologist, I recognize the natural erosional features evident in the MGS images, but I am also familiar with the evidence (arguments) for artificiality. As I see it, with more data, evidence could favor either argument, simply because I am not convinced that scientists and researchers have approached the problem with enough objectivity. When the Viking pictures were first released, arguments (assumptions) became entrenched too early with not enough quality data to prove either a natural or an artificial hypothesis. To this day the debate has continued with little concession from either side.
Geologists are very familiar with the effects of erosion, and how erosion can remove evidence for artificiality if that erosion is extensive enough. What might Mt. Rushmore look like in 100,000 years, for example, if allowed to succumb to the forces of nature? And yet on the other side of the argument is the issue of bilateral symmetry (or a lack thereof) for the 'Face'. There are many examples of natural face-like rock formations on Earth, where only one side suggests artificiality, while the other side does not. I also think that the alleged discovery of other mounds on Mars that resemble faces only hurts the artificial argument, because it raises the probability that Martian geology and climate are unusually suited for the development of pseudofacial features. Nevertheless, I am impressed by the work of Horace Crater, Stan McDaniels, and others on the geometric relationships between numerous features within the Cydonia region, enough so that I choose to take a neutral position. I think we can all learn something from these arguments, if only we will allow ourselves to look beyond our prejudices.
I recognize that the Cydonia debate is ideally suited for open scientific debate and public interest. The public can learn a lot from how the Hypothetico-deductive Method in science works and how scientists think. As the SETI-I is beginning to consider the possibility that ET robotic probes may already be here in our solar system (e.g. Tarter's Fermi video), and as Astrobiology (NAI) gains in popularity within the scientific community, scientists may become less resistant to looking for and considering ET artifacts on Earth and on Mars. Scientific debate is healthy.
27 Tower Hill Ave.
To authorize appropriations for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration for fiscal years 2000, 2001, and 2002, and for other purposes.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,
SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE; TABLE OF CONTENTS.
(a) SHORT TITLE- This Act may be cited as the `National Aeronautics and Space
Read :SEC. 314. LIFE IN THE UNIVERSE.
(a) REVIEW- The Administrator shall enter into appropriate arrangements with the National Academy of Sciences for the conduct of a review of--
(1) international efforts to determine the extent of life in the universe;
(b) ELEMENTS- The review required by subsection (a) shall include--
(1) an assessment of the direction of the National Aeronautics and Space
Administration's astrobiology initiatives within the Origins program;
The Enterprise Mission (Richard Hoagland; science consultant, author), Keith Laney (image analyst), Francis C. P. Knize (producer) has today submitted a "Correction of Data" request to NASA, under the authority of the newly instigated "Data Quality Act". This will be the first challenge ever of its kind. NASA will have to answer concerning a mysterious download from the Mars Odyssey probe, which seems to contain images of building and transportation structures underground the Mars Cydonia region. At the very least, an inconsistency of data has occurred within NASA which must officially be looked into and corrected. We are hoping the American Press will help open The United States to allowing for greater level of discourse on SETI issues today, as has happened in many distinguished countries worldwide. Please help open the doors of science and report, and join Russia, China, Argentina, Belgium, France, Brazil, Chile, Mexico, San Marino, Italy, England, and many other nationalities to allow for the people's voice on SETI matters. .
Beyond our mandates inguiry of NASA, our investigation team is determined to arrange for a debate with official organizations, scientists, researchers spanning the globe to consider the possibility for life on other planets in our Solar System, leading further to the question of evidence for intelligent life. We are set on associating with all significant entities pushing for American freedoms to pursue open Space Science, and to fairly observe the most important topic within the realm of Space Exploration: ..."are we or are we not alone?"
To move things along, I have been left little option, after being stalemated for nearly two years by NASA, but to open what is known as the (newly instigated) "Data Quality Act ," which has been put upon all federal agencies for the protection of the integrity of data. The recent episode concerning Richard Hoagland; Space Science investigator, and a questionable download his organization made from the NASA site containing Mars Odyssey THEMIS (infrared) imagery data (and possible anomalies seen underground), and of which data appears now missing from NASA archives, raises many questions about the transparency of data dispelled from JPL.
I have conducted much research in these legal areas and have contacted essential Data Quality Officers at NASA, as well as being in frequent touch with Don Savage, Public Relations Officer. I would be honored to update The Press on all these events. I can send a link to a radio show accomplished a few days ago concerning this topic (Mars Revealer radio show).
I also foresee a greater association with either AMES Research Center's noted MARSOWEB system for space probe analysis or JPL.'s new system for image analysis, whereby scientists from both outside and inside NASA can compare interpretations of the data and post them on the Internet. There is much evidence to discuss, I disagree with the present NIDS (National Institute for Discovery Science) analysis that there's not enough there to warrant further study for Solar System SETI. Arthur C. Clarke seems to think there's enough to go on to have forums about possible life-forms (leading to Intelligence) on Mars, not to mention a host of scientists worldwide ready to open discussion? Even the SETI Institute (NASA sanctioned) appears to be changing their attitude about finding life in our neighborhood.
Our team has already contacted many mainstream scientists to become involved with our venture and are ready for the Panel. Our goal is to form a just forum which can conduct lively open debate according to the dictates of the NSF and the NAS. Director Joseph Alexander of the National Academy of the Sciences has written me in support of our project. Members of The Society For Planetary SETI Research, Richard Hoagland, Stephen Bassett, Richard Dolan, ...mainstream astronomers, Geologists, Anthropologists, Authors, Government officials involved in science; have all expressed an interest to see our project succeed. We are well on the way to the reality of our event for an international debate on television.
One can reference some of my activities through these links:
File for CORRECTION OF DATA submitted October 31, 2002 to NASA:
RE: Data Quality Act inquiry concerning problems with NASA dissemination of data
October 31st 2002
On behalf of Ames Laboratory consultant, Keith Laney, and the American public at large of whom have a stake in the knowledge gained through Mr. Laney's interpretation of NASA data, we wish to submit for an official inquiry, for the purpose that NASA conduct a "correction of data" as outlined by NASA guidelines for the defined mandates of the Data Quality Act, of which were implemented recently by Congress. Keith Laney is to be considered the primary "affected party ." Since Keith Laney has observed Mars Odyssey THEMIS data by request of science writer, Richard Hoagland, and his organization known as "The Enterprise Mission ," he reserves the right to include Mr. Hoagland's organization also as an "affected party ."
We mean, when we say "American public at large" as represented by the most recent poll concerning SETI Research, known as the Roper poll, which showed a clear majority of 72 percent of the American public felt the government has not been forthcoming about what it knows about SETI matters. We hold that the interest of America is bound to our inquiry and therefore the public is to be considered, as well, an affected party. I, as a producer, represent the majority public opinion concerning The Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence. Therefore I consider myself, through associations with The Enterprise Mission and being a professional communicator aligned with this Inquisition, an affected party also.
The incident in question concerning possible non-transparency, non-credibility, non-integrity of NASA/ASU data, transpired on July 25th 2002, whereby Keith Laney made a download directly from the Mars Odyssey THEMIS section at the NASA/ASU Internet site, under recommendations of a person claiming to be a NASA employee, and that this download appeared to be different in nature than downloads which were made earlier from that same NASA Internet source, as well as downloads that were made later. Put in Mr. Laney's own words, please read the following e-mail he sent to me:
Re: I need to hear from you now please... Date: 10/28/2002 11:09:33 PM Eastern Standard Time From: Bullitt@carolina.rr.com <mailto:Bullitt@carolina.rr.com> To: <mailto:Frankknee@aol.com> Frankknee@aol.com <mailto:Frankknee@aol.com> Sent from the Internet (Details
It's as easy as this, I received a different Cydonia infrared image upon download than what was the supposed to be the ASU THEMIS webpage's official version. It is unquestionably different from as officially portrayed at the site now and at that time, and unquestionably different from the images as portrayed now in the raw pds releases.
I've already went over the whole ordeal in detail here,
"Timeline, Testimony, Processing, and Politics of a Leaked THEMIS Image"
I had been sharing my imaging results with Richard Hoagland and Mike Bara, who after review of them were astounded also. The strange thing about it was that no one else was getting near the same results as I. Holger Isenberg wasn't, Steve Wingate wasn't, (In fact he only seems interesting in debunking this image, which sadly he has looked very foolish doing) Richard wasn't. No one that tried did. The best attempts I saw from others were rather streaked and the color values were smudged, weak, with high noise levels. Not very good examples of true false color multispectrals worthy of the capabilities of the wonderful THEMIS, which for the most part are supposed to be clean and colorful where there are thermal and compositional differences being imaged.
The reason for this became apparent when I went back to the THEMIS site on August 26th. I found that the image now there is very different from the one I downloaded on July 25th. I could not believe it. This image was much "prettier." This was obviously not the same one that Noel just described as having blocks. In comparison, it looks very much like a visible image. This was the reason why the others were not getting the same results. I for some reason had a different image. Somehow, This is strange because the only source for that image on July 25th would have been the THEMIS site. No doubt my image came from there. This is further confirmed by comparing the official present image with what Noel described to me above. The block effect is not noticeable on the ratio images made from the "official" image, it is not evident in the individual band images from it either, yet it is in both on the image that I got, just as described.
These "blocks" are in no way a result of any further processing that I have done on the parent image, these were on the image the day I got it. I have done slight processing work on my original dated file download image and saved it. Nothing destructive, and for the simple reason of trying to lessen the severity of the blocks while comparing it to the different clear image from the THEMIS site at present. This was on Aug 26th as evidenced by the modified file date. Original copies were made and saved from it beforehand, and all the work and ratios I have for the color multispectral images were made from it beforehand as well. I did this quite inadvertently, but because the processes done on it are necessary and compatible for what processes are being done to the image to make quality multispectrals that is of little consequence. A lot of people have done a lot of torture processes on the image to try to discredit it's pedigree, but as of yet no one including myself has been able to replicate it using the image that is at the THEMIS site now.
I have so far processed nearly every possible band ratio combination from my downloaded image, the "official" THEMIS page image of the present, and the other separate version from an associate obtained independently that is very similar to the one I downloaded. Without exception, and in every band combination tried, the version I got on July 25th is superior both in color data levels and clarity.
The Official image at the THEMIS site is in fact a prettied up, heavily destreaked, and warp registered later version of the image I received. This is extremely important, because my image has no hints of destreaking or warp registration. Both of these are irreversible processes. There is no way I could have made my image from the version now at the THEMIS website. Not even had I wanted to. The inferior looking image produces superior multispectrals. That's all there is to it.
I challenge ANY image processor to counter the conclusions I have made comparing these images.
The image data also confirms somewhat that this image is valid. Clearly in the header of my image, (Which is a tiff) and unalterable by any method I know was the identifier. My image is labeled as a II* ¶µF Standard converted PNM file. The tiff image now available at the THEMIS site is headered with this label. II* dz. The GIF was labeled GIF, the png was labeled png, and the jpeg was labeled jiff. Might I remind any that PNM is a standard raw satellite data transferal format?
There have been many to attempt to "debunk" this image. No one has, and I have a good hunch no one ever will.
It is plain faulty analysis to take an image and subject it to overtly data torturous nonsense processes designed only to fake a claim that it's a fake based on the observations of said overprocessing steps. The only true way to analyze this image is to process all the data sets and compare. All else is foolhardy supposition using an array of dubious practices for ascertainment. Nonsense in other words.
Where did I get this image? From ASU's (Arizonia State University) THEMIS site. No speculation needed. What did I do to this image? Nothing in any way image destructive. I will stand before all and defend my stance on this. Perhaps I was "bamfed" to where the real picture was kept? I do know this, somehow I obtained an unaltered tiff image with a different header identifier which produces superior IR multispectrals over and beyond the presently displayed and original July 24th image release. Having looked at some of the example images and visible overlays both on my site and The Enterprise Mission you might come to the same conclusion. Personally, I think they are fantastic, opening up an entire new era in Mars exploration.
END of testimony.
Clearly, Mr. Keith Laney's testimony above not only describes in detail how he acquired his downloaded data from NASA, but also describes a complex set of communications between an important researcher named Noel Gorelick from within the ASU imaging department in a direct association with NASA. This accompaniment of official advice adds to the process of dissemination and must be included in the consideration of integrity for data for this circumstance.
We wish that the Data Quality officer e-mail all responses to Keith Laney at email@example.com (telephone 704-573-6144) with CC to Richard Hoagland; firstname.lastname@example.org and Francis Knize; email@example.com (203 544-9603)
Mr. Hoagland has indicated he will provide the documentary evidence upon request, which is a record kept of the headers attached to each download. Apparently the download headers indicate a difference of data size as well as other attributes.
Should NASA maintain that the data Mr. Laney claims to have received could not have come from a NASA source, then this should be considered a point of need for inspection rather than denial of inspection. An open Panel must then analyze how the elements of Mr. Laney's frame relates to the original as posted at the NASA site. Only then can it be properly determined how data was received by Mr. Laney, and disseminated by NASA
We request that a panel for peer review be set up consisting of members from both inside and outside of NASA to determine why data does not seem transparent and, additionally, the process and mode for dissemination not transparent. This is according to original OMB guidelines for data quality. A review conducted solely from the inside of the agency could be considered a continuance of prejudicial treatment in determining integrity. A fair proceeding would include agreement from imaging professionals from both inside and outside the agency. The selection must include recognized scientists previously involved in anomalies study as well as having credentials in image analysis. Open peer review status would be according to the original Data Quality Act determinations of which the NASA guidelines should be encompassing. Judgments need to include the opinions of well-established scientists who have centered on SETI study of which NASA has little inkling and knowledge, since the agency has officially indicated that it has little interest today to pursue SETI Research in our Solar System.
NASA guidelines place upon affected parties to have a duty to explain where data should be corrected, but it must also be realized that this cannot be easily determined until a reexamination is conducted to see where possibly information was corrupted, or altered, as image data often holds levels of complexity that best wait for an appropriate scientific approach for clarification. If we as a combined group of affected interests had to explain where we would like to see a correction in data take place, it would be in the correction to establish transparency of data, in other words that data would remain the same from the same NASA source for independent researchers who depend on consistency. This has clearly not been the case as depicted by the testimony above. A correction will occur when data is consistent, Mr. Laney's data for image frame was skewed when received. Mr. Laney's data contained a certain "blocking phenomenon" which appears not to be a result of photographic artifacting and pixilation, but rather to exhibit visual elements that are real. The aforementioned attributes were not contained in the image later showing at the same THEMIS source, which shows an inconsistency and unwarranted degradation in the official version now posted of the frame in question at the official NASA Internet site.
Please return notice as soon as possible concerning our Data Quality Act inquiry into NASA space probe imagery activities. The public anxiously awaits your reply.
Francis C. P. Knize; producer
Keith Laney; independent researcher, Ames Research Center consultant
Richard Hoagland; science writer, author, science consultant
The Enterprise Mission; Space Research organization
SETI scientists from about the globe
72 percent of the American population
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