Feb 21 2014

Pareidolia Watch – Mercury Edition

I only have time for a quick entry today, so here is any easy one – another example of pareidolia unrestrained by reality testing. Pareidolia is the tendency for our brains to match known patterns to random sensory noise, most commonly applied to images. The most familiar image to the human brain is the human face, and so perhaps the most common experience of pareidolia is the seeing of a face in the clouds, in a rust stain, tree bark, tortilla shell, a hillside, or on NASA photos of other worlds.

The Face on Mars is a famous example. Low resolution images of the Cydonia region of Mars showed an apparent face, although the image was lit from the side so half the “face” was missing, and the nostril (which added to the overall illusion) was just data loss from the image. Later higher resolution images showed the face for what it was, just another natural formation.

Alien-hunting conspiracy-mongering entrepeneurs, however. found a career in pouring over the tons of NASA images from Mars, the Moon, and Mercury looking for anything odd that they could declare is an alien artifact. This endeavor has brought us bigfoot on Mars and well as a menagerie of other critters that are indistinguishable from eroded rocks. But of course we have many faces.

Here is yet another Youtube video where someone points out all of the instances of pareidolia they found from NASA picture of the surface of Mercury. This one is particularly lame, in my opinion. The faces are not even remotely compelling. Often the Youtuber has to point them out to you before you even, sort of, can see them.

He also states that he wanted to get these images out there before NASA comes in, Photoshops over the faces and then reposts the doctored images. So, apparently NASA is engaged in a conspiracy to hide what are claimed to be stunning discoveries – you know, the kind of thing that would bring fame and attention to NASA and probably increase their budget by at least an order of magnitude. But I guess they are just tools of an even deeper conspiracy to hide the truth from the masses, because….

Anyway, true to the grand conspiracy narrative, the conspirators are brilliant and powerful, yet simultaneously idiotic. NASA puts out pictures to the public with evidence of alien activity they want to hide. They then wait for someone to point out the evidence to the public, then they swoop in and Photoshop over the damning pixels. Because, as you know, Photoshop doctoring is impossible to detect, and NASA does not have to worry about the pre-doctored evidence getting out of their control by posting it on the internet. It would not be worth the time and trouble to examine the photos prior to public release and cover over any unwanted evidence. Their plan is to wait until the evidence is made public, and then retroactively cover it up.

Perhaps NASA is just counting on the fact that no one is going to believe a Youtube warrior pointing to vague splotches on grainy photos as evidence of alien activity.

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