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Atlantis found on Google Earth? Er, no

Strange grid-like image off the West Coast of Africa was spotted on Google Earth. Could it be Atlantis? Nope. It's "an artifact of the data collection process," Google says.

It looks like the plan of a Donald Trump luxury prison facility etched into the ocean's floor.

Yet some who have seen it on Google Earth believe that this could be, yes, finally, no, unequivocally the lost city of Atlantis. A city where no one ever dies, everyone partakes of libidinous orgies from dusk till dawn, Bobby Ewing hangs out, and the property taxes never rise above $500.

The "Sun" newspaper even winkled a quote from Dr. Charles Orser, curator of historical archaeology at the State University of New York: "The site is one of the most prominent places for the proposed location of Atlantis, as described by Plato. Even if it turns out to be geographical, this definitely deserves a closer look."

This is Atlantis (Nassau Branch). I cannot possibly say what happens within its walls. CC Heather 0714

It pains me to say that I am the winkler of bad tidings. For I have discovered the words of one of those excitement dampeners employed by Google official job title "spokesperson." The representative acknowledged that Google Earth had already been used to find such historical gems as an Ancient Roman villa.

However: "In this case, what users are seeing is an artifact of the data collection process. Bathymetric (or sea-floor terrain) data is often collected from boats using sonar to take measurements of the sea-floor...The lines reflect the path of the boat as it gathers the data. The fact that there are blank spots between each of these lines is a sign of how little we really know about the world's oceans."

Looking at the lines traced by these boats, might I suggest that their captains are thoroughly tested for performance-debilitating substances?

When you look closely, they do seem to trace rather wobbly paths. Perhaps one or two of the captains actually spotted Bobby Ewing and were momentarily stunned that he was still alive.