It appears that the rover captured an unexplained beam of light on the surface of Mars.
The unknown white speck stands out against a backdrop of grey and black. It is so distinct, and yet utterly unidentifiable.
The immediate reaction from some theorists is that it's definite proof that there is life on the Red Planet. Either it is a tiny alien craft shining in the distance or, even better, a glimpse of a bizarre form of life on Mars.
Critics and skeptics slammed such conclusions immediately, stating that there is a logical explanation for the photo. An explanation that has nothing to do with alien lifeforms.
NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory offered up one such explanation in the form of light reflecting off a rock. Of course, this doesn't explain why the reflected light seems to rise above the ground some distance.
— Slate (@Slate) April 8, 2014
Another explanation put forward by experts is that it was merely a vent hole light leak.
As there is no one is at present able to go to Mars and confirm or deny what the strange blur is, it's likely that the photograph will be seen as a smoking gun for some conspiracy theorists and a lot of excitement over nothing by skeptics.
In other words, the beat goes on.
Personally, I say the greatest takeaway from this controversy is that such a debate is even possible. A mere hundred years ago, few would have ever dreamed that we would be seeing actual photos from the surface of Mars.
Though persons of that time period were far more likely to believe in bizarre life on Mars, today many scientists do not think the planet currently can support life.
Of course, images like this give hope to those who will continue to seek proof that argues otherwise.
— Beyond The Matter (@BeyondMatter) April 8, 2014
Image via YouTube