Chalk another one up for Google Earth seeing everything we can't. Australian armchair archaeologist David Kennedy simply fired up the app and managed to rediscover the ancient ruins of structures that rival the Nazca lines in southern Peru.
The lines were originally discovered by British RAF pilot Percy Maitland in 1927, but this is the first time they've ever been seen in all their glory. Kennedy used Maitland's photos with Google Earth to pinpoint their locations. And Google offers really the only high resolution glimpse at them that can be seen by the ordinary viewer. The structures are known to the local Bedouin tribes as being created by "the old men", and are about 2,000 years old. Similar structures, all resembling kites and wheels, have been discovered in Jordan and Yemen—some dating back as far as 9,000 years—and, while scientists aren't certain just what the hell these ruins were for, some conjecture that at least the kite-like ones could have been traps for game animals.
What the rest were for? Who knows. One of the few known civilizations that committed the energy to creating such geoglyphs was the Nazca culture, and their Nazca Lines are the most famous of all. Archaeologists still argue to this day as to the purpose of these designs, some resembling monkeys and others men, some believing that they were creating out of worship for their gods. And sure. Others like Swiss crackpot Erich von Däniken believe they're runways for alien vessels. It's unlikely that these ruins are the work of extra-terrestrials—but then again, who really knows right?—but it'll likely be unclear for years to come.
Images via Google