For centuries people have hunted the lost, and probably mythical, city of Atlantis, which was located…well, somewhere. It supposedly vanished around 9000 BC, "in a single day and night of misfortune" according to the philosopher Plato.
At the start of this week, however, British tabloid newspaper The Sun said that aeronautical engineer Bernie Bamford had spotted a suspiciously square grid of lines in the Atlantic off the coast of West Africa, using Google Earth.
Was this, the newspaper wondered, the lost city of Atlantis?
No, Google responded, it wasn’t. Instead the grids were marks made by boats using sonar technology to collect data from the ocean floor.
A Google spokesperson said:
"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."