back to article NASA admits hiding 'really good' news from Martian soil

It appears the Curiosity rover on Mars has had some exciting news, but NASA controllers have said that they're keeping quiet about it until the facts have been checked. "This data is gonna be one for the history books. It's looking really good," John Grotzinger, principal investigator for Curiosity told NPR. According to …

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  1. proto-robbie
    Terminator

    Traffic wardens?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      No, some Mango Chutney, to go with the poppadum they photographed a while back.

  2. JeevesMkII
    Alien

    NASA all shook up?

    I'm betting they found Elvis dung. Complete with half-digested fried bananas.

  3. Marketing Hack Silver badge
    Boffin

    What could it be?

    1. organic matter (probably Jimmy Hoffa's body if it is)

    2. The usual cunning marketing promotion associated with the America Geophysical Union?

    3. Dr. Manhattan's underwear?

    The world waits!!

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: What could it be?

      Working a Watchmen reference into a NASA article - ++good

  4. stucs201
    Joke

    They've found out Mars really is made out of nougat, caramel and covered in chocolate?! Now where can we get a chippan big enough to deep fry an entire planet?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Glasgow

  5. Graham Dawson

    I'm just glad to see someone spell "tenterhooks" right for once.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "THESE data ARE"

      The NASA guy can't do plurals proper though

      1. Alex King
        Thumb Down

        Re: "THESE data ARE"

        Chrissakes man - common usage and all that. Next you'll be criticising NASA employees for using split infinitives.

      2. Galidron
        Flame

        Re: "THESE data ARE"

        I really hate that. Saying that data is always a plural is so illogical to me I can't even conceive of a way to accept it. "Data are" sounds so terrible it makes my mental ears bleed every time I read it.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: "THESE data ARE"

          > "Data are" sounds so terrible it makes my mental ears bleed every time I read it.

          and yet it is still correct

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: "THESE data ARE"

          These things are... these items are... these objects are... mental ears bleeding yet?

          The only reason I don't treat data as a plural in reports is that I am surrounded by people who didn't do Latin at school.

      3. Code Monkey
        Facepalm

        Re: "THESE data ARE"

        Yeah. Data ARE. Also use "THEE" and "THOU" more often.

  6. JeffyPooh Silver badge
    Alien

    Ack. Ack ack ack.

    As above.

  7. WR
    Joke

    A million to one.

    Scientists have found red 'weed' on mars.

    Are immediately volunteering for first manned mission.

    1. This post has been deleted by its author

      1. Wombling_Free
        Devil

        Re: A million to one.

        "Perhaps the future belongs not to us – but to the Martians?"

        I bloody hope it does - I'd hate to see a universe settled by a cross breed of bogans, chavs & rednecks.

  8. Richard Boyce

    Air

    If the instrument inadvertently carried air including methane from Earth, could it have also carried organic matter? I assume everything got zapped to sterilise it before departure, but such matter would remain.

    Finding native living microorganisms would be quite fantastic, but that might mean that the planet would be quarantined, with no return trips allowed.

    1. toxicdragon

      Re: Air

      This was covered in an earlier story, the instruments were exposed to martian soil by basically running through a sampling process but with out active instruments to try to eliminate the risk of earth based contamination.

  9. LaeMing Silver badge
    Happy

    They found proof

    that there IS intelligent life somewhere in the universe after all!

    1. Vladimir Plouzhnikov

      Re: They found proof

      And they have just fried it.

  10. t1mc

    Drive Thru

    A sign? Looks like two yellow shapes on a red background?

  11. Shane Lusby
    Alien

    I for one welcome our new dirt based overlords.

  12. Winkypop Silver badge
    Alien

    It's life Jim

    But not as we know it.

    (fingers crossed)

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Paris Hilton

      Re: It's life Jim

      Beat me to it.......

      Though I'd have added:

      What do you expect? A pole dancing asari?

  13. dssf

    They found a way to springboard from Mars to Andromeda?

    Probably not, but it is interesting that a new Super Jupiter has been found, too. Apparently, that is not as big as the pending Mars news....

    For those interested, see this:

    http://www.space.com/18522-super-jupiter-alien-planet-photo.html

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: They found a way to springboard from Mars to Andromeda?

      The Reg covered it too:

      http://www.theregister.co.uk/2012/11/20/super_jupiter_pictured/

  14. AfternoonTea
    Alien

    Oh, the teasers..

    I bet they found E.T.'s "discharge".

  15. Sam Paton
    Alien

    Michael Bay already told us.

    They found a Decepticon...

  16. johnwerneken
    Alert

    hope they find life

    Hope they find life, might get funding for real space exploration, which in turn would enable (but not require) space exploitation, so maybe some day human beings can (a) preserve Earth more easily (b) gain energy and other resources from places besides Earth (c) actually live in places besides Earth. Having done all that, someday, humanity would (a) be more likely to survive (b) be capable, if desired, of exploring places light-years away. Who knows, we might someday either discover, or attract the attention of and find ourselves discovered by, some other intelligent species.

  17. P. Lee Silver badge

    Found intelligent life?

    I think not - nor any life.

    There's plenty of intelligent life here on earth but few people seem that interested.

    If we can't deal properly with our own kind, how successful do you think we'd be with aliens?

  18. WonkoTheSane
    Trollface

    They've found the best way to kickstart manned exploration missions...

    GOLD!

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: They've found the best way to kickstart manned exploration missions...

      That's a bit old fashioned. Try "They've found oil."

      Then the Americans will be itching to invade ^H^H^H^H^H^H^H investigate further.

      1. Bernard M. Orwell Silver badge
        Happy

        Re: They've found the best way to kickstart manned exploration missions...

        That's a bit old fashioned, try Helium-3.

        1. annodomini2
          WTF?

          Re: They've found the best way to kickstart manned exploration missions...

          "That's a bit old fashioned, try Helium-3."

          Given there's He3 on the moon, bit pointless to go to Mars, until we've stripped the moon bare! ;)

        2. despun

          Re: He-3

          Wake me up when they've got that to work .....

      2. Ragarath
        Megaphone

        Re: They've found the best way to kickstart manned exploration missions...

        If they have found oil that would be two big discoveries in one!

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: They've found the best way to kickstart manned exploration missions...

      Unobtainium

  19. James O'Brien
    Joke

    Whoa

    I have it from reliable sources that they found amanfrommars. Why hold back on this discovery we need to know what hes upto.

    1. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

      Re: Whoa ... Move along now, nothing to see here that you don't already know about

      :-) Hey Presto ..... urWish Our Command ... http://forums.theregister.co.uk/forum/1/2012/11/20/oldest_digital_computer_deboots/#c_1630843........ is an Alien Way with WOW Input Direction? Surely not? IT is Virtually Man's Perfectly Natural State for Elevated Being.

      Hi, James O'Brien,

      The Powers That Be are at something of a XSSXXXXRoads. To Avoid the Virtual Space Places is not an Option Open to them for Power in ITs Control, which renders them Virgin in ITs Insatiable Fields of Rabid Communication with Remote Control. The Hiring of Sound of Mind Proxies Playing Well in the Field is a Solid SMARTR Starter Investment for Both the Bemused and Amused, Abused and Defused Shareholder

      And the Virtual Gems in Insatiable Fields Energise Immaculate Desire ......with Raw Core Sourced, Sweet Sticky Temptations ...... Model Inventions on Base Pleasures.

  20. Old Handle
    Stop

    I wish they would stop doing this.

    They've done it before and the payoff never lives up to the pre-announcement hype. If you've got something to tell us, tell us. If you're not ready to talk about it, don't talk about it.

    1. El Presidente
      Holmes

      If you're not ready to talk about it, don't talk about it.

      That is what they are doing or not, as the case may be.

      "If you've got something to tell us, tell us"

      They will when they have.

      Hope it's recognisable as life of evidence thereof.

      That would be a beautiful bombshell for the religious nutters.

      Just in time for Jebus day!

      1. Elmer Phud Silver badge

        Re: If you're not ready to talk about it, don't talk about it.

        Oi! that's 'Little Baby Jesus' to you - use the proper trade name ffs!

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: If you're not ready to talk about it, don't talk about it.

        It would have the side effect of the C of E supporters of C S Lewis going around saying "He told you so".

    2. h4rm0ny

      Re: I wish they would stop doing this.

      So a journalist calls you up and asks you to comment and you're not ready yet. Do you say: "nothing has been found". Well that's a lie. Do you tell them stuff before you've triple checked, knowing that you've been burned before by that. No. Do you say: "we will make an annoucement in due course." ? Sounds like the last is the only acceptable option. So if you don't like it, have a go at the journalists, not the scientists.*

      (*note - am not saying you should have a go at the journalists.)

  21. localzuk
    Alien

    Life?

    The chances of anything coming from Mars are a million to one...

    1. Andrew Newstead

      Re: Life?

      ...they say.

      But -

      The chance on anything staying on Mars are pretty good!

      BTW has anyone worked out the chances of anything coming from Earth?

    2. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge
      Happy

      Re: Life?

      "The chances of anything coming from Mars are a million to one..."

      Million-to-one chances come up nine times out of ten...

  22. Andrew 6

    So either

    Life (or trace of past) of some description

    or

    Resources which we're rapidly running out of in a quantity that may be of interest to us

    or

    ???

    1. VinceH Silver badge
      Coat

      Re: So either

      "or

      ???"

      You think they might have found question marks?

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: So either

      "Resources which we're rapidly running out of in a quantity that may be of interest to us"

      Electrical retailers that aren't PC World?

    3. DJ 2

      Re: So either

      Isn't it obvious,

      they foud an ice crystal.

  23. wowfood
    Alien

    They found my stash

    of illudium q-36 explosive space modulators

  24. Big_Ted

    The Big News..............

    Martian Bunnies have 6 legs.........

  25. scrubber
    Mushroom

    WMDs

    A coalition of the willing must be formed to invade - NOW!!! They could potentially hit us in 45 months.

  26. EddieD

    How about

    "Slartibarfast. Beta test"

  27. ukgnome Silver badge

    I thought the whole point was the rover was looking for water or evidence of water, and did not have the apps for searching for life.

    1. Annihilator
      Boffin

      Yup, think the article's oversimplified it. Curiosity isn't designed to detect life directly, only the elements required for life (as we understand it), "organic" compounds and biosignatures (or evidence life existed).

      Although if a ma-hoooo-sive spider crawled across the ground where a camera was pointing, they could probably claim that one

      1. Sporkinum

        A bat-rat spider?

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Angry_Red_Planet

  28. Crisp Silver badge

    Blue skies on Mars?

    That's a new one!

    1. Annihilator
      Boffin

      Re: Blue skies on Mars?

      Not really, the sky is usually blue at sunset on Mars, and reddish during the day. Pretty much the opposite of Earth.

  29. I like noodles

    Wouldn't it be great if they've found ...

    ... some kind of rectangle with rounded corners?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Coat

      Re: Wouldn't it be great if they've found ...

      ... after plotting the graph of n^2 + 9 + 9, arriving at an unusual shape, a uniformly curved line which somehow joins up with itself that science has yet to find a name for.

      Can you think of a name for it? If you can, the Royal Mathematics Society would like to hear from you. Because they hold a competition each year to find a name for this figure. The final takes place in Nottingham on April the 4th of September. And you could win your school this computerised toast system. So, good luck!

      1. hplasm Silver badge
        Happy

        Re: April the 4th of September

        A complex date indeed.

    2. h4rm0ny

      Re: Wouldn't it be great if they've found ...

      My God... It's full of patent lawyers!

  30. Giacomo Bruzzo

    They found ...

    the coast of Norway ...

    1. amanfromearth

      Re: They found ...

      Slartibartfast will be pleased

  31. Joe K
    Alert

    Don't get excited

    It'll be one for the GEOLOGISTS history books, as in they've found a nice type of quartz, or some such bullshit.

    1. hplasm Silver badge
      Happy

      Re: Don't get excited

      It'll be one for the AREOLOGISTS history books.

      You're welcome.

  32. chris 251
    Alien

    it obvious what's happened.....while scooping up a sample they've found the top of a stargate.

    Kurt Russell is on standby to head a recon team

  33. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    We had this with the Phoenix lander as well...

    ... hush hush ... this must go straight to the WHITE HOUSE!!

    Nasa: We found Perchlorate.

    Bush: wtf is Perculate. This some kinda new coffee?

  34. Senior Ugli

    Its a big cover up

    sprouts grow on mars, then slowly drift through the atmosphere landing in out fields.

  35. James Gosling
    Megaphone

    Eeew...

    Martian farts!

  36. annodomini2

    We all hope for life...

    Bet it's some weird isotope of carbon or carbon dioxide.

  37. Wombling_Free
    Alert

    A lump of purest GREEN!

    Or maybe just some arsenic, so any hypothetical, maybe they don't actually eat arsenic at all creatures could live there. Hypothetically.

    A good naked-eye fossil would be nice though.

  38. Shane 4
    Mushroom

    Water or Life

    Announced next month they say? Wouldn't happen to be on the 21st December would it? (Hey someone had to do say it) ;)

    We have discovered life on a another planet, The written word is a lie, The"Book" is wrong, Mass riots on Earth take place which leads to Armageddon.

    Wow can't wait ,Sounds exciting. heh

    1. PaulWizard
      Alien

      Re: Water or Life

      Naaaa, it will just be [insert your chosen deity]'s way of testing the faith.

  39. Trevor Marron

    Is it?

    Is it Starbuck's registered office for paying their taxes?

  40. Eddie Edwards
    Boffin

    Life on Mars

    Since they found life on Mars last time they looked, my guess is they found it again.

  41. This post has been deleted by a moderator

  42. SiCo FR34K
    Joke

    ok...

    ..who farted in the launch chamber?

  43. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    We found this spoon, sir!

    (Rover brandishes said spoon and looks all chuffed with itself)

    1. stucs201

      Re: We found this spoon, sir!

      There is no spoon.

  44. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    If it is traces of water then....

    I thought the other 2 rovers and the phoenix lander had already chalked those up for themselves?

    Anyhow well done to the NASA team for the work the rover is giving the science community and hope the news is really interesting to all - and not just a geologist wetting his pants over some metamorphic rock formation which may or may not point to yet more evidence that mars was once wet (or at the very least slightly damp to the touch)

  45. Karcsi

    Look, I've found..

    a penny

  46. kend1
    Joke

    Pong

    They discovered a meteorite from Earth.

  47. DanceMan
    FAIL

    Re: There's plenty of intelligent life here on earth

    Japan announces plans for a fleet of ships to harvest the life forms on Mars for "research". Fishing nations plot how to get drift nets onto a rocket.

  48. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Spock...

    Yes Jim.

    Fire up the laser! We got company...

    Hold the fort whilst I get ready, for an imminent fight, in some Martian sand!

    Akk

    stop

  49. MikeyD85
    Happy

    Worm sign

    and Spice is prevalent on Mars! :O

  50. SimonWWW
    Unhappy

    Why are NASA playing a game with us?

    If it was serious - like life - they wouldn't tease us with a 'guess what' game in the press and on the internet would they? NASA are still a serious scientific organisation aren't they?

    Prepare to be a tad disappointed...

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