posted on Apr, 16 2009 @ 03:38 AM
Excellent work, OP! You really put a lot of effort into this.
First, I'd like to stress that I believe the Hill Starmap to be genuine, but I have to disagree with Marjorie Fish's interpretation of it. There, I
said it, and I stand on it, in spite of the danger of getting flamed by those who have too much invested in the Zeta Reticuli interpretation.
Allow me to explain. This map is the very reason that I took an interest in astrophysics to begin with. Specifically, the compositions, abundances,
and positions of nearby stars. Over the years, as I got time, I put a lot of work into it myself.
Ms. Fish did an admirable job of reasoning, and she interviewed Mrs. Hill on several occasions, asking all the right questions. There's actually
quite a bit more information concerning the dots on the map than is commonly disseminated.
There are a few points where I find the Fish interpretation to fall apart, however. First, and to my mind most glaring, is her identification of the
two largest disks, the ones she labels as Zet1 and Zet2 Reticulum, as stars. In the original map Mrs. Hill drew, these two bodies exhibit crescents.
They have a light side, a dark side, and the terminator is glaringly obvious. This is a property not found in self-luminous bodies such as stars.
Those two bodies appear to represent planets, either a double-planet, or a planet and moon system. Mrs Hill in fact stated that planets were present
on the map.
Second, the large disk in the center of the original drawing, the only star in fact that was large enough to even show a disk, and therefore the most
prominent star in the map, is ignored by Ms. Fish entirely. It appears, by the crescents of the 'planets', to actually be the central star of the
system, their 'sun'. All the other stars, including the ones on the 'trade routes', are represented by mere dots, some larger or brighter, some
smaller or dimmer.
Third, if one removes the lines representing 'trade routes' from both maps, all resemblances promptly disappear. They both become two completely
unrelated sets of dots.
My research into this is ongoing, slowly, and will probably never be finished by me. There are a plethora of computer programs out there that will
allow one to rotate and travel to any known star, to check the views for yourself. Since I'll probably never get this finished, I'll just tell you
something I've not released anywhere yet, and whoever wants to can run with it. Or not. For my money, that view comes from near Beta Comae Berenices,
also known as Gliese 502 among other designations. Coincidentally, or perhaps not, It's near the north Galactic Pole (around one degree off from it),
which is also a G class main sequence star.
All of the logic necessary to narrow down the search and identify the pattern is already on the internet, but is largely ignored, because most folks
believe the Zet Ret interpretation, and so feel no need to dig further. A good start would be to restrict the initial search to upper K (K5-K0), G,
and lower F (F9-F6) stars. Our Sun needs to be on one of the lines, since we were obviously visited. DON'T leave any of the stars on the map out,
that smacks of cherry picking to produce a pattern. DO leave the planets out. they are irrelevant until the central star is firmly identified. I would
say that MOST of the stars on the lines are habitable, but I'm not convinced they ALL are. Could be some mining or some such going on. Furthermore,
according to Mrs Hill, some of those lines only represent 'expeditions', not necessarily trade. The stars on the lines, as Ms. Fish observed, should
be in a logical sequence, distance-wise. In other words, the lines should go progressively further into the map, away from the viewpoint.
Edit: We now have the Hipparcos and Tycho data to work with, where positions are a bit more accurate and precise than the Gliese data that Fish worked
with, and more precise than the Gliese Catalog of Nearby Stars 3rd Edition (provisional) that I initially started working with back in '92 or so.
That's my .02 cents worth. Considering inflation, it will probably soon be worth .01 cents. Or less.
[edit on 2009/4/16 by nenothtu]