The iconography of extraterrestrial landscapes
From the Geologic Map of the Uruk Sulcus Quadrangle of Ganymede in which “[a]lbedo, surface morphology and texture, and crater densities were the principal characteristics used to distinguish one unit from another, following planetary photogeologic mapping conventions. Crosscutting relations were used to determine the three-dimensional relations between units. However, unlike the terrestrial planets, for which the techniques for planetary geologic mapping were developed, Ganymede has landforms that, apart from impact craters, are largely structural features. Although every effort was made to identify individual material units, the map has as much in common with tectonic maps as with geologic maps on which units are distinguished in terms of lithology and age. Thus, on this map some units of the same apparent lithology and age are distinguished from one another by different surface features.”
One cannot help but imagine that a thousand years from now, after Ganymede has long been terraformed and colonized, our ancestors may be in the midst of a civil war borne out of border disputes and conflicting claims of territorial legitimacy, the legacies of an imprecise quadrangle map.
Future Jovian israeli-palestinian warfare as a function of geomorphological abstraction. Terrorism as an offspring of ancient mapping iconography.
USGS Astrogeology Research Program