The most famous photograph of the Scottish beast was published in 1934, but the so-called Surgeon’s Photograph turned out to be a hoax. A constant progression of reported sightings has maintained public interest in the beast, and now Google is getting involved in the myth of the Loch Ness monster.
Google sends imaging equipment to Loch Ness
Just last year, debate raged as to whether an image from Apple Maps showed the monster, and now Google Street View is moving in to the area. Although Google does not promise Nessie hunters that it will finally prove its existence, it does offer a whole load of images for people to trawl through.
Google decided to send its imaging equipment to Loch Ness in honor of the 81st anniversary of the Surgeon’s Photograph. The tech giant sent its cameras over the surface of the Loch, as well as diving down into the cloudy waters, with one picture taken every 2.5 seconds in order to build a complete portrait of the loch.
Google enlisted Adrian Shine, who has investigated over 1,000 monster sightings. “He helped us go through the imagery,” said Deanna Yick, a program manager for the Street View team. “There are some very interesting images where the way the light hits the waves on the water, you’re not really sure,” said Yick.
Looking for answers in murky waters
The footage collected by Google gives one reason for the difficulties in proving the existence of Nessie: the murkiness of the water. “We knew that at Loch Ness, because of the peat content of the water, which makes it more murky than normal, that it would be difficult to see,” said Yick. “That adds to the experience.”
Another reason that the myth has continued is that people enjoy a mystery, even when it flies in the face of rational explanations. The myth continues to intrigue people because of our natural curiosity, and it seems unlikely that Google’s efforts will provide a definitive answer on the existence of the Loch Ness monster.
It has been said that Nessie is a giant squid, a seal, a hippopotamus or a crocodile, but perhaps the most cutting theory is that of British anthropologist Sir Arthur Keith, who said: “I have come to the conclusion that the existence or non-existence of that ‘monster’ is not a problem for zoologists but for psychologists.”