As the story goes, the glorious ancient city of Atlantis sank under the sea. There are different accounts offering bits and pieces of the lost city's location, but the general consensus has always been that water is involved. The water in German programmer Michael Hübner's hypothesis, however, is a little different.
For him, it was more like a massive wave of water that hit Atlantis and dealt colossal destruction on the ancient city before draining away, like a tsunami leveling an area before receding back into the sea after an earthquake. This idea led Hübner to believe that Atlantis is not underwater. In fact, it is nowhere near water and instead is sitting in plain sight in a desert in Morocco.
Data analysis prompted Hübner to conclude where Atlantis is. He used geographical data taken from two of Plato's writings describing the ancient city. From "Critias" and "Timaeus," he was able to derive 51 attributes that he then used in a mapping program. The clues Plato left regarding Atlantis' location involved closeness to the sea, a spot beyond the "Pillars of Heracles," which many believe as Gibraltar, mountains to the north, an elephant population, a ring-like city structure and a 3,100-mile distance from Athens.
Hübner applied the 51 attributes into a computer program, resulting in a map with a grid for 400 subareas. As more and more attributes were applied to a certain set of geographical coordinates, the mini squares were narrowed down to reveal Atlantis' location. After all points had been tallied, one subarea stood out: the Souss-Massa plain, a spot along the coastline of Morocco around 100 miles to the south of Marrakesh.
A closer look at the area revealed a natural depression inland, a desert basin sitting just 7 miles from the sea and almost surrounded by foothills. At the center of the basin is a small mound, highly reminiscent of how Plato depicted Atlantis' center. The mound also featured three concentric dry riverbeds surrounding it, matching Plato's description of a city circular in shape, with an island at the center that is enclosed by alternating rings of water and land.
Hübner's measurements for Atlantis' center, the rings around it and the center's distance from the Atlantic Ocean only varied by around 10 percent from what Plato had recorded. He shared his work with Mark Adams, who wrote about the discovery in the Souss-Massa plain in a book called Meet Me in Atlantis.
Photo: Swen George | Flickr