But it sure may be an interesting conclusion and sure drives funding. A group out of Washington State University published this week in PNAS on the detection of transitory microbial life in the hyperarid Atacama Desert. The research team collected samples from multiple locations and leveraged metagenomic analysis alongside more classical cellular activity assays to confirm the presence of organisms with a unique approach towards living in one of the most hostile environments on Earth. The question the researchers bring up though is even more interesting, if Mars at one point had water (which there seems to be some evidence) could it have life which survived the drastic transformation which has reduced the planet to a desert? Could any of our platforms even detect what we consider life if it were present? Should our next probe include a nanopore sequencer but then that is assuming such life would be DNA or RNA? We have already sent GCs and MSs but still no true confirmation, what would provide solid conclusive evidence (outside of a Tesla landing in front of Spirit)?