Thursday, November 15, 2018
Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day shows Comet 46P/Wirtanen, a periodic comet now visible (but not to most naked eyes). Keep watching, though, some day we'll have the confluence of a large comet passing close enough to Earth at the right time to put on a good show.
Wednesday, November 14, 2018
Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day brings us an image of Sh2–155, better known as The Cave Nebula. A combination of sulfur, hydrogen and oxygen bring us the rich colors (as does the fine work of the photographer!) together in a phrase I've noticed several times of late: the Hubble Palette.
Tuesday, November 13, 2018
Monday, November 12, 2018
Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day is a panoramic shot from Apollo 15: Mount Hadley Delta, the Lunar Roving Vehicle, Astronaut David Scott and the shadow of Astronaut James Irwin. Dream mighty things—let's go back!
Saturday, November 10, 2018
Greg Stafford passed away recently. You can read about some of his accomplishments here and here. For me, I appreciate that he, along with several other very famous game designers, always were happy to take time when I met them at conventions or sent them a piece of (paper) mail. The genuine enthusiasm of people like Greg Stafford were a big reason that I have been a gamer since 1976.
Thank you, Greg. Vale.
Today you may see the hashtag #WeAreAllUs around the various social media platforms. At the request of Greg's family, people are playing games designed by Greg, or, if they don't have one, just playing a game, in his memory.
I'm currently between game campaigns thanks to Real Life (TM) constantly whacking me, but I hope to rectify that. Soon. Hopefully with something that Greg had a hand in.
Because I am interested in more than just space and astronomy and science fiction and the like, but also finance, the economy, trade, history and so much more...I present...THE HAM BOND!
Picking on a recent theme, here is more Robert McCall artwork, all clustered around a large deep-space vehicle. Above, a visit to an asteroid. Below, the vehicle returns to Earth orbit, slowing down through the process of aerobraking.
Friday, November 9, 2018
The ESA and Roscosmos have recommended a region of Mars known as Oxia Planum for the upcoming Exomars rover. With a launch planned for 2020, the rover will explore the surface and drill up to two meters into the surface to hunt for clues that life once existed on Mars.
We've gone from a geologically dead planet, to a planet with an active geological past; from a dry planet to a planet with countless traces (to put it mildly) of a very wet past. How long before we can knock off "lifeless" (even if it is "just" traces of previous life)?
Thursday, November 8, 2018
Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day is a multiple exposure image (over time) of the pattern that Mars traces across the sky. The Earth moves around the Sun, Mars moves around the Sun, and the interplay causes Mars (or the other planets) to appear to dance back and forth in our sky.
"Mouseover" the image in the link for a constellation guide.
Wednesday, November 7, 2018
Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day shows NGC 6188, in the constellation of Ara. The dragons of Ara? No, finally, after horses and a state over the past two days, my assertion that nebula look like lizards is proven true.
Tuesday, November 6, 2018
Monday, November 5, 2018
Sunday, November 4, 2018
The first adventure I ran for Chaosium's Call of Cthulhu fantasy/horror roleplaying game was The Haunting. I'm sure this is true for many as either the first run or the first played in, given how long the game has been out there. This art, by Jason Thompson, captures that wonderful first adventure nicely.
Today's Astronomy Picture of the Day shows the post-landing scene for the return of 2001's Genesis probe, bringing a sample of our Sun back to our Earth. That first step back from orbit is the hardest.