Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Forgotten Voyager of a Sideshow

Way back when, we were going back to the Moon. And then not. And then yes. And then no. And so on.

Luckily, on one of the up cycles, we launched several probes to enhance our knowledge of our neighbor, in preparation for one of those (cancelled) plans to return. The Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, the cornerstone of the latest series of probes is still going and has had its mission extended.

So, what next. LRO? Here's a list of targets and why they are the cornerstone of this mission extension.

Maybe someday we'll return to the Moon. Maybe some day we'll realize we can afford a lot more missions than we currently have (maybe we'll reduce spending in other areas?). If so, the LRO and others will have helped to pave the way back.

Sunday, August 28, 2016

This Is Me, Jack Vance

Happy birthday to one of my favorite authors, Jack Vance. Yes, you can see the chips of wood pulp throughout his writing, but very few write with his eye towards character interplay, odd costumes and customs, plots of vengeance, humor, mystery and more.

(Go look for the story of the houseboat project between Jack Vance, Poul Anderson and Frank Herbert.)

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Vinyl Echoes

Once upon a time we listened to our audiobooks on LP records. Which means they were very abridged (well, no, they were just a few excerpts). Turning up on the internet is Arthur C. Clarke reading from 2001: A Space Odyssey. Side 01 here. Side 02 here.


A short film about the restoration of the model used for filming the U.S.S. Enterprise in the original Star Trek series. I saw this model twice in it's pre-restoration life and would love to see what it looks like now.

Friday, August 12, 2016


What, two physics-related posts in one day?

Ever wonder what a typical science-oriented government agency keeps around in terms of equipment? Now you can know, down to the Jazz drives. Yes, Jazz Drives.

Fred and Jeff and John...

...are the Three Hoarsemen.

Once upon a time, our fellow member of SF Signal was so busy that he could not work on the SF Signal Podcast. I mean, poor Patrick was working like 40 hours of overtime on top of 40 hours of work.

So, we volunteered to do a fill-in episode. Then a second. Then we launched as a separate episode at SF Signal.

Then around episode thirty-five, the retirement of the site as a ongoing project was announced.

But, wait! There's more! We're now on The Incomparable Network, which grew from just The Incomparable (a show I started listening to around the original posting of their episode eight).

We live. WE LIVE...

This Is Why We Can't Have Nice Things

It appears that we've broken physics. Gosh dang it people, I told you to put physics further back on the shelf, so it wouldn't fall over!

Sunday, August 7, 2016

From Seven to Seventeen

Apollo 7 to Apollo 17, a montage of photographs taken during the lunar-oriented missions (wish they would expand to include Skylab and ASTP!). Fifteen minutes of awesome.

Saturday, August 6, 2016