End of the Cassini mission

October 15, 1997. Cassini made a beautiful and perfect launch. I had just met my wife-to-be. I had no kids of my own.

January 14, 2005: Cassini drops Huygens probe on Titan. One of my all-time favoritest moments:

September 15, 2017: Cassini’s fuel has finally run out. It will take an intentional dive into the atmosphere of Saturn. Taking pics and measurements along the way, it will very doubtfully reach anything resembling a surface. Instead it will burn up and disintegrate along the way, just barely scraping the highest of Saturn’s mostly Hydrogen, incredibly windy atmosphere. I just celebrated my 16th anniversary, my son is fourteen years old.

What a remarkable mission it’s been.

Eclipse protective gear

August 21, 2017 is coming.  I can’t wait.  However, I still see a lot of people asking this:

The very simple answer is yes, it will damage your eyes looking into the eyes of the sun, even if that’s where the fun is.

The very simple solution is this:

These are very simply welder’s goggles.  Get them now, they are getting more expensive every single day getting closer to August 21.  August 22 I imagine they’ll be next to free.

 

My Science Fiction Tunes

Just for chucks and giggles, I’ve put together a playlist of some of my favorite science fiction songs that I’ve redone. As usual, there’s no vocals.  You have to sing them yourself.  See how many you can actually remember ( or ever even knew ) the words to:

Ziggy Stardust – Alien “Invasion”


The Man Who Sold the World – Afterlife


Starman – Aliens


Space Oddity – Space Travel


Science Fiction, Double Feature – A song about sci-fi. Duh.


Saviour Machine – Artificial Intelligence


Rocket Man – Space Travel


Oh! You Pretty Things – Making movies about science fiction


Moonage Daydream – Possibly android sexual gratification


Memory of a Free Festival – Alien contact


Me, I disconnect from you – Androids


Little Neutrino – Physics


Life on Mars! – A song about a movie about going to Mars.


Down in the Park – Future visions


Cat People – Eternal Life


Calling Occupants of Interplanetary Crafy – Alien Contact


Ashes to Ashes – Space Travel


Are Friends Electric? – Androids


Also Spach Zarathustra – AKA, theme from 2001: A Space Odyssey


Joy – Used extensively during the Apollo missions

Enjoy.  And don’t forget, I only do these for fun.

Get the much better, sometimes much different, originals here:

The Day the Internet lost its innocence

Ever wonder when the Internet went bad?  When ads started infiltrating every single aspect of your cruising experience?  Are you like I am and remember a day when the internet was still a bastion of eggheads that ruled the planet via 600 baud dialups?  Well, if you’re like me, you’re older than you think.  That image in this post header set me back a little longer than I expected.  What it is, you see, is the first documented banner ad.

Now, Hotwired still exists.  You can visit them and thank them for what they, along with AT&T, brought forth.  I’m not sure they ever contributed anything else to the Internet, but, that was probably more than enough.  Now, what Hotwired did not bring to the Internet, but the people crediting Hotwired with cursing us with banner ads in October 1994 did, was give us good reasons for hyperlinks.  Their address is:

http://thelongestlistofthelongeststuffatthelongestdomainnameatlonglast.com/

Men’s guide to surviving hormone hostage

The Hormone Hostage knows that there are days in the month when all a man has to do is open his mouth and he takes his life in his own hands. This is a handy guide that should be as common as a driver’s license in the wallet of every husband, boyfriend, or significant other.

DANGEROUS: SAFER: SAFEST: ULTRA SAFE:
What’s for dinner? Can I help you with dinner? Where would you like to go for dinner? Here, have some chocolate.
Are you wearing that? Wow, you sure look good in brown! WOW! Look at you! Here, have some chocolate
What are you so worked up about? Could we be overreacting? Here’s my paycheck. Here, have some chocolate.
Should you be eating that? You know, there are a lot of apples left. Can I get you a glass of wine with that? Here, have some chocolate.
What did you DO all day? I hope you didn’t over-do it today. I’ve always loved you in that robe! Here, have some more chocolate.

This guide was sent to me by my wife.  Trust me, it works.

 

( Originally posted 6/7/2006 )

Falcon 9 static fire anomaly

So, this happened yesterday:
They’re calling that an “anomaly”.  That folks, is complete failure.  There was a $200,000,000 #Facebook satellite on that rocket.  I’m sure the rocket itself was rather expensive as well.

Thank God it wasn’t the planned manned mission of next year.

We are still obviously not ready for manned missions.

Obama will be the first president to leave office without the ability to put a man in space since John F. Kennedy over fifty years ago.  The decision to end the Shuttle program may have been made before he was elected, but he killed off the replacement plan with no plan B.  Starting the private sector essentially from scratch AFTER ending the Shuttle program was stupid.  Nothing else but stupid.  Paying the Russians millions to get to a station we paid the heaviest burden of building was a stupid plan from the get-go.  Putting a man in charge of NASA who thinks stroking young Muslims egos and promoting global warming propaganda is more important than actual space travel just showed the contempt Obama has had for science in general his entire presidency.  The entire science community gladly jumping under the Obama bus is even more disappointing.  They still see Republicans every time Obama cuts NASA’s funding.  With this political climate, and the complete sell-out of the astronomy sector, we can’t even put a big satellite in space reliably.  If Clinton gets elected, it’ll be my kids’ generation before they even have a chance to enjoy the thrill of watching a heavy-lifter sending a crew into space.

It was her “overcharged” bribe to the Russians to get them to play nice.  It didn’t work.  They invaded a couple of countries, we tucked tail and ran, and still give them millions every year to send our people to our mostly-funded space station.  To think she’d suddenly change course as President is wishful thinking that hasn’t worked with Obama.

Obama, Biden, Bolden, and Clinton are the reason we’re watching huge fireballs instead of crews safely going to the Space Station and beyond.  Period.

 

ULA to begin human spaceflight in 2017

Today I was personally assured by ULA that they will be launching humans into space again from Cape Canaveral in 2017.

That was in response to my criticism of Charles Bolden announcing NASA needed to focus more on a destination for tourist travel.  I thought that was a clear indication of his ineptitude given the fact that since 2011 we’ve had a destination with no ability whatsoever to get people there.

That overwhelming fracking problem?

All we’ve heard for the last decade is the overwhelming, undeniable, evidence points to the fact that fracking has caused an increase in earthquakes in central United States.

No one can possibly question this statement of fact or risk being taunted in the exact same manner one would have been if they had the audacity to question global warming.  You’re a flat-Earther, Moon landing denier, you’re mentally challenged.   Seriously:

Now, the upside to this rather simple explanation for the increased earthquake issue is something the very simple-minded could understand, stop fracking.

There.

Problem solved.

However, as with almost every hot-button politically correct issue of the last twenty years, the problem is not what the activists think it is, and therefore, their solution won’t solve the problem.

This, is apparently the actual, real, problem:

Likely cause for recent southeast US earthquakes: Underside of the North American Plate peeling off

That sounds a lot more ominous than “stop fracking”.  However, that’s because it is.  As with “global climate change”, the underside of the North American plate peeling off into the Earth’s core is not something man is going to “correct” any time soon.  Blaming it on corporate America, greed, or Republicans won’t stop it.  Passing some bizarro tax won’t stop it either.  It has occurred since the dawn of Man and will continue long after our generations are gone.  And, if it does stop, so will mankind.

As with “climate change”, we’ll just have to figure out how to live with it since it will never, ever, realistically, go away.

The reality of this one is a lot simpler than proving the reality of man-made global climate change.  With the collapse of the oil industry, the fracking industry is dying a very rapid death.

By the end of this year, fracking production will be next to nothing.

How many people want to take the bet that the earthquakes will stop?