Thursday, January 15, 2004

On second thought, when does the next trip to Mars leave

While Earth prepares to lob more space junk at the Red Planet on January 24th, the Mars Rover has been busy taking temperatures of the Martian landscape. And uh, folks it's warmer than Winnipeg. Toronto and the rest of Eastern Canada could use the warming dust of Mars as well. Near as we can tell there is no wind chill today on Mars. The Spirit Rover made it's first move out into the sandbox of Mars, having sat in park for twelve days while NASA tried to figure out the best way around. The Rover will spend a few days circling the block so to speak before heading out to the hills. And that will signal the start of exploration on the planet that has fascinated us for many years.

From the novels of H. G. Wells, to the radio adaptation of War of the Worlds by Orson Welles, we have wondered if the little green men were going to be coming soon. Through the years literature and movies explored every possible angle of the Martian landscape, climate and possible civilization. So now we're there, one out of two crafts that have landed so far seem to be working, the Beagle landed and never did bark, the Spirit Rover is doing it's Steppenwolf imitation today. And more space traffic will land on the 24th of January, on landing fees alone we're going to owe the Martians a ton of whatever passes for currency there.

Here is an excellent list at our obsession with Mars, the movies, the TV shows the books and such. Make special note on the blurb about Capricorn One, and then think of the news conference yesterday at NASA. Ask yourself if it's possible for life to imitate art! Finally, lets hope we do a better job on Mars than we seem to be doing these days around the ole blue planet, third from the Sun.

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