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Marooned Off Vesta

Soulskill posted about 3 years ago | from the pebble-in-a-dark-sea dept.


mcgrew writes with this quote from an AP report: "After four years sailing through space, the Dawn spacecraft was expected to slip into orbit late Friday around a giant asteroid to begin a yearlong investigation into the origins of the solar system. It is the first of two scheduled tour stops for the NASA probe that almost never made it to the launch pad. Because of its stunted growth, Vesta holds 'a record of the earliest history of the solar system,' said the mission's lead scientist Christopher Russell of the University of California, Los Angeles." Dawn's mission homepage has all the information and pictures collected so far. On July 9th, it snapped our best look to date at the ~530-kilometer-wide Vesta, from 40,000 kilometers away. When it arrives, it will take observations from successively lower orbits, the final one being only 460km above Vesta's surface. Next May, Dawn will break orbit and head to Ceres. (mcgrew adds, "The submission's title is a nod to Isaac Asimov. Lets hope Dawn doesn't get marooned!")

cancel ×


Wow (-1, Troll)

spacenut1 (2375742) | about 3 years ago | (#36779600)

First pictures [] of the vesta as the spacecraft approaches!

Re:Wow (0)

creat3d (1489345) | about 3 years ago | (#36779642)

I'm just curious what gratification you get from this... do you jerk off to your hit counter?

Re:Wow (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#36779654)

Click on that dudes link if you want to be both trolled and disgusted.

The titled seems overly negative (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#36779656)

I read it and thought "Oh sh*t!" (including the "*", I tend to censor my thoughts that way.)

Re:The titled seems overly negative (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#36780364)

My first glance reading was "marooned in Vista" - "Oh sh*t" is right.

Re:The titled seems overly negative (1)

avandesande (143899) | about 3 years ago | (#36780394)

My first thought was what is this trans-vesta spacecraft wearing?

Wow (-1, Troll)

spacenut2 (2375754) | about 3 years ago | (#36779664)

First pictures [] of the vesta as the spacecraft approaches!

Re:Wow (1)

SleazyRidr (1563649) | about 3 years ago | (#36780482)

Troll warning: link in the above post is (probably) Goatse.

They are going to be disappointed (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#36779670)

They should have targeted the Wendows 7 asteroid.

In standard distance units. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#36779678)

Re:In standard distance units. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#36779870)

No, 530 km = 330 miles. Any further precision is irrelevant and misleading.

Re:In standard distance units. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#36780950)

Or 329 miles, depending on convention.

This is why you should always use exponential notation, so you can tell 5.3E5 km from 5.30E5 km...

Re:In standard distance units. (3, Informative)

camperdave (969942) | about 3 years ago | (#36779874)

Nice try. Miles are defined in terms of metres [] , making metres the standard distance unit.

Re:In standard distance units. (2)

bhcompy (1877290) | about 3 years ago | (#36780430)

imperial is sometimes called standard... GP didn't say "the standard".. durrr

Wow (-1, Troll)

spacenut3 (2375768) | about 3 years ago | (#36779690)

First pictures [] of the vesta as the spacecraft approaches!

Re:Wow (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#36779882)

So now you're pretty pathetic, as you actually wasted a considerable amount of time to sign up for three different accounts to post a fucking goatse link. I mean, I get it, I troll too, there's some enjoyment to be had there, but there's a limit to how much time you can invest into it before you're just a sad, pathetic waste of a human being.

Re:Wow (0)

spacenut7 (2375830) | about 3 years ago | (#36780078)

So now you're pretty pathetic, as you actually wasted a considerable amount of time to sign up for three different accounts to post a fucking goatse link. I mean, I get it, I troll too, there's some enjoyment to be had there, but there's a limit to how much time you can invest into it before you're just a sad, pathetic waste of a human being.

Its not a hard thing to create new accounts, my python script does that for me. I only enter the nick and capcha, and in a second new account is in clipboard.
Then only tree days of trolling this link got me 1700 victims.

In addition to that I am going to update that script a lot, add posting from within it, create a pool of accounts to preload it once manually and let it switch accounts, also automate IP switching when I am banned (I have dynamic IP mhaaa....), watch for comments and repost then automatically when they are modded down, notify me of victim rate, etc. Lot of work, but at least with current python script, it saves me a lot of work and makes trolling pleasant, so it worth every second of these 2 days I spent on it.

I troll usually about 1~2 hours during time I would waste otherwise. I mean what better: watch a (usually) ass suck movie than to make ~200 slashdotters hate you.
Also food served here is quite good. Every day I get 2~3 comments I laugh my ass off.

I keep a list of these comments, and post it here time form time:

"What an ass. Warning: Unpleasant picture in the link. That's what I get for browsing at 1, I guess."
"I'm just curious what gratification you get from this... do you jerk off to your hit counter?"
"O neat, you quoted me! Now I have to ask, why do you do this? seriously whats the motivation?"
"1999 called they want their overused shock pictures back."
"Parent post is a goatsex picture. Do not follow. You're an asshole of the proportions in that picture."
"Link above is to goatse. Fuck you douchebag."
"Turn on TinyUrl previews. It saves lives."
"Ugh. Goatse. NSFW. Asshole (poster and picture, both)."
"Seriously ... new account to post that ... what a douche!"
"You're a fucking douchbag." - "That is the most accurate comment yet"
"Not gonna click it to find out, but I'd be surprised if parent's link wasn't goatse... It appears you would be correct sir. Why oh why do I always forget..."
"My word, what is wrong with your anus? I'd get that checked out."
"It's because of Assholes like you that I can no longer trust URL shorteners"
"Thanks, I'm reading slashdot in class like a good student and just got tubgirl'd."
"Watching second monitor, there was something wrong with the other screen. Control + w. Phew..."
"Hey family! Come look! They're opening the Google Talk client! Now, click here......" (sees goatse)
"I tried to post warnings about the goaste loving jerk yesterday but was modded into oblivion as a karma whore"
"Posting your picture online again?", "Really? Are you not tired of this yet?"
(Me posts goatse link and tells that it is SFW): "You mean NSFW asshole."
"Can you not afford normal entertainment?" "This is grown up talk, 4chan is that way ->"
"Oops. goatse link" - "The AC speaks truth! (Well I didn't let it finish loading, but the browser was connecting to"
"He likes his urinal cakes nice and sudsy, so he tries to piss us off."
"Link is Goatse" - "Thanks. Does nerd soccer attract nerd hooligans?"
"You must be really bored, eh? Take your shit somewhere else. We don't serve your kind around here."

"Motherfucker. Some of us are at work and don't want to have a drilled out anus pop up on their fucking screen. Christ."
"BAN HIM!" "Ur a faggot for posting that."
"Death to all assholes - Let's put you first into the guillotine"
"You fucker" - "I had the same thought as you. What a fucking asshole. The link is nsfw."
"I hate your guts.", "WTF you fucking asshole.", "Fucking troll, do not click there"
"I hope you die in a fire before you are old enough to contaminate the gene pool."
"It would be more interesting if I had a piece of pipe and your face, in close proximity so I could smash your face beyond recognition,"
"Bravo teeny bopper. You're a really mature mother fucker (or do you prefer father fucking? Damn you homo erotic shittter)."
"Wait! I think I hear your mommy calling to give your tongue a good soap washing. And maybe she'll execute you too"
"I did not even bother to look, but this same idiot has been doing this for weeks now. Fuck off asshole."
"Asshole. literally. Goatse is so old. Grow up you fool."
"Asshole... Ginormous asshole, in fact." "Ugh. Goatse. You asshole."
"Better than you, you arse bandit." "You're a lowlife faggot piece of shit."
"Ah, a sheep troll. "Baaa! I post disgusting photos! Baaa!"
"I hate you"

"First time testemonies:
"Wow, all these years I managed to avoid seeing the guy, priding myself on my resilience to clicking on random image links from friends and trolls alike, taking comfort in the fact that I could identify a shock JPG based on a few lines of pixels while the holding the clipped window at the edge of my screen, and yet... now it's all for naught."

"After all these years, I finally fell for it. Just off to bleach my eyes.. thanks for that."
"Damnit, mod this guy up before GP gets any one else. My eyes, dear god my eyes, I'd managed not to see that until today!"
"WARNING: Don't click on the parent's link! Damn goatse! The first I experienced, no less.
"Parent is goatse. Dammit, and I've avoided it for a decade."
"ALERT ! goatse ya got me :("
"The fuck is a goatse? it's some dude pulling his arse open."

"Well done. I haven't been suckered into a goatse link in years."
"Now *that* is how you goatse. Even got me, and I'm an oldfag."
"Long time since I've been rickrolled with goatse!"
"Goatse URL - Haven't seen that guy in a while"
"Damnit! nearly 15 years reading /. and I still fall in a trap !"
"Well played, sir. It's been a while since I've been Goatse'd"
"Congrats. It's been a long time since I saw goatse."
"Looks very open to me... (congrats, 'twas a while ago I was goatsed the last time)"

Strong emotion:
""No ads? Kwel!" click... "WTF!! My eyes!!!! rip.... them.... OFF!!"
"i WAS eating lunch you ass!"
"Oh dear god my eyes. Haven't seen THAT awful image in a while."
"My eyes are burning... argh! Damn you!"
"MY EYES... dude i am at work here "S "
"Oh goddammit. I didn't need that right before bed."
"Goatse warning! I'm still recovering."
"Please friends, I beg of you, do not click that link! Do not look at that image, whatever you do! It is a bad image! It is a goatse image."
"Man you made me barf .... disgusting little fellow the GOATSE Guy"
"Ok I did not need to see this. kindly please go die in a fire."

Dumbassess talking:
"Oh wow, retro-trolling. Soon we'll be back to page-widening, Steven King is dead and bell bottoms."
"Hey moron, try using different links."
"You fucking piece of shit!" , "You sorry piece of shit.", "You cunt.", "Fuck you." "Get fucked"
"What a retard..... enough said...." "Nice. Asshole."
"Yup, this is what your life amounted to. Posting goatse on Slashdot and collecting comment trophies."

"Can someone make a fucking goatse blocker firefox plugin please? This is pissing me off now."
"I am sick and tired of that crap on /. "
"Don't visit the link above, everyone. -sigh- Especially at work."
"Doh! One has to also recognize data urls. *sigh*"
"Damn! Mod this fucker to hell"
"*sigh* Goatse alert..."

"When did you people stop being content with a simple rickroll? This is why Slashdot needs a "delete for spam" option."
"Goatse trolls are getting better these days..."
"Why the sudden coordinated campaign for Goatse? Is someone making money off this?"
"You're right, this is the most coordinated troll campaign in a long time. Multiple accounts, multiple pages."
"Urgh...dammit, am I the only one thinking the goatse trolls are getting worse lately than they have been in the past five years?"
"Who found a way to monetize goatse at this late date? If we got half the effort of that campaign on real stuff we'd all have better software by now."
"Boy Goatsex is out in force today... - Every topic is littered with them..."
"You can't actually expect the Slashdot users to actually know enough not to respond to a goatse troll, right ?"
"Can we start banning people who post that hiding it behind a url shortening link like"
"How many times are you going to spam this link? Like we don't know where that goes......"
"The GP's post is just to get you to click a link with the Goatse man's picture on it."
"One of these days, this asshole gonna have a hard drive crash and lose his precious list, consigning his life's work to oblivion. He'll probably kill himself."

"Cool goatse link bro"
"Giggles. That made my day. Thank you."
"You are one dedicated troll."
"Well played, sir. Well played."
"A link that redirects to a page containing goatse? How clever of you!"
"Thank you for that informational link"
"Interesting use of Data URLs for Goatse linking."
"Nice Goatse dude"
"Good one, Sir."
"Nice link to have!"

Funny warnings:
Why the fuck would you post something like that? Warning to all: scatology in its worst form. Do not look.
"Would advise against clicking the link in the troll post above. Especially if you're at work atm."
"Link Warning!!! Not for those at work or of a nervous disposition, or even those bored with the stupid Goatse image."
"You really don't want to click the fundamental link, you'll be scarred for life."
"Above Link NSFW... The picture was just wrong... wrong..."
"WARNING! Above link is not something anyone wants to see!"
"Parent should be modded down. Link is NSFW and mentally scarring."
"High likelyhood of being a Goatse link. Proceed with caution"
"Didn't click it, but the magic 8-ball says goatse."
"Danger, goatse" "Don't click the link! Goatse wannabe."
"Someone please mod this guy down... Don't click his link."
"I dunno if this is supposed to be goatse or what, but clicker beware on parent."
"Don't click link, Its a trap" - "Get an ax!"

"What the hell is up with this guy? can somebody gag him or something please"
"Just post the damn url, i'm not going to click on a tinyurl link and get goatse'd or something.."
"That's somewhat clever, but some of us do know what base-64 encoding is."
"Could not someone at slashdot write a small script to blacklist url's that have been flagged troll? I'll do it if you pay me a slave wage..."
"Mod to -1, please. this guy is an 'asshole'.... (yes, you guessed it)"
"That link is goatse-esque. Yuck."

Re:Wow (0)

cptdondo (59460) | about 3 years ago | (#36780502)

Wow dude, and this makes you feel worthwhile? It must really suck living in your grandma's basement.

Why don't you get out and try to do something worthwhile with your life?

Re:Wow (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#36782172)

ROFL. I haven't laughed at something like this since... shit. What was that? George of the Jungle? That type of funny where it's so ridiculously stupid that you just can't help but laugh out of nothing other than sympathy for the poor soul who has to come up with this shit. Tell your supervising adults (which obviously you do have, right?) that they need to give you some new toy to play with. You're getting too bored with the ones that you have. Maybe try... oh, I don't know. Here's a link to look at and get some ideas: []

Marooned??? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#36779700)

maroon 2
verb [ trans. ] (often be marooned)
leave (someone) trapped and isolated in an inaccessible place, esp. an island : a novel about schoolboys marooned on a desert island.

Yeah, so where is the part about Dawn being trapped???

Someone smack the artist (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#36779756)

Why is it that an artist rendition done in the name of science is so poorly done? You get the impression that there are big chunks of rock floating every couple of miles/kilometeres in space. This is one reason why we can't get kids straight about science... and this is approved by the scientists!

Wow (-1, Troll)

spacenut4 (2375794) | about 3 years ago | (#36779770)

First pictures [] of the vesta dwarf planet as the spacecraft approaches!

Re:Wow (1)

SleazyRidr (1563649) | about 3 years ago | (#36780494)

Persistent on this story, just in case you didn't see one of the above posts, don't click on the link in parent it's Goatse (or something similar,)

Framing Camera Runs RTEMS (4, Informative)

joelsherrill (132624) | about 3 years ago | (#36779782)

The pictures that are being shown like this one ( are from the Framing Camera. It is using the free RTOS RTEMS ( and using a space hardened SPARC V7. It was launched in September 2007. Congratulations to all the people involved!!

Isaac Isamov did it first (3, Informative)

RCC42 (1457439) | about 3 years ago | (#36779826)

Just in case anyone wanted to know 'Marooned off Vesta' was the title of Isaac Isamov's first published (short) story. As I remember it was fairly good.

Re:Isaac Isamov did it first (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#36781070)

Way to not RTFS! - There's even a link to the wikipedia article on Asimov's story.

Wow, (-1, Troll)

spacenut6 (2375814) | about 3 years ago | (#36779846)

First pictures [] of the vesta as the spacecraft approaches!

Past Tense (3, Insightful)

c++0xFF (1758032) | about 3 years ago | (#36779856)

The combination of the submission title and the quote being in past tense ("After four years sailing through space, the Dawn spacecraft was expected to slip into orbit late Friday around a giant asteroid...") made me think something went wrong!

Here's hoping all goes well!

Re:Past Tense (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about 3 years ago | (#36781590)

Well, that was Asimov's first published title and I've been an Asimov fan for half a century. Should I have titled the submission The Robot of Dawn? []

Interesting real estate for aliens (1)

MetricT (128876) | about 3 years ago | (#36779858)

I've often thought that if I were an alien intent on long-term observation of the solar system, I'd plant myself on either Vesta or (more likely) Ceres due to abundant construction material and (on Ceres) ice to crack to fuel, just enough gravity well to keep things from floating off, and just far enough away that you don't have to worry about the savages until they (hopefully) grow up.

Yeah I know, it would be one of those one in a million sort of things, but a nerd can dream.

Re:Interesting real estate for aliens (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#36779896)

What are those gooves there? Did ET strip mine for ice?

Re:Interesting real estate for aliens (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | about 3 years ago | (#36781206)

Its funny because the same grooves are on other small bodies like the moons of Mars, however these grooves scale with the size of the asteroid. Its like objects like this have grooves on different scales so if you look very close you will still see grooves. I think they are likely caused by rolling rocks. In the light gravity rocks will bounce along the surface, touching down every revolution or so and leaving a crater in the soft surface.

Re:Interesting real estate for aliens (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about 3 years ago | (#36781556)

Not sure about the ample gravity, a 200 pound man would weight four pounds. A sneeze might be enough to escape its gravity. Ceres, otoh, would be better (Dawn visits Ceres next).;

Wow (-1, Troll)

spacenut7 (2375830) | about 3 years ago | (#36779888)

First pictures [] of the vesta as the spacecraft approaches!

Re:Wow (0)

FrankSchwab (675585) | about 3 years ago | (#36779982)

What an ass.

Warning: Unpleasant picture in the link.

That's what I get for browsing at 1, I guess.

Re:Wow (1)

wagnerrp (1305589) | about 3 years ago | (#36780110)

The amusing bit is that is spacenut7. He's already trolled the exact same message on this same story using spacenut1-6.

he missed the mark (2)

Thud457 (234763) | about 3 years ago | (#36780306)

he should have registered as spacenutter1 - 6 and then he could troll while he's trolling and Xhibit would come out to hand him the keys

Re:Wow (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#36780184)

Don't post it multiple times- you'll get modded redundant!

Misleading title, a-- (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#36779946)

I don't care if the name of the post is a nod to Asimov, it is completely misleading. As one of those who has been following this story, I saw your headline and suddenly was shocked at the possibility that there was some communication error or another problem that would cause the craft to actually be marooned. Well, you got your pageclick. I hope the added revenue of a misleading title is worth the loss in credibility to the website.

Re:Misleading title, a-- (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#36780152)

I nominate this person to be the first astronaut, "Marooned off Vesta."

What's the problem? (1)

JockTroll (996521) | about 3 years ago | (#36780030)

Get into a spacesuit, walk to the water tanks and shoot them with a raygun. That will give you enough trust to land on Vesta. Gravity there isn't strong enough to crush a cookie. Here. Was it that hard, loserboy nerd? As soon as we make landfall, I'll shove your head down the last working toilet on the Silver Queen.

Asimov Homage Story Link (3, Informative)

cosm (1072588) | about 3 years ago | (#36780312)

Karma Whoring: []

First story in the PDF. I'd never read it until today--great stuff.

Re:Asimov Homage Story Link (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about 3 years ago | (#36781630)

Whoa! I just DLed that and it looks legit. Is it legal or a pirate copy? Karma whore or not, somebody mod parent up!

Re:Asimov Homage Story Link (1)

cosm (1072588) | about 3 years ago | (#36782428)

Just came up on Google when I searched for filetype:pdf. I guess ICE should seize Google's servers now :). Like your sig BTW. Stranger in a Strange land is one of my favorites of all time.

Re:Asimov Homage Story Link (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about 3 years ago | (#36784964)

Our Fair City is a really funny short silly story (fantasy more than sci-fi) lampooning political corruption. It's in his collection 6xH. Haven't read Stranger in decades, someone borrowed my copy and I never got it back. Heinlein was another of my all-time favorites, although I think I enjoyed his stuff a lot more when I was young. Asimov's still my favorite, but these days Pratchett's my 2nd favorite even though I'm not really into fantasy; the guy's books are hilarious.

Re:Asimov Homage Story Link (1)

cosm (1072588) | about 3 years ago | (#36795456)

I'll definitely check it out, thanks!

Credit where credit is due (3, Interesting)

mcgrew (92797) | about 3 years ago | (#36780382)

/. editors get a lot of flak (and I'm guilty myself sometimes), but I have to point out that the summary is far superior to what I submitted. Soulskill not only added relevant copy, but he also added all the links except the one to TFA. He did more work than I on it, and I'm pleased with what he did. Good job, sir!

The nod to Asimov was for two reasons. First, I've been a rabid Asimov fan for half a century, and second, the Dawn spacecraft is man's first visit to Vesta, and Marooned off Vesta was Asimov's first published story.

I see only 27 comments have been posted, and I hope the title isn't the reason for the lack of commentary, with people thinking it's some of my bad sci-fi [] .

Re:Credit where credit is due (1)

BJ_Covert_Action (1499847) | about 3 years ago | (#36780418)

I was afraid something went wrong with the orbit injection and we lost Dawn. I was very relieved when I went to the mission homepage and found that was not the case. The title and the word, "expected," in the summary almost ruined my Friday.

Re:Credit where credit is due (1)

TapeCutter (624760) | about 3 years ago | (#36782246)

There's nothing wrong with the headline, it's not your fault that a bunch of slashdotters failed their poetic license test.

Now for the toast (1)

Dr Fro (169927) | about 3 years ago | (#36780640)

I give you our million-dollar NASA probe we used to have!

Re:Now for the toast (2)

mcgrew (92797) | about 3 years ago | (#36781696)

Um, you might want to read more than the headline before posting. Dawn is alive and well; the title was a nod to my favorite writer, a science fiction writer who was also a scientist (PhD in biochemistry, did cancer research and taught at Boston University before dying of AIDS).

Dawn's next stop - Ceres! [] (the second story Asimov wrote and the oldest still existing).

Re:Now for the toast (1)

Dr Fro (169927) | about 3 years ago | (#36793898)

The last line in "Marooned off Vesta" is "I give you the year's supply of water we used to have."

Dawn Images (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#36781348)

Actually, the Dawn website does not have all the pictures collected so far. It only has the images that the project scientists are willing to let the public see. Most of the images from Dawn have not been released. Unlike the Cassini project, which posts all their images promptly as they are received, the Dawn project has adopted a policy of releasing only one image per week during the approach to Vesta. For example, on July 1 Dawn was scheduled to perform a "rotation characterization", taking images throughout a Vestian day in order to view the asteroid from all sides. But only one image from July 1 has been released. Apparently this policy has been justified on the theory that it "piques curiosity more than showing everything". Members of the public who prefer not to be manipulated in this way, and who are unhappy about being denied the opportunity to share the excitement of taxpayer-funded planetary exploration through expeditious release of Dawn images, are encouraged to contact JPL, NASA, and their members of Congress to make their feelings known.

Won't really know until Sunday morning (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 years ago | (#36781962)

It *should* be slipping into orbit at about 10pm Pacific time on Friday, July 15th -- i.e. in a few hours. But we won't actually know if it did until Sunday morning, when they stop thrusting with the ion engine and point the antenna towards Earth (the antenna doesn't pivot, so they have to choose between either communicating or using the engine). There's a pretty good "question and answer" at [] with this and other tidbits. One of the coolest things is the way that even if they miss the insertion into orbit, they'll have plenty of time to try again -- unlike the usual high-acceleration orbital insertion burn for a non-ion-engine, where if you miss the orbital insertion you might have to go back around the Sun and try again. The two orbits (Vesta's and Dawn's) are already so close that Dawn is gently drifting into capture by Vesta.

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