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97 comments

Gentlemen and Lady, you may now begin! (-1, Troll)

For a Free Internet (1594621) | about 2 years ago | (#40866503)

Plase have my gracious permission to comments on this article now. Kep your postes polites and on topic, please. Examples of good postes: compotores, Appils, buttfartes, and more best the I am the greatesyt the best gravy. NO ITALIANS! Thank you, and please enjoy SLASHDORT today!!!!

Your eyes (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40866507)

Of course, you have to look a little harder than usually...

Re:Your eyes (4, Informative)

wooferhound (546132) | about 2 years ago | (#40866875)

A better Idea would be to watch Streaming NASA TV

Streaming NASA TV
http://www.nasa.gov/multimedia/nasatv/index.html [nasa.gov]

NASA TV on USTREAM
http://www.ustream.tv/blog/2012/07/31/get-excited-the-mars-rover-landing-will-be-live-on-ustream/ [ustream.tv]

Re:Your eyes (4, Informative)

Teancum (67324) | about 2 years ago | (#40867405)

I happen to like SpaceVidcast:

http://www.spacevidcast.com/live/ [spacevidcast.com]

They frequently stream NASA TV, plus you have a chatroom full of space nerds who more often than not have answers to almost any technical question you can think up. The only problem comes if they are crushed with visitors, but I've seen them handle 20k simultaneous users before. The chat room gets sort of nuts when you have that many people, so it isn't perfect.

Ben and Cariann also do color commentary when things get pretty slow, but also know when to shut up (unlike the NBC commentators for the Olympics).

Re:Your eyes (1)

pdabbadabba (720526) | about 2 years ago | (#40868271)

Or, if you happen to be a New Yorker, Times Square [discovery.com] !

Re:Your eyes (1)

Brenda Lee Ayala (2702139) | about 2 years ago | (#40900703)

So proud! Go nasa! Anyone know any update on nasas "lisa pathfinder"almost secret project ;) is interesting... The lisa pathfinder project was far more expensive than this one that it has become a secret ;) maybe they found the multiverses they were looking for ;) as explained by Dr Mitchio kaku.. There are things way more mind blowing than landing on mars..dimentional duality is far more interesting.

Socialism (5, Informative)

sa666u (2626427) | about 2 years ago | (#40866513)

I'll be joining the Fraser Cain hangout on G+. BA will also be there. :)

Re:Socialism (1)

MMatessa (673870) | about 2 years ago | (#40866989)

Here's the event link to Fraser's hangout: http://goo.gl/a5t4O [goo.gl]

Re:Socialism (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40869323)

I pity the fool?

Re:Socialism (1)

An ominous Cow art (320322) | about 2 years ago | (#40869809)

BA will also be there.

What about Niles and Daphne?

Some of the best space coverage (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40866519)

I've found spaceflightnow.com has some of the best coverage of space missions around. They usually have live updating mission status center and live streaming video and I'm sure this event will be no different.

Why you should watch it (3, Funny)

neokushan (932374) | about 2 years ago | (#40866523)

I would say there's plenty of great reasons for wanting to watch this - witnessing a fairly major event in history (possibly even more major depending on what it finds on the planet), seeing science hard at work, watching how millions of dollars and collaboration between thousands of people can pay off.

However, ultimately, the reason many people will be watching is purely to be there if something goes wrong. There'll be fireworks, or at least some sort of graph that suddenly dips.

Remember watching the first moon landing (4, Interesting)

klubar (591384) | about 2 years ago | (#40866741)

When I was fairly young, I remember being allowed to spend the night at the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia by myself to watch the first moon landing live. The moon landings certainly inspired a generation of engineers and scientists. I'm not sure what the equivalent is today? (Watching Wall Street and becoming a hedge fund manager?)

If you want to read a great book about JPL, check out "Moon Hunters: NASA's Remarkable Expeditions to the Ends of the Solar Systems". Out of print, but probably available in your library.

Re:Remember watching the first moon landing (1)

Seumas (6865) | about 2 years ago | (#40875479)

My parents once told me the story of how they were thirteen years old when the entire world came to a stop and held its breath as one of mankind's greatest accomplishments was broadcast on television, surrounded by endless coverage and a great sense of excitement, hope, pride, and community.

If I were to have kids, I could some day tell them of how I was seven years old when a bunch of people blew up in a space shuttle launch. Then I could tell them about how when I was in my mid-twenties when a bunch of people blew up in a space-shuttle re-entry that wasn't really televised live on major networks, but was covered a lot immediately afterward as people tried to disparage the idea of space-exploration, because it was "too dangerous". Then I could tell them how we wasted a bunch of money, because we forgot we were supposed to measure in metric; not imperial. Then I could tell them about how one of the biggest space-related stories for an entire decade was how a crazy diaper-wearing jilted person who murdered their lover. Then I could tell them about how the ISS started falling apart and was near the end of its life and we had to start bumming rides from other countries, because we ditched the "shuttle" program and pretty much just crossed our fingers that private industry would pick up the slack. Then I could tell them about how I had to count on an old geek tech discussion site to give me links to some obscure space-related websites to watch streams of space events like landing rovers on fucking *Mars*, because the general public didn't give a shit unless the rover was the rich teenage slut of a famous family airing her sex tape or could swing a bat really well.

Then, I could tell them "my entire generation went without any real world-wide awe-inspiring community-building space exploration moment of hope like a generation or two before us did, but hopefully YOUR generation will get to experience something like that".

Re:Why you should watch it (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40867569)

It will either be the most badass planetary landing in human history ... or the biggest manmade crater created on another planet. I'm hoping for the former.

Re:Why you should watch it (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40870991)

You mean Billions of dollars. You know who else will be watching closely? Future investors.

Re:Why you should watch it (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about 2 years ago | (#40874105)

However, ultimately, the reason many people will be watching is purely to be there if something goes wrong.

I hear ya! The only reason I go to the race track is to watch the horses crash.

Best DDOS EVER! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40866533)

Being slashdotted...

Knowing some Slashdotters are on Mars (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40866539)

The view from Earth pales compared to what they see, and that's nothing to do with MSL Curiosity.

Pasadena City College (2)

wisebabo (638845) | about 2 years ago | (#40866567)

For those blessed with living near JPL in Southern CA, there usually is a big event at Pasadena City College (where I viewed a few previous landings). I think there are very knowledgeable speakers from JPL who are usually there (along with the media). Maybe this was one of the suggestions in the link posted above, I couldn't access the site.

JPL by the way has a great series of monthly(?) free to the public lectures on its various deep space programs, often given by the lead investigator! A great way of nerding out.

not at Pasadena City College (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40867283)

not at PCC.. (JPLers who don't have actual work to do on Sunday night have been exiled to CalTech and PCC and Pasadena Civic Auditorium, but it's "sign up months in advance and have your wristband").
For general public there's an event at
Planet Fest 2012 at Pasadena Convention Center, run by the Planetary Society.
http://www.planetary.org/get-involved/events/planetfest-2012/
$19-37 depending on your demographic category (age, member of PS)

And the event at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium (run by someone else)
http://www.ticketmaster.com/CURIOSITY-LANDS-ON-MARS-tickets/artist/1758097
$20 at box office, more from ticketmaster

And, of course, for free on NASA TV

Mars (1, Redundant)

SmallFurryCreature (593017) | about 2 years ago | (#40866585)

Next question?

Re:Mars (1)

jellomizer (103300) | about 2 years ago | (#40866659)

Exactly none of this time delay nonsense. I am going to start a twitter feed called #NASAfail! in protest.

Re:Mars (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about 2 years ago | (#40867703)

But only one tiny spot on Mars. If you're on the wrong hemisphere freezing and gasping for air, you're not going to see a thing. You're better off watching it live from Earth. Yes, it takes ten or twenty minutes for the signal to get here from Mars, depending on where the two planets' orbits are right now, but that's no different than the fact that the sunset you see from your porch is eight minutes late, and your view of Alpha Proxima is eight years late.

The time difference only matters to those controlling the equipment on the red planet.

just f5 Wikipedia (1)

Trepidity (597) | about 2 years ago | (#40866595)

I figure the edit history of Mars Science Laboratory [wikipedia.org] will get me up to speed on anything important.

Best viewpoint (1, Flamebait)

maroberts (15852) | about 2 years ago | (#40866677)

Looking through the Mars Express cameras at the smear of wreckage on the ground as another imperial to decimal units calculation goes astray!

Re:Best viewpoint (1)

sumdumass (711423) | about 2 years ago | (#40866801)

You mean imperial to metric right? Because I have project plans for various things that actually read 13.5 inches which would be a decimal unit.

Re:Best viewpoint (1)

maroberts (15852) | about 2 years ago | (#40876055)

You mean imperial to metric right? Because I have project plans for various things that actually read 13.5 inches which would be a decimal unit.

Yes, I agree it's a decimal unit, but people don't often use Imperial measurements in a truly decimal context - they're more often used in a binary sort of way

To take 13.5 inches, it's more often viewed as 13 1/2 inches and you're more likely to measure subdivisions in terms of quarters, 8ths, 16ths etc.
People don't often use 0.1, 0.2...etc
That's not saying it isn't used, just that it is rare. Imperial/ US measurements are more just not used in the same way.

Some people don't seem to have taken my original comment kindly, but it even happens to metric users *cough*beagle*cough*

Re:Best viewpoint (1)

thephydes (727739) | about 2 years ago | (#40870537)

Why is it that any time someone mentions the imperial to metric fuck up they are labelled as trolls or flame-baiters. Geeze the truth really does hurt doesn't it.

Re:Best viewpoint (1)

mister_playboy (1474163) | about 2 years ago | (#40873385)

Because the US doesn't use the British Imperial system? It's called the American Standard system.

Re:Best viewpoint (2)

Crypto Gnome (651401) | about 2 years ago | (#40874301)

Because the US doesn't use the British Imperial system? It's called the American Standard system.

A rose by any other name...

In terms of measurements there's "The Metric System" and "a bunch of outdated, confusing, inconsistent systems which are mutually incompatible DESPITE having identical names for some measures".

For scientific and engineering purposes spanning the entire globe, the choice is obvious except for countries which simply refuse to co-operate.

Re:Best viewpoint (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about 2 years ago | (#40874141)

And it was funny. I'll bet Howard was on that team with the metric conversion fuckup.

How about (1)

rossdee (243626) | about 2 years ago | (#40866701)

Phobos or Deimos?

Re:How about (1)

maroberts (15852) | about 2 years ago | (#40867345)

Phobos or Deimos?

It's cold outside, there's no kind of atmosphere....

you know the rest

Re:How about (1)

Nocturnal Deviant (974688) | about 2 years ago | (#40867403)

how about brutix?

In the secret studio in Nevada (4, Funny)

boyfaceddog (788041) | about 2 years ago | (#40866785)

It's where NASA films all their best stuff.

Re:In the secret studio in Nevada (0, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40867857)

I wonder whose dick you have to suck to see it live. ;)

Re:In the secret studio in Nevada (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40869273)

MI.....

Wait? Are you a hot chick?
Nevermind, this is slashdot, of course you are.

MINE!

Re:In the secret studio in Nevada (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40874569)

If NASA were in the business of faking major achievements, then we would have been back to the moon sometime in the past 40 years.

Re:In the secret studio in Nevada (1)

Tablizer (95088) | about 2 years ago | (#40883847)

We don't even have the budget to fake stuff these days.

Virtual Front Row (5, Interesting)

Ashenkase (2008188) | about 2 years ago | (#40866863)

You can watch it virtually using this online tool:

http://eyes.nasa.gov/index.html [nasa.gov]

Will let you visualize the Mars rendezvous and "I think" the decent.

Re:Virtual Front Row (2)

znrt (2424692) | about 2 years ago | (#40870361)

java.version: 1.6.0_31
jarlaunch version: 7
os.arch: i386
os.name: Linux
user.home: /home/znort
java.lang.UnsupportedOperationException: Unknown operating system, Explorer can not launch on Linux
        at Options.GetRuntimeOptions(Options.java:76)
        at jarlaunch.init(jarlaunch.java:31)
        at sun.plugin2.applet.Plugin2Manager$AppletExecutionRunnable.run(Plugin2Manager.java:1636)
        at java.lang.Thread.run(Thread.java:662)
Exception: java.lang.UnsupportedOperationException: Unknown operating system, Explorer can not launch on Linux
jarlaunch is waiting for input

why would someone use java giving a shit on it being multiplatform?

tsk! nasa, nasa ...

Re:Virtual Front Row (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40871537)

why would someone use java?

FTFY

Re:Virtual Front Row (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40872151)

Thanks enormously. Wasn't aware of this amazing tool. Will be running this on the laptop whilst watching a live stream. Cheers!

mod dNown (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40866917)

NASA is better than the other space agencies (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40867045)

I am genuinely impressed we are able to land a car on another planet in such a complicated manner and not have anything fail.

Though i am jealous NASA gets to drive a nuclear powered car for 2 years+. While my car needs to be refueled every week.

Re:NASA is better than the other space agencies (1)

drkim (1559875) | about 2 years ago | (#40869547)

"I am genuinely impressed IF we are able to land a car on another planet in such a complicated manner and not have anything fail."

FTFY ...it didn't make it yet, and this landing system seems pretty 'iffy.'

On TwiT.tv (4, Informative)

opkool (231966) | about 2 years ago | (#40867083)

I'll watch it at TwiT.tv -> http://twit.tv/2012/07/30/mars-landing-special-aug-5th-10pm-pdt [twit.tv]

The presenters/guests to this event will be:

Jonathan Strickland (How Stuff Works) -> http://www.howstuffworks.com/jonathan-strickland-author1.htm [howstuffworks.com]
Dr Kiki (Dr Kiki Science Hour) -> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kiki_Sanford [wikipedia.org]
Phil Plait (Bad Astronomer) -> http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/badastronomy/2012/07/20/mars-attacks-of-the-show/ [discovermagazine.com]
Steve Sell (JPL, Sky Crane) -> http://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2012/30jul_skycrane/ [nasa.gov]

Hope they do a good job!

Peace!

Why not Compton? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40867145)

Harlem? Detroit? Just bring a nice large plasma and satellite rig and set it up in your local ghetto to find out how much they care about all those tax dollars going to get nice desktop pictures and take potting soil samples.

Re:Why not Compton? (1)

sa666u (2626427) | about 2 years ago | (#40867443)

Actually that is a very good idea. The sense of wonder and amazement is universal. Why do you think poor people be not be able to enjoy such an event?

Re:Why not Compton? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40869751)

Why don't you go live there and find out what their lives are really like? You think any of them give a flying fuck about sending shit to Mars? They'll just gank your shit and won't think twice about it.

Re:Why not Compton? (3, Informative)

Spy Handler (822350) | about 2 years ago | (#40869939)

your naivete and belief in human wonderment is amusing... sort of. But clearly you have no idea what the ghettos are like. You wouldn't last 30 minutes in Compton or any other inner city 'hood after sundown. Before you can get that big screen TV set up to show the disadvantaged youths the amazement of Mars, they will have taken that TV, your wallet, your car, and beat you senseless. Simply because you're white. And you'd be lucky to not get shot. I am not exaggerating.

Re:Why not Compton? (1)

sa666u (2626427) | about 2 years ago | (#40893939)

And your condescension is so assumptive and cliche, it's even cute. I've been in American ghettos. I live in Eastern Europe. Ours are worse. :)

What should one expect to see? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40867179)

I plan to stay up until 1:30am to watch it regardless, but what should one expect to see during the descent? Will there be footage from a camera on the rover or the craft itself? If so, will one see anything prior to the heat shield's detachment? Will it be daytime on Mars during its descent? Or will one simply see a graph of some sort?

I mean, if there were a stream of its approach to Mars I'd be watching it right now (is there one?). I've already got the live ISS stream set as one of my desktop backgrounds (quite inspirational to see it every day, and it never gets old).

And while I'm on the topic, does anyone know what one should expect in terms of day-to-day video footage assuming the rover lands successfully? I hope I don't come across as only seeing NASA (or any other space agency) as a source of pretty and interesting desktop backgrounds. The information learned from these missions is interesting enough on its own, but it makes me feel a bit more connected and it does a lot for the experience if I can actually see it.

Re:What should one expect to see? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40868609)

You will probably see a LIVE real time streaming feed of geeks huddled around a monitor. You'll know when it lands because data will display on the screen and the geeks will jump up hugging one another in a giant sausage celebration dance. A PHB will then walk into the room and open some campaign and share it with some executives while taking all the credit for the mission.

Seriously, there is an 8-frame per second video camera to assist with landing in a safe place. The video of this camera should be available some days after landing. I think first hi-res images will be obtained on day 2. I doubt you will see anything that will be life altering.

Re:What should one expect to see? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40869811)

"I plan to stay up until 1:30am to watch it regardless, but what should one expect to see during the descent?"

Keep in mind that all the descent is autonomous. People will be watching the communications feeds for signs of trouble or success. You'll see a bunch of numbers on-screen, a bunch of people huddled around consoles, and probably a few computer renderings of what the descent process should look like IF it goes right, with someone verbally calling out the various events as they occur (or don't). You'll be able to tell whether things are going good or bad by the reaction of people in the room, but it won't *look* particularly exciting.

Real pictures probably won't be back for an hour or two at best (not sure what schedule they have planned for first picture). Even the pictures taken by the descent camera are stored in a big buffer for transmission later, and those ones probably aren't a priority. The engineers running the descent will be more interested in other information that will indicate the health/survival of the rover in much less transmission bandwidth than a picture. Once that's settled, then they'll try to get some pictures, because they know that is what people find easiest to interpret and appreciate. Keep in mind they have to do various things before they can even take pictures with the surface cameras (deploy the mast instruments, eject covers, that kind of thing). All these things take time. Don't worry, they'll be doing that as fast as they can, but don't expect it in 15 minutes. Maybe not even 15 hours, although I expect they'll try to get some pictures down by the time of the morning news.

Even though plenty of explosives and rockets are involved in putting this nuclear-powered, 6-wheeled, car-size, mobile scientific laboratory on the surface of Mars (awesome!), the live landing feed is not something to watch if you're mainly into Michael Bay films. Don't get me wrong: it's still going to be cool. But it won't be flashy.

Re:What should one expect to see? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40874727)

Here is a great overview of what to expect as far as images sent to earth:
http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/msl/news/msl20120803.html

In addition, according to Matt Heverly (one of the people responsible for "driving" the rover) in this question and answer session: http://gizmodo.com/5931298/talk-to-the-man-who-drives-the-26-billion+dollar-mars-curiosity-rover , the rover is able to transmit data at "about the speed of DSL." The data is actually transmitted to an orbiter of mars (assuming the Mars Reconnaisance Orbiter) but only within certain time frames. The data is then relayed from the orbiter back to earth. The result is that it will probably take a few weeks for the EDL footage to be received on earth in its entirety.

Ithaca NY - Cornell University Public presentation (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40867243)

Astrophysicists from Cornell's program will be on hand, giving presentations from 11:45 p.m., Aug. 5, to 3 a.m., Aug. 6, in G01 Uris Hall.

https://www.facebook.com/events/204514239677263

Where you should watch the Mars landing - (1)

Darth Snowshoe (1434515) | about 2 years ago | (#40867319)

In bed!

Portland, OR - Livingroom Theaters (1)

FauxReal (653820) | about 2 years ago | (#40867401)

They'll be streaming it live at Livingroom Theaters [oregonlive.com] in Portland, OR. It's a small boutique theater. Livingroom Theaters homepage. [livingroomtheaters.com]

The doors for the screening will open at 9:00p, with landing expected to occur at around 10:30p. Admission, which is limited to patrons 21 and over, is FREE, but you must reserve a spot in advance by sending an email to: curiosity(AT)livingroomtheaters.com.

Ring-side Seat (1)

RivenAleem (1590553) | about 2 years ago | (#40867469)

I got my wormhole device all warmed up and ready to go!

NASA TV on Dish Network (1)

Muad'Dave (255648) | about 2 years ago | (#40867695)

I'm not sure if it's available in all programming packages, but Dish Network currently carries NASA TV on channel 212. It will move on Aug 8th.

Re:NASA TV on Dish Network (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40868167)

I went to set the dvr @ my parental units' house on DTV and NASA's regular fare was listed in the guide, nothing mentioned/referred/suggested anything remotely related to this event. I set it to record from 10pm-4am, JIC. I hate streaming anything live on the internet, a slow connection or overfloaded servers always causes hiccups &/or outages and I miss significant portions of the event(s). Even on my previous 7MB connection, races or sports with alot of movement always hiccuped when activity was high, even when my machine was cutting edge hardware(2yrs ago, i7+8GB+Nvidia card+GB adapter,).

In my backyard! (1)

VikingOfNorth (2570199) | about 2 years ago | (#40867719)

Are you telling me none of you have enough magnification in your telescopes?? Pathetic...

Denver Science Museum sold out 1,500 spaces (1)

peter303 (12292) | about 2 years ago | (#40867753)

The rockets and part of the probes were built by Denver area companies (United Launch Alliance, Lockheed Martin, Ball Areospace, Southwest Research Institute.) Reps from these companies will give lectures Sunday night. Then they will watch NASA TV for the 11:31 MDT landing and "first pictures" expected around midnight. The best of the three relay satellites- Odyssey- has been balky the past few weeks, so the telemetry might be slower than expected.

Gale crater (1)

DerekLyons (302214) | about 2 years ago | (#40867783)

There's only one place to view the Mars landing - Gale Crater, Mars.
 
Here on Earth, you're just going to be watching a bunch of talking heads looping the same animations we've all been watching for months and repeating the same breathless quotes about the difficulty of the landing. They could pre-record the thing in two versions (one for a successful landing, one for a failed landing) and you'd never know the difference.
 
Me, I have an event I'm organizing over the weekend... If I'm awake on Sunday night, I'll watch the talking heads. If not, no biggie.

Re:Gale crater (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40870981)

Wrong.

MSL will be sending out a continuous stream of data (albeit simple tones) about the landing sequence as it is happening. The issue is the dicey comm. links back to Earth, but that is a different story that explained in a previous post that the moderator seems to have squashed. Hopefully one of the engineers will explain the tricky comm links during EDL.

Comcast in Western Washington (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40867827)

Check to see if you have UWTV2. If you don't, hook up the coaxial and do a scan using a TV with an ATSC tuner. You might have to flip through it a lot, but it might have it, even if it's not available as an analog station. That's my case here, last I checked. Although, I do not guarantee that they will carry NASA TV at the moment it happens, so prepare to have a backup solution if it's a must for you.

MCNN of Course (2)

the eric conspiracy (20178) | about 2 years ago | (#40868019)

Set up your dish and tune into the Martian Cable News Network Phobos feed on M band for coverage of their intercept efforts.

So far the overall intercept rate has been about 70%. However the M.A.F. hasn't had much luck shooting down those pesky US built rovers.

Don't bother with trying to get audio. Martians hear in the IR band.

Not a special case (3, Insightful)

Sloppy (14984) | about 2 years ago | (#40868035)

Does anyone have recommendations for other sources of coverage on August 6?

Same solution as everything else: timeshift it. Defer source-selection until after some other chump sucker has done all the hard work. Let someone else figure out which videos cover it best. Then a few hours/days later, see which videos are being raved about, and watch them.

This is the very best, most sastisfying, least time-wasting, most educating, most convenient, fastest, least-bandwidth-intensive, most efficient approach, and it works just as well for NASA as it does for all other forms of news which don't involve nuclear attacks, tornados, or other stuff like that.

Re:Not a special case (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40869095)

But it's already timeshifted 14 minutes!

Re:Not a special case (1)

strack (1051390) | about 2 years ago | (#40875667)

theres something to be said for watching something unfold as it happens. the thrill of the unknown if you will.

Toronto's Live Curiosity Rover Landing Party (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40868225)

In Toronto there is a party at a downtown bar (Hotel Ocho), with drinks, costumes, and live streaming of the PlanetFest event.

http://www.marsparty.ca/ [marsparty.ca]

(I'm not involved with it, I'm just planning to go).

Toronto's Live Curiosity Rover Landing Party (1)

Leif_Bloomquist (311286) | about 2 years ago | (#40868263)

In Toronto there is a party at a downtown bar (Hotel Ocho), with drinks, costumes, and live streaming of the PlanetFest event.

http://www.marsparty.ca/ [marsparty.ca]

(I'm not involved with it, I'm just planning to go).

Watch what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40868663)

What are we going to be watching exactly?. They've said we will not get any pictures or video (from the pod that drops the rover) for two days after the machine has landed. So I guess we can all tune in to either watch some people shouting 'Yay!!' with their hands in the air; or, some people quietly sobbing if it's a failure.

Why is the landing so late? (2, Funny)

ShanghaiBill (739463) | about 2 years ago | (#40868759)

Does anyone know why the landing is so late? I am in California, and the landing isn't till 10:30pm here, so my kids probably won't be in bed till after 11 on a school night. It is even worse for east coasters. Couldn't NASA have scheduled the landing for US prime time to get more viewers and interest? Maybe this is the only time the rotation of both planets is lined up right.

Re:Why is the landing so late? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40868999)

Wow, seriously?

Re:Why is the landing so late? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40869235)

Wow, and the dumbing down of America continues.

Re:Why is the landing so late? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40869257)

You also realize there isn't a film crew at the scene of the landing, so there won't be good footage of that part either, right?

Re:Why is the landing so late? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40869511)

"Does anyone know why the landing is so late?"

Physics and astronomy. I'm pretty sure "arrival time close to waking hours across the USA" isn't in the mission design parameters at all, and that even if it was considered, over that kind of distance, variable solar storms, and duration of flight there would be significant variation anyway. Probably the biggest constraint on the timing of arrival would be the location of Earth ground stations and the various Mars orbiters that will be used as relays, plus the need for a (local Mars) daytime arrival for the optical descent cameras. They've probably timed things for the best "line of sight" for as many communications passes as possible.

On the other hand: let the kids stay up. That's what I'd do. And if you think you have it bad, I'm in the Atlantic Standard Time zone (landing at 2:31am local time -- woohoo!).

Re:Why is the landing so late? (4, Funny)

drkim (1559875) | about 2 years ago | (#40869755)

I'm pretty sure NASA/JPLs first concern is: "How can we get the highest television ratings for this mission?" The thinking went something like this:

Mission control:
"OK guys, we're up against the Olympics most of that week, but market trend analysis show that most people will be tired of the Olympic stuff by Sunday at 5:00pm. However, we are looking at back-to-back "Family Guys" in the 5:00pm to 6:00pm slot, and we'll never make numbers against that. in the 6:00pm to 7:00pm slot we're up against TMZ and "Simpsons" we'll lose a lot of the geek demo there, uh, let's see... "Big Bang," no... "House," no... no... no...

I guess gentlemen, we're looking at 10:30pm. We'll be losing a big portion of our share to a "McHale's Navy" rerun, but any later and we're up against "Twilight Zone" - we won't have a chance.

Re:Why is the landing so late? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40870021)

And the bastards keep scheduling lunar eclipses in the middle of the night, too!

Re:Why is the landing so late? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40874923)

This could be possibly the stupidest question I've ever heard.

Re:Why is the landing so late? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40875161)

It's because of the unions, it's less money on Martian Time.

Re:Why is the landing so late? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40891113)

Actually NASA can stay in contact with mars regardless of which side of the earth is facing it. For the landing of curiosity, I heard that the Australian tracking station at Tidbinbilla (operated by NASA) will be in contact with the rover, as Australia is facing mars at the time.

I'm sure all variables for landing time were calibrated so as to maximise the chance of landing in the right spot, at a certain time of mars day, with the least amount of fuel - all calculated from the time the craft left Earth, which was itself subject to various mundane timing considerations.

However despite all the derision poured on the idea here, i wouldn't be surprised if there is an increasing media sense at space agencies in the future. Especially those running tourist trips. For instance, I'm sure that whenever there is another moon landing, the planners would consider this factor to be somewhat important (in relation to their home country, not necessarily USA).

How'd they get the camera men on Mars? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40868961)

That's what I'd like to know!

The communications link will be dicey (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40869039)

Just off the top of my head (maybe a space geek can spruce this up), I think that this is how it will go down:

MSL is designed to send a continuous stream up data points as the EDL progresses, but it is going to be tricky to get the info to Earth. During the beginning stages of EDL, MSL will send simple tones at 128 points during the EDL. These will go direct to Earth and, hopefully, be picked up by the deep space network. But, alas, Earth will set after a couple of minutes and this line of communication will be closed. Hopefully by then Odyssey will be above the horizon and be able to do a "bent-pipe" relay of MSL telemetry (I am not sure if this will just be the tones or more). Alas this does not last long either and the best we can hope for is 1-2 minutes of telemetry from the surface via the bent pipe before Odyssey sets and the link goes silent. Next Odyssey's next pass will be 3 freaking hours later for those nuts (like me) that want to stay up to 4:00 am to get the info.

It is hoped that one or two MARDI (descent imager) thumbnails can be uploaded and maybe a hazcam shot of the immediate regolith in front of the rover can be relayed to Earth in the first or second Odyssey pass.

Re:The communications link will be dicey (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40874753)

I think you did the Space Geek thing justice. :-)

Xbox Live (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40870015)

Xbox Live has a cool setup with short movies on the landing and the rover technology and you can watch the landing live. I think this is a great thing as it will target many kids.

WNYC's RadioLab Meetup / Hangout (2)

PyroMosh (287149) | about 2 years ago | (#40871463)

WNYC's excellent program, RadioLab [radiolab.org] will have a Google Hangout [google.com] and possible a meatspace meetup somewhere in the Lower East Side [facebook.com] in NYC.

Headliners for their event include:

Side note: RadioLab is a production of New York's NPR affiliate. Apparently the show is just a couple years old and apparently it's not carried on stations everywhere. If you haven't heard it, and you like science, check out their podcast [radiolab.org] . It's quirky, incredibly well produced, and overall very well done.

"At the event"? (1)

DulcetTone (601692) | about 2 years ago | (#40872579)

That would be some nice seating, indeed

Best place (1)

giorgist (1208992) | about 2 years ago | (#40873343)

Why from Mars offcourse

I don't care about *where*. I care about *when*. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40873661)

Every fcking article I've read on the subject buries the time somewhere in the article if they include it at all. I don't want a goddamned slideshow, I want to figure out when (and, once I've determined I'm able to, *then* how and where) I can see it happen live.

20:30 PDT Sunday night, right?

From the landing site, of course (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40874365)

I plan to watch it from the surface of Mars, about 0.5 km south of the landing target. Should be a fine show.

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