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Apollo 11 Moon Landing Turns 45

samzenpus posted about 2 months ago | from the we're-here dept.

United States 211

An anonymous reader writes On July 20, 1969, U.S. astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin became the first humans to walk on the moon. Neil Armstrong would say later he thought the crew had a 90% chance of getting home from the moon, and only a 50% chance of landing safely. The scope of NASA's Apollo program seems staggering today. President Kennedy announced his moon goal just four years into the Space Age, but the United States had not even launched a human into orbit yet. Amazingly, just eight years later, Armstrong and Aldrin were walking on the moon.

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It's a fake! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494183)

Just kidding, the real doubters come a bit lower down.

Not going to happen again any time soon (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494487)

Not as long as you have someone with three muslim names as commander in chief.

Get this: Hussein installs a black guy in as NASA chief, and telling him that the "foremost" goal of NASA is NOT science, is NOT space flight, but is, literally, to make Muslims feel better. This guy says in an interview:

"When I became the NASA administrator -- or before I became the NASA administrator -- he charged me with three things. One was he wanted me to help re-inspire children to want to get into science and math, he wanted me to expand our international relationships, and third, and perhaps foremost, he wanted me to find a way to reach out to the Muslim world and engage much more with dominantly Muslim nations to help them feel good about their historic contribution to science ... and math and engineering

http://www.space.com/8725-nasa... [space.com]

Thanks alot, assholes, for electing this guy.

Re:Not going to happen again any time soon (1)

Vladius (2577555) | about 2 months ago | (#47494577)

And what affect does that have on our manned space flight program? None. It was George W Bush that killed it. The solution he pushed isn't going to be past development for years to come. Business doesn't see the money that's up there due to their inability to see beyond the next quarterly earnings statement. Get over stupid your "OBUMMER IS RESPONSIBEL FOR ALL THE WORNG AnD BAD AND EVIL IN THE WORLD" schick. It's long past old. It's just plain stupid. Obama's not perfect but he has had more foresight than any President in modern history. It's too bad people like you oppose him on "principle", even things you once supported. The Tea Party is stupid, corrupt and mindless. Just like your corporate masters intended.

Re:Not going to happen again any time soon (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47495089)

President says that NASA isn't there for space exploration anymore, but to make bunch of sand niggers feel good about their shitty lives and nonexistant achievements and you don't see it as a problem?

It's always the other guy's fault. (1)

hsthompson69 (1674722) | about 2 months ago | (#47495433)

You're right - we don't get to blame Obama for everything until he's out of office, and then we can spend two terms doing so. Obviously people blaming him now are simply jumping the gun.

That being said, we shouldn't have a manned space flight program. It's a ridiculous luxury item, and frankly, even the moon shot was more about hubris and cold war competition than actual science.

Space flight is important, space exploration is important, but slinging meat bags into space is decidedly *not* important.

Re:It's always the other guy's fault. (2)

cusco (717999) | about 2 months ago | (#47501133)

So how does one learn how to colonize space without "slinging meat bags" out there? Robots can do a lot of exploration and even do some of the preparation for installing habitats, but the only way to learn how to live in space is to actually GO THERE. Yes, LEO is barely "in outer space", but until we come up with good shielding we need to rely on the Van Allen belts for protection. For now, we're just taking baby steps, and the pols insist that killing brown people is more important than learning to run so that's what we'll continue doing for now. Space is our future, though.

The Earth is the cradle of humanity, but mankind cannot stay in the cradle forever. - Konstantin Tsiolkovsky

Re:It's always the other guy's fault. (1)

hsthompson69 (1674722) | about 2 months ago | (#47503139)

So how does one learn how to colonize space without "slinging meat bags" out there?

You do that part last.

Assume for a moment that it'll take 500 more years to actually get things together enough where we can send robot fleets to the moon to build habitable modules there. *Then* start training your meat bags...or start off by sending a colony of dogs or cats to survive there. In any case, you don't spend the next 500 years wasting effort on meat bags, you focus on the technology that needs to come *first*.

Actually, I'll make one more caveat - if you did want to practice the whole meat bag support thing, you'd want to start off with a manned mission to the bottom of the marianas trench, to establish a human colony there. You'll get a real quick idea of just how much stuff you need to prep before supporting a colony for any amount of time.

Re:Not going to happen again any time soon (2)

Gonoff (88518) | about 2 months ago | (#47494597)

Get this: Hussein installs a black guy in as NASA chief,...

I'm not from the USA so I don't understand your country but your joke? confuses me. Hussein is dead. His fellow Iraqis hung him after a lengthy trial. Also, it has not been seen as a common role of anyone from the USA to help Moslems feel good about anything. You have it in your constitution to keep church & state separate. That's why nobody would get elected president if they were an atheist or anything but a follower of a western variant of Christianity.

Re:Not going to happen again any time soon (5, Informative)

binarylarry (1338699) | about 2 months ago | (#47494763)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/B... [wikipedia.org]

"Barack Hussein Obama II"

Nutters like to use Obama's middle name because of the negative correlation with Saddam Hussein.

Re:Not going to happen again any time soon (3, Interesting)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | about 2 months ago | (#47495141)

I suspect it has more to do with it sounding Islamic / non-American.

Re:Not going to happen again any time soon (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47495405)

Irony: A country made of and founded by immigrants that is extremely xenophobic and hostile towards immigrants.

Re:Not going to happen again any time soon (2)

wonkey_monkey (2592601) | about 2 months ago | (#47495967)

Immigants! I knew it was them. Even when it was the bears, I knew it was them.

Re:Not going to happen again any time soon (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47496179)

What a douche. You completely know the difference, yet, in your effort to be PC, you pretend you don't.

There is a VAST difference between the immigrants our country was founded on (European) and those from the Middle East. VAST. You know that. Stop acting like a retard.

Re:Not going to happen again any time soon (1)

JeffAtl (1737988) | about 2 months ago | (#47496667)

Every country was made of and founded by immigrants.

Re:Not going to happen again any time soon (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47500431)

Just like every other country, ever.

Re: Not going to happen again any time soon (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494853)

Exactly. Which is why Obama was quick to promise everybody he believes in the Zombie Jesus. We all know he's lying though

Re: Not going to happen again any time soon (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47495925)

As are likely half of all politicians at the national level.

Re: Not going to happen again any time soon (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47496599)

Half? You are WAY too optimistic.

Re:Not going to happen again any time soon (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47495295)

He wanted the guy he appointed as the administrator of NASA to do something. That's different from the underlying role of NASA itself.

I know, it's hard for right-wing nutbars to comprehend that, but you can even tell that from the quote, if you don't want to read it maliciously.

Re:Not going to happen again any time soon (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47495673)

NASA has suffered a series of layoffs and cutbacks. If they spend ONE DIME in that enviroment making "muslims feel better about themselves" that's one dime too many.

You think that's absolutely lovely, though.

And you can ME a "nutbar". When you find absolutely NO ISSUE with the administrators statement? NO ISSUE WHATSOEVER? Not only that, but you PRAISE IT? And I'M a "nutbar"????

Re:Not going to happen again any time soon (1)

tragedy (27079) | about 2 months ago | (#47505645)

Not only that, but you PRAISE IT? And I'M a "nutbar"????

Considering that you are apparently hallucinating praise that doesn't exist in the GP's post, I'm going to say that you may indeed be a nutbar.

Re:Not going to happen again any time soon (0)

50000BTU_barbecue (588132) | about 2 months ago | (#47495905)

"alot" isnot aword.

Re:Not going to happen again any time soon (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47496235)

> "alot" isnot aword.

Neither is "isnot". So sue me, fuckface. I type fast. It's called a "typo".

Perhaps your issue was with "a lot"?

Google:

"a lot" site:nytimes.com

If it's good enough for the Times, it's good enough for me.

What a homo.

Re:Not going to happen again any time soon (1)

50000BTU_barbecue (588132) | about 2 months ago | (#47496387)

Wow, talk about giving someone the rope to hang themselves with...

Re:Not going to happen again any time soon (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47496567)

One more thing. It's a "grill". Not a "barbecue" you back woods, slack jawed, F150 driving, banjo-playing yokel. A "grill". Or a "gas grill" if you want to be specific.

Re:Not going to happen again any time soon (2)

WoOS (28173) | about 2 months ago | (#47495907)

Leaving aside all the froth-mouthed name-calling there is an important detail the author does not write in

> This guy says in an interview:

Namely that the interview was to Al-Jazeera, the premier Muslim news channel.
Normally politicians (and the NASA chief definitely counts as that) try to tell something nice to foreigners they talk to.
You know, I can't remember the huge outcry of "Lies!", "Pampering Foreigners!", "Forgets his U.S. values and heritage!" when Kennedy said "Ich bin ein Berliner.".

To come back to "News for Nerds" it should also be noted that the statement about Muslim contributions to science, math and engineering is definitely true. There is a reason the numbers we are using are called "Arabic Numbers".

Re:Not going to happen again any time soon (1)

Le Marteau (206396) | about 2 months ago | (#47496725)

What are calld "Arabic" numbers are more properly called "Hindu-Arabic" "Hindu-Arabic" numerals were invented by Hindu mathematicians in India thus called "Indian numerals" by Persian mathematician Khowarizmi. They were later called "Arabic" numerals by Europeans, because they were introduced in the West by Arabized Berbers of North Africa.

http://www.unc.edu/~rowlett/un... [unc.edu]

Re:Not going to happen again any time soon (1)

Mister Liberty (769145) | about 2 months ago | (#47496935)

I see you're scoring -1 which is an abomination (obamination?), just as the quote you gave is.

The hubris of the image: Moslims needing the USA, nay the NASA (the very NASA who get their
feet and meters mixed up sometimes), to tell them about their, the Muslim's, great contributions
to science, math and engineering.

Re:It's a fake! (1)

Max_W (812974) | about 2 months ago | (#47496061)

I wonder if it is possible to prove or disprove a human landing on the Moon irrefutably?
And if yes - how and when?

Re:It's a fake! (3, Interesting)

mark-t (151149) | about 2 months ago | (#47496239)

Sort of.

Go there. See for yourself.

It won't necessarily prove exactly when it happened, if you're going to be really skeptical about it, but it should prove that it happened... at least to the extent that you can trust what your own senses tell you, and what you will find there will be completely consistent with what should be there. At an absolute worst case, it would prove that somebody spent a whole lot of money to fabricate a replica set of the"fake moon landing" on the real moon just to convince future people who land there that it actually happened... of course,even that still means that somebody has already been on the moon.

Oh, and of course, any stories you might tell upon your return would be categorized by skeptics as either you being paid off to say what you saw. And the really die hard skeptics who go up themselves would probably just believe that they were being brainwashed if they saw it for themselves.

There is a difference, you see, between proving that something happened and having somebody believe that it happened.

Re:It's a fake! (3, Funny)

GrahamCox (741991) | about 2 months ago | (#47496745)

You need to watch this: http://youtu.be/P6MOnehCOUw [youtu.be]

Laughs aside, I guess the point is, conspiracies just don't scale.

Re:It's a fake! (1)

TapeCutter (624760) | about 2 months ago | (#47497063)

I'm not sure which came first, the fake landing theory or the movie Capricorn One.

Sure (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494205)

Sure it happened. Look at all the evidence.

no doubter here, I watched the launch (4, Insightful)

swschrad (312009) | about 2 months ago | (#47494209)

our family drove down to Florida, hauling our new 17' trailer, partly to see the launch and partly to visit Grandmother. up at 4 am to drive down Cocoa and park on the side of the road. when that Saturn came up over the rise, the noise was monstrous, quiet as a churchmouse until that first lick of yellow-orange showed.

a stunning achievement. from that effort came chips, medical telemetry, Lord only knows what.

our driver of innovation today? cat pictures and dashcam video of accidents.

Re: no doubter here, I watched the launch (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494219)

Aliens stole your [shift] key.

Re: no doubter here, I watched the launch (1)

Applehu Akbar (2968043) | about 2 months ago | (#47494537)

Around here, the aliens are more interested in the stuff we keep in our garages.

Re: no doubter here, I watched the launch (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47505513)

I thought they were more interested in the stuff we keep in our anuses

Re: no doubter here, I watched the launch (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47496369)

Using caps that way is code. Kids these days use it to singify that they take it in the ass. It's true, I read it on snopes.

Re:no doubter here, I watched the launch (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494271)

" from that effort came chips, medical telemetry, "

No, those came first.

Decoy (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494367)

It's amazing how gullible people are.

See, that rocket was an unmanned decoy that eventually crashed into the Atlantic. Then they filmed the crew and landing at a studio.

The capsule was then dropped from a B-52 at 60,000 feet to make it look like it reentered to the Navy crews - after taking blow torches to the heat shield.

The astronauts were put under heavy North Korean brainwashing so that they'll will insist to their deaths that there were in fact on the Moon.

Do not get me started on how Obama is actually working with Dick Cheney in taking over the Government and having George W. Bush as the figure head of their Socialist Muslim Dictatorship financed by oil interests in the Middle East backed by the Israeli military and Massad.

Re:Decoy (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494459)

and we put the gun from the grassy noel in the same storage locker as the left over moon stuff.

also any one see capricorn one

Re:Decoy (2)

Applehu Akbar (2968043) | about 2 months ago | (#47494545)

We learned this from Grassy Noel, the famed British snitch.

Re:Decoy (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494625)

I thought he meant the Grassy NoÃfl , but JFK wasn't shot at Xmas .

Re:Decoy (1)

50000BTU_barbecue (588132) | about 2 months ago | (#47494633)

Well at least it wasn't his brother, Gassy Noel.

Re:Decoy (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494513)

It's amazing how gullible people are.

See, that rocket was an unmanned decoy that eventually crashed into the Atlantic. Then they filmed the crew and landing at a studio.

The capsule was then dropped from a B-52 at 60,000 feet to make it look like it reentered to the Navy crews - after taking blow torches to the heat shield.

The astronauts were put under heavy North Korean brainwashing so that they'll will insist to their deaths that there were in fact on the Moon.

Do not get me started on how Obama is actually working with Dick Cheney in taking over the Government and having George W. Bush as the figure head of their Socialist Muslim Dictatorship financed by oil interests in the Middle East backed by the Israeli military and Massad.

I think your Tin Foil hat is loose

Re:Decoy (4, Informative)

Dr_Barnowl (709838) | about 2 months ago | (#47495249)

And the retroreflecting prism arrays [ucsd.edu] sent to the moon, that anyone with a big enough laser can bounce a beam off and determine what the distance of the moon is at the moment, were presumably put up there by Elvis on his way home. Hell, it's just a few pairs of his rhinestone trousers that fell out of his trunk.

Re:Decoy (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47495431)

No, that's an alien moon-base thats reflecting signals from the moon. Its real purpose is that its part of HAARP and used to reflect beams from Earth for both mind- and weather-control.

Re:Decoy (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47499705)

Because stuff on the moon HAS to have been placed there by a human hand. It is LITERALLY IMPOSSIBLE for ANYTHING to be put on the moon without the wise, guiding hand of a sentient being.

https://upload.wikimedia.org/w... [wikimedia.org]

Re:Decoy (1)

riverat1 (1048260) | about 2 months ago | (#47495605)

I think the mods fell victim to a Poe [wikipedia.org] there.

Re:no doubter here, I watched the launch (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494679)

Serious question: Why can't you be bothered to capitalize? It looks horrible and is rude.

Re:no doubter here, I watched the launch (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47495097)

he capitalized all of the proper nouns. what's the big deal, Hitler?

Re:no doubter here, I watched the launch (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47495645)

That makes it even more, rude. It's intentional, like people who use ridiculous fonts to draw attention to themselves.

Re:no doubter here, I watched the launch (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47504829)

when you physically write something down, do the glyphs you are drawing match, perfectly, to those that elementary school teachers tried to drill into your muscle memory, or have you developed your own 'style', 'flare', or idiosyncrasies by other names over time? same question regarding your hand-written signature.

typing may not be an avenue for organic motion but people still find a way to write in their own ways. refute it if you want, but people will keep doing what they want because your opinion of it doesn't matter to them any more than their opinions of how you do it would matter to you.

aND just FoR YOu THIS sEntEncE,

Re:no doubter here, I watched the launch (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47495747)

You're the one who said you watched the launch when you didn't. Calling the kettle black, saying I misrepresented myself. You are a coward, a liar, and a thief.

Re:no doubter here, I watched the launch (1)

DerekLyons (302214) | about 2 months ago | (#47498281)

a stunning achievement. from that effort came chips, medical telemetry, Lord only knows what.

In general, we got damm little back from the Apollo project. (Though NASA's PR department has spent decades telling us different.) Take chips for example - the only reason chips were available for Apollo is because someone had already built the fabs. (To sell chips to the DoD. But they got their timing wrong and the DoD wasn't buying big right then... leaving capacity available for Apollo.)

Re:no doubter here, I watched the launch (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about 2 months ago | (#47543237)

Bullshit, were it not for Apollo we would not have the ISS, robots on Mars, telescopes in space, or probes all over the solar system.

You are one ignorant jackass (1)

DerekLyons (302214) | about 2 months ago | (#47547611)

When you graduate kindergarten, and learn to read, go back and read the exchange and note that spin-offs are the topic of discussion - not follow on missions.

Until then, toddle off to bed with the other infants, the adults are have a conversation here.

Re:You are one ignorant jackass (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about 2 months ago | (#47549375)

You, sir, are an abusive moron who is obviously not intelligent enough to realize that the Mars rovers are spinoffs from Apollo. Were it not for Apollo there would be no Hubble, no Martian robots, no ISS, none of the space exploration done today. Obviously unlike you, I remember Sputnik. We can thank the Russians for Apollo.

Now crawl back to 4chan where flamebait like yours is welcome. Where in the hell are the moderators?

Re:no doubter here, I watched the launch (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47501981)

I think a lot of people forget the difference between our technology now vs. 1969.

Here's my favorite YouTube video, which elaborates on this:

Moon Hoax Not: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sGXTF6bs1IU

Re:no doubter here, I watched the launch (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about 2 months ago | (#47543207)

I reposted this journal [slashdot.org] the day before the anniversary; it's my story of that day.

our driver of innovation today? cat pictures and dashcam video of accidents.

Telescopes in outer space, robots crawling around Mars, all sorts of robotic probes all over the solar system, self-driving cars, a permanent space station, GPS, private space launches... And, you know, when Apollo 11 took off, flat screen displays and Star Trek communicators were only fantasy. Those cat pictures themselves were impossible science fiction; a computer as powerful as a smart phone didn't exist. Hell, cars didn't even have seat belts then, let alone ABS, disc brakes, air bags, bluetooth... I think your memory of just how primitive it was and how far we've come is a bit faulty.

Where were you when the Eagle landed? (2)

david.emery (127135) | about 2 months ago | (#47494213)

This is one of those events where you remember where you were when "The Eagle has Landed" and "One Small Step..." For me, it was a gas station in Jackson Center, PA for the landing (we were driving home from our summer place.)

Re:Where were you when the Eagle landed? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494659)

Grandparent's house, watching on B&W TV, age 6 and a half.

Re:Where were you when the Eagle landed? (1)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | about 2 months ago | (#47495173)

I was eight. We were glued to the TV at home. Heck, we were glued to the TV at elementary school too! Everyone was in awe of this - anything seemed possible.

And then I remember Apollo 13 - biting my nails, hoping and praying those brave souls were going to make it home.

Back to the present, and wondering if we'll ever get out there again.

Re:Where were you when the Eagle landed? (1)

david.emery (127135) | about 2 months ago | (#47495437)

My 1st grade teacher lived close to the school. She marched her entire class to her house, where we watched John Glenn on the TV in her living room.

Re:Where were you when the Eagle landed? (1)

mwehle (2491950) | about 2 months ago | (#47496913)

I was eight too. Built Revell models of the command and lunar modules - seemed like most boys did. Major Matt Mason toys, Star Trek on the television, Estes rockets launched by the whole class in elementary school. I remember assuming that if there was no nuclear war in the late 20th century by the 21st century there would be space stations and moon colonies like in 2001 A Space Odyssey. Would never in my wildest dreams have imagined that in 2014 the US wouldn't have vehicles capable of putting men into earth orbit.

Re:Where were you when the Eagle landed? (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about 2 months ago | (#47543347)

NASA doesn't have a lift vehicle, but three American companies do. The last ISS resupply was delivered on an American rocket, and the Dragon capsule being tested now will hold seven people.

Re:Where were you when the Eagle landed? (2)

sconeu (64226) | about 2 months ago | (#47495583)

I was six. At a friend's house. I had sprained my ankle, so his dad carried me downstairs so I could watch it on TV with everyone.

Re:Where were you when the Eagle landed? (2)

riverat1 (1048260) | about 2 months ago | (#47495625)

I was 17 at the time. I remember watching Armstrong get out of the capsule and walking around then later that afternoon looking up at the Moon in the sky in awe to thing that human beings were up there.

Re:Where were you when the Eagle landed? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47496539)

So? Did you ever look at the ground and think in awe that humans live upside down on the other side of the planet?

Big deal! At least those humans are on a planet and can live there! Test pilots on the Moon was never anything more than a stunt.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/V... [wikipedia.org]

"putting a man in space is a stunt with little scientific or military use".

Re:Where were you when the Eagle landed? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47500503)

Just curious, who shit in your cereal? Did you wake up this morning and say to yourself "What do I want to do today? Oh, I know, I'll get on the Internet and be a massive douche, and trash on one of the most significant achievements of humankind!"

Nobody died because we Apollo 11 landed.
Nobody went hungry because Apollo 11 landed.
Nobody is less educated because Apollo 11 landed.
Nobody is worse off in any way because Apollo 11 landed.

Shut your fucking hole.

Re:Where were you when the Eagle landed? (1)

tragedy (27079) | about 2 months ago | (#47505721)

From the article you link to:

Before the war, Bush had gone on the record as saying, "I don't understand how a serious scientist or engineer can play around with rockets",[56] but in May 1944, he was forced to travel to London to warn General Dwight Eisenhower of the danger posed by the V-1 and V-2.

So, it looks like he wasn't a fan of rocketry in general, which wasn't really particularly visionary of him in retrospect.

Re:Where were you when the Eagle landed? (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about 2 months ago | (#47543267)

You're my age then, I was working at a drive in theater and brought my TV with me (I had a little twelve inch Panasonic). The boss was pissed. I've written about it before. [slashdot.org]

Re:Where were you when the Eagle landed? (1)

Verio Fryar (811080) | about 2 months ago | (#47495729)

I was 2 months old, so I don't remember anything.

Re:Where were you when the Eagle landed? (1)

occasional_dabbler (1735162) | about 2 months ago | (#47496021)

It is honestly my first living memory. My Dad woke me up, age 4 years, 5 months to watch on our tiny black and white telly sometime in the small hours (in the UK I think it was 4am?). Several years later I earned a week of detentions at school for staying in the TV room to watch the first shuttle launch rather than going to German class. Very happy to have witnessed both events.

Re:Where were you when the Eagle landed? (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about 2 months ago | (#47543305)

I was working at Disney World when the first shuttle took off, and saw every shuttle launch before Challenger without a TV. One was a night launch I saw from my mom's house in Tampa. We drove to the cape to watch one, man that thing is LOUD.

The first one I not only didn't see firsthand was Challenger; I missed that launch completely. I was in Illinois looking for work (we'd just had our first kid and moved back to be close to family and besides, Florida is a shitty place to live).

Re:Where were you when the Eagle landed? (1)

Rashdot (845549) | about 2 months ago | (#47496723)

I was 12 and at home in the Netherlands. I had to stay awake all night, but I had no trouble staying awake because that afternoon our neighbor had drowned. When we went swimming in the morning I was in their car. I was all alone that whole night with my thoughts, watching the landing, waiting for hours for the astronauts to get out of the LEM.

I''l never forget.

Re:Where were you when the Eagle landed? (1)

TapeCutter (624760) | about 2 months ago | (#47497135)

The day they landed on the moon, I landed on a plate of spaghetti. I was 10, I had put my meal on my chair and gone to get some juice, I came back and was so enthralled with the TV I sat back down on the chair without looking.

Re: Where were you when the Eagle landed? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47505549)

I was having some wild sex. Way more important than watching some stupid astronauts walk on a rock in space.

I was six years old watching that (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494225)

Like a lot of geeky little kids, I saw the grainy black&white television with my family, and was *amazed*. The National Gegraphic that came out with the wonderful moon maps and photos was a treasure of my childhood. So were the years of National Geographic and Analog on the family bookshelves. It was only 30 years later that I realized just how *deeply* Dad delved into the leading technologies of his time. I didn't get to see him much, because he was supporting almost a dozen immigrants. But all the boys, and some of the girls, learned machine shop basics in the basic with him.

That moon landing has inspired generations of Americans to reach out and do *amazing* things. And in the midst of the Cold War, to make it one "giant step for mankind" instead of a claim for our own nation. Combined with the 'Outer Space Treaty' to prevent militarization of outer space, it makes me proud as hell that we've visited there.

And we are going *back*, dammit. SpaceX, *go, Go, GO*!!!!!!

Re:I was six years old watching that (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494317)

Outer Space Treaty? Like this one? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/S... [wikipedia.org]

Re:I was six years old watching that (1)

pslytely psycho (1699190) | about 2 months ago | (#47496465)

I was 10 at the time and felt the same way, wondrous.

I don't recall what the series was, but my parents subscribed for me a series of books with sticker photos of the ships and facilities. Each one came with a new model and I think they came every three months, but I don't recall exactly.
I had all the models of the Mercury, Gemini, Apollo along with the Saturn V and LEM. (as well as the Enterprise, along with a Klingon and Romulan warbird of course!)
I couldn't wait to open that package when it arrived.
It was an incredible time to grow up.

All lost due to an accident moving up the west coast in 1972.

Re:I was six years old watching that (1)

TapeCutter (624760) | about 2 months ago | (#47497191)

The National Geographic that came out with the wonderful moon maps and photos was a treasure of my childhood.

I still have a copy of that issue. :)

The "mankind" thing was just poetry for a domestic audience, read Kennedy's speech and it's crystal clear that the Apollo project was a military response to the "threat" posed by sputnik.

worst. headline. ever. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494229)

Day before yesterday turns two days old!

worst. headline. ever. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494449)

Umm what? Where in the world is it the 22nd of July now?

worst. headline. ever. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47504273)

East coast of Australia, was almost 1am on the 22nd when you posted

And today (5, Insightful)

Rosco P. Coltrane (209368) | about 2 months ago | (#47494233)

The United States has abandoned its manned space exploration capabilities, relying on another semi-derelict cold-war era launch setup, provided by a country it's on the brink of war with (Russia), preferring to funnel almost unlimited funds to anti-terrorism and Orwellian surveillance programs instead...

I'm was born during the cold war. Tensions between the US and the USSR weren't ideal by any means, but at least when I was a kid, we looked forward to a bright future of scientific achievements and space exploration. Now all I look forward to is reaching retirement age with some money on the side that's still worth something despite the inflation, hoping that WW3 and the religious crazies don't overwhelm the world before I kick the bucket.

Sad, sad world...

Re:And today (4, Interesting)

rubycodez (864176) | about 2 months ago | (#47494257)

nonsense, the US has many manned space programs in development and some of them are private. Exciting times are coming

Re:And today (2)

itzly (3699663) | about 2 months ago | (#47494443)

You must be confusing pork barrels with actual intent to produce something that works.

Re:And today (1)

rubycodez (864176) | about 2 months ago | (#47494507)

many pork-barrel projects also happen to produce working systems; hell in defense and space that's par for the course

Re:And today (1)

Vladius (2577555) | about 2 months ago | (#47494591)

The only light on the horizon is SpaceX. NASA is part of the government and with our current Congress of Republican non scientific assholes NASA's going to such for the near future. Branson's Virgin Galactic is nothing more than a toy for a rich billionaire.

Re:And today (2, Interesting)

ganjadude (952775) | about 2 months ago | (#47494887)

how can you blame the republicans for the state of nasa? bush had the funding in place when he left office, obama gutted the program, and made one of NASAs missions, sorry their "formost" mission is increading the relationship with muslims. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/... [huffingtonpost.com]

explain to me what reaching out to muslims have to do with space travel????

there is alot of blame to go around, but a lot of it belongs on obama

Re:And today (1)

thrich81 (1357561) | about 2 months ago | (#47497317)

Damn, are memories this short! Constellation, Bush's project for post Shuttle manned space, was underfunded from the very beginning. Read the findings of the Augustine Commission (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Review_of_United_States_Human_Space_Flight_Plans_Committee) which was commissioned by the Office of Science and Technology Policy to review the state of human spaceflight in the US in early 2009. The Commission concluded, "The Committee judged the 9-year old Constellation program to be so behind schedule, underfunded and over budget that meeting any of its goals would not be possible." (quote from the Wikipedia article). I recall seeing the committee head (Norm Augustine) on TV briefing Congress, he basically said that Constellation had spent all its money with little to show for it. The Summary Report from the Commission is available on a NASA website (http://www.nasa.gov/pdf/384767main_SUMMARY%20REPORT%20-%20FINAL.pdf) and begins with the statements, "The U.S. human spaceflight program appears to be on an unsustainable trajectory. It is perpetuating the perilous practice of pursuing goals that do not match allocated resources." This was in early 2009 before Obama's first budget.
The committee members were not in any way toadies for the Obama administration but aerospace professionals who knew the business:
Norman Augustine (chairman), former CEO of Lockheed Martin, former chairman of the Advisory Committee on the Future of the United States Space Program[17]
Wanda Austin, CEO of The Aerospace Corporation
Bohdan Bejmuk, former Boeing manager
Leroy Chiao, former NASA astronaut
Christopher Chyba, Princeton University professor
Edward F. Crawley, MIT professor
Jeffrey Greason, co-founder of XCOR Aerospace
Charles Kennel, former director of Scripps Institution of Oceanography
Lester Lyles, former Air Force general
Sally Ride, former NASA astronaut, 1st American female in space

Re:And today (1)

ganjadude (952775) | about 2 months ago | (#47499675)

seems I was wrong on the initial funding. Fucken bush doesnt surprise me though

That does not change the fact that obama made NASAs number one mission muslim outreach. I have no idea what that has to do with space travel

Re:And today (1)

cusco (717999) | about 2 months ago | (#47502305)

That was a peripheral objective of the Director, who now-days is mostly a PR position who has very little to do with actual operations. Nothing in NASA's actual goals or funding has anything to do with that right wingnut talking point.

Re:And today (0)

tomhath (637240) | about 2 months ago | (#47495115)

The space program is languishing because Democrats cut budgets everywhere they could to fund Obamacare. You can't blame Republicans for this one.

Re:And today (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47495713)

"The space program is languishing because Democrats cut budgets everywhere they could to fund Obamacare. You can't blame Republicans for this one."

The US House of Representatives is responsible for appropriations bills and is controlled by Republicans. If you want NASA funded contact John Boehner.

Re:And today (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47495943)

Yes, how horrible, health care for the species. You know, the species you Space Nutters purport to care about so much.

The hell with them!

What we want are test pilots in rubber suits pooping in diapers ... in SPPPAAAAAACE ... FOR THE SPEEEECIES!!!

Grow up you nutcases, the needs of the many outweigh the wants of the few.

You want test pilots in low Earth orbit, YOU pay for it. Your precious free market already had the chance

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/O... [wikipedia.org]

and blew it monumentally.

Re:And today (1)

rubycodez (864176) | about 2 months ago | (#47498331)

yes it is horrible, that abortion of a program is making small and medium businesses and their employees pay more than double for their insurance.

only parasites and slackers are benefitting

Re:And today (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47496407)

"You can't blame Republicans for this one."
Rubbish. The Bush tax cuts gutted the federal budget. There is no way Bush's $200 billion "return to the moon" Constellation program could have survived. And the one thing we learned from Apollo is that the moon is a terrible place for humans. There is nothing humans can do on the moon that can't be done better with robots at a tiny fraction of the cost. See, e.g. https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/15567903/Lunarfab%20ISDC%202013.m4v

Re:And today (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494917)

We would have reached far beyond this solar system had they continued to put everything like it was in the beginning.

Commercial spaceships are fucking toys. Private companies can never have the sort of resource that US government could utilize.

Re:And today (1)

rubycodez (864176) | about 2 months ago | (#47517863)

you are full of shit, the money Nasa spends on manned space flight is in the few billions (like a billion for Orion or 1.7 billion on space launch system); private companies can deal in that range.

http://www.nasa.gov/sites/defa... [nasa.gov]

Re:And today (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47497085)

Exciting? SpaceX is working on sending people to the ISS....something possible in the 1960's. We've gone to the moon...further than that is exciting...closer than that is boring. NASA is working on unmanned visits to Mars but even that isn't exciting..we've put unmanned craft out of the damned solar system FFS. If the space industry had the same rate of development as say the computer industry, we'd have a city on the moon by now and people would be going back and forth to it safely. Instead, the same risks exist in the space industry that existed in the 60's and all it would take would be one catastrophe to end any of these private enerprises...the same way one accident ended commercial supersonic flights (the Concord). Why on earth are people so impressed with a private company doing now what the US government did 50 years ago?

Re:And today (1)

rubycodez (864176) | about 2 months ago | (#47512149)

no, the SpaceX is developing systems which have capabliities that 60s one did not.

Re:And today (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47497631)

You mean the private corporations that have no loyalty to anyone? Then the US dosn't have space capabilitiesjust a choice in who its pusher is.

Re:And today (1)

Keith Henson (1588543) | about 2 months ago | (#47504521)

I was in my last year of college when they landed. It's still one of my most intense memories.

It's worth keeping in mind that NASA is not the only game in town. The most interesting work right now is Skylon by Reaction Engines in the UK. Japan has the most interest in a commercial product, power satellites. Between them with China or Norway picking up much of the tab, we could see the first power satellite by 2023.

Artwork of a microwave ground station and and a vehicle to take 1000 15 ton Skylon payloads from LEO out to GEO to build power satellites.

Ground transmitter size

https://drive.google.com/file/... [google.com]

Microwave rockets 3 pixs

https://drive.google.com/file/... [google.com]

https://drive.google.com/file/... [google.com]

https://drive.google.com/file/... [google.com]

Re:And today (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494811)

at least when I was a kid, we looked forward to a bright future of scientific achievements and space exploration. Now all I look forward to is reaching retirement age with some money on the side that's still worth something despite the inflation, hoping that WW3 and the religious crazies don't overwhelm the world before I kick the bucket.

Sad, sad world...

So then what did you and your generation do to contribute to a bright future of scientific advancement and sustainable retirement plans that you wanted? You kicked the can down to my generation from what we can see.

Re:And today (1)

Bob_Who (926234) | about 2 months ago | (#47495627)

So then what did you and your generation do to contribute to a bright future of scientific advancement and sustainable retirement plans that you wanted? You kicked the can down to my generation from what we can see.

You're welcome.

"......same as it ever was ....same as it ever was ....same as it ever was ...."

Re:And today (1)

MrKaos (858439) | about 2 months ago | (#47498295)

"......same as it ever was ....same as it ever was ....same as it ever was ...."

same.as.it.ever.was

Re:And today (1)

cascadingstylesheet (140919) | about 2 months ago | (#47495765)

hoping that WW3 and the religious crazies don't overwhelm the world before I kick the bucket.

Yeah, those Presbyterians are really on a rampage, aren't they?

Re:And today (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47500103)

No even worse, LUTHERANS.

They're not abandoned (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47496827)

What the fuck?

We're just in an in-between time, and not going anywhere cool at the moment.

Inflation? (1)

Tablizer (95088) | about 2 months ago | (#47496929)

some money on the side that's still worth something despite the inflation

Inflation has been relatively mellow. The cost of raw materials has gone up largely due to higher demand by a modernizing Asia and Brazil. But, services have been almost flat due to a jobs recession such that total inflation averages out to a "typical" historical rate, perhaps even a little low.

Re:And today (1)

aberglas (991072) | about 2 months ago | (#47497103)

People are obsolete technology for space exploration. Have been for decades.

If the money wasted on manned exploration such as the ISS has actually been spent of useful things we would have the Webb telescope up and running some time ago, probes on Europa etc.

Get over it, Buck Rogers is just for TV. The real world aint like that. And the ISS is an extremely expensive way of producing a bit of TV.

Re:And today (1)

cusco (717999) | about 2 months ago | (#47502427)

Sorry, but people poking and prodding and adjusting things are all that keep most of the experiments on the ISS running. You have a very distorted view of the reliability of electrical and mechanical equipment if you're unaware of that simple fact. Hubble functioned for as long as it did only because human beings were able to get up there and work on it. The big reason to have people living and working in space is that because THAT'S THE ONLY FRELLING WAY TO LEARN HOW TO LIVE THERE! If we're ever going to colonize the rest of the universe we're going to need to take these baby steps, and the sooner the better.

Re:And today (1)

aberglas (991072) | about 2 months ago | (#47504555)

The experiments on the ISS are almost worthless. A solution looking for a problem. Certainly not worth their huge cost. The reason for having the ISS is most certainly not the science.

And for the enormous cost of servicing the Hubble it could have simply been replaced, several times over if necessary and with the latest technology each time.

The new Webb telescope will not have any human servicing, being too far away. If it needs any, a robot will be sent up to do the job.

Anthony

Re:And today (1)

cusco (717999) | about 2 months ago | (#47507905)

for the enormous cost of servicing the Hubble it could have simply been replaced,

No, there's not enough pork in a new telescope for Congress to pass funding, which is why Webb took so long to get funded. To dig a tunnel out of prison you might want a boring machine, but if all you have is a shovel you'll use that. NASA was stuck using a spoon because that was all that Congress would allow. The most disappointing thing that we learned from the entire Hubble mission is that while they wouldn't even pay for basic maintenance on Hubble until NASA had grovelled sufficiently and promised even more giveaways to the Pentagon, they gleefully purchased so many Hubble-class telescopes for the National Recon Office that the NRO couldn't even use two of them.

If Webb ever needs servicing it will be abandoned, since Congress will never budget the funding for the R&D in time to prevent minor malfunctions from cascading into complete failure. There just isn't enough pork in it.

It's not a miracle (4, Insightful)

AikonMGB (1013995) | about 2 months ago | (#47494247)

As Jim Lovell put it:

From now on we'll live in a world where man has walked on the Moon. It's not a miracle, we just decided to go.

There seems to be this perception that space travel is this incredible thing. It is awesome for sure, but it is fully within our grasp to do with as we please. One of my favourite arguments against the conspiracy theorists goes: if NASA were willing to fake the Moon landing, they would have done something else by now.

Let's reach for the stars again!

Pffft! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494383)

if NASA were willing to fake the Moon landing, they would have done something else by now.

They just haven't gotten a decent script yet! Geeze!

I have heard that they are planning a reboot of the '69 Moon landing only making the astronauts women in bikini space suits.

Re:Pffft! (1)

Tablizer (95088) | about 2 months ago | (#47496947)

In that case, I don't care if they DO fake it!

Re:It's not a miracle (1)

phantomfive (622387) | about 2 months ago | (#47494939)

Let's reach for the stars again!

Sure, but how?

Re:It's not a miracle (1)

lennier (44736) | about 2 months ago | (#47496417)

Let's reach for the stars again!

Sure, but how?

Simple: wait 296,000 years for Voyager 2 to reach Sirius [futuretimeline.net] .

Oh, did you mean developing faster-than-light technology that will let us send probes to a star within a human lifetime, and with an energy output less than a supernova? We'll get right on that. First up, falsifying General Relativity, Quantum Mechanics and String Theory; shouldn't take too long...

Kidding aside, it seems like the 1960s Golden Age of GR was the last fun time; there really was a sense that we could engineer spacetime fabric Real Soon Now [wikipedia.org] . Who knew what those wacky mesons did? Warp drive was just around the corner! But from the 1980s on, fundamental physics became the Science of Nope, You Can't Ever Have That. Science fiction in particular hasn't ever really recovered; it lives it its little parallel universe where the big future dreams of the 1930s live on.

Re:It's not a miracle (1)

cusco (717999) | about 2 months ago | (#47502893)

Not to be rude, but that's a rather absurd assumption. Do you really think we know everything that will ever be possible to learn about physics? Since the majority of the universe seems to be made of matter and energy that we can't even detect yet I think there just may be some wiggle room for new discoveries.

Even more absurd is the assumption that the only reason to go to space is to go to other stellar systems in the blink of an eye. There is more than enough here in our own system to keep humanity occupied for centuries, and generation ships would be a natural outgrowth of asteroid colonization.

Theories? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494251)

What in the world can turn the landing module by 45 degrees? Moon dust storm?

Great example (4, Insightful)

ichthus (72442) | about 2 months ago | (#47494289)

What a great example of what can be achieved with real leadership, and an environment that bolsters creative problem solving and innovation.

Re:Great example (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494933)

Versus todays corporative takeover

We want the money and we want it now
Next year..fuck next year!

Re:Great example (1)

thrich81 (1357561) | about 2 months ago | (#47497179)

You also have to remember that the entire American manned space program from Mercury through the Apollo moon landings was in reality just another contest in the Cold War between the USA and the Soviet Union. Manned space would never have gotten the funding and national priority it got in the 60's without that aspect of it. For many Americans, who were paying the bills, "beating the Russians" was the only reason for it. So to "real leadership and environment that bolsters creative problem solving" I would add, "military level budgets and priorities and wartime sense of urgency". Other than the secrecy of the former, I see little difference between the Manhattan Project and Project Apollo. If you want results on the scale of those projects then it will require similar national level commitment and resources. I've only seen that on endeavors tied to "national security".

Re:Great example (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47500419)

OK, assume that is so. The next step would then to be finding the modern competition that would spur those who would normally have no interest.

Re:Great example (1)

ichthus (72442) | about 2 months ago | (#47501035)

I certainly agree with you, but I would tend to emphasize the environment of innovation over cold war muscle flexing. We won the race largely due to the developments in computer technology that had already happened -- invention of the integrated circuit being key among them. I think you could make an argument that the IC came as a successor to the tech developed during and after WWII, but (and I'm no historian) I believe Fairchild Semiconductor's work was privately funded.

And less than four years later... (4, Insightful)

damn_registrars (1103043) | about 2 months ago | (#47494291)

... we returned from the last manned mission to the moon [wikipedia.org] . For a while it seemed like it was going to be a routine event, then we just gave up on it. We haven't put a man on the moon in over 40 years now.

Re:And less than four years later... (2)

itzly (3699663) | about 2 months ago | (#47494453)

It's because people got bored doing the same thing over and over. Beyond the novelty factor, there's just not much purpose in sending people to walk on the moon.

Re:And less than four years later... (1)

damn_registrars (1103043) | about 2 months ago | (#47495763)

It's because people got bored doing the same thing over and over.

Really? We only successfully got people to the moon 6 times. If you urinate 6 times in a day, do you refuse to do it again later in the day because you are bored of urination?

Beyond the novelty factor, there's just not much purpose in sending people to walk on the moon.

Novelty? Really? No. Going to Disney World is novel (though plenty of people do it far more than 6 times in their lifetime). Going to the moon is not merely "novel". Going to the moon is a pinnacle of engineering and science.

As for purpose, anyone claiming there to "not be much purpose" to going to the moon is epically shortsighted. For one, we will eventually exhaust all the resources on this planet, and our species will become extinct if we cannot - at the very least - successfully extract resources from other worlds. We really need to find a way to actually live on other worlds if we are to continue to exist. Furthermore the moon can tell us a great deal about the origins of our planet and solar system.

Re:And less than four years later... (2)

lennier (44736) | about 2 months ago | (#47496473)

For one, we will eventually exhaust all the resources on this planet, and our species will become extinct if we cannot - at the very least - successfully extract resources from other worlds. We really need to find a way to actually live on other worlds if we are to continue to exist.

Actually, it's fairly easily shown that if we continue our current exponential rate of population growth and resource usage, we'll use up the entire Milky Way Galaxy in 2,500 years [ucsd.edu] . That's assuming nonexistent magitech FTL drives which contradict our current fundamental physics theories.

Or, we could stabilise our short-term rapid growth and learn to live on the one accessible habitable world we have, like we did for the past few million years. Our choice.

By the way, any future that has economically viable space colonies in it will also have economically viable greenhouse cities in Antarctica, the Sahara and the Australian outback first. Because they'll be much cheaper to build, require no launch costs, don't have to be perfectly airtight, and you get atmospheric pressure, water and oxygen for free. Also, in the case of war, plague and political tensions, ground-based semi-closed environments will be much less fragile and more survivable than sealed orbital tin cans.

Any space activists keen on setting up some of those first?

Re:And less than four years later... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47498227)

That's a terrible comparison. Urination serves a purpose and doesn't cost billions.

Re:And less than four years later... (4, Interesting)

the eric conspiracy (20178) | about 2 months ago | (#47494921)

It won't be long before the 12 human beings to walk on the moon are dead. Already we are down 8. Soon there will be no living person who has walked on another world.

I wonder if time will show this period to be the high water mark of the human race. With all the existential threats facing us it could work out this way.

Re:And less than four years later... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47495743)

We are our collectively our largest existiential threat.

Re:And less than four years later... (1)

14erCleaner (745600) | about 2 months ago | (#47505119)

Space travel is a big dead-end. Outside of sci-fi, nobody really wants to live in anyplace remotely as horrible as the friendliest of non-Earth planets. Think about the worst places on Earth: summit of Everest, South Pole, bottom of the ocean, middle of the Sahara. All of those places look like Eden compared to the nicest environment available within 10 light-years of here. Get real - we're stuck with our one Earth, and we should take care of it.

Re:And less than four years later... (1)

tompaulco (629533) | about 2 months ago | (#47495833)

What do you expect? We no longer have the motivation or the desire or the technology to go back to the moon. Nor do we have the engineering expertise necessary to redevelop what we have lost. Back in the 60s we had unprecedented spending by the government on education, research and technology, which led to the space program, huge advances in engineering, computing, science and technology. Now we have unprecedented spending on self perpetuating programs designed to keep people at home in front of their TVs and remove any incentives or concerns that perhaps they ought to educate themselves or learn a skill. Go to the moon? Heck, in another 20 years, we will probably be back to most people not ever venturing further than 100 miles from their house, something unheard of in the last 2 centuries.

Generations before us (3, Interesting)

sinij (911942) | about 2 months ago | (#47494315)

Great generation defeated Nazis, landed on the moon; Baby Boomer generation built Internet and tackled racial and gender issues. What are we doing other that building surveillance state and wealth inequality?

Re:Generations before us (4, Insightful)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | about 2 months ago | (#47494329)


Great generation defeated Nazis, landed on the moon; Baby Boomer generation built Internet and tackled racial and gender issues. What are we doing other that building surveillance state and wealth inequality?

We're trying to deal with the surveillance state and the wealth inequality that was produced by the system the "Greatest" generation created. Likely several generations will be required to dig out from under it.

Re:Generations before us (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494475)

Actually (though I accept that your post was largely US-centric and this is a world-centric answer) we are radically reducing absolute poverty, significantly improving the education of women worldwide, developing an unprecedented understanding of the genetics of disease, controlling cancer better than ever before, structuring and disseminating information in a way that the generations before us could only imagine, developing the kind of natural language translation and portable, low-power computing that makes that information more available to countries whose citizens were knowledge-poor, focussing on energy efficiency and recycling, modelling and mapping our own planet with the kind of diligence necessary to fully answer the space age era "we've been to the moon but we don't know what's at the bottom of the ocean" rebuttal, and an awful lot more.

There are many many things we do now that even the baby boomer age would have found difficult to believe.

Re:Generations before us (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494567)

We're trying to deal with the surveillance state and the wealth inequality that was produced by the system the "Greatest" generation created

It's not the WW-II generation that created this surveillance state. It started in earnest under Clinton and has expanded every since. It came well after the WW-II'ers were long retired.

Re:Generations before us (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47495175)

We're trying to deal with the surveillance state and the wealth inequality that was produced by the system the "Greatest" generation created

It's not the WW-II generation that created this surveillance state. It started in earnest under Clinton and has expanded every since. It came well after the WW-II'ers were long retired.

Ha ha ha ha ha you're so naive. Does the NSA scandal in the 60s-70s ring a bell ?
What's happened since then is that Congress abdicated its role to counterattack the worst excesses of the executive branch. The reality is that the us kids post ww2 have been brought up on a lie. A necessary lie but a lie nonetheless. And the US was doing shit things 60+ years ago. But I guess that's too far a time to really remember what the US policy was like. Bringing war and misery to all those that didn't tow the US line. Guess things the more they change the more they rest the same eh ?

Re:Generations before us (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47495731)

J. Edgar Hoover [wikipedia.org] was dead nearly 20 years before Clinton was President.

Re:Generations before us (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47497081)

I suppose FISA passing in 78 (Carter) is nothing then?

Re:Generations before us (1)

tompaulco (629533) | about 2 months ago | (#47495845)

The 50s, 60s and 70s saw huge innovations in technology. They were focused on the right people for the job and there was little to no racial prejudice. It was largely after that that race became an issue in science and technology. Now, it is not whether the person is right for the job but whether the person will help meet our diversification quotas. We won the race wars in the 50s and 60s and now the race war is conquering us again.

Re:Generations before us (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47495909)

I have a device in my pocket that can communicate to people around the world and look up information on essentially any topic. Huge innovations in technology continue today...

Re:Generations before us (1)

david_thornley (598059) | about 2 months ago | (#47503173)

If you think race didn't make a difference back then, you were either not born yet or completely oblivious. Affirmative action quotas suck, but they're better than what we had back then.

Look up the history of the civil rights movement sometime. We won basic rights in the 50s and 60s, not anything approximating full equality.

Re:Generations before us (1)

Applehu Akbar (2968043) | about 2 months ago | (#47494635)

The primary accomplishment of my generation, the Boomers, was to start a meme in which hatred of every new technological advance was the default position. On the day of the first Apollo landing, when I was 21, the Greatest Generation was glued to its TV sets while we Boomers were out protesting against the "astropigs." Today, this is why you young people are mostly out of work.

And we didn't invent the Internet either. It slipped through our clutches because it has no single large facilities, like power plants or launch stands, that we could legislate out of existence.

Re:Generations before us (1)

fustakrakich (1673220) | about 2 months ago | (#47494775)

Baby Boomer generation built Internet...

Baby Boomer generation monetized the Internet, and left us AOL in the wreckage. Then again, the "greatest generation" sent them to Vietnam to settle a trade dispute. Guess which program lasted longer.

Re:Generations before us (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47495161)

There, I moved your comma:

Great generation defeated, Nazis landed on the moon.

Considering Vietnam and von Braun's rank probably more appropriate.

Generating confusion (1)

TiggertheMad (556308) | about 2 months ago | (#47495949)

To be fair, the 'Great Generation' fought Nazis at age 18. The Internet (really ARPNET at the time) would have been built by young(ish) engineers in the 60s and 70s (Baby Boomers). The current political problems we have are a result of legislation that has been passed for the last 10-15 years (government moves slowly), which would have been passed mostly by the elder politicians of the time (your 50-70 year olds at the peak of their power and careers) who would have basically been Baby boomers. Gen X is only now starting to come into the senior positions of power in government. Obama is youngish and he was born in 1961, which is at the very end of the Baby boom generation and the beginning of the gen X group, so you won't know what the 'current generation' (who ever you consider that to be) leaves as a legacy for quite some time.

Re:Generating confusion (1)

thrich81 (1357561) | about 2 months ago | (#47498357)

Hold on there with your Boomer bashing -- someone who is 70 years old NOW is not even a Boomer (missed it by 2 years) and the average age of the Congress people is old, so 10-15 years ago it wasn't Boomers in power but the vestiges of the Greatest Generation and the Silent Generation after them. Boomers have only slowly replaced them since. Add that to the outsized influence the older voters in the electorate have and you find that most of the problems blamed on the Boomers (Social Security bankruptcy for one) are actually problems started by their parents.

Re:Generations before us (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47496457)

What are we doing? Voting us some free stuff! Duh!

Where my Obama phone? Where my health care? SOMEBODY gotta pay for all this crap, and it ain't gonna be me!

Obama 2016!!!!

It's right there! (2)

Tteddo (543485) | about 2 months ago | (#47494331)

I was 5 watching the landing on TV and I remember being kind of annoyed that they preempted the cartoons that morning. I mean what's the big deal? The moon is RIGHT THERE (pointing up)!

Re:It's right there! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494387)

I had just turned 4 that morning and was watching the landing. Enough said.

Re:It's right there! (1)

real gumby (11516) | about 2 months ago | (#47495459)

I was also 5 years old. I didn't really understand what the USA was but all of us were totally space mad (we would draw pictures of rockets and moon landers, but put Aussie flags on them). My parents got a TV just to see it. All of the landings were tremendously exciting. Even Apollo/Soyez was exciting.

I am sure the space program was the reason that as an older kid I thought of the US as the cool place where they just got awesome shit done. And I was quite happy to move to the States, and I live and work here now.

It's sort of sad that my kid considers the US the boring place and prefers to spend his time working in "dynamic" countries.

Re:It's right there! (1)

cusco (717999) | about 2 months ago | (#47503079)

The moon landing was carried live worldwide, even on the few television stations in the USSR and China. To my knowledge it still holds the record for the program with the largest percentage of televisions worldwide tuned in. (Any game in the World Cup had larger numbers, but as a percentage of total available viewers I believe Apollo still wins.)

Re:It's right there! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47501419)

The landing was after 4pm EDT. The walk wasn't until almost 11pm EDT. It was a Tuesday, although the walk went in to Wednesday EDT.

What if we hadn't? (1)

swb (14022) | about 2 months ago | (#47494349)

I'm kind of curious what the space program would look like today if we hadn't sent people into space and had only used remote landers. About half the current Slashdot audience is critical of manned space exploration and prefers robotic exploration only. Would we be more or less down the road of space exploration if we hadn't done a manned moon mission?

It cost a lot of money to send people to the moon vs. just robotic stuff, but I wonder if there would be as much interest in it if we had never sent humans to the moon.

What if we hadn't? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494503)

To return from the moon, you're already in Earth's gravity well, so the energy cost is relatively cheap. To return from Mars, you have to launch whatever you send off a frikkin planet, and get it back to Earth without and support structures at the remote launch site. That's just not doable. We went to the moon because it was doable, the Soviets were only a few years behind but scrapped their project once the Americans did it. Because it's basically pointless to do so. That's also why the Americans stopped going there. It's a waste of the budget and resources.

Sure, it was a nice accomplishment, but right now manned space programs any further out are pretty silly.

Re:What if we hadn't? (1)

Macrat (638047) | about 2 months ago | (#47495383)

That's also why the Americans stopped going there. It's a waste of the budget and resources.

And those resources were redirected into more bombing of Vietnam.

Re:What if we hadn't? (1)

thrich81 (1357561) | about 2 months ago | (#47496237)

A little history: By the time of the last Apollo mission to the moon (Dec 1972) US involvement in Vietnam was for all practical purposes over; US direct involvement officially ended in Jan 1973 with the signing of the "Paris Peace Accords". Perhaps an argument could be made that Vietnam took resources which could have gone to Apollo in earlier years, but considering that Apollo had military type budgets and priority through the 60's I doubt it. The period of maximum involvement by the US in both Vietnam and the Apollo program was the same (mid to late 60's). As both were proxy battles against the Soviets in the Cold War, this was not a coincidence. By the early 70's the American people, who were paying the bills for both, were no longer interested in either. However, in what must really be a coincidence, the last mission with Apollo hardware (Apollo-Soyuz) occurred in 1975, the same year that South Vietnam finally fell to the North Vietnam forces, putting a definitive end to that conflict.

Re:What if we hadn't? (1)

R3d M3rcury (871886) | about 2 months ago | (#47495357)

One of the things I always like to point out in the "Manned versus Unmanned" arguments is comparing the amount of lunar material brought back. The Apollo program returned something like 800 KG of moon rocks. The Soviet Union's landers returned something like 0.8 Grams of moon dust. And those rocks were brought back because an astronaut (who in later missions was trained in geology) actually thought they were interesting, whereas the moon dust returned by the Luna probes was whatever happened to be within reach.

So it costs a lot more. The question is, do you get more value out of a manned mission versus a robotic mission? Apollo brought back 1,000,000x the amount of lunar material for 1000x the cost. So if you're just calculating based on those numbers, Apollo gave a better return than the Luna program. But that initial cost was pretty off-putting.

As people at NASA and others have pointed out, what the rovers have accomplished on Mars could have been done by an astronaut in a couple of days.

An analogous issue is time versus money. I could buy a ticket on the Concorde way back when and get from New York to London in three hours for $6000. I could buy a ticket nowadays on a non-supersonic transport for maybe $1500 that would get me there in 8 hours. The question is, is it worth the extra $4500 to get there five hours earlier?

Mars isn't really changing. There's really nothing about Mars we need to know right now, such that it would be worth spending that initially large amount of money to find out.

Re:What if we hadn't? (1)

itzly (3699663) | about 2 months ago | (#47495425)

On the other hand, if somebody had made it a goal to send an unmanned probe to collect a ton of moon rocks, it could have been done too. Scaling from 0.8 grams to 0.8 tonnes is just a matter of using a bigger rocket.

Re:What if we hadn't? (1)

Nkwe (604125) | about 2 months ago | (#47495783)

Scaling from 0.8 grams to 0.8 tonnes is just a matter of using a bigger rocket.

For small scales that is true, for large, not so much. When you make a bigger rocket, you need more fuel to lift that rocket. When you add that extra fuel, you need to add even more fuel to lift the weight of the added fuel and so on. As you scale up, a higher and higher percentage of the fuel is used just to lift the fuel. There is a point of diminishing returns. I am not a rocket scientist, so I don't know at what point you hit the wall with current technology (probably not at 0.8 tons), but there is a limit to scaling with current technology. It would be more accurate to say scaling up is a matter of building a better rocket or finding a lighter fuel source. Solving these problems would have broad applications.

Re:What if we hadn't? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47496105)

That's right, that's why it's a good idea to get rid of the most fragile and heavy component: the test pilot, his rubber suit, and all the food and water he needs.

Good idea! After all, how many dead rocks do we need to look at? Are we hoping to find an element that doesn't exist on our Periodic Table? Maybe there's a new integer between 4 and 5??

Re:What if we hadn't? (1)

cusco (717999) | about 2 months ago | (#47503195)

Early on VonBraun planned on using multiple launches and assemble the spacecraft in orbit. Kennedy's 'end of the decade' deadline made that proposal a non-starter, since we didn't have the time necessary to learn the proper construction techniques, so we ended up with the enormous beast of the Saturn V as our booster. It's too bad, VonBraun's design would have had people working on the surface for as much as a month at a time before returning, and the program would have grown at a sustainable rate that could have been integrated into the economy and government.

when we dared to seize the day (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494357)

I remember watching on my parent's B&W TV. This was part of what inspired me to pursue engineering, and to get a couple of degrees, first in mechanical and then manufacturing automation engineering. I had no idea what was to come. Clearly.

So yeah, I remember this. Back with America dared to dream, and to act on those dreams.

Re:when we dared to seize the day (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494623)

But if we dare to dream about universal health care, the leisure society or life extension for the species, that's bad.

PR stunts involving test pilots in rubber suits tacked onto the military contractors who build ICBMs, that's OK. Because the species wants to go camping on the Moon.

You know, the species with untreated illnesses who still need to work just to get food.

Re:when we dared to seize the day (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47499651)

If we never went to the moon, you might still need your degrees but perhaps it would have saved you from having to talk about them.

"live" coverage on NASASpaceflight.com forums (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494411)

NASASpaceflight.com site is doing a nice forum coverage "live" as if this were happening now. The site does these coverages on all launches and have a massive pile of detail on the Apollo 11 flight.

About 5 hours from landing as I write this. Really interesting bits coming up.

Current "LIVE" tread for the landing: http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=35227.0
Earlier thread that covered the flight from launch up until lunar orbit: http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=35180.0
Discussion thread for "in character" commentary as-if-it-were-45-years-ago: http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=35181.0

Damn cool to follow... new posts covering what's going on posted according to the historical timeline, taken from the transcripts of the mission and with screen shots from historical TV broadcasts & links to videos of them.

Boring Hollywood movie. (0, Troll)

abrahamOH (3712519) | about 2 months ago | (#47494423)

Old US propaganda from 60s.
Everything was possible back then. Now, when technology is here to catch any fakes, no one makes any attempts to do "Moon Landings"

This chapter of US history is so pathetic.

Re:Boring Hollywood movie. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494505)

You're so naive. Nasa landed on the moon but made it look fake. At the same time, they launch the "moon hoax" theory in order to divert attention from other dealings from the US governments. Moon hoaxers are actually part of the conspiracy. How much money does the US government pay you to propagate those fake conspiracies?

Re:Boring Hollywood movie. (1)

spiritplumber (1944222) | about 2 months ago | (#47496985)

It was a soundstage on Mars.

Gil Scott-Heron (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494435)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PtBy_ppG4hY

US, the moon. China, mars. (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494463)

China is the new United States. It has a "future belongs to us" mindset that the US had in the 1960's. It values science and math, and it's willing to invest in its own future. It has many problems it has to solve, social and economic, even bigger ones than the US has, but it will solve them because it has the will to do so.

The US has fewer problems than China, but lacks national will and foresight. It gets tied up petty bickering and political infighting. It no longer values science or understands how much of what it takes for granted has come from basic research in science and technology. Entire fields it once dominated, in everything from medicine to technology, are moving step by step to countries like China. It's little by little strangling its former best-in-the-world national labs, NASA, and other national assets. It's shipping its technology over to China wholesale as industrial theft and voluntary outsourcing of production transfers the know-how elsewhere.

The US is Rome in the last of its days, trying to hang onto its position in the world, but watching the future slip through its fingers.

Re:US, the moon. China, mars. (3, Interesting)

joe_frisch (1366229) | about 2 months ago | (#47495467)

US may be more like Byzantium, a slow centuries-long decline. Reliving its past glories "safe" behind its invulnerable walls.

Civilizations rise and fall. Its not clear who's next. China is making rapid progress, but it isn't clear if they will regain their millennia long place as world leaders, or crash and burn on the next economic downturn. I hope they make it though - I'd rather it were us, but I want someone in space.

Re:US, the moon. China, mars. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47496001)

Why? Your view of the future is collapsing civilizations on Earth, but as long as a few lucky test pilots get to play Boy Scout camper on the Moon with some dead rocks, you're OK??/

Are you mentally 8 years old?

Re:US, the moon. China, mars. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47498843)

The Team America World Police influence wasn't built in a century where Rome wasn't built in a day. The fizzling might be comparable to the rise.

China isn't nearly as ephemeral as either, even though the latest emperor is a series of committees. They're taking it slow, with five year plans that actually work. They actually can and do look forward, well beyond the four year boundary, something the western world hasn't done in a long time. And, you could even argue that they've never lost their place as a world power. I'm just really glad they tend to look to the inside, but that may no longer remain the case.

Beyond that there's at least Brazil and India contending, as well as Russia trying to get up again. I don't know who'll "win" but this is and moreso will be Chinese curse time.

Partly because of that I don't particularly want anyone to reach for, much less colonize, the stars. But it's quite besides the point, really. The big things that the space race brought the world was political symbolism (can't eat that), and technology advances. We don't particularly need that particular symbolism drive to get the technology advances. Though the alternatives that get the USoA to move at all are a lot bloodier, making me think the problem isn't with whether or not to explore space.

Re:US, the moon. China, mars. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47496263)

So according to your theory, all it takes is half a century to go from The Moon (tm) as some sort of symbol of ultimate power to decay...

So what are you worried about? The Chinese will find the same things the US did, that the Moon is far away, it's dead, it's hostile and it's an expensive stunt.

So they will collapse as well in 50 years, maybe even faster as they learn to imitate us without all that nonsense in between.

"The future" didn't slip between anyone's fingers ...

Your idea of the future was DEAD WRONG the whole time!!!

Gil Scott-Heron on the moon landings (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494465)

This always makes me laugh: whitey on the moon [youtube.com] .

In Nam (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494491)

I was in Nam at the time, captured, in a stick cage.

I heard about it from the guards, one of em pointed to the moon and made a motion like a gun.

Like now the USA could just shell them with artillery from the moon.

They were scared that the USA would shoot them .. from the moon.

Re:In Nam (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | about 2 months ago | (#47495003)

Interesting. Didn't realize the VC were into Heinlein.

Re:In Nam (1)

spiritplumber (1944222) | about 2 months ago | (#47496997)

That's awesome.

Re:In Nam (1)

MrKaos (858439) | about 2 months ago | (#47498339)

I just ran out of mod point - this is probably one of the most interesting "where were you when they landed on the moon" stories I've heard.

Apart from actually being on the moon

Because Slide RUELZ! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494541)

No crapping javascript-based shit running everything, for they would surely have perished with the shit software of today.

Re:Because Slide RUELZ! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494617)

Nonsense! My MBA tells me that an agile scrum methodolgy using noSQL and ruby-on-rails would have go us there in half the time!

How did they launch from the moon? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494661)

It's interesting to hear Armstrong say that he thought returning would be easier than landing on the moon. I've never understood how they were able to launch from the moon back towards Earth. Launching from the Earth requires massive infrastructure and huge rockets. Yes, the moon's gravity well is shallower, but still significant. How did they launch from the moon with no infrastructure or giant rockets?

Re:How did they launch from the moon? (1)

Waffle Iron (339739) | about 2 months ago | (#47494905)

I've never understood how they were able to launch from the moon back towards Earth. Launching from the Earth requires massive infrastructure and huge rockets. Yes, the moon's gravity well is shallower, but still significant.

It's because the fundamental equation that relates a rocket's performance and the mass fuel it requires to orbital velocities is exponential. This makes it work out so that any chemical rocket leaving earth has to have the vast majority of its weight as fuel, where as a rocket leaving the moon only about half of its weight as fuel.

What's more, the entire lunar module and its fuel supply is dead weight as far as the earth launch is concerned, which makes the earth rocket and its fuel multiple all the bigger. Then there's the issue of bringing along enough fuel to slow down the craft into lunar orbit, and escaping lunar orbit back to earth. The lunar lander didn't need to handle any of that, either.

There's more to this than just the beginning (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494683)

Next was the space shuttle. It held back the US, and with it the world, a good twenty to forty years. Its "cheap" flights weren't, but nothing else could replace it while it hogged the spot.

I'm not sure I want the US romping around in space and on the moon, n'mind beyond, so all in all I'm not too unhappy about this. But it's something you should be aware of. The whole thing was entirely politically driven and internal politics just isn't that great a driver to say "hello" to the wider universe, with or without aliens in it.

And yeah, neither do I particularly want Russia, or China, or Brazil, or India, or whoever else, to go there. We need to work on our attitude first, all of us. This is something the American People could use to be but are not going to be the world's first in, n'mind foremost.

The biggest problem with the space shuttle (1)

FeriteCore (25122) | about 2 months ago | (#47495265)

The biggest problem with the space shuttle wasn't tiles or tanks or SRBs or O-rings. Or even needing to practically rebuild it between flights.

The biggest problem was that the first four orbiters should just have been the Mk-I model. All those things that were found to be problems in the Mk-I model should have been improved or even fixed in the MK-II and subsequent orbiters.

Yes, they made improvements in the later orbiters based on early experiences with the Columbia, and fixed the O rings after the Challenger accident, but there never was a truly improved model.

 

Re:The biggest problem with the space shuttle (1)

joe_frisch (1366229) | about 2 months ago | (#47495439)

While I agree with this, I think there is also the issue that the shuttle was not a very good general purpose launch vehicle - or more correctly general purpose launch vehicles do not seem like a good engineering solution.

For missions where you need to send men and equipment into orbit and bring them down again the Shuttle is fine. If you just want to put cargo into orbit, the extra weight and complexity is not worth it. If you just want to put men in orbit and return them, then a smaller vehicle works.

The design of launch vehicles is so marginal that it is not worth providing for a lot of mission flexibility. The early shuttle concepts recognized this and had non-returning heavy-lift variants.

The greatest generation (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494705)

Fucking baby boomers would never be able to pull this off. Hell, they're why the world is deteriorating so badly. People can't handle abundance. They squander it all.

Where's the "allegedly"? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47494945)

I don't see the word "allegedly" anywhere?

Editors, did you somehow miss this, or deliberately omitted it?

Re:Where's the "allegedly"? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47495087)

I don't see the word "allegedly" anywhere?

Editors, did you somehow miss this, or deliberately omitted it?

Allegedly is up your ass.

For those who didn't see the Buzz Aldrin ama (3, Informative)

GoodNewsJimDotCom (2244874) | about 2 months ago | (#47495293)

Check this out to see Buzz Aldrin answer questions on Reddit not too long ago [reddit.com] The way the guy speaks is a more romanticized version of humanity and space exploration. It is good to see someone still have a positive attitude about things.

Re:For those who didn't see the Buzz Aldrin ama (1)

Tablizer (95088) | about 2 months ago | (#47496885)

Favorite "Apollo" moment:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?... [youtube.com]

Bart got to see stars & moons himself.

Forget men on the moon... (1)

hsthompson69 (1674722) | about 2 months ago | (#47495415)

...why aren't we sending more robotic probes? Putting meat bags in space is completely overrated - we need to get better at developing the robust systems necessary for autonomous and semi-autonomous probes.

I know this is a swift kick in the nut sack for all those astronaut wannabes in the air force out there, but frankly, the quickest way to get meat bags somewhere else is to have a bunch of mechanical devices head out there first and build the infrastructure necessary to support meat bags. The sheer inefficiency of manned space exploration is phenomenal, and if it is going to have a place, it's gotta come after we've laid the necessary groundwork with unmanned probes.

Never happened (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47496447)

Why haven't we been back? I don't think it ever happened! They should have some sort of base there by now and expanding to other planets. Never happened!

Re:Never happened (1)

50000BTU_barbecue (588132) | about 2 months ago | (#47496661)

Do you also think we never went to the bottom of the Challenger Deep because there's no base there?

50% Chance (1)

Tablizer (95088) | about 2 months ago | (#47497073)

Armstrong: "I thought we had a 90% chance of getting back safely to Earth on that flight but only a 50-50 chance of making a landing on that first attempt. There are so many unknowns on that descent from lunar orbit down to the surface that had not been demonstrated yet by testing and there was a big chance that there was something in there we didn't understand properly and we had to abort and come back to Earth without landing."

Seems like a decent estimate. The landing computer had issues that almost was cause for an abort. I'm surprised NASA decided to ignore the alarm. Who wants to try to land with an active error code? Two even. In hind-site it was the correct decision, but the cause was unknown at the time.

http://www.theguardian.com/sci... [theguardian.com]

Re:50% Chance (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47497133)

Hindsight. No site, no hyphen.

Re:50% Chance (1)

Tablizer (95088) | about 2 months ago | (#47498317)

In hindsight, you are correct.

ask (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47497119)

I hear that Neil Armstrong take a Muslim religion right?

http://elliamebeljepara.com/

"Moondust" (1)

Kittenman (971447) | about 2 months ago | (#47497347)

Finished this book recently: writer catches up with the living 'moonwalkers'. At that time, there were nine. We've lost Neil Armstrong since then (anyone have a website that gives current state of the NASA astronauts? Or the Soviet Cosmonauts?)

Anyhow - author (Andrew Smith) states that it's as if a decade of the 21st century had been dropped in to the 20th century. Good comment, I thought.

Re:"Moondust" (1)

cusco (717999) | about 2 months ago | (#47504035)

Non-obligatory XKCD. 'Number of living humans who have walked on another world.' [xkcd.com]

The overtext says, "The universe is probably littered with the one-planet graves of cultures which made the sensible economic decision that there's no good reason to go into space--each discovered, studied and remembered by the ones who made the irrational decision."

Almost Beyond Living Memory (1)

jaa101 (627731) | about 2 months ago | (#47497889)

The saddest part about this is that soon, probably, we'll live in a world where there's no living memory of what it's like to walk on another world. Armstrong and his successors are no longer young and none of the projects to return to the moon or to go to Mars look likely to happen quickly enough. Who in 1972 would have thought that they were watching the end or an era instead of the beginning? I don't think anyone's made it past 1000 miles up since then.

Apollo 11 Moon Landing Turns 45 (1)

milestones (3756601) | about 2 months ago | (#47502015)

I had just graduated High School. There were several boys in my class that went on to attend West Point. One of them, Steve Oswald graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1973 and went on to pilot two missions aboard the Space Shuttle Discovery and retired from NASA in January 2000. I, on the other hand, married twice, have one son, climbed the corporate ladder, retired and now am a graphic artist, web designer, work at marketing for Milestones Building and Design [http://mbdbuildings.com]. I just wanted to say that the Apollo Moon Landing inspired many of us.

Buzz should have been first... (1)

jbburks (853501) | about 2 months ago | (#47503063)

Buzz Aldrin should have been the first man on the moon.

He's done much more to be an evangelist for space exploration than Neil ever did. It was almost impossible to get Neil out of his cocoon. We need someone making space exploration real and desirable to get funding.

please don't haul out (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47507431)

the fake video this time

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