Friday, July 08, 2005

Sweet Success

Seems like Deep Impact was success, sweet success. Hearty congrats for a job well done to the folks at NASA, University of Maryland, JPL, Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corporation, and anyone else involved. Check it out. This was a project purportedly to study the interior of a comet, but I dare say that much, much more was learned, particularly along the lines of high speed intercepts.

(Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/UMD - shamelessly ripped from NASA website)

Full Story


Addendum: Thanks to Chaotic Synaptic Activity for the link to this:
A Russian astrologer sues NASA over Deep Impact Mission.
She is concerned about the impact causes problems out in the universe....and she is demanding $300M in damages. I wonder just where she will spend it? The Cafe at the End of the Universe? The Great Galactic Preserve? I dunno, I think she's just going to pocket it.
There's more, go read it!

Tagged as , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Back, What Did I Miss?

Returned home late yesterday. Good, relaxing trip, camping was excellent, weather was great, family all well (pics below for those interested). So, let's see what happened (or failed to happen) while I was away....

First, checking to see if Fabian Cayetano Urrea, suspected murderer of Spc. Jorge Estrada, has been caught yet... Nope. The blogosphere needs to turn up the heat on this one, get this picture out to everyone, and keep it on the front burner.

I also see that we haven't won the War for Survival yet, but that's to be expected. President Bush did say, after all, that this was going to be a multi-generational conflict, and I see no reason to disagree with that assessment. On the other hand, and on the plus side, we haven't lost it either. Losing could happen at any time, in a really short time-frame. Depends on how influential and effective the MSM is in their usual anti-American stance.

And I see that there were bomb attacks in London. Everyone else sees that also, and Fox, CNN, et al are covering it almost non-stop. I have nothing to add to commentary on the blogosphere, so I'll pass. But on domestic security issues, traveling this past few days has given me some more personal observations on air travel. Travel was through the Nashville, TN, Chicago (O'Hare), San Jose, CA, and Dallas/Ft. Worth airports. I won't characterize any of the above as having demonstrated half-hearted efforts... all seem to do their required jobs. However, I would like to commend the TSA and American Airlines personnel at the San Jose airport. They were extremely diligent in doing their job, effective, and nice about it. They even seemed to enjoy their jobs. Chicago, on the other hand, seems to have rudeness as a job prerequisite. Might have something to do with the relative size of the task, since Chicago is much busier than San Jose. But, each set of screeners only had one line of people to deal with, regardless of location.

And all world leaders seem to still be among the living... oops... scratch one Egyptian envoy/ambassador. Hmmmm, that seems to be a mighty risky ploy to take there. Capping an Egyptian just might make Arab countries less eager to have official relations with the current Iraqi government, but it might instead produce ill will towards the killing organizations. I don't think I would have taken that route. It sucks to be them.

Ahh, and Sandra Day O'Connor has announced her retirement. The usual suspects are already whining about the lack of consultation they are having with the Bush Administration on possible SCOTUS replacements. Screw 'em, sez I. They made their bed, now Bush should make them lay in it. Typically, in their efforts to avoid that happening, they will end up stepping in it instead. Good.

Lots of stuff going on, and it will take me a while to catch back up.

* * * * * * * * * *
We live well while camping. Our campground is guarded throughout the year by the legendary Sentient Tree:


(Stump of Redwood logged sometime prior to 1920. The cutouts that are now the 'eyes' and 'mouth' were generated by a then common logging technique, where notches were cut in the tree to support planks, which in turn supported loggers using two-man crosscut saws. Yes, hand powered! This stump is approximately six feet in diameter, and about 14 feet tall. I knew at one time why the loggers cut the trees so high, but have forgotten. And yes, I made the name up, and the stump is NOT a legend... yet.)

Side view of one of our picnic tables. The table part is a slab cut off the side of a redwood log, almost 30 inches wide, about a foot thick at the thickest point, and about twelve feet long.


Any of my camping stories will include some reference to food, and here it is...

Dinner one evening: Grilled Salmon, Roasted Corn on the Cob (in the foil), and some kind of Broccoli/Rice concoction in the covered pot, all over an open fire.


Sometimes I just hate to come home!