Curiosity has landed

“‘I’m significant!’….screamed the dust speck.” – Calvin from ‘Calvin and Hobbes by Bill Watterson

Curiosity has landed, and that’s not a metaphor.

It’s literal, and it’s a cause for celebration, as this real-life Michael Bay-esque montage shows:

The successful landing of the Mars rover this week seems like the beginning of a science fiction story. Humans shoot device into space to land on Mars. It’s tasked with finding alien life. You can fill in the rest confidently, I assume. Most of you have seen “Independence Day” or “Transformers” or read a story or two by the late Ray Bradbury.

But while those films are tales of fiction, a 9-month voyage through space followed by a 13,000 to 0 mile-per-hour descent onto the Martian surface is now a tale of fact.

Sidenote: How cool is it that we get to say stuff like “descent onto the Martian surface” now and not be talking exclusively about a Star Trek episode?

The Curiosity rover will reside on the planet for two years, looking for evidence that the planet could have supported life at one time. That and other Bill-Nye-the-Science-Guy stuff like timelines on atmospheric processes over billions of years. It’ll utilize high-grade HD cameras, lasers and spectrometers to amass that data.

I have to wonder if Bradbury, Arthur C. Clarke and Isaac Asimov are watching from a distance and grinning; maybe nudging each other and saying “See? Told ya so.”

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    Ryan Pfeil

    This is a blog for southern Oregonians to check in on all things geek. Sci-fi, history, comics, movies, video/photo and anything else that would have gotten you shut in a locker in high school. Have fun. Read Full
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