End Of Summer Zombie Bugs

You know those bug noises, the ones that start in mid to late August and herald the end of summer?

I know I’ve heard them before, many times. But now… now when I hear those raucous bug serenades, it sounds like The Walking Dead are coming.

Music – We can’t all be a Mars rover

August 17, 2012 10:00 am
Good Morning Curiosity – Wake up With the Same Songs as a Mars Rover

Hopefully, Curiosity will never wake up on the wrong side of Mars, then we’d have trouble finding her.

There’s a long history of waking up astronauts with songs. Last year, NASA archivist Colin Fries listed every song played to astronauts in the space program he could find.

Turns out, Curiosity gets wakeup songs too. The Curiosity team answered questions on Reddit recently, and one user asked: “Does Curiosity get wake-up songs every morning like the other Mars rovers got? If so, what have some of the songs been so far?” Answer: “Yup! She tends to be less cranky with a good wakeup song.”

So far, the songs have been as follows.

Sol 2: “Good Morning Good Morning” Beatles, Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club

Sol 3: “Good morning, good morning” from Singing in the Rain.

Sol 5: Wagner “The ride of the valkyries” R10 Victory Song: Theme from Mission Impossible

Sol 6: “Got the Time” by Anthrax, and “Echelon” by 30 Seconds to Mars

Sol 7: The Doors – “Break on Through”, and George Harrison – “Got My Mind Set on You”

Sol 8: Theme from Star Wars by John Williams

Sol 9: “Wake Up Little Susie” by Simon and Garfunkel

Sol 10: Frank Sinatra “Come Fly with Me”

The “Sol” markers there indicate Martian days. Mars Rover Soundtrack, the site that listed the songs played to the Spirit rover that landed on the planet in 2004, explains:

The Mars rover engineering team works on Mars time. A martian day, also called a “sol”, is 40 minutes longer than an Earth day. Each martian morning as the rover wakes up they play a song related to the events of the upcoming sol. Occasionally a second or third song is played during the sol in addition to the wakeup song. This is a tradition from the manned space program. Unfortunately robotic probes are not yet capable of feeling inspiration from music, but Mission Control is.

Right, so Curiosity doesn’t have ears. And the engineers didn’t rig her with speakers to play our tunes to the aliens she meets. So the songs really ring through mission control.  Continue reading

Perseid Meteor Shower This Weekend

It’s not the Leonids, but it’s way warmer. ~ theartofvikki

Perseid Meteor Shower 2012: Annual ‘Shooting Star’ Show To Hit Night Sky This Weekend
Posted: 08/10/2012 1:39 pm Updated: 08/10/2012 1:58 pm

NASA astronaut Ron Garan took this photograph during the Perseid meteor shower on Aug. 13, 2011 from the International Space Station.

This is the weekend of the peak of the annual Perseid meteor shower and most meteor forecasts predict the annual “shooting star” display will be at its best during the overnight hours of late Saturday (Aug. 11) into the early Sunday.

The Perseid meteor shower occurs each year in late July and early August when the Earth passes through the dusty remains of the comet Swift-Tuttle. In the night sky, the meteor shower appears to radiate out of the constellation Perseus, hence, its name: Perseid meteor shower. Continue reading

Mars Rover Curiosity

Yup, I set my alarm to wake up at 1 am this morning to catch it. Did you?

Mars Rover Curiosity Meets The Face On Mars