back to article Mars rover harangues empty landscape with loudhailer

Curiosity, the nuclear-powered laser raygun rover recently landed on the surface of Mars by NASA, has begun shouting propaganda messages from Earth at the apparently empty desert which it is currently patrolling. A speaker on the car-sized robotic vehicle was used to issue a message from NASA chief Charles Bolden, a former US …

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WTF?

Uh, surely they didn't waste rocket fuel getting a PA up the gravity well?

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At a guess, it's conceivable that using a calibrated speaker and microphone might tell them something about sound propagation in the Martian atmosphere. But since IANAScientist, I have no idea if they sent a PA system or if that might be why they sent it.

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Anonymous Coward

What if the martians don't understand English?

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They do if you shout loud and slow enough.

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Joke

Let 'er rippppp

But, is one of the tracks "I'm REALLY lookin' fer a gas giant bigger than Uranus"?

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/48819528/ns/technology_and_science-space/

A gas giant larger than Uranus... Lol....

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All you need for science...

Well actually you need bugger all to find out how sound propagates on Mars. If you know what the gas mix and pressure is you can just reproduces everything right here on earth.

If you really want to run tests on Mars then a small transducer set (less than 20 grams) is enough. The physics will be the same for a small transducer or a rock concert.

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Just a question

Why does Curiosity have speakers on board at all?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Just a question

> Why does Curiosity have speakers on board at all?

How else were they supposed to play Ride of the Valkyries as she landed?

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IT Angle

Re: Just a question

If I had to hazard a guess, it's to do with projecting sounds and then recording the echos back from the surrounding terrain. Possibly an exercise in measuring sound propogation in a different atmosphere and environment.

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Megaphone

A better question

Does it have a subwoofer?

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Did anyone reply?

Any Martians shouting back "Oi, keep it down. You'll wake the kids. Aww, that's them up now. It took hours to settle them down..."

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Devil

Uh-huh

Just behind the next boulder...

"Wir müssen die Rückkehr zur Erde jetzt mit äusserster Kraft vorantreiben! Stellt mir sofort eine Telefonverbindung mit Doktor Kessler auf!"

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Happy

Re: Uh-huh

Hmmm. Google says:

We must return to Earth now press ahead with extreme force! Provides me immediately to a phone connection with Doctor Kessler!

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Big Brother

Re: Uh-huh

Iron Sky?

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From what i can gather, it doenst have speakers - the message was simply relayed VIA the rover.. it was never played out loud to an empty martian desert.

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JDX
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How disappointing.

They are also going to broadcast the new Will.I.Am single by radio back to earth as part of some "get the kids into science" effort... not sure how easy it is to pick the signal up or if amateurs have the needed equipment?

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Gav
FAIL

totally pointless

So no matter which way you look at it; a totally pointless operation.

Don't they have some science they could be doing??

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Science, pah

Forget science -- they've got some funding they could be earning!

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FAIL

So, who's wrong ?

To quote El Reg "A speaker on the car-sized robotic vehicle was used..."

To Quote CMF: "From what i can gather, it doenst have speakers...."

(OK so the pedants will say it has only ONE speaker, rather than "speakers")

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Stop

Re: totally pointless

Seriously.....what on earth (no pun intended) prompted you to post that silliness....."just because"?

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Pint

Amateurs...

"...not sure how easy it is to pick the signal up..."

Damn near impossible.

"...or if amateurs have the needed equipment?"

Not a chance. Not even close.

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FAIL

As usual, it was El Reg who was wrong...

I just watched the BBC news and one of the first things the reporter said was "Although the rover doesn't have any speakers on board..."

and continues to say how this is the first audio broadcast from another planet...

basically its the first interplanetary spotify

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Stop

If you believe the BBC...

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-19407396

"But with no speakers on the rover, the track was not played on the red planet itself."

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Anonymous Coward

But to the locals...

Unfortunately, in Martian, that speech sounds rather like "Go stick your head in a pig".

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WTF?

Re: But to the locals...

Do they have pigs on Mars?

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Joke

Re: But to the locals...

Of course. Why else would the rover have to drive so slow?

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Re: But to the locals...

"Go stick your head in a Banth".

FTFY

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Do they have pigs on Mars?

They have Essex lions.

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Coat

Re: Do they have pigs on Mars?

They used to have lions, but everyone knows: Curiosity killed the cat.

Thanks, it's the one trimmed in Orluk fur.

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Facepalm

wouldnt they be pissed

if a martian came along and turned the rover off.

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Will.I.Am

And they're doing the same thing with a song by Will.I.am

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Alert

Re: Will.I.Am

Now that's a declaration of war in any language.

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Go

Re: Will.I.Am

He should be there as well, listening to the rover playing his song.

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Has it got a microphone?

To hear the reply. Otherwise there is no point.

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Mushroom

at that very moment...

... the words "Hello. This is Charlie Bolden, NASA Administrator, speaking to you via the broadcast capabilities of the Curiosity Rover" drifted across the conference table. Unfortunately, in the Martian tongue, that was the most dreadful insult imaginable and there was nothing for it but to wage terrible war for centuries.

So, that's it. We're all going to die.

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Silver badge

Re: at that very moment...

But you forgot the outcome:

"After millennia of battle the surviving Martians realised what had actually happened, and joined forces to attack the Milky Way in retaliation. They crossed vast reaches of space in a journey lasting thousands of years before reaching their target where they attacked the first planet they encountered, Earth. Due to a terrible miscalculation of scale the entire battle fleet was swallowed by a small dog. "

So, quick, deploy the small dog brigade...

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The correct form of words, as I recall, is,

"So this is it - we're going to die."

Also,

"Is there any tea on this spaceship?"

And,

"I, for one, welcome our new stentorian overlords."

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Re: at that very moment...

Nah... you know they all speak proper English... haven't you watched Stagate SG-1 ?

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Pint

Could this be an early warning....

Any Martians who heard this advanced announcement of invasion have begun preparations. :-)

I support the exploration of space, but I find the message pointless. Hey, anyone with access to a microphone is going to use it. Next step it to pipe elevator music to the Moon.

Best wishes,

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Coat

Just wondering...

... to use that age old question - if nobody's there to hear it, would it make any sound at all?

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Ru

Re: Just wondering...

Wrong question.

If there's nobody there to hear it, how much money could you save by not launching any audio equipment and simply faking the whole silly exercise? Or perhaps even, 'am I a more deserving cause than a daft and easily faked audio broadcast on another planet?'

On a related note, any of the engineering heads recently bought themselves a new sports car?

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Megaphone

Re: Just wondering...

I'm not sure that it would make any sound anyway. Or at least not much.

Given that the atmospheric pressure on Mars is about 1% of that on Earth Bolden would have to have been very SHOUTY to even have been heard.

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Anonymous Coward

"Since the beginning of time, humankind’s curiosity has led us..."

Humankind wasn't present at the beginning of time. In fact we didn't start getting curious for an awful long time after that.

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Time

Since time is a human invention, yes we have been there since the beginning of time.

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Happy

Re: Time

Since time is a human invention

Yeah? Who got the patent on that then?

In human terms, the measurement of time might be a human invention, but I think we can be fairly sure that things happened in a sort of sequential order, one after another, long before humans were invented.

There's at least one tribe who have no words or even gestures to represent numbers, so they probably have a very odd, if any, concept of time. Maybe we could licence that IP to them?

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Anonymous Coward

Erm, hello.....

.....as we all know, God made us, and everything else, around 6000 years ago. Therefore we were around at the beginning of time. Read ya Bible sonny!

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Re: Time

"Yeah? Who got the patent on that then?"

Apple.

Go on. Ask me a hard one.

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>Humankind wasn't present at the beginning of time

It was in Texas - or at least within the first week.

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But the beginning of Time was at midnight, January 1st of 1970. We were already going to the Moon back then.

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Pint

Time

Time is an illusion. Lunchtime, doubly so.

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