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back to article NASA probe orbiting Moon sights ANOTHER SPACECRAFT

NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) has snapped a picture of a spacecraft flying over the Moon beneath it - unfortunately, it was one of the space agency's own satellites. LRO snaps pic of LADEE LRO was ready on the camera when the Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE) craft passed below in orbit around …

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Boffin

Colour me

Impressed.

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jai
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headline tease!!

damnit - i was so excited that you were going to say the other craft belonged to the Quagaars!!!

so excited, i didn't even read the sub-headline until it was too late

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Nasa taking selfies again?

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well if Mr Obama does, why shouldn't NASA? At least this is a more appropriate place .....

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Facepalm

Yep...

...absolutely no doubt that that blur is a satellite.

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Trollface

Lawsuit

I demand that high resolution images of this object be released immediately!!!

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Re: Lawsuit

Why? it's just the Starfleet emblem being covered up by NASA again.

High resolution images will not show much more.

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Re: Lawsuit

"Why? it's just the Starfleet emblem being covered up by NASA again."

Stop being silly. It's just an old model Culture drone monitoring Earth. We *are* in the control group.

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Re: Lawsuit

I thought they all buggered off in the late seventies.

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Pint

SELFIES IN SPAAAAACE

Sorry could not resist

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Boffin

That animated GIF in the article reminds me of CSI scenes in which blurry, pixelated images are "enhanced" into something suitable for framing.

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Coat

Picture Enhancement

In the early CSI episodes they used the phrase 'I have a friend at NASA with an algorithm that will clean this up'

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whats the matter with all those on youtube

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WlLN_Jcg1pc

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-fK5C2IPthk

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2HzLPnURISg

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Black Helicopters

The UFO sightings during the Apollo flights were all real.

But the Apollo flights were faked.

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Yup, they were all recorded on a sound stage on mars

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there are thousands of ufo videos on youtube, NASA space camera blur and fuzz would be hard to fake on its own, some of them are probably real

alot of good looking fakes could only be done in todays world with modern graphics that can fake light well underneath camera effects

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Well you Can ave r al!

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Am I the only one

who thinks it strange that while everyone now carries around a high resolution camera in their pocket or handbag, the footage and images of alleged modern "UFO's" remains the same shakey, blurry shite they were trying to pass off 30 years ago?

Michael J Fox could hold a camera steadier than most of these UFO hunters.

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"there are thousands of ufo videos on youtube, NASA space camera blur and fuzz would be hard to fake on its own, some of them are probably real"

Funny, I've personally saw UFO's that were real.

They were identified as objects that "You didn't see that and that is a direct order."

AKA, classified military aircraft.

Some of which are well established to operate out of Old Blighty.

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Re: Am I the only one

"Michael J Fox could hold a camera steadier than most of these UFO hunters."

Somehow, I suspect that Michael would agree with you.

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Re: Am I the only one

i gone around the whole universe on a UFO, took a dump in some alien hands, got bored and came home because they did`nt have no cheese burgers and gave me some flatty to smoke

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Quick fire shutter

I'm quite impressed at getting the shot at all, 1.35ms isn't very long at all to take a snap!

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Re: Quick fire shutter

It is pretty cool and all. But I'm afraid we're witnessing the last remnants of the arts of traditional, perspective corrected model making, lighting management and multiple exposure photography.

By the time today's first year college kids are finishing their undergraduate degrees those traditional studio practices will have been completely crushed, and generally forgotten. CGI is becoming ever more simplified and affordable.

I really hate to see it end like this; but even worse, I hate even thinking of all the jobs those recent grad won't be able to get. Working on small projects first has always been how you proved you were ready to work on faking moon evidence. With most of the necessary traditional skills becoming lost arts those who practice them are fairly well doomed as a career professional in the field of fabricating moon exploration evidence. It's all quite sad.

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Re: Quick fire shutter

"With most of the necessary traditional skills becoming lost arts those who practice them are fairly well doomed as a career professional in the field of fabricating moon exploration evidence. It's all quite sad."

Yes, it's very sad. With all of those funny looking dune buggies wandering about on Mars.

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Headmaster

"... a spacecraft flying over the Moon ..."

I'm sure it's not actually flying.

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Alien

Re: "... a spacecraft flying over the Moon ..."

You're correct. The appropriate terminology for 'space stuff' is a not infrequent topic of discussion at work. Star Trek really fixed the use of traditional maritime terminology for space stuff in the public imagination. At best, that's going to become very confusing. What's worse though, is that it really isn't appropriate at all.

Aviation has a fairly well developed language and suitably mature usage rules. But nothing remotely close to maritime language and usage rules that have been developed over the course of centuries. It is an extraordinarily precise language, and using it appropriately is a (fairly well paid) profession in itself.

A major part of what identifies something as being 'special', and of high importance, is that it has its own language. People often miss it, but when those special languages are in use, either written or spoken, your brain picks up on it instantly. That happens because the language is used appropriately, with such overall consistency, that even fairly young people quickly become accustomed to (x) always meaning (x) and if (x) is used incorrectly the sentence simply doesn't seem to work right.

Hurling hunks of metal, some with people inside, into space is every bit as big and 'special' as blue water vessels, railroads, automobiles and aircraft; and may very well prove one day to be more important than those things.

As such a lofty (ha!) thing, space stuff deserves its own specialized language and usage rules. One which denotes its significance, aids in clear communication and prevents misunderstandings, like your downvoter obviously experienced. As I said at the start, there have been some fairly feeble steps toward a language and rules, but nothing suitably appropriate or unique.

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Re: "... a spacecraft flying over the Moon ..."

Does space needs it own language? Words have been appropriated from one industry to another without problem. Look at the word cockpit. Originally used in a naval sense and transplanted to aviation without any problem.

Flying doesn't always mean with aerodynamic control, it can be used to describe an object that has been thrown. And spacecraft have been "thrown" into orbit. So flying is a valid word.

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Re: "... a spacecraft flying over the Moon ..."

Sure the cockpit isn't where the craft's "joystick" is?

Think of where the pilot sits on early aircraft, and where the control stick is. Now you realise why it got the "joystick" moniker, and, possibly, why the bit of an aircraft where the pilot sits is the, ahem, "cockpit".

Urban Legend or Urban Myth? Not sure, but it's amusing enough.

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Re: "... a spacecraft flying over the Moon ..."

How is using 'flying', when that's clearly not what's occurring, appropriate? I'm not sure how long you've been in IT, but if it's been very long I'm nearly certain you've heard someone call the box/tower/enclosure of a desktop the 'processor'. How about calling a server(s) a 'mainframe'? It's a sure sign that person is about to say something confirming the rest of your time with them is going to absolutely suck.

In physical engineering you'll hear people talk about the 'strength' or 'strength to weight ratio' of a material and you know instantly to put on your 'attentive salesperson' hat because that person has no idea what they're talking about and you simply don't have enough time, and they don't have enough money, to tutor them on the vast array of complex things they just blew by.

With ultra obscure fields it isn't that important, because nobody understands what those people do anyway. But in fields that everyone is aware of, even if it isn't their profession, proper language is still important. Make a technical error or attribution mistake and professionals in the field will write entire articles tearing you to pieces. Pick any national political figure talking about more jobs in (sector) and look at how quickly the brick masons/fishermen/ranchers, whatever, come out and correct him, vocally. Even though it's a 'detail' they've lost big sections of their audience because they obviously don't know what they're talking about: How can they possibly help?

Proper language is also important because improper/imprecise language can create huge never ending headaches for entire industries. Consider the following:

- Nuclear Waste vs High Level Nuclear Waste. One is a manageable industrial waste issue, the other is a fucking nightmare with absolutely zero good solutions currently out there. Were you and I publicly debating a new nuclear facility your employer wanted to build and you failed to be precise about the waste I now have 100% control of the debate.

I can NIMBY the new facility out of existence or I can support it. I bill $5k/hr for corporate policy work and $20k/hr (one hour minimum) for public appearances. Your only options are to drop the project or pay me. I've already won the crowd. My body language and simple 10 word statements will let me keep them and knock you down every time you pop up. You've got to teach nuclear physics, elemental chemistry and particulate transport via short term molecular bonding to the general public. Good luck with that.

That's obviously a bit convoluted, the details of particulate transport via short term molecular bonding will only put your audience in a coma. All I have to explain is how radioactive materials get into groundwater and end up inside your baby because when you boiled baby's bottles to sterilize them for mommy's breast milk their state was plasticized long enough to trap millions of tiny little nuclear reactors in the bottles. I don't have to show numbers or proof, that's on you Mr. Smooth Talking corporate strongman :) I've won with a single slide that shows the nuclear radiation symbol, a pair of nice, scantily clad tits, a white baby and some popular sci-if mutants. Tits and babies beat fact and science every single time.

My point is, that without correct and precise language, you are needlessly destabilizing any point you are trying to make. You've effectively walked off without logging off a public computer or out of your email system. The next person to come along can completely reposition your message and you've got no defense against it. Zero. All that person has to do is keep pointing out the proof you provided proving you don't know what you're talking about: 'Look what this idiot said'. You lost your chance to be accurate, now emotion wins.

Why do you think that elected officials and corporate executives rarely say anything in public that resembles normal Human speech; Nobody actually talks like that. It's because if you venture into territory governed by precise, meaningful, language and you make a mistake, you're fucked. Your entire case is now lost because somebody called you out on the error and you're now on the defensive. Nobody is immune to that. Monarchs, dictators, elected heads of state and other government officers, leaders of religious orders, corporate executives, judges, lawyers, professors, artists and blue collar workers all can be disarmed and neutralized through the correction of their language or by adding specificity to reposition their statements however you see fit.

Lastly, using the correct language is simply good manners and a sign of respect to those who practice in those professions. Personally, I find it just atrociously insulting when people challenge/question the abilities of individuals in a field, but don't even make an attempt to get the language correct.

I don't have people telling me what to do anymore, but for the many decades that I did I never forgot the truly black, soul crushing hatred I had for my first direct corporate manager. He could not, or would not, acknowledge the difference between an empty field and a null field. We were integrating the systems of a company we had acquired into our own and even I understood we had been screwed. It was grammar school database design, comprised of more null's than complete data. Just broken, not fixable, totally fucked in other ways too. This ass threatens my job and tells me how he wants the integration done. Exactly how he wants it done. The level of detail was phenomenal and his charts were beautiful. They were indispensable six weeks later as I was defending my job and explaining how a company with zero system wide downtime in 10+ years was completely nonoperational for five days.

I've had staff that didn't like me and I've had staff that thought I was stupid and they were better fits for my job, but never, not once in so very many years, have I not taken the time to at least understand the basics and try use the proper language with my staff. I wasn't Jefe then and I wouldn't be Don't Jefe now if the hundreds of subject matter experts I've on my staff for all those years wouldn't go to the mat for me. Even the ones that didn't like me saw how I shielded them from upper management and I could do that only because I had taken the time to learn their language and could understand (sort of anyway) what their challenges were and translate that to ExecuSpeak. They had absolute faith that I wouldn't make demands that couldn't be met. I'm aggressive, and more than a little pushy, and people understand that and will work with that, go to the mat for that, because I show them respect by at least trying to understand and use their language.

TL;DR: Appropriate and precise language, and the consistent application of its rules, allows you draw boundaries around a topic and keep the discussion within those boundaries. Appropriate, and precise language, and the consistent application of its rules allows you to take control of a conversation where the other party(ies) are not using appropriate and precise language and move the conversation within boundaries you define where you can press your attack and completely neuter the other participants. Appropriate, and precise, language and the consistent application of its rules, you identify yourself as knowledgable enough of the subject to merit the attention of actual subject experts, through a shared familiarity of the subject instead of demanding their attention through hierarchical protocols and dickishness. Change/evolution/alteration/forward progress cannot be realized, in any situation if the vocabulary is not precise and shared among all the participants in the drive for change.

Appropriate, and precise language, and the consistent application of its rules, is also the #1 factor in keeping an already bizarre world from moving on over into mind numbing 'Finnegan's Wake' style insanity. 'Borrowing' words from other industries, where their meanings are not identical, is absolutely no different than me calling MS Windows open source software or a bicycle a sheep. Without a common, shared IT understanding of Windows or OSS or a public shared knowledge of bicycles or sheep my calling Windows OSS is absolutely valid.

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Re: "... a spacecraft flying over the Moon ..."

Actually, me and Einstein here have a wager on it being "completely motionless". Anyone who can prove otherwise, gets a Nobel prize. ;)

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Re: "... a spacecraft flying over the Moon ..."

"I'm sure it's not actually flying."

True enough. It's actually *falling*, but due to altitude and velocity, it's missing the moon.

There's a knack to flying. One falls and misses the ground.

Space programs call that orbiting.

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Re: "... a spacecraft flying over the Moon ..."

I'll snip, by a fuck ton, as it was a rather long tirade.

"but if it's been very long I'm nearly certain you've heard someone call the box/tower/enclosure of a desktop the 'processor'."

Whenever they did, I rapidly corrected them. It is a COMPUTER. If they repeat that error, I'm enough of a BOFH to pull the processor out and hand it to the offender, ESD be damned. They'll also end up paying for that processor.

How about calling a server(s) a 'mainframe'? It's a sure sign that person is about to say something confirming the rest of your time with them is going to absolutely suck.

I've *never* heard technical staff call a server a mainframe. That is grounds for immediate dismissal, as they have no fucking clue as to what the hell they are talking about and most likely, no clue what they are doing.

"In physical engineering you'll hear people talk about the 'strength' or 'strength to weight ratio' of a material "

May the negligent landlord almighty suddenly acquire interest to help them, for I'll bombard them on what strength they're speaking of. Tensile? Shear? Longitudinal? Compression? I could go on, but it'd be boorish.

Any asshole who tries that one with me has a really, *really* bad day. They also never get to waste my time again.

"With ultra obscure fields it isn't that important, because nobody understands what those people do anyway."

That *is* my career, currently. I work in information security.

My first and primary job really is education!

"Pick any national political figure talking about more jobs in (sector)"

Who the fuck really listens to politicians? Their only real skill is being reelected! Otherwise, they'd be in careers that contribute *and* make far better money and far less having to remember which damned lie they told yesterday.

"Nuclear Waste vs High Level Nuclear Waste."

Six of one, a half dozen of the other. It all comes down to storage methods and willingness to reprocess the shit.

Of course, managing to get through the "Not in *MY* neighborhood" bullshit (when many of the same type of idiot live in such a neighborhood anyway.

"I can NIMBY the new facility out of existence or I can support it. I bill $5k/hr for corporate policy work and $20k/hr (one hour minimum) for public appearances. "

Good for you! I am envious! Well, not envious enough to want to make public appearances. I far prefer to speak to and with professionals, not Athenian idiots.

That said, I'm honestly not entirely certain that we agree or that you know what you're going on about.

I'll continue, as I was previously a BOFH, who cowed the devil into subservience.

OK, I just enjoy being difficult and have nothing more constructive to do on a Sunday night.

Being married for over 32 years tends to eliminate a personal life.

"My body language and simple 10 word statements will let me keep them and knock you down every time you pop up."

You're not the only person around who knows those techniques. That I choose to not address the public does not mean I am incapable of doing so.

A few cutting comments can trivially undermine your point within seconds.

One just needs to be willing to be a dick.

I'm a father, a grandfather and a former senior NCO. I have no problem being a dick when required to.

Worse, I'll use folksy terms, creative metaphors and other endearing traits to win the audience. It wouldn't be my first rodeo, it shan't be my last.

"That's obviously a bit convoluted, the details of particulate transport via short term molecular bonding will only put your audience in a coma. All I have to explain is how radioactive materials get into groundwater and end up inside your baby because when you boiled baby's bottles to sterilize them for mommy's breast milk their state was plasticized long enough to trap millions of tiny little nuclear reactors in the bottles."

I'll pull a lead fishing weight from my pocket. Or a mercury thermometer. I have both onhand.

I'll remark how horrifically toxic both are. Then ask the audience why I'm not dead.

As I said, one comment undermining. Add in pictures of my grandchildren holding the same items, I've won, you have to really work hard now.

"My point is, that without correct and precise language, you are needlessly destabilizing any point you are trying to make."

Bullshit. You speak to your audience. In this forum, technical people are the primary audience.

In forums where non-technical people abound, you "Goober it down". I've taught combat engineers and infantry how to administer drugs, initiate IV's and test and purify water. All rather complex, technical subjects. You address the audience at their level, explain in simplified terms what and why.

I never told infantry to check for turbidity and clarity of the water sample, I said, "Look to see if it's clear, are there any sea monkeys in it?"

Two decades later, I had men come up to me and mention that wording. Not a one had a water borne disease outbreak.

"Why do you think that elected officials and corporate executives rarely say anything in public that resembles normal Human speech; Nobody actually talks like that."

I'll nitpick there. Since nobody speaks like that, elected officials and corporate executives don't speak that way by your very sentence.

Now, "regular people" don't speak that way, "professionals don't speak that way" would be more accurate, but I'm being both pedantic and being a prick.

Largely due to the TLDR bit that I obviously have read.

"Lastly, using the correct language is simply good manners and a sign of respect to those who practice in those professions. Personally, I find it just atrociously insulting when people challenge/question the abilities of individuals in a field, but don't even make an attempt to get the language correct."

In that, I fully agree!

"I don't have people telling me what to do anymore,"

Bullshit. If you speak in a public forum by invitation and for pay, there are things that you can and may be told are out of bounds. Violate those terms, you shan't be speaking in public for very long on a financially remunerated basis.

"I don't have people telling me what to do anymore, but for the many decades that I did I never forgot the truly black, soul crushing hatred I had for my first direct corporate manager. He could not, or would not, acknowledge the difference between an empty field and a null field. We were integrating the systems of a company we had acquired into our own and even I understood we had been screwed. It was grammar school database design, comprised of more null's than complete data. Just broken, not fixable, totally fucked in other ways too. This ass threatens my job and tells me how he wants the integration done. Exactly how he wants it done. The level of detail was phenomenal and his charts were beautiful. They were indispensable six weeks later as I was defending my job and explaining how a company with zero system wide downtime in 10+ years was completely nonoperational for five days."

Been there, done that. But, I crushed the asshole by having him explain a null field and empty field. Repeatedly, in different orders to trip the asshole up.

Thankfully, I've never gotten a five day outage, half a day was bad enough and took a lot of scrambling to recover from.

But then, another thing about me is this: At my last long term gig, one NA/SA had complimented me thus:

"Steve, when you started, two years ago, I thought you were the plumber coming in to fix the toilet. Now, we *all* come to you for answers and we did even then."

I love to be underestimated. I'm quite bright. I also know how to look things up and learn quickly.

I also did fix the toilet, as it quickly started to piss me off. Being in a desert was bad enough, having a broken toilet was intolerable.

Though, I did let the plumber take credit.

My father was a tradesman, I learned a lot of things from him.

"I've had staff that didn't like me and I've had staff that thought I was stupid and they were better fits for my job, but never, not once in so very many years, have I not taken the time to at least understand the basics and try use the proper language with my staff."

Same here. I'd set aside what I was doing just to help them all out. Whenever I needed help, I had a full court press assisting.

When I started my information security duties, I included the PC break-fix shop, the LAN/WAN shop and help desk in on threat briefings, with specifics, as cleared. Much of that was classified, so each audience was addressed as permissible.

Cooperation was automatic once the problems were understood.

"Appropriate and precise language, and the consistent application of its rules, allows you draw boundaries around a topic and keep the discussion within those boundaries. "

I'm a prick that way. Even if I'm speaking with a stone mason about concrete, I'll stay technically correct.

Of course, my father did educate me in that field as well.

My life is that of an information sponge. Learn all that is learn-able, for knowledge is power.

But, one also addresses an audience to its capabilities and comprehension.

Hence, some will always know to look through water and also try to see sea monkeys. And the proper concentration of chlorine. And the proper PH. And sedimentation factor.

Even if they didn't comprehend those numbers and what they actually meant.

Or, "eventually, he'll run out of that nasty red stuff. Then, we'll have a real problem, well, *he* will, anyway. You'll just have a lot of explaining to do to your and his buddies."

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Facepalm

Re: "... a spacecraft flying over the Moon ..."

Oh for crying out loud....it's "orbiting", how much more specialised do you want?

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Pint

@ Dom Jefe

Can't afford your $20k/hr, but "Tits and babies beat fact and science every single time" gets you a beer

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Headmaster

Re: @ Dom Jefe

"some popular sci-if mutants"

They sound pretty scary!

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Anonymous Coward

badger badger badger badger.....

go on, someone's going to file a complaint saying its a Mars mushroom... -

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Re: badger badger badger badger.....

SNAAAAAKE!

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Playmobil

Or it never happened

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or converesely...

"Fortunately, it was one of ours....."

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NASA instead of Nasa

Glad to see the Register use NASA rather than Nasa. I know the "rules" for writing Nasa in British press but they seem a bit archaic to me and am happy to read NASA. Hope others follow suit.

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1600ms-1

Relative to what exactly? Each other? At the same time? Please, a little science in your science stories.

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Paris Hilton

Why didn't LADEE also snap LRO at the same time? Wrong kind of camera?

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Looks like a weather balloon to me

See title.

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Technically impressive and utterly pointless.

The reg's SPB should send them a commendation or something.

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Meh

"...it was one of the space agency's own satellites."

Are we sure. Shouldn't we take hundreds of high-res pictures from all angles, study it on a microscopic level and take samples... Just in case it IS an alien artefact or an attempt by aliens to communicate.

I mean, this could be the most profound discovery in mankind's history, and I'd hate to see them get sued for deriliction of duty, or whatever...

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