back to article 365 days in SPAAACE: An interstellar glance at 2012

In a year dominated by Martian news, the pioneering Earthling spirit of one Elon Musk and the hunt for a second human home also grabbed some cosmic headlines. Mars Science Laboratory - Curiosity rover and skycrane The year started with Curiosity's journey to the Red Planet, dodging solar flares as it thrust its way towards …


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  1. Gordo Rex
    Thumb Up


    Great recap!

    (even though we all know that all of the "Curiosity" stuff was actually happening in a Mexican desert.)

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Did you see

      The cigarette end in the corner on one of the photographs?

      Mars? My foot.

      1. Andus McCoatover

        Re: Did you see

        No, I didn't. Point it out, would you? Ta muchly.

  2. Marketing Hack Silver badge

    Nice recap!

    My only gripe is that you didn't mention Opportunity, still soldiering away on Mars in the figurative shadow of Curiousity!

  3. Marketing Hack Silver badge

    Oh, and that montage of habitable zone planets.....

    Looks like it should be air-brushed onto the side of a 1970s van with Led Zepplin blaring out of quadrophonic speakers! Not Reg's fault of course, since it's NASA's illustration.

    1. DJV Silver badge
      Thumb Up

      Obviously...'s the Medusa Cascade!

  4. Captain DaFt

    And through all this, nobody consulted the Mayans.

    Little known fact: The Mayans are still here. In fact, in Mexico alone, there are over 6 million Mayans!

    Basically, one day they just said "Screw the government, I'm going home!", left the cities, and went back to living in small villages.

    Their take on the whole Apocalypse froo-frah? "Crazy gringoes."

    In fact, they're looking forward to the new grand cycle, since it's supposed to be a new era of prosperity and enlightenment.

    (That would've made for lousy Doomsday headlines, though. "Mayans Predict Good Times Coming")

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: And through all this, nobody consulted the Mayans.

      That could actually be worse though. If people predict the end of the world, and it does not come, it's a relief. If people predict "Good times coming" and they don't, then it's trouble! ;)

      1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

        Re: And through all this, nobody consulted the Mayans.

        As long as the endtimers stay away from the red button or from fanning global thermonuclear war to usher in the rapture (yes, I am looking at some "Friends of Israel" here), they can drink as much kool aid as they like by me.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Re: 365 days in spaaace, an interstellar glance at 2012


    I've two problems (aside from the personality defects I'd thank you not to mention)...

    a) 2012 is a leap year so there are 366 days for the calendar year, not 365.

    b) at time of publishing only 357 of them had elapsed

    so either this review excludes part of 2012, or includes part of 2011


  6. Anonymous Custard Silver badge

    Hanging from a short rope?

    "Twenty metres above the surface, we have to lower the rover below us on a tether that's 21 feet long, and then gently deposit it on its wheels on the surface," engineer Adam Steltzner said. "It is the result of reasoned engineering thought, but it still looks crazy."

    Umm, 21 feet is about 6.5 metres? Something doesn't quite add up there, or did they use elastic or bungy cord?

    Bugger, now I'm going to have the image of a bungy-jumping Curiosity bouncing up and down in the back of my mind all day...

    1. Beachrider

      Re: Hanging from a short rope?

      21 feet is actually 6.4 meters, are you that concerned about the 10 cm?

  7. James Hughes 1

    Musk's latest rocket

    Pretty impressive...

  8. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
    Paris Hilton

    Orbital manoeuvers!

    No mention of the Kerbal Space Program?

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