I know that some people adore Foursquare.
They have a dominant need to become the mayor of their local laundromat and fishmonger.
However, others feel safer when others don't know where they are. Indeed, last night I saw several attendees of Oracle OpenWorld wandering around a part of San Francisco's North Beach and entering places from which I feel confident they would not have checked-in.
NASA's Mars rover, Curiosity, has no fears however.
It is unconcerned about broadcasting its precise whereabouts. It has no worries that by doing so it might be vulnerable to a Mars attack.… Read more
NASA's Curiosity Mars rover, slowly nearing its initial science destination where multiple types of terrain come together, has found outcrops of conglomerate rocks made up of eroded gravels that scientists believe were transported across the floor of Gale Crater by a "vigorous" flow of ankle- to hip-deep water in the distant past, scientists said today.
It's the first observation of its kind on Mars, showing that an alluvial fan photographed from orbit was, as suspected, formed by the action of flowing water that entered the crater through a 100-foot-deep, 2,000-foot-wide channel dubbed Peace Vallis that … Read more
More than half the way to its first major scientific destination, the Curiosity Mars rover will pause a few days to perform the mission's first hands-on geology, using instruments on the vehicle's robot arm to photograph and chemically assess an intriguing pyramid-shaped rock, project managers said Wednesday.
Data from the arm-mounted Alpha Particle X-ray Spectrometer, or APXS, will be compared with remote sensing data from another instrument known as Chemcam that uses a powerful laser to vaporize tiny sections of a target's surface. Debris from the laser strike is measured remotely to help determine chemical composition.
"… Read more
Seeing as Mars is much further away from the sun than Earth is, a solar eclipse would look different than it does here. Curiosity -- NASA's Mars rover -- caught an image of what this phenomenon looks like from the Red Planet.
While somewhat less impressive than what a solar eclipse looks like from Earth, appearing as a tiny black blip on a small white blip, this photo is still fascinating. Mars has two moons that orbit it, so the moon seen in this image is called Phobos.
To get this photo, Curiosity -- ever the clever rover -- … Read more
Engineers testing the Curiosity Mars rover are wrapping up a series of robot arm calibration and motion tests before resuming a slow trek toward a nearby rock formation this weekend, on the lookout for a suitable stone to reach out and touch in an initial round of "contact science," officials said today.
The goal is to make sure the arm can precisely position a sensitive camera and an X-ray spectrometer as required for "hands on" geological observations, including eventual operations with a sample scoop and a compact drill. With the tests nearly complete, the arm has … Read more
Chances are you had to dissect a frog in high school biology class. What if it had been a Mogwai instead? Artist Bradwick J. McGinty III has created a bizarre mashup of science fiction creatures and vintage anatomical drawings imagining what fictional beasts look like under their skin.
The Mogwai doesn't look as cute and cuddly as usual in this form. The illustration hints at its sinister transformation into a Gremlin through the care and feeding instructions at the bottom of the drawing. Better keep an eye on those feeding times!… Read more
NASA's Curiosity Mars rover has driven some 357 feet from its landing site on the floor of Gale Crater -- 269 feet as a martian crow might fly -- on its way to an intriguing area about five times farther away where three different types of rock come together. The rover continues to chalk up near perfect scores during extended checkout operations, with detailed robot arm tests on tap over the next week or so.
"We've been on the surface of Mars for about a month and Curiosity continues to be very healthy and continues to surprise … Read more
I have a space dream. I've been invited to the NASA prom by Mohawk Guy. He's going to pick me up in the Mars Curiosity rover. What on earth am I going to wear? I'd better head over to Etsy and order a Mars panoramic skirt.
When Curiosity touched down on Mars earlier this month, we Earthlings experienced an out of this world multimedia experience showing off amazing angles of the Red Planet. A few days ago, NASA released perhaps the best Mars panorama yet, which simply blows away the rest, at least in terms of size. … Read more