On July 21th, 1969 Neil Armstrong
and Buzz Aldrin
waited within paper thin walls on the surface of the Moon. Hours ago they had made history by being the first humans to land and walk on its surface
. Now the only thing left to do was take off. All that entailed was performing the final test of the Lunar Module
: launching from the lunar surface with no on-site support or possibility of fixes if something failed. [more inside]
posted by Brandon Blatcher
on Jul 21, 2014 -
In 1972, Tom Wolfe was assigned to do a piece for Rolling Stone on Apollo 17, NASA's last moon mission
(Google book preview). That turned into a four-part series on the astronauts, written in a frantic three weeks. From there, he thought he could quickly expand the piece into a book
(Gbp). But that book, on what makes an astronaut, ended up taking a much broader scope and more time. In 1979, The Right Stuff
was published, and later was made into a well-regarded 3 hour movie
. A few years later, Andrew Chaikin started on a similar path to Wolfe, more broadly documenting the US moon missions in his book, A Man on the Moon
. The book was published in 1994, and HBO used it as the basis of a 12-part mini-series that they aired in 1998
, titled From the Earth to the Moon
. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief
on Dec 26, 2013 -
Bras in Space: The Incredible True Story Behind Upcoming Film "Spacesuit"
When we think of the Apollo 11 moon landing, what do we think of? President Kennedy’s bold vision. Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin’s heroism (unfortunately we rarely think about Command Module Pilot Michael Collins). Perhaps we even think of the incredible engineers, rocket scientists, astrophysicists and all the other geniuses at NASA who made it possible. Now we want you to think about your grandma’s bra. [more inside]
posted by Room 641-A
on Oct 29, 2013 -
Initially the conventional wisdom was that spacesuits “would be like rockets: adamantine, metallic, armored and smooth.” But in practice, rigid spacesuits repeatedly failed under testing. So when Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin walked on the Moon they were protected from the vacuum of space by flexible spacesuits crafted from twenty-one layers of fabric, “each with a distinct yet interrelated function, custom-sewn for them by seamstresses whose usual work was fashioning bras and girdles” for the Playtex Corporation.
The Spirit of the Spacesuit
, Spacesuit: Fashioning Apollo [more inside]
posted by Herodios
on Jul 21, 2011 -
For All Mankind
"Al Reinert’s documentary For All Mankind is the story of the twenty-four men who traveled to the moon, told in their words, in their voices, using the images of their experiences. Forty years after the first moon landing, it remains the most radical, visually dazzling work of cinema yet made about this earthshaking event." "For All Mankind is irreplaceable: one of a kind and likely to remain so. It is, formally, among the most radical American films of the past quarter century and, emotionally, among the most powerfully affecting. It makes its impossible title stick. In For All Mankind, we all lift off together, and we all come home the same way, and few movies have captured so well the rhapsodic absurdity of our common voyage." 1
posted by puny human
on Apr 7, 2011 -
They Were There
is a 30 min video from IBM, who is turning 100 this year. "told by first-hand witnesses—current and retired employees and clients—who were there when IBM helped to change the way world works.
posted by finite
on Jan 22, 2011 -
Built as part of the fifth /dev/fort
developer retreat, Spacelog.org
allows you to explore early space missions via the original NASA transcripts. Currently live are Mercury 6
which made John Glenn the first American in orbit, and the 'successful failure' Apollo 13
(The transcribed key moment
and the original
). Alongside the transcripts are supporting materials from the NASA archives including photography
and descriptions of the mission phases
. The developers are looking for help
to digitise the Gemini 7, Apollo 8 and Apollo 11 missions.
posted by garrett
on Dec 1, 2010 -
At the mostly abandoned Moffett Field in an abandoned McDonald's, digital archeologists attempt to restore, recover and archive abandoned high resolution imagery and data from previous manned Moon missions, using an abandoned Ampex 2" tape drive found in a chicken coop - the last working machine in the world, restored by the last man alive capable of rebuilding the heads. This is likely only part of their weird story.
posted by loquacious
on May 1, 2009 -
In honor of this morning's impressive lunar eclipse
, another moon-photo post: For decades you had to be a scholar or specialist to get access to the original Apollo flight films, most of which have been stored in freezers at Houston's Johnson Space Center. Now Arizona State University and NASA are scanning the negatives with high-resolution equipment and creating an online digital archive
of downloadable images for the general public.
Here are the first few
, from Apollo 15.
(Similar topics previously: 1
posted by GrammarMoses
on Aug 28, 2007 -
You've read about
NASA's plan to use new post-shuttle launch vehicles to return to the moon
But what, exactly, is the US planning to do
on the moon? What would a semi-permanent moonbase look like? And why return at all? NASA's announced answers to these questions remain vague. But last year eleven sets of responses to these questions were offered to NASA in the development proposals submitted to NASA by eleven Aerospace concerns
, each of which suggested different designs, missions, and philosophies for NASA's return to the moon. Some common themes:
"Provide nationally assured access to orbital locations for the placement of observation systems" and "assured access to space for development of force projection systems and movements of logistics." (pdf link, p. 5)
"Commercialize space products and services" (pdf link, p.6)
Keeping the public inspired with "regularly placed program milestones." (pdf link, p.7)
It's interesting to compare the details of these proposals. But taken together, they raise a broader question: does NASA's fear that the public will lose interest in this commercializing, militarizing, moon venture reflect an awareness that that the vision
has finally been lost?
posted by washburn
on Sep 22, 2005 -
Thanks to Yahoo's video search
, I've spent the morning thrilling to movies from Nasa's earlier space programs.
Ed White does the first american spacewalk
, the crew of apollo 8 sends out a christmas message
(wonder how that would play these days), Neil Armstrong goes for a walk
, Buzz Aldrin gives a science lesson
, John Young goes muddin'
, Apollo 17 lifts off from the moon
. Galileo gets his due
via Apollo 15, as does Kubrick
, via Skylab
all this makes the Challenger explosion
just incredibly sad.
Though I still don't know why searching for apollo 8 turned up gay porn
and I don't wanna know.
What is really interesting though, is watching this Apollo 17 astronaut work on the moon
. His body is moving in all sorts of subtle ways that highlight how odd it must be to work in lower gravity
posted by Brandon Blatcher
on Jan 9, 2005 -