Last week, I was having lunch with some friends, which included a number of programmers. One of them mentioned an old urban myth, that I hadn't heard in several years, which claims that, due to a programming bug (involving a misplaced semicolon), NASA once accidentally sent a probe into the Sun. I pointed out to my friend how implausible this was. … Continue reading NASA has never accidentally sent a probe into the Sun.
This is a pretty big milestone. The first Earth sized planet in a star's habitable zone. Pity it's so far away (500 light years) that spectral analysis probably won't be possible to figure out what its atmosphere has in it. The first Earth-sized exoplanet orbiting within the habitable zone of another star has been confirmed … Continue reading First potentially habitable Earth-sized planet confirmed by Gemini and Keck observatories — ScienceDaily
Ok, so if you're like me, you probably didn't pay much attention to the latest announcement of the number of exoplanets that had been found by Kepler. It seems like those kinds of announcements have become old hat. This reaction must have been common, and must have annoyed someone at NASA, so they created this … Continue reading Kepler’s Latest Exoplanet Hoard, Graphed
Most science fiction and news stories describe Mars terraforming as a long term but simple process. You warm up the planet first, with greenhouse gases, giant mirrors, impacting comets or some such. You land humans on the surface right away and they introduce lifeforms designed to live on Mars. Over a period of a thousand … Continue reading Attempts To Terraform Mars Could Fail – With No Chance To Try Again