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Mars Rober Curiosity

Last night from the quiet of my living room I watched live on my iPad a group of scientists and engineers over 2,000 miles away watching NASA’s Mars science rover Curiosity descend to the surface of Mars 352 million miles away.

Not wanting to view this historic moment by myself I Iogged into various web sites and apps to help me be part of the community. I viewed the Mars Science Laboratory team located at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California using the NASA ipad app. I viewed other news websites and apps for more information on the program and current news. I visited YouTube to view the Seven Minutes of Terror video that was produced to explain how Curiosity was to land on Mars.

While Curiosity plunged through the atmosphere I followed conversations on Twitter as the event unfolded. I found myself in a true community of fellow geeks who stayed up way past bedtime to be part of the landing. The real-time updates and excitement from my fellow tweeps made the event that much more fun.

As soon as Curiosity made it safely to the planet and the first photos came back I checked in on Facebook to see what was taking place there. After wading through invitations to be link to a school module and the tin-foil hat political analysis, I found one mention of the Mars Rover. One friend who complained why we spent so much money go to Mars when we needed to do things here on earth.

I am not disappointed in my Facebook experience. It actually just confirmed what I was already feeling. For me, Facebook is just becoming one noisy and somewhat useless place to be. I tend to get better and more accurate information from other sources. Facebook is great for some things but now that my class reunion is over, I am not sure why I am hanging around.

Congratulations to the Mars Science Laboratory team and to all who had a hand in the Curiosity program. I look forward to see what this expedition uncovers. I’ll see you on Twitter.

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Shawn Wright
Shawn Wright is a graphic designer and podcaster living in Birmingham, Alabama. You can find his design work at shawnwright.net. You can find his podcasts, Alabama Short Stories at alabamashortstories.com and the Shades Cahaba Oral History Project podcast at shadescahabahistory.com. His designs are for sale at TeePublic.com, Redbubble.com and Society6.com.
Shawn Wright
Shawn Wright

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