By: Elisha Fieldstadt and Andrew Blankstein of NBC
By: Eric Berger of Arstechnica
Late Tuesday night, scientists at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory sent their final data uplink to the Opportunity rover on Mars. Over this connection, via the Deep Space Network, the American jazz singer Billie Holiday crooned “I’ll Be Seeing You,” a song that closes with the lines:
I’ll find you in the morning sun
And when the night is new
I’ll be looking at the moon
But I’ll be seeing you
The scientists waited to hear some response from their long-silent rover, which had been engulfed in a global dust storm last June, likely coating its solar panels in a fatal layer of dust. Since then, the team of scientists and engineers has sent more than 835 commands, hoping the rover will wake up from its long slumber—that perhaps winds on Mars might have blown off some of the dust that covered the panels.
So on Tuesday night, they listened. They reminisced. But in the end, no response came. Opportunity would finally be declared dead on Sol 5352, as in five thousand, three hundred, and fifty-two days on Mars. NASA is expected to make it official at 2pm ET Wednesday, when NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine and the chief of the agency’s science division, Thomas Zurbuchen, convene a news conference.
Opportunity landed on Mars more than 15 Earth years ago, on January 25, 2004. So much time has passed since then. Facebook would not be created until a month later. YouTube would not get its first video upload for more than a year. George W. Bush was still in his first presidential term. NASA’s Cassini spacecraft had not yet even arrived in the Saturn system.
And yet from that moment on, Opportunity and its sister rover Spirit began plugging along the surface of Mars. Originally designed for 90-day lifetimes, the rovers persisted. Spirit lasted until 2010, when its batteries were unable to keep the spacecraft’s critical components from freezing.
Elon Musk has become infamous for his extreme work schedule.
When he was ramping up production of the Model 3 Tesla, he put in as many as 120 hours in a week. He slept at the factory because he had no time to go home. He called 2018 “the most difficult and painful year of my career.” “[I]t was excruciating,” he told The New York Times.
In late October Musk finally said he was working a much more manageable schedule of 80 to 90 hours a week.
This from a man who is already worth more than $20 billion, according to Forbes.
So why does Musk push himself? To hear Musk tell it, he is trying to save planet Earth. Literally. Musk wants Tesla to be successful so the world moves away from driving cars that run on petroleum-derived fuel.
“Tesla is incredibly important for the future of sustainable transport and energy generation. The fundamental purpose, the fundamental good that Tesla provides is accelerating the advent of sustainable transport and energy production,” Musk said told Recode’s Kara Swisher. “The success of Tesla is, by far, the biggest forcing function for the other car makers to get into … electric cars.”
Providing alternative methods for mass transportation that do not depend on petroleum-derived fuel is key to slowing global warming.
“Yes. It’s very important for the future of the world. It’s very important for all life on Earth. This supersedes political parties, race, creed, religion, it doesn’t matter. If we do not solve the environment, we’re all damned,” Musk told Swisher.
By : BBC
What has been the reaction?
By: India Today
Two subspecies of giraffes were recently added to the list of “critically endangered” species for the first time ever, as per athelatest report by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), which administers the world’s official endangered species list.
The next slots after ‘vulnerable’ are ‘endangered’, ‘critically endangered’, ‘extinct in the wild’, and ‘extinct’. Thus, if we do nothing about it, giraffes could become extinct in the wild in the medium-term future.
There are nine subspecies of giraffes. Five of them are declining in numbers, two are improving, and one is stable, reports the New York Times.
Another subspecies living in the Horn of Africa — called the reticulated giraffe – was listed as “endangered”.
Even though the Kordofan giraffe and the Nubian giraffe are now critically endangered, the West African and the Rothschild’s giraffe species have seen an increase in their numbers, leading to an upgrade in their conservation status.
photos courtesy of CBS News live event coverage.
America as a nation celebrated the life of POTUS #41, George HW Bush in a funeral service most befitting for a President. The flawless service would make any American proud as it represented the 41st President with dignity, respect, honor, and royal class. The musical performances were excellent along with each speaker who resonated with the tone of loyalty, family, friendship, and devotion to country exemplified by President George HW Bush. There are those who did not agree with his politics or decisions, however, most everyone in America and abroad would agree that he upheld his office as President with dignity and respect.
The passing of President George HW Bush and the passing of the Hon. John McCain earlier this year marks the end of an era in America when soldiers dedicated to country held political office to uphold the constitution for the betterment of America and her people. President George HW Bush called for a kinder and gentler nation, and although he only served one term as President he made many notable accomplishments including; the NAFTA (North American Free Trade Agreement), the clean air initiative with Canada, and support of health reform for all Americans.
President George HW Bush and his family are political royalty in America. They are undeniably privileged, yet ruled with a heart for all people, not just other privileged. Perhaps the Last Great Soldier-Statesman, we honor his service as a President and Patriot.
Our heartfelt condolences go out to his family, friends, and to all of America for the loss of a true American President.
Links to more about President George HW Bush: