January 29, 2010


Spirit – the little Mars rover that could – has been declared a “stationary research station” and is expected to last only until May before total shutdown occurs. Landing on Mars on January 4th 2004, it was expected to last 90 days. Six years later, this XKCD cartoon is surprisingly poignant.

  1. January 29, 2010 at 6:24 pm

    That made me tear up this morning. Over a little machine.

    We do anthropomorphise, don’t we?

  2. Doc Bill
    January 29, 2010 at 8:38 pm

    I watched her touch down on NASA TV many years ago.

    So sad.

  3. Crudely Wrott
    January 30, 2010 at 1:33 pm

    If the durability and adaptability displayed by the twin rovers and their dedicated team of handlers are any indication, we can look forward to more discovery and amazement in the future with even greater expectations.

    As much as I support humans in space I see that there is such a wealth of knowledge to be gained by robotic explorers before people assume the risk of life outside of the cradle.

    With the skill available Earth side and a bit of luck Mars side, Spirit will be around for a while longer, telling us about its surroundings.

  4. DLC
    February 9, 2010 at 6:05 pm

    As much as I love these missions, I still say “Go.”
    Go in person. Go now. Start building it tomorrow morning, for launch next Wednesday. I volunteer to ride on it. Hell, I’ll pay you 10.00 to go.
    In time, we must move off earth — expand — grow or die. Let’s not waste time waiting “for the right time” because the right time will never come.

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