What I Learned at Spacefest X

With the transition to the next generation of Spacefesters, Spacefest X demonstrated change with the times, growing and diversifying in subject, scope, and attendees in what makes a gripping and fascinating new flavor.

An Apollo Computer Lands on the Moon in Naples, FL

A small group of computer scientists and spaceflight enthusiasts descend into a lamplit living room with the only operational AGC in existence. One year ago, the computer, its owner, Jimmie Loocke, and its chief operator, Mike Stewart, were at Spacefest IX in Tucson demonstrating that the computer was in good enough condition to be fired up for the 50th anniversary of Apollo 11. Loocke’s team and the AGC pulled through.

A Writer Describes a Falcon Heavy Night Launch

Instead of listening to the launch chatter and livestream, counting down with the clock, and cheering with friends, I decided on a more cerebral experience, and witnessed the pure events as they happened in front of my eyes, with little other sensory input.

Op-ed: Without the Moon, There is No Mars

In the spacefaring community, we are facing a question like one that was asked 58 years ago . . . Their question was: “how do we go to the Moon?” Our question today, which we ask as twenty and thirty year olds just like they were, is: “how do we go to Mars?”

Book Review: “The Way of the Explorer” by Edgar Mitchell

Mitchell’s endeavors and beliefs towards mysticism are no longer strange to me, having heard his own explanation for them. Unlike the way some people remember his interests and dedication to them, Mitchell himself does not claim to be a mystic, nor does he insinuate that his experience on Apollo 14 separates him from others on Earth who share the same worldview.

Lecture Summary: Story Musgrave and his Space Photography

*cross-posted from Stardom*
Musgrave exudes an infectious sense of sheer joy and astonishment at the beauty of planet Earth. His descriptions of the photos are interlaced with such exclamations as “I can hardly stand to look at it, it’s so beautiful,” “this was an unbelievable sight,” or “gosh, look at that!”

NASA Social: Wallops Flight Facility

Launches are always made better by meeting people whose work is onboard. Years’ worth of scientific experiments with the potential to change the world were on their way to the International Space Station. The work of everyone at NASA Wallops and the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport was taking flight and coming to fruition.

Film Review: First Man

Spoiler Alert
In the theater, you could hear a pin drop. No one wanted to ruin the silence. That insulating, still, and fuzzy silence of those lunar surface scenes creates the otherworldliness for the audience.

First Man: The Panel

In today’s action and superhero devouring pop-culture, I was concerned that studios and producers would butcher history in the name of profit. That belief changed after being present for the First Man panel, and meeting people involved with the film’s creation.