Print 26 comment(s) - last by JediJeb.. on Jan 2 at 7:36 PM

Word art message was not what (most of) the crowd was hoping for

The Curiosity Rover's official Twitter account, maintained by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, titillated space exploration fans with a Twitter message promising, "Will you be in @TimesSquareNYC for New Year's Eve? Look for a special message from Mars on the giant Toshiba screens."

Fans were hoping for some new images or video from the Rover -- possibly even news of a new discovery.  Instead they were treated to a brief pre-rendered animation, followed by a word art "text" from the Rover commenting "Happy New Year From Mars".

The Verge, whose offices are based in Manhattan, New York, described the build-up and delivery as "groan worthy".  One commenter hints that maybe budget cuts were to blame, commenting, "I think we should double NASA's budget, purely for the reason that they can then go and license decent typefaces."

However, the $2.5B USD third generation NASA rover perhaps has earned itself a bit of slack for its hard work blasting rocks on the hostile Martian landscape and for becoming the first Mars rover to directly observe the long hypothesized dried stream beds of the "Red Planet".

Hopefully NASA gets the memo and treats the crowd to a more impressive display next year.

Comments     Threshold

This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled

cut some slack
By MadMan007 on 1/1/2013 3:47:52 PM , Rating: 3
It's sending a message from FREAKING MARS...people are so blase about how amazing things are these days.


RE: cut some slack
By Bubbacub on 1/1/2013 4:54:50 PM , Rating: 3
only the message didn't come from mars.

it would have been way cooler (though unappreciated by most) if they had actually pinged the rover IRL and got a response - many minutes later.

RE: cut some slack
By MadMan007 on 1/1/2013 7:15:05 PM , Rating: 2
Oh, I see. In any case, Louie CK is still awesome.

RE: cut some slack
By MadMan007 on 1/1/2013 7:15:53 PM , Rating: 2
(Yes, I know it's LouiS CK before someone corrects that :P)

RE: cut some slack
By FaaR on 1/2/2013 9:31:09 AM , Rating: 3
Many minutes = more like half an hour later for the full round trip. You think today's audience have that kind of attention span? :P

2023 New Years Eve party...
By bupkus on 1/1/2013 8:12:01 PM , Rating: 4
TV announcer: Now coming from the planet Mars is that once teen heart throb Justin Drew Bieber singing his once hit song Come home to me.

Fans: Yayyy!!!
Nonfans: OMG, no, not again.

Announcer: I think, I think his space suit has failed and he's choking to death. OMG!

Fans: OMG, noooo!
Nonfans: Yayyy!!!

By HostileEffect on 1/1/2013 10:35:10 PM , Rating: 1

By MrBlastman on 1/2/2013 1:04:22 PM , Rating: 2
The revelation that you know the title of a real Bieber song is... well, utterly depressing. You should be ashamed of yourself.


They should have...
By Spookster on 1/2/2013 1:19:44 AM , Rating: 4
Used the rover arm to write 2013 in the dirt/sand, take a photo and send it back. That would have been pretty cool.

RE: They should have...
By JediJeb on 1/2/2013 7:34:02 PM , Rating: 2
Or used the laser to write it on a rock :)

(or maybe to draw a shark on the rock)

Mars tweet
By Dr. Kenneth Noisewater on 1/2/2013 10:54:39 AM , Rating: 3

RE: Mars tweet
By JediJeb on 1/2/2013 7:36:27 PM , Rating: 2
Be careful with that laser Opportunity or you will shoot your camera out!

By 91TTZ on 1/2/2013 11:59:58 AM , Rating: 5
This social media craze is overblown. It's good for people who want to keep in touch with their friends, but why does a robotic rover on Mars need need a human posting things on Twitter on its behalf as if it were a person? Even the most boring products now have a "Follow us on Facebook!" link. Even my electricity provider sends out mail about this.

Everything nowadays seems to be dumbing down. It's as if you need to cater to the (increasingly stupid) majority now. Science isn't allowed to stand on its own, people feel the need to rebrand it to make it appeal to the idiots watching reality TV.

What's next, the Large Hadron Collider gives a shout out to Honey Boo Boo Child on Twitter?

A better message would have been:
By Motoman on 1/2/2013 10:34:37 AM , Rating: 3
Mars rover: "F%ck you guys - I'm on Mars!"

Let's be honest
By Beenthere on 1/1/13, Rating: -1
RE: Let's be honest
By dark matter on 1/1/2013 4:45:06 PM , Rating: 3
The view is much better than moms basement though.

RE: Let's be honest
By Motoman on 1/2/2013 12:16:50 PM , Rating: 2
Well, that on whether or not you're into S&M. Have you seen his mom's basement?

Can you really blame them?
By Articuno on 1/1/13, Rating: -1
RE: Can you really blame them?
By DiscoWade on 1/1/2013 4:38:09 PM , Rating: 5
Although I personally believe there is no life on Mars and could never be life on Mars, I don't consider this to be a waste. There are other parts of NASA that are a waste. And there are other things in government that should be cut, but obviously won't because doing so requires a backbone and the desire to think beyond the next election. The things that NASA does when reaching out like this provides benefits for all us. But that is the problem with NASA now: it is a shell of itself now run by activists.

There is so much waste in our government, and you are going after the some of the most important work NASA currently does.

RE: Can you really blame them?
By Visual on 1/2/2013 3:22:05 AM , Rating: 3
Ok, "could never be"? Really? Do you really believe that?

RE: Can you really blame them?
By mcnabney on 1/2/2013 9:51:52 AM , Rating: 3
The current pressure/temperature make life extremely difficult on Mars. However, we do know that it wasn't always this way - so looking for signs of life in the past is not such a bad idea.

RE: Can you really blame them?
By dark matter on 1/1/2013 4:44:07 PM , Rating: 5
Cool, no doubt tomorrow you'll be selling your laptop/desktop/tablet/phone and cancelling your Internet and donating all the money to help the starving.

Talk is cheap otherwise.

RE: Can you really blame them?
By Ringold on 1/1/2013 8:22:11 PM , Rating: 3
What the poor really need isn't a handout from some self-righteous Westerner, anyway. They need jobs.

What makes jobs? We do, when we buy stuff. That's the beauty of capitalism. Individuals pursue self-interest, and the net effect is prosperity.. generally speaking.

RE: Can you really blame them?
By FaaR on 1/2/2013 9:37:06 AM , Rating: 2
That's an over-simplification, to put it mildly.

Generally speaking - in the real world, rather than in some silly rose-colored glasses fantasy - globalization capitalism is much better at enrichening a few individuals at the very top of the food chain than it is at spreading prosperity around the poor people of the world.

It's kind of like hoping that throwing even more money at the military-industrial complex will lead to job growth back home.

RE: Can you really blame them?
By Bubbacub on 1/1/2013 4:52:35 PM , Rating: 5
2.5 billion isn't going to put a dent in the figures with regard to starvation

the reasons behind why people starve on this planet are pretty complex. we already produce more than enough food to feed the planetary population.

most human starvation is direct consequence of conflict, local overpopulation and a complete lack of infrastructure.

even if you wanted to spend all your salary to fund taxes to support an international army to take over and police all of sub saharan africa, build local infrastructure for them and feed them - there isnt enough money, there certainly arn't enough soldiers and there is zero desire to have our soldiers killed by belligerents why we try to help them. look at somalia and the events from 'black hawk down' as simple example of why starvation and famine will not be eradicated for a long time.

IMO, the starving children argument for not performing science research is completely and utterly invalid

RE: Can you really blame them?
By MartyLK on 1/1/13, Rating: -1
"If you can find a PS3 anywhere in North America that's been on shelves for more than five minutes, I'll give you 1,200 bucks for it." -- SCEA President Jack Tretton

Copyright 2016 DailyTech LLC. - RSS Feed | Advertise | About Us | Ethics | FAQ | Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information | Kristopher Kubicki