Am I the only one who missed this, or was there just a complete lack of coverage out there that Tuesday, April 12, 2011 was the 50th anniversary of the first manned spaceflight? We are living in a wonderful new world that is getting more wonderful and more complex while also facing more and bigger problems. The fact that we have only been able to send people into space for the past 50 years is both amazing and humbling. Anyone want to share their thoughts on this momentous day (which is now already 3 days past)? And who else wants to establish an atheist colony on Mars? Or set out to mine the moons of Jupiter? And who thinks I am nuts? I just love geeking out about this stuff, who's with me?

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If I remember correctly google altered their logo for the day (same with youtube). But other than that I didn't hear to much of it.
The CBS News mentioned it.
NASA had a special on NASA TV about it.

More recognition should be given to Laika who was the first mammal and first female in space.

Absolutely! If I remember correctly, she only lasted about what, 3 hours before her oxygen ran out or something? Or am I way off?

Yes, it seems they weren't too concerned about Laikas life. There was no retrieval plan so she would die anyway.

In Russia they have groups of stray dogs who just lay around all day in public parks. People feed them but nobody owns them. Laika was one of these dogs.

 

One of the many off tactics employed in WW2 was the Russians strapped bombs to dogs and sent them at German tanks. This was only nominally successful as the Germans responded by simply shooting every dog that came near them before the dogs had any chance to get to any tanks.
This is a darned cool achievement. But I don't think it got a hell of a lot of coverage here in America. It is possible that I just missed it.
MSNBC had a story on it, and I also saw that Google tribute. Unfortunately, not too much interest in space these days. Despite possibilities of a manned mission to Mars, probes to Europa, and increasing evidence that life can be found practically anywhere, everyone seems to just dismiss it all as "science stuff."
Wow and I watch MSNBC religiously (haha) but I still missed that one. Yeah it's amazing that people can go through their whole lives being completely disinterested in all things science. Hello, there is an amazing world out there, most of it right under your noses, and you would rather think about... what? Fantasy? Things that don't even exist? It's amazing to me when I meet people from all over the world, and especially from the middle east, and the first and only thing they want to know is what your religion is, and yet they have no clue about what our universe is like, or even what our planet is like. So frustrating! So much ignorance! I've been dreaming about colonies on Mars at least since I watched Total Recall back in what, the 80's? I was only a spoolboy...
I organized a First Flight anniversary party in my undergrad astronomy class on the 12th. Glazed donuts, space punch and a shortened lecture put all in a giddy nerd mood.

GaryB

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