Category Archives: Space

Forget eco, let's go exo

Hey, that’s what it says here in Ireland’s paper of record. Apparently there’s a community out there who feel it’s time that we left our petty mess behind and sought communion with our galactic neighbours (maybe they can give us a dig out as well — that’s just my opinion). 

Forget “eco”. The most urgent prefix today, the X-Conference suggests, is “exo”. We need to evolve into an exoculture. We need to be exoconscious, to reframe our minds for interstellar relations and interdimensional experiences.

“If we live off-planet, we have to change our mind and bodies,” says Rebecca Hardcastle, a hypnotherapist and exoconsciousness coach from Phoenix, Arizona. “Your emotions, life force and what you’ve been taught is a belief system that cords you to the Earth. We must change our frame of reference.”

Hardcastle, wearing pearls and a black dress, says she has been contacted by ET intelligence since she was three. She, and others in the exopolitical community, say we must learn remote viewing and teleportation, propagate the practice of ESP, let ETs change us, and integrate technology and consciousness so we can participate in the universe.

What’s the secret? Diet and exercise and balanced living, says Hardcastle. Yoga and peacefulness, say others.

Okay, I’ve picked a quote from what looks like one of the flakier members of the movement. It’s just quirky. Anyway, a lot of the debate is about full disclosure from terrestrial governments about what contact they may or may not have had with extraterrestrials. I’m not going to enter the debate over whether or not aliens exist, or if they have visited our little mudball. But there is something about being prepared for any such contact that I find myself agreeing with. I just wish our governments and banks had thought to be prepared for the economic slump in which we find ourselves.

Links o' the day 27/11/08

This shot of wind tower in Jaipur is one of my favourite photos of recent times. And it certainly helps take one’s mind off the carnage that’s going on in Mumbai.

While on the subject of great photographs, here are ten of Hubble’s best before it gets decommissioned in 2010.

Say phooey to that digital alarm clock and get a pin one instead.

Although given its recent track record (read “Vista”), Microsoft has got a fair bit right.

Could newspapers have survived the web?

The credit crunch/economic meltdown has thrown up all sorts of new financial terms. Just to add one: apparently Nokia refers to “synergy-related headcount adjustments”, better known to you and me as redundancies.

Too hot to be habitable…

…but that doesn’t necessarily mean nothing lives there.

Carbon dioxide, a potential fingerprint of life, has been discovered for the first time in the atmosphere of a planet orbiting another star…  carbon dioxide is one of four chemicals that life can generate, so being able to detect it shows that astronomers have the ability to find the signs of life on other worlds.

Martian glaciers

Looks like Kim Stanley Robinson was right.

A radar instrument aboard a NASA spacecraft has detected large glaciers hidden under rocky debris that may be the vestiges of ice sheets that blanketed parts of Mars in a past ice age, scientists said on Thursday.

The glaciers, the biggest known deposits of water on Mars outside of its poles, could prove useful for future manned missions to the red planet as drinking water or rocket fuel, University of Texas planetary geologist John Holt said.

Space and Obama

The Planetary Society’s proposed “vigorous new space exploration plan” is surely timed to coincide with the US president-elect Barack Obama trying to get things together for his administration. Although currently short on details, the society is being smart by tailoring the plan to reflect the economic conditions, another thing Obama has to deal with.

There may be some good news if the president-to-be follows through with his promise to increase NASA funds by $2bn:

Bill Adkins, a Washington aerospace consultant who worked on space policy in the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate, said Obama probably could get an extra $2 billion from Congress for NASA if he asks for it.

“I think there will be a premium on the new Congress and the new president to show they can govern and not start off bickering about issues,” Adkins said. “If Obama actually puts the $2 billion in [his budget request] that he promised in his campaign, I think Congress is likely to go along with it because it’s not big enough to have a fight over. If Obama doesn’t, I don’t see the mood in Congress to add the money.”

Other sources who follow NASA’s prospects on Capitol Hill said Obama might be able to get an additional $2 billion for the space agency without having to make a formal budget request. Democrats are working on a $100 billion economic stimulus package that could be taken up this month and sent to Bush to be signed into law before the end of the year. Lawmakers also are talking about assembling a separate, possibly bigger stimulus package early next year after Obama takes office. Legislative strategists said NASA money plausibly could be added to one or both of the proposed bills.