After a rain delay on Wednesday, SpaceX is poised to launch its first manned mission to the International Space Station with DM-2. Leo says that while critics say that money shouldn't be "wasted" on space exploration, Leo disagrees, saying that a tiny fraction of the federal budget goes to NASA and the Commercial Space Program, and the benefits of what we learn far outweigh what we spend, or the risk. And it always has.
Bill says that exposed Xray film is good for viewing the solar eclipse and if you can find some wasted film from a doctor's office, you can use it. Leo doesn't recommend doing this, and viewers should consult the NASA Eclipse Website for how to properly and safely view it.
Amazon has issued a recall alert and cancelled all orders for glasses told to view the upcoming solar eclipse. The glasses were counterfeit and has the proper ISO certification printed on the items, even though they weren't. Not knowing which ones were real and which were counterfeit on it's face, Amazon decided to cancel ALL sales and issue a recall.
In a few weeks, on August 21st, there will be a total solar eclipse in North America. It will be possible to see at least a partial eclipse everywhere in the US, but some places will get totality, meaning the sun will be completely blocked by the moon. That will happen in a band stretching across Oregon to Florida.
Scott reports that NASA is going to do the first ever, live 4K stream from Space. They will be sending it to earth at 18MB/s which Scott says is really small. The backend is being handled by Amazon's Elemental streaming and cloud based processing division, which will stream it online via H.265 HEVC and then transcoded into H.264. So to watch it online, you'll need at least 45MBps of bandwidth.
44 years ago today, Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin became the first humans to set foot on the moon. Leo wonders though -- what has mankind done since to equal it?
George says that SpaceCraft 3D is a very cool app for iOS. Leo says it's really cool because it uses augmented reality to make the rovers appear on your space as you interact with them. And it's free!
With it's complicated sky crane design, everyone was going through the Seven Minutes of Terror that was the landing of the Mars Curiosity. The Jet Propulsion Laboratory stuck the landing and now Curiosity is roving around Mars. The Mars Science Lab (Curiosity) is the size of a car and is packed with all kinds of experiments.