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Deepfake video shows President Richard Nixon announcing the failure of the 1969 moon landing

Daily Mail - Science & tech

A scarily realistic deepfake video shows what it would have looked like if President Richard Nixon was forced to deliver a sombre address to the world had the Apollo 11 mission ended in disaster. It is well-known that the American president had two speeches prepared, one in case of a safe landing and one in the event that tragedy struck. Fortuitously, the landing on July 20 1969 by Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin was a resounding success, rendering the latter redundant. However, experts at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) have created an entirely artificial video showing what it may have looked and sounded like. It is part of a project called'Moon Disaster' and is designed to draw attention to the risk deepfakes pose and how they can manipulate people and spread fake news.


'Deepfake' Nixon Video Discusses A Moon-Landing Disaster That Never Happened

#artificialintelligence

It's a lot harder to recognize fake videos than you can imagine, including this President Richard ... [ ] Nixon deepfake about Apollo 11. Fifty-one years ago this week, the first moon landing took place. Two astronauts from Apollo 11 walked around on the lunar surface for a couple of hours, changing space exploration forever. Most people around the world accept this statement as truth, but there has always been an underbelly of society who (wrongly) think the moon landing in 1969 never happened. A new project shows the danger of how easy it is to spread fake news, through the power of a video related to the first moon landing.


How the moon landing shaped early video games

The Guardian

On 20 July 1969, before an estimated television audience of 650 million, a lunar module named Eagle touched down on the moon's Sea of Tranquility. The tension of the landing and the images of astronauts in futuristic spacesuits striding over the moon's barren surface, Earth reflected in their oversized visors, would prove wildly influential to artists, writers and film-makers. Also watching were the soon-to-be proponents of another technological field populated by brilliant young geeks: computer games. It is perhaps no coincidence that during the early 1960s, when Nasa was working with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Instrumentation Lab to develop the guidance and control systems for Apollo spacecraft, elsewhere on campus a programmer named Steve Russell was working with a small team to create one of the first true video game experiences. Inspired by the space race, and using the same DEC PDP-1 model of mainframe computer that generated spacecraft telemetry data for Nasa's Mariner programme, Russell wrote Spacewar!, a simple combat game in which two players controlled starships with limited fuel, duelling around the gravitational well of a nearby star.


1969 moon landing was a giant leap for moviemakers, too

The Japan Times

NEW YORK - In 1964, Stanley Kubrick, on the recommendation of the science-fiction author Arthur C. Clarke, bought a telescope. "He got this Questar and he attached one of his cameras to it," said Katharina Kubrick, the filmmaker's stepdaughter. "On a night where there was a lunar eclipse, he dragged us all out onto the balcony and we were able to see the moon like a big rubber ball. I don't think I've seen it as clearly since. He looked at it all the time."


Asteroid watch more urgent than Mars trip for Americans: AP-NORC poll

The Japan Times

CAPE CANAVERAL, FLORIDA - Americans prefer a space program that focuses on potential asteroid impacts, scientific research and using robots to explore the cosmos over sending humans back to the moon or on to Mars, a poll shows. The poll by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research, released Thursday, one month before the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing, lists asteroid and comet monitoring as the No. 1 desired objective for the U.S. space program. About two-thirds of Americans call that very or extremely important, and about a combined 9 in 10 say it's at least moderately important. The poll comes as the White House pushes to get astronauts back on the moon, but only about a quarter of Americans said moon or Mars exploration by astronauts should be among the space program's highest priorities. About another third called each of those moderately important.


Asteroids, research, robots: Poll shows Americans don't want a space program focused on moon

USATODAY - Tech Top Stories

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. -- Americans prefer a space program that focuses on potential asteroid impacts, scientific research and using robots to explore the cosmos over sending humans back to the moon or on to Mars, a poll shows. The poll by The Associated Press and the NORC Center for Public Affairs Research, released Thursday, one month before the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing, lists asteroid and comet monitoring as the No. 1 desired objective for the U.S. space program. About two-thirds of Americans call that very or extremely important, and about a combined 9 in 10 call it at least moderately important. The poll comes as the White House pushes to get astronauts back on the moon, but only about a quarter of Americans said moon or Mars exploration by astronauts should be among the space program's highest priorities. About another third called each of those moderately important.


Remembering Al Reinert and "For All Mankind," the Precursor to "Apollo 11"

The New Yorker

Viewers still coming back down to Earth after watching "Apollo 11," Todd Douglas Miller's new documentary about the spaceflight that first landed men on the moon, might overlook the dedication line in the film's credits: "For Al and Theo." "Theo" refers to Theo Kamecke, the director of the NASA-commissioned documentary "Moonwalk One," from 1972, whose leftover Todd-AO 70-mm. "Al" refers to Al Reinert, the director of "For All Mankind," from 1989, a kaleidoscopic assemblage of Apollo-mission footage narrated by thirteen of the twenty-four astronauts involved. Reinert, who received an Oscar nomination for the film, and another for co-writing Ron Howard's "Apollo 13," died recently, at the age of seventy-one, at home, in Wimberley, Texas. Reinert did not live to see the thirtieth anniversary of his film's release, in January, or the fiftieth anniversary of the moon landing, which will occur in July. But his influence can be seen throughout "Apollo 11," which expands to regular theaters on Friday, following a one-week IMAX run.


From moon landing to AI, the year ahead in Chinese science

#artificialintelligence

Chinese science advanced on several fronts in 2018, and this year should see scientists in China reach a number of milestones that will focus the world's attention on their achievements. Here are a few to keep an eye on. Chang'e 4 set to land on dark side of moon'between January 1 and 3' In December, China launched a plan to become the first country to land a probe on the far side of the moon. The Chinese mission, named Chang'e-4, is the fourth robotic iteration in a decade-long endeavour by the country to explore the moon. Chang'e is a reference to the Chinese goddess of the moon.


Stunning film animates NASA Apollo images

Daily Mail - Science & tech

It is a stunning new view of one of mankind's greatest achievements. A new short film has used digital effects to turn thousands of NASA images of the Apollo missions into a short film. Called Lunar, it uses techniques such as stop motion and panoramic stitching to bring the photographs to life. Filmmaker Christian Stangl spent over 18 months on the project, and describes it as an'animated collage'. It uses techniques such as stop motion and panoramic stitching to bring the photographs to life and create scenes that never happened - such as this shot from the surfact showing a lunar module blasting back to Earth.


Trump's call for human space exploration is hugely wasteful and pointless

Los Angeles Times

Space exploration aficionados experienced the thrill of anticipation in the hours before President Trump's speech Tuesday night, with advance word that he was going to call for a return to the human exploration of space. Sure enough, in his closing words Trump declared that for a country soon to celebrate its 250th anniversary, "American footprints on distant worlds are not too big a dream." Trump's brief, offhand comment had the tone of an impulsive notion that, like so many of his other policy pronouncements, won't get any follow-through. Let's hope so, because the idea of sending humans to explore distant worlds is loopy, incredibly wasteful, and likely to cripple American science rather than inspire it. And that's assuming that Trump's notion doesn't have the ulterior motivation of diverting American scientists from their Job One, which is to fight climate change right here at home.