I'm a huge space buff, and really lament the state of manned space exploration these days, but rest assured, this post isn't really a rant about how we've given up our desire to explore. Forty years ago we accomplished the single greatest exploratory and technological achievement in history, by stepping foot on the moon.
I've been fascinated by the We Choose The Moon web site since it launched. AOL and the JFK Library have done an exceptional job using current tools to retell the Apollo 11 mission for the 40th anniversary of the Apollo 11 mission. You can listen to the live radio stream and follow the status of the mission in real-time, 40 years later. The site is full of pictures and video from the mission. There's even a timer to let you know when the next stage is starting and when the landing occur. I've installed the AIR version on my desktop.
My favorite feature of the site is the coordinated Twitter feeds. I can't sit with the site open all day and just listen, but I've got a column in Tweetdeck for AP11_CAPCOM, AP11_SPACECRAFT, and AP11_EAGLE. The tweets are synchronized so they flow like a conversation. This is such a great use of Twitter. A lot of the comm messages are
short bursts which fit into the Twitter timeline really nicely.
Here's a sample from yesterday:
- AP11_CAPCOM: Hello Apollo 11. Houston. We have scrubbed the midcourse 1. Over.
- AP11_SPACECRAFT: Roger. Understand you have scrubbed midcourse 1.
- AP11_SPACEFRAF: Hey Charlie. Houston, Apollo 11.
- AP11_CAPCOM: Go ahead, 11. Over.
- AP11_SPACECRAFT: Hey maybe you better call Lou and tell him we might be a little late for dinner.
For those of you who were alive when Apollo 11 landed, where were you?