Starstruck–60 Years of NASA’s Dazzling Archives

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The first thing you might notice about the breathtaking new volume from German publisher TASCHEN, The NASA Archives, is the weight of the book itself. The care required to extract the 12-pound tome from its glossy case hints you might be in for a daunting experience. The subject matter is just as heavy: the triumphs, tragedies and as-yet-unrealized dreams bound up in the 60-year history of America’s voyages into space, all told via stunning photos, illustrations and firsthand accounts.

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While you’re here, how about this:

The NASA Archives are a visual history of American space flight

There’s a moment in Taschen’s new visual history of NASA, The NASA Archives, where Neil Armstrong describes piloting an experimental X-15 plane to the outer edge of the atmosphere’and realizing he couldn’t get back down. ‘I rolled over and tried to drop back in, but the aircraft wasn’t going down because there was no air to bite into,’ he recalled. ‘It wasn’t clear at the time I made the turn whether I would be able to get back.’

‘NASA is one of the world’s largest creators of data,’ author and historian Piers Bizony writes early on in the book. ‘Over 24 million gigabytes of information reside in storage systems (and that figure grows by around 12,000 gigabytes a day). To put this in perspective, all the letters, postcards, birthday and Christmas greetings, insurance documents, tax forms, photos, newspapers, magazines, circulars, and advert fliers that the U.S. Postal Service delivers in an entire year to hundreds of millions of citizens amount to no more than a one-tenth fraction of NASA’s information treasury.’

  • Publisher: Fast Company
  • Date: 2019-02-26T09:00:37
  • Author: Kelsey Campbell Dollaghan
  • Twitter: @fastcompany
  • Citation: Web link (Read More)

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A Space Nerd’s Reading of Ariana Grande’s ‘NASA’ Song

On Ariana Grande’s new album, among the kinds of titles you’d expect from an ultra-successful pop star singing about the highs and lows of love’needy’ or ‘ghostin’ there’s this single, all-caps track: ‘NASA.’

Yes, one of Grande’s new songs is named for the U.S. government agency that runs the space program.

The song opens with a reimagining of Neil Armstrong’s famous line: ‘This is one small step for woman / One giant leap for womankind.’ The intro segues into an addictive jam sprinkled with outer-space buzzwords: Stars, orbit, gravity.

‘You know I’m a star / Space, I’ma need space,’ the chorus goes. Grande insists to her paramour that she needs some time apart because she needs some ‘me’ time. She imagines herself as a star, and also ‘the universe / and you’ll be N-A-S-A.’ (We’ll leave the sleuthing about which ex-boyfriend NASA represents to someone else.)

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  • Publisher: The Atlantic
  • Date: 2019-02-09T08:00:00-05:00
  • Author: Marina Koren
  • Twitter: @theatlantic
  • Citation: Web link (Read More)

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‘Apollo 11’ review: Must-see, breathtaking account of the 1969 mission to the moon

‘”Apollo 11,” directed by Todd Douglas Miller, chronicles the 1969 moon landing. Photo Credit: Neon

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PLOT The story of the 1969 mission that first put a man on the moon, told through archival film and audio.

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Peter Jackson’s recent documentary on World War I, ‘They Shall Not Grow Old,’ used digital restoration techniques to turn century-old film into natural-looking color images that, in a sense, had never before been seen. Jackson’s next project will edit down 55 hours of never-released footage of the Beatles into a feature documentary. Meanwhile, the latest’film from Todd Douglas Miller, ‘Apollo 11,’ re-creates the 1969 moon mission using newly discovered footage from the National Archives.

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