0695: "Spirit"

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cryptoengineer
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby cryptoengineer » Sun Jan 31, 2010 5:06 am UTC

The folks over at http://www.unmannedspaceflight.com or UMSF have been following the rovers with OCD like attention day by day since they landed (including myself).

One of our number has linked to a less mournful version of the strip:
http://www.unmannedspaceflight.com/inde ... &start=915
the image is at:
http://www.unmannedspaceflight.com/inde ... t&id=20543

(This seems to fall within the parameters of the CC license used)

BTW '@marsroverdriver' is exactly that; one of the team at JPL who drives the rovers.

CE

ZeroSkulleton
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby ZeroSkulleton » Sun Jan 31, 2010 6:44 am UTC

Wow :shock: that is so sad...
I am on the brink of tears... :(

I can just imagine the little rover buzzing around Mars, doing its job, unaware of its fate...

Damnit, now I feel horrible about enjoying WALL-E...
Last edited by ZeroSkulleton on Sun Jan 31, 2010 6:49 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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Pen_Bird
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby Pen_Bird » Sun Jan 31, 2010 6:48 am UTC


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Ferahgo
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby Ferahgo » Sun Jan 31, 2010 8:32 am UTC

These edited versions rule.

St_Fred
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby St_Fred » Sun Jan 31, 2010 9:51 am UTC



This is now sad in a different way... what with the Idiocracy |33+speek :)

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Ephemeron
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby Ephemeron » Sun Jan 31, 2010 1:00 pm UTC

Anyway, if you feel sad for the Mars rovers, then you're got to reserve some sympathy for the probes that were sent to Venus, and enjoyed only a short time of service before they were corroded to death by its acidic atmosphere. Then of course don't forget the Apollo lunar modules, which were jettisoned shortly before re-entry, and subsequently burned up in the Earth's atmosphere (although I appreciate it's harder to attach human-like feelings to something that is inherently piloted by humans). Even sadder, their fate will soon be shared by the Hubble Space Telescope and the ISS. But maybe a quick burnup is a better way to go.

St_Fred: I believe it's an allusion to how people will talk in the 2070s - i.e. that 1337speak might become a common form of English.

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dennisw
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby dennisw » Sun Jan 31, 2010 1:18 pm UTC

Ephemeron wrote:St_Fred: I believe it's an allusion to how people will talk in the 2070s - i.e. that 1337speak might become a common form of English.

That's why it's sad.
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Pen_Bird
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby Pen_Bird » Sun Jan 31, 2010 3:12 pm UTC

Television ossified the evolution of dialects. Chat (not L33T) will restore it.

L33T is an "argot" - a cryptic language used by an underworld.

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Ephemeron
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby Ephemeron » Sun Jan 31, 2010 4:10 pm UTC

An update on my previous post: I looked in up, and it turns out that the lunar modules were jettisoned to crash-land on the Moon, not the Earth. There goes my idea for a comic centering on the Apollo 11 command module (titled 'Eagle' of course), which would have been something like this.

Panel 1: (Saturn V rocket on launchpad) The floor is shaking... We must be taking off!
Panel 2: (Command module docks and retrieves lunar module from third rocket stage) I can see! We're actually in space! Now to go to the Moon...
Panel 3: (Separation of luanr module) Almost there! Must remember to fire my descent stage before we land...
Panel 4: (Niel steps onto lunar suface "That's one small step...") Hooray, we've made history!
Panel 5: (Lunar module docks with command module) Three days until I go home!
Panel 6: (Command module approaches Earth) Wow, the Earth is so beautiful...
Panel 7: (Command module prepares for re-entry, separates from the lunar module) Okay, good idea that we land separately. See you after re-entry!
Panel 8: Wait, where's my heat shield! Guys?
Panel 9: (Burns up) YAAAAAAAAARRRRGGHHHH!!!

That would have been a much darker and tearful idea for a comic. Unfortunately having the Lunar module crash on the Moon doesn't make quite as great a story. I guess I could still do it for Apollo 13 (which DID burn up in Earth's atmosphere).

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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby Lucello » Sun Jan 31, 2010 5:39 pm UTC

That is so sad.

Airbuilder7
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby Airbuilder7 » Sun Jan 31, 2010 6:43 pm UTC

Ephemeron wrote:An update on my previous post: I looked in up, and it turns out that the lunar modules were jettisoned to crash-land on the Moon, not the Earth. There goes my idea for a comic centering on the Apollo 11 command module (titled 'Eagle' of course), which would have been something like this.

Panel 1: (Saturn V rocket on launchpad) The floor is shaking... We must be taking off!
Panel 2: (Command module docks and retrieves lunar module from third rocket stage) I can see! We're actually in space! Now to go to the Moon...
Panel 3: (Separation of luanr module) Almost there! Must remember to fire my descent stage before we land...
Panel 4: (Niel steps onto lunar suface "That's one small step...") Hooray, we've made history!
Panel 5: (Lunar module docks with command module) Three days until I go home!
Panel 6: (Command module approaches Earth) Wow, the Earth is so beautiful...
Panel 7: (Command module prepares for re-entry, separates from the lunar module) Okay, good idea that we land separately. See you after re-entry!
Panel 8: Wait, where's my heat shield! Guys?
Panel 9: (Burns up) YAAAAAAAAARRRRGGHHHH!!!

That would have been a much darker and tearful idea for a comic. Unfortunately having the Lunar module crash on the Moon doesn't make quite as great a story. I guess I could still do it for Apollo 13 (which DID burn up in Earth's atmosphere).

Of course, it could also stare upward as the ascent stage shrunk into a tinier and tinier point of light until it finally vanished (with all its attendant cries of "Wait for meeeeeeeeee!"), and then "turn" to look at the vacant gray landscape reaching to the horizon and know it will be there forever...

July 22nd, 1969: "Oh, well, I know they'll come back to see me in a few years. They're real nice. Neal was real nice. They'll come back to see me and pat my side and say, "You did a good job, watching over the flag. You did a good job. And now you can rest, for we are here to watch it too."

2010: "Guyyss.....?"


You know, all this *does* get rather horrible when I think of them speaking in Tachikoma voices. :(

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Ghandi 2
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby Ghandi 2 » Sun Jan 31, 2010 8:05 pm UTC

This wasn't depressing, it was hilarious. You guys are weird.

And holy shit that sequel comic is fucking terrible.

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Ephemeron
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby Ephemeron » Sun Jan 31, 2010 8:12 pm UTC

What about LCROSS? He may not have anticipated the impact until the last few minutes, but my sympathies for the part of the craft who realised that his fate was sealed the moment he saw his brother slam into the lunar surface. Yes, now that I think about it, every space probe has a tragic story. And we send them to do the suicide missions that no astronaught would ever do. Maybe we're overdue for a robot uprising?

Edit:
nihil wrote:If I was a system programmer at the rovers project, I'd encode, secretly, a "One is happy to be of service!" message to be automatically sent some years after the rovers were there, even if the mission design was only 90 days - it would be freaking awesome. :P


It seems someone else had your idea. The last transmission from the Phoenix probe on November 2, included the message "Triumph" in binary.

libartsgrad
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby libartsgrad » Sun Jan 31, 2010 10:56 pm UTC

Can the winged ferret come swooping in and rescue the rover? Please?

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Pen_Bird
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby Pen_Bird » Mon Feb 01, 2010 12:30 am UTC

Ephemeron wrote:Maybe we're overdue for a robot uprising?


Image

Image

Image

http://freefall.purrsia.com/ff1900/fc01832.htm

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Drain
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby Drain » Mon Feb 01, 2010 12:48 am UTC

So sad. Good comic though.

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Steax
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby Steax » Mon Feb 01, 2010 1:01 am UTC

I wonder if it's possible for it to manifest sapience by the time we get to Mars.

The Voyager probes seem even sadder in this way, though. All out there, shrouded in black with nothing to accompany it. Not even the sun means much out there. And they'll stay that way for a long, long, long time.

Perhaps one day humanity will wipe itself out and another sapient species will arise elsewhere. Then they find the Voyager probes; and all hell breaks loose.
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St_Fred
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby St_Fred » Mon Feb 01, 2010 1:19 am UTC

dennisw wrote:
Ephemeron wrote:St_Fred: I believe it's an allusion to how people will talk in the 2070s - i.e. that 1337speak might become a common form of English.

That's why it's sad.

Yup, thats what I meant :)

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TheTedinator
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby TheTedinator » Mon Feb 01, 2010 2:02 am UTC

Ok, i hadn't checked the website for several days, and then I look back for the first time since like wednesday, and there is this great comic! I almost laughed, and very nearly cried, so my face just kinda shut down with a saddish smile for a minute. Great comic!!!!!!!

Murphly
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby Murphly » Mon Feb 01, 2010 4:31 am UTC

I feel like this comic is a pretty good metaphor for what Obama's pushing NASA towards with the new budget...

Platinumweaver
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby Platinumweaver » Mon Feb 01, 2010 5:01 am UTC

I see now that I'm not the only one that made a different version.
I was going to email the creator with mine and a message simply saying "you made my girlfriend cry, so I made this" but a) Cant find an email address and b) I found this thread.

Project.jpg
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Gero
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby Gero » Mon Feb 01, 2010 11:59 am UTC

psion wrote:Now we just need to mourn all the engines and plating and everything else Nasa discards once they've served their purpose.


What you don't celebrate space-junk day annually?

cryptoengineer wrote:BTW '@marsroverdriver' is exactly that; one of the team at JPL who drives the rovers.
That is one helluva sweet gig to lose. And one helluva harsh way to lose it.

Steax wrote:The Voyager probes seem even sadder in this way, though. All out there, shrouded in black with nothing to accompany it.


Bender: And now for Eons of loneliness. My good chum.

Anyways. Maybe us all crying for this poor little anthropomorphised robot will make Skynet go easy on us when it finds this. I wonder how much kinship Arnold Schwarzenegger feels to Spirit?

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Pen_Bird
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby Pen_Bird » Mon Feb 01, 2010 2:15 pm UTC

Gero wrote:
cryptoengineer wrote:BTW '@marsroverdriver' is exactly that; one of the team at JPL who drives the rovers.
That is one helluva sweet gig to lose. And one helluva harsh way to lose it.


I wish I had "Mars Rover Driver" on my resume...

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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby Infectonator » Mon Feb 01, 2010 4:50 pm UTC

This made me laugh and be sad, too. YOU SHOULD BE HAPPY RANDALL.

Leanan
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby Leanan » Mon Feb 01, 2010 7:28 pm UTC

Virtual Adept wrote:
Leanan wrote:Oh, Asimov is dead now. So it wouldn't matter to him if his heart was broken or not before he ate it.

*quickly hides the zombie medicines*


Herbert West would like to have a little chat with you about that...


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Shinin
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby Shinin » Mon Feb 01, 2010 8:19 pm UTC

Veracious said it right: I cried for a robot today.

Why? Because Randal is a masterful storyteller, even if the story is complete in one panel.

BTW, little Spirit, you *are* home. You will be there to welcome us when we finally arrive, and we will honor you.

hendric
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby hendric » Mon Feb 01, 2010 10:06 pm UTC

Shinin,
Here is our response from the best of UMSF:

http://www.unmannedspaceflight.com/inde ... t&id=20523

Every time I see that reflection, it just makes my eyes tear up.

Neal J. King
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby Neal J. King » Tue Feb 02, 2010 12:04 am UTC

Recently, I've noticed that references to Spirit by NASA folks refer to "she".

But in this strip, it seems obvious, somehow, that Spirit is a he: Maybe the longing to be back with the team, with the "other guys".

brucejtaylor
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby brucejtaylor » Tue Feb 02, 2010 12:32 am UTC

I'm not a real fanboy, and I normally lurk among the threads.

But the "Spirit" strip hit me so hard that I had to sit down, and I thought I needed to post just this once.

Who hasn't had this experience, of being thrown out into the chaos and uncertainty of life, with only the directions, "Just do your best?" To most people, it sounds like a meaningless exhortation, but some of us take it seriously; and sometimes it leads to this kind of disappointment and abandonment.

Imagine, an existential tour de force hidden inside a 9-panel comic strip.

Many thanks

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Pen_Bird
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby Pen_Bird » Tue Feb 02, 2010 12:53 am UTC

brucejtaylor wrote:Who hasn't had this experience, of being thrown out into the chaos and uncertainty of life, with only the directions, "Just do your best?"


You mean like this?

Image

Will Eisner's Spirit...

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Minerva
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby Minerva » Tue Feb 02, 2010 3:26 am UTC

On January 26th, 2213 days into its mission, NASA declared Spirit a 'stationary research station', expected to operational for several more months until the dust buildup on its solar panels forces a final shutdown.


It's kind of nice that we're not going to have to concern ourselves with this issue for many, many decades with Mars Science Laboratory.
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missbittens
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby missbittens » Wed Feb 03, 2010 8:20 am UTC

For me, this was a little of Wall-E, a little of Moon, and a little of Whiskey ("Was I my best?") from the Dollhouse episode Epitaph One, although on Mars instead of underground.

*comforts robot*
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somebody already took it
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby somebody already took it » Wed Feb 03, 2010 1:19 pm UTC

Platinumweaver wrote:I see now that I'm not the only one that made a different version.
I was going to email the creator with mine and a message simply saying "you made my girlfriend cry, so I made this" but a) Cant find an email address and b) I found this thread.

Project.jpg

All content ('cept the Welcome Home Text) comes from previous XKCD comics.

Thank you for making this. You have a talent for creating artifacts that cause happiness. Please make more artifacts in the future.

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Coffee
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby Coffee » Wed Feb 03, 2010 7:13 pm UTC

Very Spirited discussion going on here eh?
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Superuser
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby Superuser » Thu Feb 04, 2010 5:16 am UTC

This is one of my favorite strips in a long time.

Big props to Pen_Bird for the Will Eisner Spirit reference, lol.

Also, all the different edited versions of the strip are great.
Never knew I could feel empathy for a robot.
Image

lbiorn
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby lbiorn » Thu Feb 04, 2010 5:42 am UTC

Join us here: http://www.petitiononline.com/savesprt/petition.html

Let's hope some dust devils help him out in the mean time.

GooglyBoogly
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby GooglyBoogly » Fri Feb 05, 2010 9:02 am UTC

Platinumweaver wrote:I see now that I'm not the only one that made a different version.
I was going to email the creator with mine and a message simply saying "you made my girlfriend cry, so I made this" but a) Cant find an email address and b) I found this thread.

Project.jpg

All content ('cept the Welcome Home Text) comes from previous XKCD comics.


Nicely done
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jacog
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby jacog » Fri Feb 05, 2010 11:30 am UTC

I'm still thinking V'ger though.

Spirit gets picked up by a sentient mechanical race (later presumed ((or retconned)) to be The Borg) and given extraordinary power. Then returns to earth to find out if we're worth keeping around in the universe. If the decision is no, then we get squished like a bug.

And judging by the original comic, Spirit returns to earth somewhat embittered.

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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby Neal J. King » Fri Feb 05, 2010 11:53 am UTC

And judging by the original comic, Spirit returns to earth somewhat embittered.


No, jacog: Judging by the original comic, Spirit is a Pollyanna-type, "born yesterday."

Spirit would be grateful to have the opportunity to save our bacon.

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jacog
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Re: "Spirit" Discussion

Postby jacog » Fri Feb 05, 2010 12:49 pm UTC

Neal J. King wrote:
And judging by the original comic, Spirit returns to earth somewhat embittered.


No, jacog: Judging by the original comic, Spirit is a Pollyanna-type, "born yesterday."

Spirit would be grateful to have the opportunity to save our bacon.


Dunno man, I think maybe I'll save a copy of this thread, just in case. You never know when we might have to prove to the all-powerful new Spirit that we actually cared about it.

This xkcd forum thread might one day save the world! *

* So make sure you mind your grammar.


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