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04 October 2007 @ 10:04 am
Beep, beep, beep, beep, HELLO THERE!  
50 years ago today, the Soviet Union put Sputnik 1 into orbit,
and H. sapiens took its first baby step to the stars.

So... happy new year! It's 50 S.A. (Space Age)!
I feel: quixoticquixotic
I hear: Leslie Fish, "Surprise!"
Pyatpyat on October 4th, 2007 05:26 pm (UTC)
In Soviet Russia, satellites... um... launch... you?
Shadow Dragonshdragon on October 4th, 2007 06:21 pm (UTC)
One of the papers around these parts had a story about this in it the other day. I saw it while at the taqueria for lunch, and don't remember which paper it was though, sorry. :/

It did raise an interesting point though, that of all of those fantastical ideas that we had about the space race 50 years ago NONE have come true. We haven't sent a man past orbit since -Apollo-. The ISS, which was dreamed up in the 50s, -still- isn't done.. There was an interesting quote along the lines of "When you look at what all has come of the space race, it makes putting a man on the moon look like nothing more than a cold war stunt."

There were some other interesting(/controversial?) tidbits in the article as well. but none that I remember well enough to quote without horribly mangling.
Tombfyretombfyre on October 4th, 2007 06:37 pm (UTC)
Well that was certainly amusing. ^^() Gotta love how we've all been at this space thing for so long, and we're only now getting off our asses to go back to the moon. :p
McGuffinhitchkitty on October 4th, 2007 06:48 pm (UTC)
Stephen King tells the following story from his childhood:

I guess the terror really began for me while I was watching Invaders from Mars at the local moviehouse. It was in the final reel, when American know-how and can-do was about to triumph over the evil alien menace...when the projection stopped. The theater manager came down to the front and told us that the Russians had just launched a satellite. They called it "Spootnik". It was circling over our heads, right that minute. Beeping.

(And that, ladies and gentlemen, explains to me why every King story has a "gotcha last" moment -- that instant when (to borrow shamelessly) you think it's safe to go back in the water...)
Kreggankreggan on October 4th, 2007 06:54 pm (UTC)
And just today I was in the Science Museum in London, where there's a full scale mock-up of the Apollo 11 lunar lander. "We came in peace for all mankind."
Araquan Skytracer: Spaceship Eartharaquan on October 4th, 2007 07:49 pm (UTC)
Ah, Sputnik. Inadvertently creating precedent for the openness of space- something the Soviets opposed.

Politics aside, though, a very significant moment in Human history. Though I, personally, count my years from the moment Armstrong stepped on the Moon... }:>
Hafochafoc on October 4th, 2007 08:50 pm (UTC)
Indeedy. The Russians shot down Eisenhower's "Open Skies" proposal-- and Francis Powers's U-2. A few years later "Open Skies" came true because not only don't satellites respect borders, they CAN'T.

I have to think that perhaps the resulting constellation of spy satellites might just have prevented/delayed thus far World War III. Especially notable because it's the only instance I can think of at the moment where science trumped politics.
Pakapaka on October 5th, 2007 04:29 am (UTC)
And it almost didn't happen. The military wanted to continue their dickwaving and only the sheer charisma and genius of Korolyov got this off the ground. So utterly American in its scope, isn't it? And I'm amazed that this is one of the times when having the right person there was so completely crucial.
journalcatalog on October 7th, 2007 10:56 am (UTC)
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