theodp writes: Ground control to Major Tito. The work Tito Collasius does sounds a little like science fiction: Men on ships flicking joysticks that control robots the size of trucks as they rove miles beneath the sea in near-freezing depths no man could hope to reach. But BP's spill efforts rest in the hands of underwater remote-operated vehicle (ROV) pilots, who 'fly' the ROVs from command centers aboard ships, joy sticks in hand and large banks of screens in front of them offering a view of the challenges they confront in the waters below. ROVs are typically used for commercial (as in the oil industry), oceanographic (science research and exploration), and military (mine reconnaissance and recovery) missions. If you're interested in joining Tito, training's available.
FleaPlus writes: The successful inaugural launch of SpaceX's Falcon 9, privately developed and built at a cost of less than $400M (including another Falcon 9 to be launched this summer and five earlier Falcon 1 rockets), has been hailed by a number of space organizations and former astronauts. However, it's also quite interesting to look at the reactions from those in Congress who control the purse-strings for NASA (one of SpaceX's biggest customers). The successful launch was congratulated by Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL and former astronaut) and Rep. Suzanne Kosmas (D-FL), both praised and criticized by Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX) due to the successful launch being a year later than previously predicted, and blasted by Sen. Richard Shelby (R-AL) for merely replicating what 'NASA accomplished in 1964,' who added that the company's success 'must not be confused with progress for our nation's human spaceflight program.'