There's been some talk about the possibility of sending an airplane to Titan, the Saturn's biggest moon and I it sounds a lot more interesting and practical than a plane on mars.
For one, Mars's atmosphere is very thin, making flying in there very hard. You're going to need big wings to stay in the air and controlling it is going to be delicate. Titan, on the other hand, has a very thick and dense atmosphere, allowing for a lot smaller craft and easier manouverability. That also lowers the power requirements for the propulsion, so it could be quite feasibly be powered by a ASRG giving it a flight time of years.
There are a lot of other very good points, too, but instead of writing about them myself, I'll just post a link to a cool blog that explains most of it quite well: http://futureplanets.blogspot.com/2010/06/aviatr-titan-plane-details.html
Here's a very informative presentation about it, too http://vimeo.com/11432536
I've been living with only a 380kbps cellular internet connection for the last couple of months and I don't have the luxury of downloading multiple gigabytes accidentally. Just some hours ago, I decided to spend the evening painstakingly downloading 150MB worth of Arch Linux updates over the connection.
(... Only to reboot the machine after the update and realizing that the crappy internet didn't work anymore. Took couple of hours to get it fixed. Another exciting day in Linux land)
But besides huge downloads, I can generally get by with a slow connection like this, even these days. Online banking, news, messaging and so on are no problem.
Relevant expertise required and also US citizenship, apparently.
I think you're right. Low temperatures and air pressure, radiation and dust storms would make it practically impossible to go outside the well-shielded martian underground bunker. Now where on earth would you find people willing to live their lives without sunlight inside dark basem^H^H^H^H^Hbunkers?
Well that was an intreguing piece of writing
Ceres does appear to be an interesting place indeed. I guess that's why we've got the Dawn spacecraft on the way there. 5 more years and we'll know a lot more about the place than before. If 5 years sound too far away, it'll also be studing Vesta, another interesting large asteroid belt object, next year.
For some reason, I can't stop imagining a fight scene with James Bond battling the Bad Astronomer amongst a large array of huge, spinning, mercury-filled telescopes.
I doubt those things would be very practical, but it would probably be a pretty amazing sight!
My thoughts exactly. These Linaro guys will focus on getting the the low level kernel stuff patched up and fixed for the all the new ARM platforms as they are released. MeeGo develelopers can use that, they won't have to worry about the low level stuff as much and they can focus on the user experience and all the other special stuff that makes MeeGo different. Same goes for all the other linux-based mobile operating systems. I guess that would include Android, too.
That the way I understood it, at least.
I sense a grand future for car-loving open source enthusiasts!
I, for one, can't wait to download the new Carbuntu 25.4. I hear they've moved the steering wheel to the other side to open some space for future widgets and the brakes don't seem to work with the radio on, but the new color scheme is beautiful!
Also, they removed reverse to streamline the user experience
ctrl+alt+command+8 negates the screen on a mac. I, too, have used that feature during night a couple of times and it does help.
"How can magnets impact my moral choices? Isn't my soul supposed to do that?"
Humans have known for a large part of their history that certain chemicals and diseases can affect the behaviour of humans. Now we know magnets can do that, too. It's a great find in a scientific sense, but it doesn't really pose any new moral questions that haven't been asked before. Replace "magnets" in your question with alcohol, drugs, brain diseases or medication and you might see that people have been asking the same question ever since religion was invented.
You scratch my tape, and I'll scratch yours.