Friday, February 20, 2009

Seen From Space: Following the Memestream (UPDATES!)

The Skylon flying vibrator Spaceplane

Abstract: Two
Seen from Space posts in five days? Science fiction is the new reality...

Reaction Engines Ltd
. is yet another of the constellation of corporations popping up seemingly out of nowhere and producing science fiction spacecraft. They've developed the Skylon (no, not Cylon) yet another of the new vehicles meant to shuttle people back and forth from orbit. Read this:
"The Holy Grail to transform the economics of getting into space is to use a truly reusable spaceplane capable of taking off from an airport and climbing directly into space, delivering its satellite payload and automatically returning safely to Earth,” said Alan Bond, Managing Director of Reaction Engines.
Fascinating language. These are heady days for the space industry, and the libidos seem to running wild. I use "libido" in the Jungian sense, but I can't help but look at all of this hardware with anything but a Freudian eye. (By the way, Reaction Engines also makes the SATAN engine).


Interesting conjunction of articles here from the Beeb science section. Sheesh, I thought there was a global depression on, and yet we are seeing billions spent on space programs of marginal benefit to ordinary people. What's the big rush?

The ESA is building a "space truck" to supply the ISiS, and we looked earlier at the massive Jupiter/Saturn programs going on. I can't ask it enough- why is this so compelling to our governments all of a sudden? It's too bad Arthur C. Clarke is no longer with us. Maybe he knew.

The visual connection to the Danton discovery is fascinating, tying into the memes of new discovery pertaining to water, which is driving the Jovian satellite program. And there's this little factoid, telling us that the Danton "was attacked by Germany's U-64 submarine at 1317 on 18 March, 1917." Hmmm...

But it's worth taking a second look at that gas giant article, since there is some unexpectedly florid language being thrown around. The very idea of visiting these lunar systems has clearly excited the libidos of some of these scientists as well:
On the subject of the Galilean satellites, Dr Blanc added: "They are fascinating. They are coupled; they are in resonance.

"While Ganymede is doing one turn around Jupiter, Europa is doing two turns; and Io is doing four orbits. And in this motion they keep eccentricity; they excite each other. And there is a lot of tidal interaction which heats the internal bodies of those satellites."

But the planetary scientist, who is a principal investigator on the Cassini-Huygens mission to the Saturnian system, added: "My heart belongs to Titan."
To Jung, libido was psychic energy. To Freud it was sexual energy. Six of one, half-dozen of the other. Libido is life. Life is energy, period. In this light, I recommend that everyone head over to The Stygian Port to read Violator's new magnum opus on the symbolism of sacred sexuality, "Opening the Stargate."

If we are hearing about all of these projects now, that means that they have been in development for a very long time. NASA reportedly operates on a $17 billion dollar budget (surprise, surprise) but I can't imagine that covers all of the hardware we are seeing going up.

Here's an interesting question for you to consider: what if our mammoth "defense" budgets haven't really all been spent on armaments but on what we are seeing unfold today? And who would know the difference?

UPDATE: Yahoo, of course.

UPDATE II: Talk about pushing a meme- Lynnertic points us to this story, showing the cosmic copulation of the Sun and Earth...
On Feb. 10 (JST), the lunar explorer "KAGUYA" successfully took an image of the moment when the Earth looked like a diamond ring by its onboard high definition camera. The moment came when a penumbral lunar eclipse occurred and the view of the Sun from the KAGUYA was mostly covered by the Earth, thus the earth looked like a diamond ring. This is the first time that this phenomenon was shot from the Moon.
UPDATE III: Speaking of "seen from space," StrangeEye caught this ad- I'm speechless:

Note that it opens on the ESB obelisk and then goes to its counterpart the Eiffel Tower. "Hugh Jackman" reminds me of Hugh De Payens and Jacques De Molay, the first and last Grand Masters of the Knights Templar.

Amazing. Great catches here, guys.

UPDATE IV: What was I just saying about androgyny? "George Mason University picks drag queen as homecoming queen."

Note: In the next post, we'll see how obscure details can tie together seemingly unrelated aspects of the Memestream.