03 January 2019

2018 -- triumph and loss met in the cold

I'm not doing an overall "events of the year" post for 2018.  But there were two things that stood out.

The triumph:

Once again, technology extends the reach of the living mind, even to the frozen wasteland of a barren alien world.  In a time that often seems to fetishize victimization and despair and cynicism, here is achievement.  (You can stop the video at about 6:45.)

The loss:
While his body was crippled by a horrifying illness, his mind explored realms most of us cannot even imagine.  He is gone now, but his work will live on long after the idiot yammering of Trump and the Evangelical morons who make an idol of him is forgotten.  I observed his death here.


Blogger Debra She Who Seeks said...

Both are testaments to the human spirit!

03 January, 2019 04:29  
Anonymous Burr Deming said...

Hard to argue with either the triumph or the loss.

Good choices.

03 January, 2019 10:57  
Blogger Jono said...

No offense, but how can you use the names of Hawking and Trump in the same paragraph?

03 January, 2019 18:03  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

Debra: Certainly true!

Burr: Thanks!

Jono: I'm just trying to promote some perspective. People think Trump is such a huge big deal, but today, everyone remembers Galileo while nobody except history buffs remembers the name of the Pope in Galileo's time. I think this will end up the same.

04 January, 2019 02:46  
Blogger Ranch Chimp said...

I can't even imagine something coming in at 2000 meters per second ... pretty cool though. I was alwayz curious what may be beneath the Martian surface, due to theories, I figure, when we get deep enough, we will see what history it has as far as life, and maybe what happened. As far as earth, we were I guess in the right place at the right time. I also read the theory that a piece of Mars broke off and hit earth ... just interesting stuff.

Hawking is amazing ... incredible all the work he continued to do despite his disabilities, for many that would be frustrating as shit, just having to be so dependent on others and technologies ... interesting background he has too.

04 January, 2019 07:22  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

I can't even imagine something coming in at 2000 meters per second

And even that was after some initial braking in the upper Martian atmosphere. These probes travel at several times the speed of a bullet -- and they still take months or years to reach the other planets of our own solar system. Distances in space are huge.

It's long been thought that if life exists on Mars, it's more likely to be underground, not on the surface. With its thin atmosphere and weak magnetic field, Mars's surface just gets too much radiation. Bacteria have been found in rocks miles below the surface on Earth, so we know it's possible for life to exist deep underground.

Hawking was a truly incredible man. Most people in his situation would have given up trying to accomplish anything. He was a pioneer in his own way, just as much as the space probes are.

04 January, 2019 18:58  
Blogger Martha said...

Both very significant events! A huge triumph and a terrible loss.

05 January, 2019 10:24  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

Martha: I hope this year will bring more of the former and no more of the latter.

06 January, 2019 06:51  
Anonymous Judyt54 said...

The fact that he persevered to become what he became, with humor and grace and charm, well, there are no words for that. I don't mourn the loss, hell, we all have to die sooner or later, but I rejoice that we had him for so long.

06 January, 2019 20:47  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

He showed unbelievable determination against limitations that would have overwhelmed most people. A truly remarkable man.

07 January, 2019 19:10  

Post a Comment

<< Home