25 May 2011

Inspired by Spirit, inspired by xkcd, Inspired by Human Ingenuity

The news that NASA is giving up on the Mars rover Spirit made me a little sad this morning.  It's easy to anthropomorphize Spirit and her twin, Opportunity, considering that they have semi-autonomy when it comes to choosing their route yet conversely (am I using that correctly?) that there is a human looking through their electronic eyes, the soul of a rover driver tethered to the robot via radio signals beamed over tens of millions of miles.

It also helps in the anthropomorphizing that Randall Monroe over at the singular, insightful, and entertaining xkcd comic had posted this work (http://xkcd.com/695/) that a friend reminded me of when I mentioned Spirit's declared loss -- we know where she is, we just can't get her to talk back to us.  It's all in the first article I linked.

Saddened yet inspired, I wondered what must be going through the minds of the other probes we have launched into the cosmos, and no explorers so well-traveled as the Voyager twins.  So with apologies and thanks to Mr. Monroe, and in an attempt to return cheer to the hearts of space enthusiasts the world over, I give you the thoughts of either Voyager (and fine, Pioneer X, too) as they hurtle through space ever outward to the stars:

Oh to feel the interstellar medium flowing across my antennae

24 May 2011

Women are Just Like That

The Mrs., if you didn't already know, is a fantastic opera singer, and she has come together with a similarly talented group of singers/actors (and just damn nice people, too) to form an Opera Ensemble, if you were similarly unaware.  They are currently busting their rear-ends to perfect a production of Mozart's Cosi fan Tutte for performances in Junes (see information below).  What follows is the details copied/pasted from the Facebook event I created for the performances, but I was long-winded enough that I wanted to drop it in here, to catch anyone who might not have got the invite for whatever reason.

This is the cultural event of the season, if not the year, for the Tri-state area.  A fully staged opera performed in the open air of HCC's ampitheatre.  Surrounded by trees you will be nestled in stadium-style seating (every seat is a good seat!) to watch professional opera performers sing and act out the story of two pairs of lovers and the ridiculous scheming that occurs so that the guys can win a bet with their mentor that all women "are just like that."

It's sung in Italian and there will be sub-titles projected above the stage in English.

On a personal note, I've seen this opera performed before, and I've been to a few rehearsals for this specific production. It's going to be hilarious as well as musically fantastic.  The last production that Hub Opera performed made the front page of the Herald-Mail, and this show is just as good if not better.  What I'm trying to say is: COME!

The performances dates are:

Friday June 10 @ 8pm
Saturday June 11 @ 8pm

Friday June 17 @ 8pm
Saturday June 18 @ 8pm

It's outside, so the two rain dates are:

Sunday June 12 @ 7pm
Sunday June 19 @ 7pm


Adult: $12
Senior/Student: $8

At the Door:
Adult: $15
Senior/Student: $10

For more information please visit the website:
http://huboperaensemble.org, or Like the Hub Opera Ensemble on Facebook


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