The random ramblings of a techie

Mars rover Curiosity set to land tonight

Watch it live on NASA TV

NASA’s new Mars rover Curiosity is scheduled to land on Mars tonight.  The best part is that it will be broadcasted live on NASA TV, starting 23:00 (11pm) Eastern time.

Of course, every landing on Mars is exciting, but this one in particular will be spectacular.The previous two rovers, Spirit and Opportunity, which spend over 5 years exploring the Mars’  surface, used a “conventional” landing – after they entered the atmosphere, parachutes were deployed to slow the decent down and the impact of the touch down was handled by a high tech bouncing ball which wrapped the rovers. After the ball stopped bouncing, it opened up and the rover rolled out.

Curiosity however is the size of a car and too heavy to do that, so NASA devised a completely new procedures – which they could not even test completely on Earth. The re-entry will be pretty much the same, but once the heat shield is discarded and parachutes deployed, the landing craft is supposed to fire it’s rocket engines, hover above the ground, open it’s cargo bay door and lower the rover down on a rope. After the rover is deployed, the hover will fly away and crash away from the rover.


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Guard you privacy

Online passwords - Part I

In “Hackers”, The Plague told his employer that the four most often used passwords are love, sex, secret and god. Not much has changed. Most peolpe still seem to use simple words as passwords, or at the best, combination of their initials and their birth or wedding dates. The “power users” tend to go for 133t sp3@k – which is probably even worst because there are 133t sp3@k dictionaries that can be used for a brute force attack.

Just a few days ago, the media reported that LinkedIn has been hacked and over 6 millions passwords were stolen. Guess what the most common ones were?? Jackpot – god, ilove (I guess times are changing …), sex, 1234 …


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A few words about me

You’ve probably read some of my articles and are wondering “Who is this guy?”. I’ll assume you mean that as in “Who is this awesome, funny person who has posted all those incredibly insightful and helpful articles?” and not “Who in their right mind can publish so much crap?”

Or maybe you one of those rare persons who always read the forward first? I never read the forward – it’s boring. Usually. And I don’t want the mind polution of the preconsieved of some hack who writes forwards.

Anyhow … “Who is this guy?”


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