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first contact

  1. Happy First Contact Day, Everyone!

    Alright -- technically speaking, First Contact Day is a fictional holiday celebrating the first communication between humans and vulcans in the Star Trek Universe. Even more technically speaking, it won't be a thing even in that fictional universe for another fifty years. A couple of trivial details like that aren't going to stop us from celebrating, though, because any holiday that celebrates advanced technology, communication with other sentient races, and the beginnings of mankind getting off this lovely rock that's been so good to us to seek our destiny among the stars is one worth marking in our book. Call it an aspirational holiday -- one where we celebrate not what we've accomplished, but what we might one day.

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  2. NASA Drafts Our Prime Directive

    NASA has an Office of Planetary Protection. It's where the Officer of Planetary Protection works. And that may be the most awesome thing I've heard all week. Goodnight everybody! ...Just kidding. But there really is an Office of Planetary Protection at NASA, and its job is to keep us from irretrievably screwing up interaction between terrestrial life and extra-terrestrial life (or possible extra-terrestrial life). Boing Boing has an article up about the ever-changing job of creating the protocol that we use to avoid horrible science fiction disasters.

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