Best Of The Web
“In April, the lunar lander Beresheet — a privately funded Israeli project — crashed on the moon. The mission originally started as a contender for the Google Lunar X prize, a contest to land a privately made robot on the moon before a 2018 deadline. As The Verge’s Loren Grush explains, it wasn’t a very robust scientific mission: It had planned to run some simple tests on the moon’s magnetism. The mission was more a proof of concept that ambitious space exploration can take place outside of big government programs.
Sadly, the craft crash-landed due to a computer error.
But a part of the mission lives on. A group called the Arch Mission Foundation had installed a library of sorts on the craft, and they tell Wired, they believe it may have survived. Arch Mission has the goal of “maintaining a backup of planet Earth,” and wanted a store of information on the moon “to preserve the records of our civilization for up to billions of years.” In the future, after our extinction, if aliens were to land on the moon and find the archive, they could learn about us (and presumably feel sorry we’re no longer around).
Tardigrades — the microscopic, oddly cute toughest animals on Earth — explained
The “library” was etched on to a nickel-metal disc, and it contained nearly all of English Wikipedia, copies of classic books, human blood samples, and tardigrades (because if anything alive on Earth is going to last billions of years, it’s them). Many of those tardigrades are coated in a protective resin, much like how amber preserves long-dead mosquitos that were once trapped in tree sap.
According to Wired, a co-creator of the library believes the disc survived the crash. “In the best-case scenario, Beresheet ejected the Arch Mission Foundation’s lunar library during impact and it lies in one piece somewhere near the crash site,” Wired reports.”
JJ Editor's Picks
"U.S. President Donald Trump thinks he’s suffered more injustice than the alleged witches of Salem, but it could be worse. Pakistan’s former president Pervez Musharaff faced possible impeachment in 2008, leading to his resignation. In the end..."
"The 2000s felt like a decade of looking forward. Wi-Fi went mainstream, phones got smarter, social media connected us, digital tools let us rely less on physical ones. But the 2010s brought a shift. There was still tons of new technology, but..."
"While some women experience pregnancy and childbirth as joyful, natural and fulfilling, others find themselves recoiling in horror at the physical demands of carrying and sustaining a child in their womb, and even more so at the potential..."
"A few months ago, the New York Post’s Steve Cuozzo bemoaned the death of the Manhattan power lunch. Gone were the long, decadent afternoons filled with networking and Negronis: “Suit-and-tie-wearing machers in media and Wall Street gave way to..."
"Economic inequality has moved to the top of the political agenda in many countries, including free-market poster children like the US and the UK. The issue is mobilizing the left and causing headaches on the right, where wealth has long been..."
"If you’re not familiar with the Andrew Lloyd Webber musical Cats — or even if you are — then you probably have many, many questions going into the film adaptation this weekend, especially if you’ve witnessed the widespread bafflement the trailer..."
"Despite his precisely targeted campaign and some unexpected support, the chances of Gideon Saar engineering a surprise defeat of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in the Dec. 26 primaries for the Likud party leadership are still considered modest.."
"Peter Thiel is Big Tech’s most prominent Trump supporter. He is an unabashed enemy of the free press, having covertly funded a lawsuit that bankrupted Gawker three years ago. He has become one of the most vocal pro-monopoly advocates, taking a..."