A Proposal for Testing Exploratory Landers in Real-World Circumstances; or, Send NASA to my backyard

2008.08.10 Portland, OR

"The idea came to me after working in The Backyard," John Mead reports. "There I was, grubbing around in the dirt, following roots and creepers through a morass of matted grass and soft dirt, getting stuck by blackberry stickers and then grinding dirt into the wounds, working by feel 80% of the time, having to be careful not to pull too hard on this pervasive morning-gloryish vine so it doesn't break off on me, and whamo! It hit me!"

After recovering from the concussion he examined the idea.

Remote sensing, manipulation of materials without visual assistance, use of tactile/tension receptors to calculate force/stress/angle for manipulation of semi-elastic vegetation, adverse environmental forces [dirt, moisture, nasty sharp pointy objects]; why, this is just made for testing Mars landers, or better yet, landers designed for exploring planets around other stars where we haven't a clue what the environment is like.

"I just need to figure out how I apply for a grant to fund this, then I should be able to talk someone at NASA into this," Mead said, "I may not be dealing with kudzu but they'll still understand where I'm coming from."


Yep, got more stuff done outside, this time on the main section of the yard. Not so much blackberries or raspberries this time, but this *bleep* vine/creeper thing, should take pictures and post them to see if anyone knows what they are, anywho they do funky stuff like growing 20'+ up one tree, into another, then wrap around power lines and into the neighbor's eaves; surprised the *bleep* out of me when I pulled that section down! Got a bunch out of our yard, and then went next door and got out the stuff that had crept over into their space, that's when I discovered it had crept over the power lines to their roof. Boy, does their area look better now! Good deed for the day, fershur!

starting to crash and burn, so time to

Post this puppy!

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