Pale Blue Dot

2 min read


I really enjoyed this. I listened to an audiobook version of it and there was something really soothing about walking or running at night and being able to look up at what Carl Sagan and Ann Druyan. It’s one thing to hear these descriptions of amazing places, like the surface of Titan or Mars, but to actually know that they’re right there above us is really cool.

There was one particularly awe-inspiring description of the precision with which one of the Voyager probes was launched:

Just before Voyager 2 was to encounter the Uranus system, the mission design had specified a final maneuver, a brief firing of the on-board propulsion system to position the spacecraft correctly so it could thread its way on a preset path among the hurtling moons. But the course correction proved unnecessary. The spacecraft was already within 200 kilometers of its designed trajectory-after a journey along an arcing path 5 billion kilometers long. This is roughly the equivalent of throwing a pin through the eye of a needle 50 kilometers away, or firing your rifle in Washington and hitting the bull’s-eye in Dallas.

It inspired me to resurrect this old project which I made at a Hackathon a few years ago.

date: 2022-02-17 21:44
finished: true
rating: 8.5
- '@?book'
- '@?public'
- '@?safe-to-post-online'
title: Pale Blue Dot