Nasa rover checks in online from Mars

2012-10-04 14:35

San Francisco - Nasa's Mars rover took the post-PC revolution into space on Wednesday by using location-sharing mobile application Foursquare to "check-in" on the red planet.

"Nasa is using Foursquare as a tool to share the rover's new locations while exploring Mars," said Nasa spokesperson David Weaver.

"This will help to involve the public with the mission and give them a sense of the rover's travels through Gale Crater," where the Curiosity rover landed in August.

People using social network Foursquare can keep up with Curiosity as the rover explores Mars, checking in at key locations and posting photos and tips, according to Nasa.

Details were available online.

Nasa announced last week that the Mars rover has discovered gravel once carried by the waters of an ancient stream that "ran vigorously" through the area.

Scientists had previously found other evidence that water once was present on Mars, but this is the first time stream bed gravel has been discovered.

Curiosity is on a two-year mission to investigate whether it is possible to live on Mars and to learn whether conditions there might have been able to support life in the past.

The $2.5bn vehicle landed in Gale Crater on 6 August, opening a new chapter in the history of interplanetary exploration.

Earth-bound Foursquare users will be able to earn Curiosity-themed virtual badges at the social network for check-ins at labs, science centres or other locations that inspire interest in technology, math or engineering.

Nasa launched its alliance with Foursquare two years ago with astronaut Doug Wheelock checking in from the International Space Station.

  • Robert Mrobo Machinga Chambale - 2012-10-05 12:52

    +2 billion spent on a vehicle!!! much is spent on trying to find food for the starving tummy...? cnt gt dis

      Desilusionada - 2012-10-05 13:34

      Robert, Plse Re-read what you said. Then evaluate in the context of what is happening in South Africa re waste of money and poor/hungry people. Then take US$ 2 Bn in comparison to the total US GDP spread over the period of vehicle development. Then go read up on technology spinoffs and benefit for mankind. Then go back to the school and the place where you work and question their teaching methods. U wl gt dis (sic). This argument has been made so may times.........

      andre.barendse.7 - 2012-10-05 14:15

      Much has been done to secure food stability, and I agree that much more can be done. But there are considerations to keep track of. We're overpopulating this planet and the next big step for those tummies is to live on other planets and harvest from them, or even just live and grow food in space. The other alternative is war and lots of dead tummies Nasa has done this too and this information is already available. The real obstacle for man today is getting off the globe. At this point more research must go into getting space vehicles that can take up/elevate heavy materials. [has anyone checked out the 3d printing technology. I imagine that will be handy in space.] We don't have the technology to afford these ventures from earth... however... Mars gravity is far weaker and it may have an abundance of iron. That gets our foot in the door. From there we really can get our space mission going, as getting heavy materials into space from there would be more affordable. Baby steps, but we do need them. Nothing stops any human child or grownup from planting a fruit bearing tree at his school for the poor. Nothing stops the poor from planting trees in their areas where thy live. Food is free, all it takes is care and a leftover seed. Why not make it part of education to grow a tree. In fact. One should not be allowed to pass std 5 without nursing/growing/planting. Now until 2020 will be green times.

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