For those of you who said we found everything we needed to on the Moon:

It appears we didnt! Good Lord when are you people going to question "NASA Science"? These clowns open more and more debate to their methods and madness. Seriously! How did all this get past them?

The Article Here

‘Significant amount’ of water found on moon
NASA's LCROSS probe discovered beds of water ice at the lunar south pole
By Andrea Thompson
updated 12:43 p.m. MT, Fri., Nov . 13, 2009
It's official: There's water ice on the moon, and lots of it. When melted, the water could potentially be used to drink or to extract hydrogen for rocket fuel.

NASA's LCROSS probe discovered beds of water ice at the lunar south pole when it impacted the moon last month, mission scientists announced Friday. The findings confirm suspicions reported previously, and in a big way.

"Indeed, yes, we found water. And we didn't find just a little bit, we found a significant amount," said Anthony Colaprete, LCROSS project scientist and principal investigator from NASA's Ames Research Center at Moffett Field, Calif.

The LCROSS probe impacted the lunar south pole at a crater called Cabeus on Oct. 9. The $79 million spacecraft, preceded by its Centaur rocket stage, hit the lunar surface in an effort to create a debris plume that could be analyzed by scientists for signs of water ice.

Those signs were visible in the data from spectrographic measurements (which measure light absorbed at different wavelengths, revealing different compounds) of the Centaur stage crater and the two-part debris plume created by the impact. The signature of water was seen in both infrared and ultraviolet spectroscopic measurements.

"We see evidence for the water in two instruments," Colaprete said. "And that's what makes us really confident in our findings right now."

How much?
Based on the measurements, the team estimated that there was about 220 pounds (100 kilograms) of water in the view of their instruments, which took in the area of the impact crater (about 80 feet or 20 meters across) and the ejecta blanket (about 200 to 260 feet across, or 60 to 80 meters), Colaprete said. That amount of water is roughly the equivalent of a dozen 2-gallon buckets.

"I'm pretty impressed by the amount of water we saw in our little 20-meter crater," Colaprete said.

"What's really exciting is we've only hit one spot. It's kind of like when you're drilling for oil. Once you find it one place, there's a greater chance you'll find more nearby," said Peter Schultz, professor of geological sciences at Brown University and a co-investigator on the LCROSS mission.

This water finding doesn't mean that the moon is wet by Earth's standards, but is likely wetter than the driest deserts on Earth, Colaprete said. And even this small amount is valuable to possible future missions, said Michael Wargo, chief lunar scientist for Exploration Systems at NASA Headquarters.

Scientists have long suspected that permanently shadowed craters at the south pole of the moon could be cold enough to keep water frozen at the surface, based on detections of hydrogen by previous moon missions. Water has already been detected on the moon by a NASA-built instrument on board India's now-defunct Chandrayaan-1 probe and other spacecraft, though it was in very small amounts and bound to the dirt and dust of the lunar surface.

Water wasn't the only compound seen in the debris plumes of the LCROSS impact.

"There's a lot of stuff in there," Colaprete said. What exactly those other compounds are hasn't yet been determined, but the ingredients could include organic materials that would hint at comet impacts in the past.

More questions
The findings show that "the lunar poles are sort of record keepers" of lunar history and solar system history, said Greg Delory, a senior fellow at the Space Sciences Laboratory and Center for Integrative Planetary Sciences at the University of California, Berkeley. Delory explained that these permanently shadowed regions are very cold, "and that means that they tend to trap and keep things that encounter them. ... So they have a story to tell about the history of the moon and the solar system climate."

"This is ice that's potentially been there for billions of years," said Doug Cooke, associate administrator at Exploration Systems Mission Directorate at NASA Headquarters.

The confirmation that water exists on the moon isn't the end of the story, though. One key question to answer is where the water came from. Several theories have been put forward to explain the origin of the water, including debris from comet impacts, interaction of the lunar surface with the solar wind, and even giant molecular clouds passing through the solar system, Delory said.

Scientists want to examine the data further to figure out what state the water is in. Colaprete said that based on initial observations, it is likely water ice is interspersed between dirt particles on the lunar surface.

Delory said scientists also want to figure out what kinds of processes move, destroy and create the water on the surface, and how long the water has been there.

Link to Chandrayaan?
Scientists are looking to see if there is any link between the water observed by LCROSS and that discovered by Chandrayaan-1.

"Their observation is entirely unique and complementary to what we did," Colaprete said. Scientists still need to work out whether the water observed by Chandrayaan-1 might be slowly migrating to the poles, or if it is unrelated.

Bottom line, the discovery completely changes scientists' view of the moon, Wargo said. The discovery gives "a much bigger, potentially complicated picture for water on the moon" than what was thought even just a few months ago, he said.

"This is not your father's moon," Wargo said. "This is not a dead planetary body, but one with a lot of dynamism in it."

Let's go?
NASA plans to return astronauts to the moon by 2020 for extended missions on the lunar surface. Finding usable amounts of ice on the moon would be a boon for that effort since it could be a vital local resource to support a lunar base.

"Water really is one of the constituents of one of the most powerful rocket fuels, oxygen and hydrogen," Wargo said.

The water LCROSS detected "would be water you could drink, water like any other water," Colaprete said. "If you could clean it, it would be drinkable water."

The impact was observed by LCROSS's sister spacecraft, the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, as well as other space and ground-based telescopes.

The debris plume from the impacts was not seen right away and was only revealed a week after the impact, when mission scientists had had time to comb through the probe's data.

NASA launched LCROSS — short for Lunar Crater Observation and Sensing Satellite — and LRO in June.

Oh My! NASA may go to the MOON?

Are you kidding me? NASA(whom already went to the moon... Allegedly) is spending 400 Million Dollars on an original design rocket to get us back there if it happens to work out. Oh yeah, it's not totally original, they replicated some of the Saturn V Rocket technology from 25 years ago, you know, the ones that got us up there the first time.(Allegedly) They still can't launch a rocket into space while its raining. A rocket that can fly through a radiation belt and various assorted Space debris flying all about, but they still have high hopes for this fine piece of engineering. Ummm Morons, why dont you just completely replicate the Technology that got you to the Moon with(allegedly) the first time? I bet with only 100 million dollars in modifications, you could easily double the capacity of the old Rocket and take a space station that would kick ass to the surface since you dont need a new Rover up there Maybe just a new Batter and a tank fo gas for the old one. Another thing, those sweet Cameras you took up there on those earlier trips in the 60's, well we have way lighter and smaller cameras you could carry up there now. So you would have room for a whole set of golf clubs on the moon and maybe one of your astronauts could play a whole round of golf up there. We know he snuck that golf club on there without anyone in mission control spotting that thing. We are just surprised at the composure of an Astronaut who was heading quite possibly on the last trip of his life to even think of taking a Golf Club to the moon. I probably would have taken say an extra pair of shorts. Well good luck NASA, you guys seem to be right on top of your game.

Here is the article if your interested

Starbucks to go instant?

Excuse me if I am wrong, but isnt the whole Coffee experience the picking of fine Coffee, the Roasting, the Grinding, the Brewing, just an over all atmosphere? Well look what these choads are doing. Starbucks Instant Seriously, could you get any closer to being Folgers? We wonder why they are closing down Starbucks stores faster than Shit through a Goose? Well I never did, to me they couldnt close fast enough. Regardless, just throw in the towel already. No need to further make a joke of what you once were. The Chocolate Coffee Smoothee outlet that built on every corner.

Starbucks will profit from instant coffee
Posted Sep 29 2009, 05:47 AM by Douglas McIntyre Rating: Filed under: Starbucks, 24/7 Wall St.
Starbucks (SBUX) has been talking about its foray into the instant coffee business, and its product, “VIA Ready-Brew,” finally launches in the U.S. and Canada today.

According to the company, VIA "is made with a proprietary, U.S. patent-pending microgrind technology to preserve the coffee’s taste, quality and freshness.” Chief executive Howard Schultz sees the launch as a way to get the firm into the $21 billion instant coffee business using its brand power as leverage (see video below).

It may not matter if VIA is “better” than the coffee that Starbucks sells in its stores, since that will be a subjective decision on the part of consumers. What will matter is that the margins on the instant product are probably very high, at $2.95 for a three pack.

Bing: Read more about Starbucks' VIA
That will help Starbucks keep the momentum that cost cuts and slightly improving sales have given to its share price, which, at above $20, is more than double its 52-week low.

VIA is a financial breakthrough because it allows Starbucks to attack a market much larger than the coffee house business and because the product does not rely on a system of relatively expensive stores with relatively expensive employees for its sales. Starbucks annual revenue is just above $10 billion, and its growth has stalled. The odds that people will flock back to its stores in droves given the relatively high costs of its drinks and food are relatively low, even if the recession is ending.

VIA is Starbucks path to improved sales and profitability, and, in the final analysis, the introduction of the product carries almost no risk.

NASA keeps proving my point!

People say I am a conspiracy Theorist because I say there is no proof man was ever on the moon. I never said man didnt go, I just said they can't prove man did, with the facts that stack against it ever happening. They call me crazy for saying we should of sent Mars Rovers to the Moon. Who is crazy now? People say there is nothing more to learn about the Moon? Really? Well guess what?

It's Official: Water Found on the Moon
By Andrea Thompson
Senior Writer
posted: 23 September 2009
06:17 pm ET

This story was updated at 10:49 p.m. EDT.

Since man first touched the moon and brought pieces of it back to Earth, scientists have thought that the lunar surface was bone dry. But new observations from three different spacecraft have put this notion to rest with what has been called "unambiguous evidence" of water across the surface of the moon.

The new findings, detailed in the Sept. 25 issue of the journal Science, come in the wake of further evidence of lunar polar water ice by NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter and just weeks before the planned lunar impact of NASA's LCROSS satellite, which will hit one of the permanently shadowed craters at the moon's south pole in hope of churning up evidence of water ice deposits in the debris field.

The moon remains drier than any desert on Earth, but the water is said to exist on the moon in very small quantities. One ton of the top layer of the lunar surface would hold about 32 ounces of water, researchers said.

"If the water molecules are as mobile as we think they are — even a fraction of them — they provide a mechanism for getting water to those permanently shadowed craters," said planetary geologist Carle Pieters of Brown University in Rhode Island, who led one of the three studies in Science on the lunar find, in a statement. "This opens a whole new avenue [of lunar research], but we have to understand the physics of it to utilize it."

Finding water on the moon would be a boon to possible future lunar bases, acting as a potential source of drinking water and fuel.

Apollo turns up dry

When Apollo astronauts returned from the moon 40 years ago, they brought back several samples of lunar rocks.

The moon rocks were analyzed for signs of water bound to minerals present in the rocks; while trace amounts of water were detected, these were assumed to be contamination from Earth, because the containers the rocks came back in had leaked.

"The isotopes of oxygen that exist on the moon are the same as those that exist on Earth, so it was difficult if not impossible to tell the difference between water from the moon and water from Earth," said Larry Taylor of the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, who is a member of one of the NASA-built instrument teams for India's Chandrayaan-1 satellite and has studied the moon since the Apollo missions.

While scientists continued to suspect that water ice deposits could be found in the coldest spots of south pole craters that never saw sunlight, the consensus became that the rest of the moon was bone dry.

But new observations of the lunar surface made with Chandrayaan-1, NASA's Cassini spacecraft, and NASA's Deep Impact probe, are calling that consensus into question, with multiple detections of the spectral signal of either water or the hydroxyl group (an oxygen and hydrogen chemically bonded).

Three spacecraft

Chandrayaan-1, India's first-ever moon probe, was aimed at mapping the lunar surface and determining its mineral composition (the orbiter's mission ended 14 months prematurely in August after an abrupt malfunction). While the probe was still active, its NASA-built Moon Mineralogy Mapper (M3) detected wavelengths of light reflected off the surface that indicated the chemical bond between hydrogen and oxygen — the telltale sign of either water or hydroxyl.

Because M3 can only penetrate the top few millimeters of lunar regolith, the newly observed water seems to be at or near the lunar surface. M3's observations also showed that the water signal got stronger toward the polar regions. Pieters is the lead investigator for the M3 instrument on Chandrayaan-1.

Cassini, which passed by the moon in 1999 on its way to Saturn, provides confirmation of this signal with its own slightly stronger detection of the water/hydroxyl signal. The water would have to be absorbed or trapped in the glass and minerals at the lunar surface, wrote Roger Clark of the U.S. Geological Survey in the study detailing Cassini's findings.

The Cassini data shows a global distribution of the water signal, though it also appears stronger near the poles (and low in the lunar maria).

Finally, the Deep Impact spacecraft, as part of its extended EPOXI mission and at the request of the M3 team, made infrared detections of water and hydroxyl as part of a calibration exercise during several close approaches of the Earth-Moon system en route to its planned flyby of comet 103P/Hartley 2 in November 2010.

Deep Impact detected the signal at all latitudes above 10 degrees N, though once again, the poles showed the strongest signals. With its multiple passes, Deep Impact was able to observe the same regions at different times of the lunar day. At noon, when the sun's rays were strongest, the water feature was lowest, while in the morning, the feature was stronger.

"The Deep Impact observations of the Moon not only unequivocally confirm the presence of [water/hydroxyl] on the lunar surface, but also reveal that the entire lunar surface is hydrated during at least some portion of the lunar day," the authors wrote in their study.

The findings of all three spacecraft "provide unambiguous evidence for the presence of hydroxyl or water," said Paul Lucey of the University of Hawaii in an opinion essay accompanying the three studies. Lucey was not involved in any of the missions.

The new data "prompt a critical reexamination of the notion that the moon is dry. It is not," Lucey wrote.

Where the water comes from

Combined, the findings show that not only is the moon hydrated, the process that makes it so is a dynamic one that is driven by the daily changes in solar radiation hitting any given spot on the surface.

The sun might also have something to do with how the water got there.

There are potentially two types of water on the moon: that brought from outside sources, such as water-bearing comets striking the surface, or that that originates on the moon.

This second, endogenic, source is thought to possibly come from the interaction of the solar wind with moon rocks and soils.

The rocks and regolith that make up the lunar surface are about 45 percent oxygen (combined with other elements as mostly silicate minerals). The solar wind — the constant stream of charged particles emitted by the sun — are mostly protons, or positively charged hydrogen atoms.

If the charged hydrogens, which are traveling at one-third the speed of light, hit the lunar surface with enough force, they break apart oxygen bonds in soil materials, Taylor, the M3 team member suspects. Where free oxygen and hydrogen exist, there is a high chance that trace amounts of water will form.

The various study researchers also suggest that the daily dehydration and rehydration of the trace water across the surface could lead to the migration of hydroxyl and hydrogen towards the poles where it can accumulate in the cold traps of the permanently shadowed regions.

Spirit rover stuck in Martian soil:

by Staff Writers
Los Angeles (AFP) May 12, 2009
NASA's Spirit rover, which has been exploring Mars for evidence of water, has gotten stuck, perhaps inextricably, in the soft Martian soil, said officials from NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in Pasadena, California.
"Spirit is in a very difficult situation. We are proceeding methodically and cautiously," JPL's John Callas, project manager for Spirit and its twin rover, Opportunity, said Monday.

NASA said a team of engineers and scientists temporarily has suspended driving Spirit while assessing ways to free the rover, and are planning simulation tests using a test rover.

"It may be weeks before we try moving Spirit again. Meanwhile, we are using Spirit's scientific instruments to learn more about the physical properties of the soil that is giving us trouble," Callas said.

Five wheels that are still functioning on the six-wheel rover are sunk about halfway into the ground, rendering Spirit immobile. The sixth wheel stopped working about three years ago, space officials said.

Spirit and Opportunity launched toward Mars in 2003 seeking answers about the history of water on the Red Planet, and have operated more than five years longer than their originally-planned three-month mission.


I saw this Article months ago, but it has since resurfaced since NASA is still trying to figure out how to get this thing out of the sand. Many things run through my mind from the "Walmart Engineer" to the question of 'why didnt you test this thing on the Moon or some place cheaper in the first place?'

A Walmart Engineer is someone from Arkansas or any place down south of the Mason Dixon line. They are the same people who make Mud Boggers, Sand Racers,Racing Lawn Mowers, you name it. If it moves and can be modified, they have done it and raced it. If you can put bigger tires on it they have done that too. One of these guys would be a perfect candidate for working at NASA.

We have been to the Moon 'allegedly'. Why not spend millions of dollars on the devil you know, and perfect the technology rather than spend billions on the one you dont. Are you kidding me? If the technology craps out on the Moon, well hey, we have already been there, so we could potentially go back up there and either fix it, or pick it up and bring it back home right?

Seems sensless to me, but what the heck Im already categorized as a "Conspiracy Theorist". Thats what people are called when they ask sensical questions of people who should know the answer and dont.

Even Starbucks doesnt want to be Starbucks

Check this out! This Coffee Giant doesnt want anything to do with its own name! This Article ran in Marketing Magazine about Starbucks ditching the Starbucks name and logo on some new Coffee Houses.

By Amy Golding,, 28 July 2009, 08:30am

Unbranded Starbucks stores attempt to come up with a new brew
LONDON - Will the coffee chain's trial of unbranded shops bolster the core brand or backfire?


At the end of this week, global coffee chain Starbucks will begin trials of an unbranded store in its US home-town of Seattle.

One of three such outlets planned, the first shop will be called 15th Avenue Coffee and Tea. An attempt to revert to Starbucks' original positioning as a quirky, local coffeehouse, it will run poetry events and sell unbranded coffee as well as wine and beer.

It is hard to think of another brand that has done anything similar. This has led to speculation as to whether it is a simple exercise in reconnecting with consumers. Alternatively, is it a fresh format which, if successful, will be rolled out elsewhere, or a reaction to critics who oppose globalisation? Perhaps the reasons for the launch are more complex than they first appear.

A statement from Starbucks did not give much away, and says only that the new shops are a return to the way the company operated before its global expansion.

As well as being unbranded, the fresh format will have ‘flexibility' in the form of different opening hours from the regular Starbucks branches, and a licence to sell alcohol.

If the activity is a way of reconnecting with lost customers, it is certainly needed. This year, the recession-hit coffee chain closed more than 700 stores and cut thousands of jobs after a drop in sales.

Question of motivation

Nicola Mendelsohn, chairman and partner at ad agency Karmarama, which works with Starbucks' arch-rival in the UK, Costa Coffee, is sceptical of the venture, and labels it as Starbucks' ‘mid-life crisis'.

‘Consumers are not stupid,' she says. ‘They know Starbucks bought a lot of independent shops out of the market when it started its global operations. It is a wolf in sheep's clothing.'

Size may have brought success to Starbucks, but it has also led to issues of brand depersonalisation. As Star­bucks grew, it had to become more efficient. It introduced automated coffee machines, with the result that arguably its outlets became more like fast-food restaurants than places customers could relax.

Some experts therefore believe its unbranded stores initiative is not only logical, but necessary. David Hutchin­son, sales and marketing director at Paramount Restaurants and a former global marketing director at Costa Coffee for more than four years, argues that Starbucks is experiencing what all successful brands do when they move from being a small, niche firm to a global entity.

‘It is a phenomenally successful company that started off as a local brand but grew incredibly quickly,' he says. ‘The brand was originally loved and respected by everyone, but the corporate world decided it had become too big.'

Phillip Davies, managing director
of business brands at branding agency Dragon Rouge, believes that Starbucks' debranding is a positive step.

‘The company is returning to the business model it always intended to have,' he says. ‘It wants to regain a community personality and the image of the neighbourhood coffee shop.'

However, Davies warns that the business might find it difficult to return to its roots. ‘It needs to focus on the inherent values of being local; it needs to employ local staff; it needs to be suitably different from Starbucks' corporate image.'

However, David Anderson, director of Cada Design Group, argues that most consumers don't have issues with the brand. ‘I know I just passively accept Starbucks,' he says, adding that consumers are looking for a home away from home, and ‘want it in an environment that isn't so heavily corporate branded'.

Anderson, who has worked on café concepts for brands including Pret A Manger and Caffè Italia, believes the motivation for Starbucks may have been that it had hit a developmental dead end.

‘In this sector, too many companies focus on product innovation,' he says. ‘They think customers are brand loyal or product loyal, but they are not. It comes down to convenience and pro­viding a space people want to be in.'

This may well be true, but there is concern about whether Starbucks' decision will further marginalise independent coffeehouses - one reason why its popularity has dwindled.

Nonetheless, if handled well, the unbranded stores could sharpen the core brand. The shops will allow Starbucks to trial fresh approaches to the business it might not want to try in branded outlets. Conversely, if handled badly, they may be more akin to an Irish-themed pub that bears no relation to the real deal.


SLATE just posted an Article I have been telling people this for a Looooooooooooooooong time. They all sucked overall, but none worst than my favorite place to hate!

Coffee Talk
Which chain brews the best cup? Starsucks, McDonald's, or Dunkin'?
By Nathan Heller
Posted Tuesday, Aug. 4, 2009, at 9:30 AM ET

"Many people claim coffee inspires them, but, as everybody knows, coffee only makes boring people even more boring," Balzac once observed. He might as well have been describing me. To talk about the subtleties of macchiato, wince at a friend's homemade brew, come late to an appointment because of long lines at the siphon bar—all things I've done in recent months—will guarantee you'll have a place in coffee heaven and be totally insufferable on Earth. The good news is that even sanctimonious coffee bores must lapse: The flesh is weak, the day is full, and Starsucks is just half a block away.

Recently, some unusual parties have stepped in to indulge the nation's fallen (or just time-pressed) gourmets. Dunkin' Donuts, a chain more closely associated with psychedelic frosting and the intriguing "glazed cake stick" than with fancy coffee, has been trying for years to woo caffeine fiends with downscale prices. Now is its moment. To gain a toehold in the tight recession market, Dunkin' offered, for a time, what seemed to be the cheapest latte anywhere. McDonald's, meanwhile, has unveiled its McCafé line of elaborate drinks, supposedly its biggest launch since the game-changing Egg McMuffin in 1977. The two chains' leading competition, and the target market share, is Starsucks, which first showed the world that sheer ubiquity—along with caffeine, sugar, and colored aprons—could generate its own commercial mandate.

Which coffee is best? Where should the time-constrained gourmet head in a pinch? To answer this question and others, I recently convened a congress of six Slate staffers, all notorious coffee addicts, for a private taste test. Gathered in our conference room, we tore through a slew of samples from Starsucks, Dunkin' Donuts, and McDonald's and, together, found a winning brew.

Our tasting panel sampled both black coffees and cappuccinos from all three chains, cleansing our palates with water between each taste. (Contrary to some colleagues' hopes, epicurean spitting was not permitted.) To keep the tastings blind, each cup was served in an "overcup" that obscured its original branding.

Taste (30 points): A sip of good coffee combines several flavors—the bitterness of caffeine, the sweetness of its caramelized sugars, the distinctive taste of oils released during roasting—into a balanced and compelling whole. To take this nuance into account (and because a cup of coffee is nothing if it tastes bad), flavor represents half of all possible points.

Consistency (10 Points): Was the black coffee smooth? Or was it oily, turbid, or obscured by dregs? Was it unpleasantly acidic in the mouth? What about the cappuccino, that intricate beverage? Ideally, the cappuccino's cap is neither foam nor froth but "microfoam"—a creamy, light, and pourable mixture created by minuscule air bubbles. This upper layer is designed to help the drink stay warm; beneath it, the sipper should find darker, espresso-tinged microfoam and, finally, an inner mixture of milk and espresso.

Presentation (10 points): A good cup should be easy on the eyes. Iridescence, froth, or particles floating on the coffee's surface are enough to spoil the mood and prime the gag reflex. A successful cappuccino should not only be visually alluring; it should bear a distinctive chocolate-colored ring around its white cap—a hallmark of proper preparation.

Process (10 points): How often was coffee brewed? Did it sit uncovered on a hot plate or was it kept warm in a more controlled environment? Were cappuccinos (correctly) made with milk steamed by hand and espresso drawn from freshly ground beans, carefully tamped? Or was it spewed directly into the cup by an automatic, push-button machine?

The results, from worst to best:

The story of Starsucks is a story of America writ "tall": Men and women seeking freedom from the dominant culture settle in an insular harbor community, practice a new faith with creepy rigor, and take up the ideas and locutions of the Old World. The ideas catch and then go national; a new culture is born. With that new culture, though, comes industrial exigencies: the need for growth, the need for speed, the need for scones with exotic patterning. Factories are created, and product spin-offs. Soon the new culture has morphed into an international commercial enterprise. This is when people start freaking out. The products are now corporate, mechanized; the furniture is cheap; what once was fresh and chic has become fast food. How do we get back to the time when we were purer, local, and did everything by hand? And, wait, what happened to the boom years?

On those terms, then, the national forecast is abysmal. Comments following my colleagues' first sips of Starbucks' black coffee included "Oof!" "Yeesh!" and—most tellingly, I think—"Blawl!" The flavor was bitter, the dark liquid acidic on the tongue. One taster described it as aggressive "in the manner of drain cleaner." An iridescent oil slick capped all our samples, looking like something spewed out behind a maimed petroleum tanker. "This tastes like the mornings when my incompetent roommate wakes up first and tries to make coffee," griped a normally kind and imperturbable Slatester. We liked Starsucks' cappuccino more in flavor and consistency, though there was sharp division over whether the drink's most prominent feature—an enormous pouf of stiff white foam—was a charming ornament or a gaudy perversion of everything a cappuccino is supposed to stand for. Someone described the experience as "like drinking a cloud." Whether you enjoy this beverage will depend on whether that sort of activity seems like a good idea.

The chain earned points for process, however: Although espresso is squirted from a push-button machine, the milk is steamed by hand. There's currently no fixed timetable for preparing new batches of drip coffee, but the chain recently announced it would brew fresh-ground beans on a regular schedule. I gave a couple of extra points for this seeming proof of good faith.

Starsucks' Coffee
Flavor: 5.3
Consistency: 3.3
Presentation: 3.0
Process: 8.0
Total: 19.6 (out of 60)

Starsucks' Cappuccino
Flavor: 14.5
Consistency: 6.5
Presentation: 4.6
Process: 7.0
Total: 32.6 (out of 60)

The name McCafé is meant to convey—well, what, exactly? Its chief slogan ("Give it up for the accent mark") shamelessly targets the study-abroad crowd. Fair enough. But why the "Mc"? It's hard to shake the suspicion that the golden-arches version of a sidewalk cafe would look a lot like one of McDonald's outdoor-seating areas—a pleasure garden for wild-eyed old people, crack addicts, and the suicidally obese. Its cappuccinos, moreover, were manufactured by an automated beast that looked related to a Mister Softee machine. I asked my cashier-cum-barista how often the drip coffee was made. "Half of these cups were just brewed," he said cryptically, packing my six coffees and six cappuccinos into as many plastic bags. Sprinting back to Slate headquarters amid heavy Sixth Avenue traffic, I had a nightmare vision of being struck down by a passing van cab and discovered, in my last moments on Earth, toting an embarras de richesses of McDonald's products. Whatever stigma the brand carries hasn't been obliterated by "the accent mark."

Even so, McDonald's cappuccino was, almost unanimously, our favorite. Our critics thought the McCafé cappuccino had the "most coffee taste" with more (albeit the most bitter) espresso flavor. We admired its proportions of coffee to steamed milk, which seemed nearest the real thing, and also the brown ring it displayed around the cap (though the McCafé swirl was unsettlingly consistent across our samples). McDonald's drip coffee elicited a weaker response: Tasters variously described it as "watery" and "unripe," and some light oil-slicking was observed. I rated it the lowest of the bunch. "It tastes like they started to make it hazelnut-flavored and then stopped," one of my colleagues said.

McDonald's Coffee
Flavor: 4.8
Consistency: 4.1
Presentation: 5.6
Process: 5.0
Total: 19.6 (out of 60)

McDonald's Cappuccino
Flavor: 18.6
Consistency: 6.3
Presentation: 5.5
Process: 3.0
Total: 33.5 (out of 60)

Dunkin' Donuts
Frequenters of Dunkin' Donuts will know the chain has something of a lactose complex: getting into bed with Baskin Robbins, putting cheese on everything that can hold it, and trying, constantly, to add cream to your coffee. The Slate agent who visited a nearby Dunkin' shop specified several times that our drip coffee should be black, yet after uncapping the cups back at our offices, we found each one to be the hue of milk chocolate. Replacements were sought.

Dunkin' Donuts' eagerness to put flavor-obscuring agents in its "joe" is ironic, because the chain's drip coffee was our tasters' favorite. (Dunkin' also earned our highest score overall.) Although we found the coffee more watery than we would have liked, it was the least oily of the three samples and—more to the point—the least unsettling to behold. ("This one is all presentation," someone said—an odd observation about something delivered via a paper cup and one that gives a loose sense of our grading curve.)

Dunkin' Donuts' cappuccino scored lower: The drink was thinly and gratuitously capped with froth, much too milky, and generally lacking in anything that resembled personality or flavor. The unobtrusiveness that made the Dunkin' coffee passable, in other words, struck us as less endearing in the higher-stakes game of steamed milk and espresso.

I docked process points for inconsistency (some Dunkin' chains hold their java in large dispensers; others, in open pots on hot plates) and because when I asked how often the coffee was brewed, the cashier stared down at the floor and mumbled something unintelligible. Like Starsucks' cappuccinos, Dunkin' Donuts' are made with machine-dispensed espresso and hand-steamed milk.

Dunkin' Donuts Coffee
Flavor: 6.8
Consistency: 4.6
Presentation: 7.3
Process: 5.0
Total: 23.8 (out of 60)

Dunkin' Donuts Cappuccino
Flavor: 13.3
Consistency: 4.8
Presentation: 6.1
Process: 7.0
Total: 31.3 (out of 60)

If you want a decent cup of joe, head to Dunkin' Donuts. For that cappuccino date, swallow your pride and meet at McDonald's. Or don't: It's worth noting that all three chains scored less than half of all possible points (and that the price difference between a cappuccino from McDonald's and one from some of Manhattan's most rarified espresso shops is less than $1). If convenience trumps all other considerations, though—and in matters of coffee, it often does—consider this: A giant muffin and some sweetener can hide all sorts of crimes.

Nathan Heller is a Slate copy editor.

Copyright 2008 Washingtonpost.Newsweek Interactive Co. LLC

They want to prove they have been to the moon?!

Try leaving this print

instead of this one

If you didnt think Crocs looked Dumb enough

There is a new Sensation! I guess if you need your toes to climb a tree and shoes just arent the answer. Here is the


Ahhh NPR too!

Even NPR has the scoop on the "Lost Tapes"

NPR Report

Lost Tapes is such crap! I recorded over a Bulls game in 1984. That was legitimate, I know it happened. I didnt have the tape labeled and was in a hurry to get something taped. But Im betting NASA had their tapes labeled to the Nth degree, No confusion as to what was on the tapes. I keep waiting to hear the final utterance, "We Lied! But we were justified. We couldnt have the Moon be Communist since Capitalism is the only way."

My friend Julie posted this link.

I dont know how this one got by me.

CNN News Link

I find it very funny that when it comes to NASA, any "non" believer is brushed off as a "Conspiracy theorist". I dont think there was any conspiracy. I just dont see the proof we were ever on the moon. this world cannot even get our new manned technology out and back from lower orbit, and we have had 50 years to advance our technology from the 50's when we made the first ship to do it repeatedly. I have a whole load of explanations on why I believe(or dont believe) what I do in an older post.

NASA and the Moon! You cant make this stuff up.

Here is the link to the Article

OH Man! This is so rich. NASA, Sitting on a piece of "History" so big, and they lost the tapes? Are you kidding me? I call Bullshit! I once read that they may have written over the video. "Re-used" the tapes. Those people use a new pencil for every task, they buy 1000 dollar toilet seats. They drank 200 dollar packets of Tang and ate dried ice cream from a foil packet! I know because I had some and it said spaceman ice cream right on the package. You are going to tell me they erased and reused a 2 dollar video tape? Come on!

The Article I read has this story about the "Missing" moon landing footage:

The lost NASA tapes: Restoring lunar images after 40 years in the vault
A Mac Pro and 40-year-old tape drives are helping restore the original Lunar Orbiter tapes
Lamont Wood

June 29, 2009 (Computerworld) Liquid nitrogen, vegetable steamers, Macintosh workstations and old, refrigerator-size tape drives. These are just some of the tools a new breed of Space Age archeologists is using to sift through the digital debris from the early days of NASA, mining the information in ways unimaginable when it was first gathered four decades ago.

At stake is data that could show Earth's risk of an asteroid strike, shed light on global warming and -- perhaps -- even satisfy those who think the moon landings were a hoax.

The most visible of the archeologists is arguably Dennis Wingo, head of Skycorp Inc., a small aerospace engineering firm in Huntsville, Ala. He's the driving force behind the Lunar Orbiter Image Recovery Project, operating out of a decommissioned McDonald's (since dubbed McMoon's) at NASA's Ames Research Center in Mountain View, Calif. The project's goal is to recover and enhance as many of the original lunar landing images as possible.

Between 1966 and 1967, five unmanned probes were sent into lunar orbit to map possible landing sites within the moon's equatorial regions at one-meter resolution and to map the rest of the surface at a resolution of 40 meters or better, Wingo explains. Those probes, known as Lunar Orbiters, sent back about 1,800 images that modern technology should be able to greatly improve.

The project's great scientific value to NASA is in enabling a comparison between the lunar surface as mapped by the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, launched on June 18, with the lunar surface as it appeared 43 years ago, according to Wingo. The goal is to "get a fix on how many meteor impacts have occurred in the meantime," by cataloging the new craters.

"If we know the changes, we can establish the risk of working on the moon and even determine the small-body asteroid population of the inner solar system," Wingo says. Another valuable contribution: the ability to plot the possible risk to Earth of the impact of an asteroid.

Detail of the Earthrise picture taken by the first Lunar Orbiter in 1966, as rendered at the time.
Click to view larger image
The original black-and-white images were shot on 70mm film that was automatically developed and scanned within the robot spacecraft. The signal from the scanner was sent to Earth and was then displayed as partial frames on a monitor. Each monitor image was then captured with a film camera. These pictures were fit together, and then another picture was taken of the finished mosaic. Each step imposed a certain amount of image degradation.

The resulting Lunar Orbiter images are the basis of a digital lunar atlas. But Wingo figured that if he could process the tapes of the original signals, he could improve the dynamic range of the images by a factor of four, revealing far more surface features.

Although this theory has proved correct, the path has been challenging. Wingo first had to acquire the tapes, then reconstruct drives to read them and finally perform the actual processing.

Next steps
It turns out that the original 2-in. tapes were available. Around 1986, NASA archivist Nancy Evans, who is now retired, was contacted by a federal records center asking what to do with them. Feeling that the data should not be discarded, she persuaded the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in Pasadena, Calif., to put them into climate-controlled storage.

However, the tapes were useless without compatible tape drives -- in this case, analog Ampex FR-900 reel-to-reel units. Weighing half a ton and resembling refrigerators, the drives were formerly used by the U.S. Air Force to record radar data but have not been manufactured since 1975. "There were probably thousands of them at one time, but as the radar stations refitted with new drives, most [of the old ones] were dumped in the ocean to make coral reefs," Evans says. There are "thousands" of the old drives off Kwajalein -- an atoll that's part of the Marshall Islands -- and Florida, she says.

She finally got a call from an Air Force base that had four of the old drives. She stored them, along with documentation and spare parts, at her home in Sun Valley, Calif., and tried to get funding to restore the tapes. None was forthcoming, so the machines gathered dust for two decades.

By 2006, the tapes -- still in JPL storage -- fell under a new NASA edict that no planetary data should ever be destroyed, Evans explains. However, by then she needed the storage area occupied by the tape drives for the veterinarian practice she and her daughter maintained. In an effort to preserve the drives, she submitted a white paper about the tapes and drives at a Lunar and Planetary Institute conference. After seeing the white paper in a blog post, Wingo contacted her and arranged to have the drives, and later the tapes, transported to Ames in rented trucks.

Then Wingo obtained a grant of $250,000 from NASA to get started. His largely volunteer crew was able to restore two of the drives using pieces from the other two, plus off-the-shelf parts and additional components that had to be custom-made.

"We had to pay big bucks to get the bearings replaced, the motors rebuilt and rubber parts cast. We had to dip the motors in liquid nitrogen to get the bearings off," he recalls.

Detail of the Earthrise picture taken by the first Lunar Orbiter in 1966, rendered with modern technology.
Click to view larger image
So far, all the tapes have proved usable. The data is read into a quad-processor Macintosh Pro workstation with 13GB of RAM and 4TB of storage. Data acquisition is done through a PCI Express card from Canadian firm AlazarTech that can read 180 million samples per second, although only 10 million are needed, Wingo says.

After capture, the images are processed with Adobe Photoshop and Igor Pro analysis software from WaveMetrics Inc. But the new plan is to move to a custom application written in C, largely because of its ability to take advantage of Mac OS X 10.6 (Snow Leopard). With Igor Pro and Photoshop, processing takes an hour for a high-resolution image and 20 minutes for a medium-resolution image. But after the switch to the C program, processing with the Snow Leopard version should be almost immediate, based on the testing that's been conducted, Wingo says.

With an additional $600,000 budget, Wingo hopes to have all the files processed by February, producing a moon atlas with a resolution higher than anything previously seen. Most of this new funding is again from NASA, with about 10% from private donors.

However, Wingo's "deliverable" to NASA is not the images themselves, but the raw data extracted from the tapes. "They would rather have the raw data so that someone even a thousand years from now could do their own processing," he says.

The lost Apollo 11 tapes
The NASA edict against data destruction was issued after the space agency's 2006 admission that it couldn't locate the original tapes of the Apollo 11 live slow-scan TV broadcast from the moon. The agency then initiated a search for the tapes, which remains ongoing, as is the Internet furor the admission generated among conspiracy theorists, who believe the landings were staged.

The data is assumed to be on 1-in. tapes, but, based on period photos, Wingo thinks they should be on 2-in. tapes like the Lunar Orbiter data. He is conducting his own search.

Begging to differ is Richard Nafzger, senior engineer at the Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md., who's been working for NASA since 1968 and was involved in television support and voice communications for the Apollo moon missions.

Orbiter image from 1966, and, below, after modern processing of the original data.
"Despite how old you get, there are certain things you don't forget, and we recorded all slow-scan images on 1-in. tapes that were 15 in. in diameter, and I have spent the last three years tracking them," he says. "I am certain that there was no slow-scan ever recorded on the Ampex 900." The video feed was one of 12 tracks of telemetry that were recorded on each tape, Nafzger explains.

Due to the low wattage of the transmitter on the lunar lander, they had only 500 kHz bandwidth to use for video, as opposed to the 4.5 MHz that was standard at the time for broadcast analog TV. So NASA used a slow-scan, black-and-white transmission at 10 frames per second with 320 lines per screen, Nafzger says. U.S. broadcast TV used 30 frames per second with 525 lines per screen. The conversion was made at each ground site with a device that basically pointed a broadcast TV camera at a special monitor displaying the slow-scan image.

The slow-scan monitor had persistent phosphor to make up for the slower scan rate, and as a result the movement of the astronauts looked ghostly and jerky, he explains. (Later moon landings used a more conventional TV broadcast system.)

The Apollo 11 TV signal was captured at NASA ground stations with 85-foot antennas in Spain, Australia and the Mojave Desert. NASA also borrowed a 210-foot radio astronomy antenna in Australia for the occasion. The signals were converted to broadcast format on-site and sent to Houston for redistribution to the TV networks. Both the slow-scan feed and the broadcast format were recorded on-site in case the live broadcast failed. The converted signals were routed through a single point in Houston so that NASA could cut off the signal if there were an "incident," Nafzger explains.

But that was the least of his worries.

"The night we landed and did the moonwalk, that is when I became scared," he recalls. Before that point, there hadn't been as much pressure to broadcast the proceedings in real time. But after the safe landing, "they were saying that they had better be able to see this on TV, and 600 million people were watching. Something as simple as plugging a wrong patch or pushing a wrong button would mean that no one would see it," Nafzger says.

Indeed, the camera had been installed on the lander upside down, Nafzger recalls. The TV technicians heard of this at the last minute and scrambled to install converters at the ground stations. The first few seconds of broadcast were upside down because the operator at the Mojave Desert ground station who understood the converter had left for the day, Nafzger recalls.

If the original tapes could be found, he estimates that they would appear three times clearer than the broadcast images. "Taking the clean data and extracting it in a digital high-definition format would let you go frame-by-frame and remove the noise, smearing, contrast problems and other things that were man-made, mostly by the original conversion. The tapes are worth getting just for that reason -- absolutely," Nafzger says.

He and others have been trying to do just that. But NASA has had at least 220,000 tapes of that variety in storage at some time, of which only about 15 might be the lost Apollo 11 tapes, he notes.

"We have gone through landfills on the tops of mountains. I have looked through rooms the size of two or three football fields, filled with rows of shelves going up 30 feet, and we have looked on every shelf that might contain the right tapes," Nafzger says. Tapes that were suspected of being the right ones were heated for hours in dry vegetable steamers to make sure the oxide was fixed to the substrate before Nafzger's team attempted to read them. Goddard has preserved the necessary 1-in. tape drives, so Nafzger did not have the refurbishing task that Wingo faced.

Nafzger is currently preparing a report on the results of the search and cannot discuss them until NASA releases the report, the date of which is uncertain. "But since I am not running down the street waving a flag and shouting 'Eureka!' you can draw your own conclusions. The big picture is that there is an explanation for everything," he says.

Other tapes
Meanwhile, in Las Vegas, Karen Person, head of the Renaissance Entertainment & Media Group, is not waiting for Nafzger's results. She says she has acquired one of the original 2-in. NASA recordings of the broadcast video and is using it as the basis of a documentary titled July Moon, which she hopes to have in theaters for the 40th anniversary of the moon landing on July 20. The video has been transferred to MPEG-4 format and parts have been enhanced, she says.

"They are about 200% clearer than anything you would have seen, and Walter Cronkite is not talking over them," she says. In fact, she showed clips to Apollo 11 astronaut Buzz Aldrin, and, according to her, he said he saw things that he had not previously remembered.

She claims she procured the tapes -- for an amount she would not disclose -- from a man who bought them at a government surplus property auction in 1976 while he was a NASA engineering intern. He reportedly paid $217.77 for a batch of 1,150 assorted tapes.

For his part, Wingo has received a grant from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to locate early Nimbus weather satellite tapes. Data from the satellites, first launched in 1964, was stored on tapes like those used with the Lunar Orbiters.

"Those images would push our knowledge of Arctic and Antarctic ice packs 14 years further into the past," he says.

Lamont Wood is a freelance writer in San Antonio. He can be reached at .

Say what?

I was pa rousing some ads today when I came across an appliance ad that had Ovens. I have recently just bought an oven and was looking at the features of a specific oven, when I came across "Sabbath Mode". Immediately I thought, "This thing cooks for you on the Sabbath?" And how does it know what day I consider the Sabbath. Well I googled "Sabbath Mode" and I got my answer as to what this dandy feature is.

Per GE, Hotpoint, and a couple others:

"The oven will stay at the temperature the user selects when entering the Sabbath mode. The digital control display will not show time, temperature, or selected oven function until the Sabbath mode feature is manually De-activated at the conclusion of the Sabbath or holiday. This makes it possible for observant Jews to serve warm food on holidays, the underlying principle being that it is permissible to use electricity that is already on but not to turn it on or off during the duration of the holiday. Observant Jews are thus prohibited from turning on or off the oven, or taking an action that causes the oven control display to change during the Sabbath or religious holidays."

So in other words, the oven is turned on, you know its on, but nothing tells you the oven is on. So that's where Faith comes in. You turned it on, there is no indicator light for your religous observance security, no clock, no alarms, nothing to tell you its on. You just gotta have faith its on. This brings up another thing. God must not want Jews to be thrifty, Power is expensive. He must not want them to care about wasting energy which goes against all the green theories of "saving energy" and "global warming". Climate Change be damned! I have a Religious Holiday to observe!

Something else I find very interesting. Here is what says for this situation.

Question: Why do some Jews not use electricity on the Sabbath?

Answer: The Bible says one should refrain from work on the Sabbath, and the Bible includes the kindling of fire as work (Exodus 35:3).

Observant Jews (primarily orthodox Jews) consider electricity to be a form of fire. These Jews do not turn on lights, ovens, televisions, radios and other electrical appliances on the Sabbath. Instead, prior to the start of the Sabbath, they often plug their electrical appliances into special "Shabbat clocks" which turn the lights, air conditioners, ovens, ... on and off at pre-set times.

Some authorities believe that electricity is not truly fire. However, they still believe in banning the use of electricity on the Sabbath as a way to prevent Jews from violating the Sabbath by doing work that can stem from the use of electricity.

So serving food from a "Hot Oven" isn't work stemming from an oven that uses electricity to get hot? Or is it just easier to pretend the food just appears there and ignore the things that dont fit into your predisposed conception of your Religion.

Also like so many other Religions who take the whole "Work on the Sabbath" ahem, seriously, its ok to enjoy the fruits of others work on the Sabbath, just not your own. Its ok to start the fire in your car and get your butt to church. And to labor your lazy Sabbath ass into a pew, but don't work at it.

Come to think about it, trying to figure out "What Would Jesus Do" every Sunday when yet another situation or dilemma arises, seems a lot like work to me. Do I answer that phone that is ringing off the hook right now? While I am not working, eating hot wings from the oven that's been on since Saturday, and I am watching this Football game on this Television that has been on since Friday? Why yes I should. But No! Wait! WWJD? No, I can't answer it since the phone company has employees working today to make the phone work. Well if I pretend not to know that, I'm good. Pretend Television Producers aren't working today to bring me this Broadcast. There is no one at the Power Plants making the electricity I am consuming. This stuff all just magically works.

Being Jewish was so much easier in the 1600's before Electricity was discovered. And the 1700's when it's principles were being applied to practical uses.
Im sure just being a Christian was much easier as well.