Say hello to the new (and only) Mayor of Mars!
The Mars rover ‘Curiosity‘ (launched by NASA on 11-26-11 with a successful landing on Mars’ Gale Crater on 8-5-12) checked into Foursquare today, not only making the robot the first ever (known?) “Mayor” of Mars, but also marking the first ever check-in from “the surface of another world”.
Hooray–wait…why do we care?
According to David Weaver, associate administrator for communications at NASA Headquarters, Curiosity will be checking in at various locations during its exploration of Mars and posting pictures and information with each check-in!
Who knew that such seemingly egocentric technology (can’t tell you the number of times I’ve heard hipsters get into arguments over who was the mayor of ‘Randy’s Donuts’ or ‘Father’s Office’) would lead to something so badass and revolutionary?!
The $2.5 billion dollar (oh is that all?) robot was sent to Mars with the mission of determining whether or not the planet could, at one time, have ever supported microbial life. Curiosity is now two months into its two year mission and is currently cruising toward a site called Glenelg (pictured below).
Its main destination is the base of Mount Sharp (below), “which rises 3.4 miles into the Martian sky from Gale Crater’s center. Mars-orbiting spacecraft have detected evidence that Mount Sharp’s foothills were exposed to liquid water long ago”.
While this check-in is the first ever conducted from another planet, it is–surprisingly–not the first check-in from outer space: NASA has been using the app since 2010 when astronaut Doug Wheelock made the first-ever check-in from the International Space Station.
Personally, I can’t wait to see what awesome pictures Curiosity shares with us as it checks out the red planet’s geography. And with the amount of money put into its creation, I have no doubts that the rover is perfectly capable of governing the friendly Martian race.
What’s your take on all this, Nation? Are you looking forward to seeing Curiosity’s check-ins and photos? Also, do you think Mars once supported life?