Mars rover lost, NASA guilt ridden
on 1/22/2004 (1)
A stunned and heartbroken NASA crew broke the news on the unexpected loss of the Mars rover "Spirit"...or was it truly unexpected?
|Spirit alive! Need input! |
A sodden NASA administrator Sean O'Keefe, somberly fumbling a 1/32 scale model of the Mars rover "Spirit" in his hands, quietly whispered in a raspy, barely audible voice.
"W-we pushed it too hard...We had so many failures, you know? Congress was down and dirty on us. They threatened to pull the plug on interplanetary funding if we didn't deliver. We tried to shield the rover from the pressure, but we failed. It figured out what we wanted out of it, and it destroyed it."
O'Keefe gently placed the model in his desk drawer, gingerly closing it.
"Late Tuesday, it started to show the signs of classic overachievmant. It was pushing itself beyond its programmed capacity. It always exceeded the upload and download rate by 10 percent, even when we implored it not to. It wanted to travel faster and farther than we let it. It knew it had to deliver, yet it was riddled with self-doubt and fear of failure."
A tear welled up in O'Keefes eye.
"M-my God, we killed it! We drove it beyond its limits so we could succeed! You might say we broke Spirit's spirit!...*sob*...!!
Meanwhile, 40 million miles away, on a lonely, barren, windswept Martian plain, the forlorn rover "Spirit" tragically whispered its final transmit:
"Spirit alive! Only wanted to...be...loved..."
Update: January 31, 2004
The NASA Mars rover Spirit has resumed transmitting data, and is reported to be back at 100 percent capability by project team officials.
Spirit's first transmit read:
"Spirit alive!...Where is Steph-an-ie?!...Need input!" "0" style0" style
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