I'm sitting here suddenly overwhelmed at the utter coolness of what I'm doing. I'm sitting at my desk in my home office, "working from home," as NASA's LRO/LCROSS mission prepares for launch in a few hours. In front of me is a 22" Apple Cinema Display attached to a 15" Aluminum MacBook Pro (Core 2 Duo, 2.5 GHz).
Thanks to NASA and Spacevidcast, playing on my desktop I have no less than six video streams, some with multiple angles, showing me the rocket and various other video. Thanks to ScanAmerica, I'm listening to the Kennedy Space Center ground loops via iTunes internet radio streaming. A NASA Java applet shows the Atlas countdown information. I'm chatting with friends via AIM, Yahoo! Messenger, and GTalk, as well as Spacevidcast's chat room. I'm following NASA agencies and employees via Twitter. And I have my as-yet-unfinished iPhone app MissionClock counting down to LRO. It looks like this:
This is all cool by itself, but every now and again I get a tweet like this one from Andy, who works cryogenics (fuel) and other things on the launch pad:
Been on the tower for the last 5 hrs. Finally got down and now they are kicking us out for the Atlas launch.
They just started the go/no-go poll. Time to do some real work while I listen/watch. Weather is a bit of a concern, here's hoping it holds!
One last bit of commentary: this ULA/Atlas launch has a lot more transparency/awesome geek factor than NASA Shuttle launches. I get to see a lot more info, and hear a lot more. I hope the Shuttle public outreach can surpass that of the Atlas someday soon. There aren't many opportunities left!