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May. 27 2009 - 10:50 pm | 8 views | 0 recommendations | 5 comments

It’s a “Curiosity” alright…

Curiosity (indeed). From NASA

Curiosity (indeed). From NASA

Now please do not take this the wrong way, because I think it is noble and good that NASA is involving schoolkids in the process of naming its Mars Rovers. But Curiosity? Can’t we do better than that?

Imagine if kids had named the Apollo spacecraft…would the “The Curiosity has landed” have the same ring to it? Or, if one of the Mercury guys had named their capsule the Sobriety-7 or the Kindness-7, wouldn’t they have been laughed out of the Right Stuff Corps? Those are just a few other traits from the List of Virtues I found on the interweb.

Given what I hear about the Mars Science Laboratory, Complexity, Corpulence or Extravagance might be more apt. OK, maybe I am being something less than virtuous here…But what about naming this one after some towering figures in exploration of the Red Planet – like Schiaperelli, Lowell (or my favorite) Sagan? Or how about some of the great science fiction writers? Wells, Burroughs or Bradbury would all be great names.

Anyway, as my kids say: just sayin’…no offense. If you have a good idea for the name for MSL, let me know…By the way, my friends at NASAWatch.com are running a poll on this – click here if you are…er..curious.

First there was Sojourner, then there were Spirit and Opportunity, and in a few years there will be . . . Curiosity. That’s the official name given to NASA’s next Mars rover, formerly called the Mars Science Laboratory, or MSL.

via “Curiosity” rover to explore Red Planet – Short Sharp Science – New Scientist.


One T/S Member Comment Called Out, 5 Total Comments
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  1. collapse expand

    how about “Red Rover” (just kidding)
    I think it would have been good to give it the name of an explorer or astronomer.

  2. collapse expand

    Got it…”Sedulous” – meaning: active, busy, determined, diligent, hard-working, industrious…you get the idea. :u) Course it is not exactly a Schoolkids word; still…

  3. collapse expand

    good stuff, as usual, miles. bradbury would have been an amazing name

  4. collapse expand

    name it: MARVIN…after the martian cartoon character from WB

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    I am a 26-year broadcast news veteran - with nearly 17 years as CNN’s science, aerospace, technology and environment correspondent. I am an active pilot, airplane owner and a lover of all things that fly. I was slated to be the first journalist to fly on the space shuttle before the Columbia accident ended that dream. I am based in New York City - married with two teenagers and two dogs.

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