No More O-PHISH-AL Email, Please…

Dear US Government, you are making me tired.

In 2011 and 2014 you published memos that said the following:

Then in June of 2015, we find out there’s been a data breach at the Office of Personnel Management, “resulting in the theft of approximately 4 million personnel records handled by the office.”  Federal employees everywhere were told to be patient, more information would be forthcoming. Just watch for an email from the OPM CIO, they were told.  When the email finally came, was it from Donna.Seymour@opm.gov (or even CIO@OPM.gov) and digitally signed using HSPD-12, as one would expect?


Because it wasn’t, countless recipients assumed the email was fraudulent. (I applaud them! Because it’s clear they paid attention to their annual cyber security training.) Here’s a copy of the email, which looks almost like a textbook phishing example:

o-PHISH-alThe first thing we notice is who sent the email. It says OPM CIO, but then the email address is opmcio@csid.com. Why would a government agency have a .com email address? Hmmm… phishy.

Before we even get to the salutation, we see two long, ugly URLs full of gibberish. Never a good sign. Need I say it? Phishy.

The salutation is innocuous enough, but immediately after that, we are given a PIN and another long, ugly URL with the words ENROLL NOW in all caps — the Internet equivalent of yelling. If I were a hacker, I would hope that at least a few victims phish  recipients, would take the bait and click on the URL with their new PIN ready to go.

For those that aren’t as quick to bite, I would include some faux explanatory text. Which is exactly what you’ll find next in the email. The first sentence is scary: “…may have exposed your personal information.” That should hook a few more, right?

The email ends with lots of official sounding information about Homeland Security, personal information, and a promise of $1M worth of identity theft insurance.

one_millionApparently the reader is required to infer that the PIN at the top of the email is provided in order to take advantage of said insurance. It never actually gives specific instructions, however. (If you visit the OPM website, which ends in .gov, as one would expect, you’ll find more complete information is available at this (less phishy-looking) URL >> http://www.csid.com/opm.)

enroll_nowHindsight being 20/20, we know that the email was perfectly legit. But did it really need to look exactly like the emails people are trained to report to their security offices?  How many man hours (i.e., dollars) were spent on June 8th drafting, reviewing, and approving “Phishing Threat Advisory” emails about the above? Shortly thereafter, how many man hours (i.e., dollars) were spent drafting, reviewing, and approving the retractions of those advisories?

How much will it cost the government to re-send the emails with personalized PINs to all the people who deleted them thinking they were fraudulent? (Because they were following their training, which instructs people to permanently delete phishing emails after reporting them.)  As Facebook commenter Matney Wyatt said, “…the ‘pin’ is needed to access the CSID services that were contracted by OPM. The original email has the ‘pin’ and everyone who received the ‘pin’ has deleted the email. It’s a gamble to assume that this email was ‘left in the delete folder.'”

As a taxpayer, I knew the aftermath of the OPM data breach was going to cost the government a lot of money. Thanks to the email above, however, the aftermath of the aftermath is going to cost even more. If everybody could just follow the policies that are already in place, the “Government efficiency” they promise might actually come to fruition.


GI Film Festival 2015

For the third year in a row, I attended as much of the GI Film Festival as I could. There were simultaneous screenings on some days, though, so as much as I would have liked to, I couldn’t see every single film. That said, I’d like to share with you the films I did see!

Of the GIFF 2015 award winners, I saw the following:

Veteran Filmmaker Award (Short): Day One

Best International Film: Who’s Afraid of the Big Black Wolf

Best Short-Short: Beautiful Sunset

Best Documentary Short: The Next Part and Climb

Best Narrative Short: Birthday

Best Documentary Feature: The Millionaire’s Unit

Best Action Feature: War Pigs

Best Narrative Feature: Kajaki

American Heroes Channel Award Winner: The MIAs on Tiger Mountain

Founder’s Choice Award: Battle Scars (tie)


I didn’t get to see these award winners, but will watch them as soon as I can — especially Drone, since it features Michael Trucco from Battlestar Galactica:

Veteran Filmmaker Award (Feature): Haebangchon

Best Student Film: Drone (festival page)

Founder’s Choice Award: Nomadic Veterans (tie)


And of course, nobody got to see this award winner, because it hasn’t been filmed yet:

Best Screenplay: Text Messages to God


With over 65 films showing at this year’s festival, obviously not everybody could win an award. I’m happy to report that even those that didn’t win are still very much worth watching. I will continue to add links to these films as I have time. (Many of them, unfortunately, are not available on streaming services or the open Internet, so some links will only lead to trailers, rather than the complete film.)

  • First and foremost, there is my friend Peter Carruther’s third GI Film Festival narrative short submission: Unload, a film that aims to improve global understanding and quality of therapy for veterans. (Trailer only)
  • If you prefer to put away your tissues and screen an upbeat GI Film Festival piece, try this one about searching for and refurbishing downed WWII aircraft. I missed it during the festival because I was in the other theater watching a simultaneous film block. Happily, the filmmaker was able to send me a link, which I am now sharing with you: Resurrecting Warbirds
  • I’ve been a fan of StoryCorps since I saw their Ron McNair animation, so I was really excited when this one came on the screen during the Saturday awards ceremony: The Last Viewing

Sites that feature my Flickr Photos

Only a few times has somebody asked me for permission to use one of my photos, but when they do, it’s a bit of a thrill. I realized that I should start documenting these instances.

The Morning Metropolitan

Blogs Art Info

Jeri’s Organizing & Decluttering News

The Food of France


Job Announcement: Medical Device Software Engineer

My nephew’s company in Cambridge, MA is looking for a Medical Device Software Engineer. In order to get them a great pool of qualified applicants, I’m sharing this far and wide…

logoAre you passionate about creating dynamic web and mobile applications with exceptional user experiences? Do you dream up new ways to visualize data every night? Does it make you angry that social media interfaces are decades ahead of health data interfaces?

frame_oneCommon Sensing is looking for a motivated, proficient individual to develop the software for GoCap in our Cambridge, MA office. GoCap is a new medical product that that automatically tracks injectable medicine and lifestyle data for chronic disease patients. Our goal is to connect patients, families, and caretakers with relevant information on emotionally engaging interfaces. We invite you to improve the lives of millions of chronically ill people with us.

Once a part of the team, we will challenge you to design and build novel chronic disease management applications for a variety of platforms at a fast pace. User studies will put you in the same room with with patients on a regular basis to test your interfaces. Adopters will trust you to carefully plan encryption, authentication, cloud storage, and database structures for safely sharing and storing troves of medical data. We will give you the best tools available to design and implement your applications, and you will be an integral part of proving to the FDA and medical community that our system is effective and reliable.

In addition to software development, we encourage participation in all aspects of the business, from fundraising to industrial design to embedded electronics. You will be one of the first employees in a VC-funded medical technology company, bypassing bureaucracy and eating lunch with the co-founders. We enjoy a relaxed, hard-working atmosphere and are well-poised to create tomorrow’s solutions for our healthcare ecosystem.

Software Engineer Overview
– Develop full-stack web and mobile applications with constant feedback from users
– Lead software development process and a growing team of software engineers
– Efficiently write highly organized code with outstanding version control and documentation
– Quickly become familiar with the following: iOS development (Objective C), Android development (Java), Bluetooth (2.1 and 4.0), JavaScript, HTML5, CSS, OAuth2, SSL/TLS, MVC and REST architectures, HIPPA, FDA Medical Device Software Guidance, ISO13485 Design Process

Competitive salary and equity compensation offered.

Common Sensing (www.common-sensing.com) is a new seed-stage startup backed by Qualcomm Ventures, founded by two MIT engineers passionate about better health through technology. If you or someone you know would be a good fit for this position, tell us why at team@common-sensing.com

– Richard Whalley (MIT ’10) and James White (MIT ’10)


One of My Favorite Essays about MIT

Gail H. Marcus ’68

<-364.4 Smoots and one ear. Never forget the ear. The ear says it all. Imagination, humor, an engineer’s precision overlaid on an imprecise world. If not for the ear, the paint would have faded long ago. But they thought of the ear. And now, here it is, our own unit, neither British nor metric, to measure my progress toward the Institute.

10 Smoots. The Institute. The very name sounds heavy, important. Like the Rock, the Hill, the Temple Mount. I contemplate the view across the river. The sandstone buildings take on a golden glow in the afternoon sun. Solid, embracing. Just across the river. A world away. A lifetime away. Yet not so long ago or far away.

20 Smoots. Has it really been 25 years? I contemplate my life — the distance I have come and the distance yet to go. I remember the dreams, dream the memories. Memories that are mine alone. Yet … memories that have roots in time and place, roots I share with every classmate, with every alum. Intersecting circles of shared experience. Venn diagrams of common hopes and dreams.

How many times did you walk across this bridge and count the Smoots? How many times did you watch the Tacoma Narrows Bridge resonate to destruction? How many times did you rub Francis Amasa Walker’s nose? We are from the same time warp. Come, cross the bridge with me. Share my memories — our memories. Walk the paths we walked. Sing the songs we sang.

30 Smoots. Remember arriving here for the first time? I remember. I was driving with my parents along Storrow Drive, and we were trying, without much success, to get from there to this bridge and across the river. As we drove back and forth, so close and yet so far, I wondered if this was some omen, some warning that I could not, should not approach. But, we found our way there that day, and I have been finding my way back ever since.

40 Smoots. Love that dirty water. Wo wo, Boston you’re my home. The dirty Charles sparkles today. The sailboats dance lightly on its glittering surface. The crew shells slide smoothly, silently along. Lovers stroll slowly along both banks. Gulls soar overhead. Bicyclists bicycle, runners run, dogs lope along, squirrels gather nuts.

Clever of them to set reunions in June, when the river beckons and invites, and not in February, when it is gray and bitter. Do they think we can forget? No. We forget nothing. And this river…this river cannot be forgotten. Our lives were lived along its banks. Our days were shaped by its moods. Our memories are tied to the days like this, when we were the eager lovers, the bicyclists, the runners along its banks, and to the wintery, wet, raw days when we so reluctantly made the cold trek across the river.

50 Smoots. I have been coming here more than half my life now, as a girl and an adult, as a student and an alumna. Every time I leave, it lures me back. Every time I return, it binds me ever more firmly. What is it about those buildings that has such power over me? What is it I cannot let go?

60 Smoots. It is, after all, a messy place, jumbled, confusing, disorganized, exhausting. It is a swirling, clashing vortex of ideas and activities, an ongoing experiment in sensory overkill. Getting an education at MIT is like taking a drink from a firehose. It is a bit arrogant and brash sometimes. But it is a place of infinite possibility. It pulsates with energy, it vibrates with excitement. It is stimulating, exhilarating. It is a heady, even intoxicating, atmosphere.

69 Smoots. Ah! My favorite milestone. It breaks the cadence, the regularity of my progression, it diverts my thoughts. Everything is either concave or convex. So whatever you’re thinking, it’s something with sex. Especially when you are eighteen. Integral of e to the x equals function of u to the n. We have grown up since then, but only a little. I can never resist a smile…

80 Smoots. Remember all-nighters? I remember. There was always someone awake, someone working, someone to talk to, something happening. It was a place where “intense” was not a dirty word. It was a place where I learned to care passionately, whether it was about preparing for a test, completing a research experiment, pursuing a hack, or putting on a party.

90 Smoots. A university paralyzed around science. I came here to study math and physics, but it is the other things I learned that have meant most to me. I learned to care, to think, to dream. To aim high, to work hard, to play just as hard. To be different. To challenge my limits. When to laugh, and when to be serious. Never to quit. How to compute the number of blades of grass in the Great Court, and the number of cars on Mass Ave.

It sounds contradictory. I came to study facts and formulas, and I learned passion. The formulas may be fading, but the passion, I learned well. I still try to taste everything on the table, to drink heartily from the firehose, to peer behind every closed door. How else to explain my valiant — but somewhat futile — efforts to learn Japanese after the age of 40? And, once committed, to find I wanted an A in that class. And to get it!

110 Smoots. Remember discovering that the title of our physics text spelled P.A.N.I.C? I remember. Remember Tony French running across the demonstration desk with strobe lights flashing? Remember MIT is a party school? Remember “It should be intuitively obvious to the most casual observer,”, and it wasn’t clear to you at all?

120 Smoots. Remember the emotional roller coaster, the mixed signals? The thrill the first time special relativity made sense, the exhausting sense of never quite being caught up. The ecstacy of a successful experiment, the agony of a low grade. Daydreaming about someday winning a Nobel prize, worrying that you could flunk out next week. You are the best and the brightest. You are the future of this nation. You are culturally illiterate. Techmen can’t read. Techmen are nerds.

130 Smoots. Remember the nerds, the Tech tools? I remember. Wouldn’t date ’em. The guys with pimply faces and ugly glasses, who wore slide rules on their belts and looked like they slept in their shirts. Not like us, of course. Surprise! Their faces cleared up, they bought nice suits, learned social skills, and gave their slide rules to museums. Today, they are the vanguard of the 21st century, leading high technology around the world. Not bad for the culturally illiterate, huh?

140 Smoots. Remember the Beach Boys in the rain? Ian and Sylvia? UMOC? Voo Doo? Remember Maxwell’s equations sweatshirts? The Great Court? 26-100? 10-250? Remember beer blasts? I can’t get no satisfaction. Are there songs you still hear on the radio every now and then which transport you right back to a blanket on the floor of the Cage, and just for a moment, you can feel the beat vibrating inside you, smell the spilled beer, see the sweaty bodies writhing on the dance floor? There are such songs for me.

150 Smoots. Do you have a Doc Edgerton memory? I do. I remember trick-or-treating Doc Edgerton with half a dozen coeds to raise money for UNICEF. He perched us all on the sofa, fed us lemonade and cookies, brought out all his scientific toys and sat on the floor demonstrating them and challenging us to guess the scientific principles involved.

Remember the Great Blackout? I remember. Our first thought was that it was an MIT hack run amuck! At McCormick Hall, we gathered in the housemaster’s suite and had a spontaneous sing-along. For once, problem sets were forgotten, and music and candlelight worked their spell.

160 Smoots. Remember the coming of age of baby boomers? The Beatles. Simon and Garfunkel. Remember when you weren’t going to trust anyone over 30? When 40 was really old? When campuses across the nation began to explode? The Viet Nam war. The social revolution. The Middle East. All the world’s problems concentrated and interpreted in the lobby of Building 10. Literature from the pros at one end, from the antis at the other. It was not the easiest of times on campus, but it seemed like the only place to be.

170 Smoots. The future beckons unto thee, and life is full and good. We have travelled far, both physically and metaphorically these last twenty-five years. Our class will be analyzed statistically, and others will report in hard numbers where we stand. But I think I already know.

We’re basically a predictable lot. Our mean income is high. We like upscale, high-tech toys. We eat less red meat and more veggies. Collectively, we have gained weight and lost hair, and what we still have is turning gray. At forty-something, our health is generally good, though a few us have suffered ill health or ill fortune (remember standard deviations?). For all of us, the exuberant image of being boomers and yuppies has given way to the more burdened image of the sandwich generation. The baton has been passed, and we are now the responsible ones, hard as that is to believe.

180 Smoots. MIT, PhD, MONEY. The survey will certainly document the fact that a few of us have found real fame or fortune. Though their dreams have lost some grandeur coming true. It will confirm that the rest have not soared as high or as fast as we might have dreamed, but it will not reveal that most of us found riches anyway — in our families, our friends, our colleagues, our work, our homes, our hobbies. And it will offer no hint whether we still pursue the dreams of our youth, or whether we now have other dreams.

In the clearing stands a boxer and a fighter by his trade. The statistical profile will tell us how many books we have published and how many patents we have obtained, but it will not reveal at all what we have become as human beings. We are, for our quarter century of life since graduation, different people than we were on graduation day, more tempered by time, more weathered by experience. Like the boxer, what hasn’t actually destroyed us has made us stronger, but there are no neat ways to measure character.

HALFWAY TO HELL. Abandon hope all ye who enter here. Tech is hell. It was hard work, but was it hell? Maybe, sometimes. But, admit it, that was part of its charm. Part of what you thought made you special. Set you apart from all the unwashed attending college elsewhere. Life was tough in those days, but we liked it that way.

190 Smoots. IHTFP. No, you don’t. You don’t hate this place. You hated this place at moments. Like you hated your mother for making you eat your vegetables. You hated it the day you flunked an exam for the first time in your life. You hated it the time you couldn’t make the apparatus work. You hated the weather. You hated yourself for not catching on more quickly. But you didn’t really hate this place. If you hated this place, you wouldn’t be reading this. You wouldn’t be coming here.

200 Smoots. But we do come back. We are captive in a force field that does not follow the inverse square law. Even far from Cambridge, the school reaches out and ensnares us. We left here with more than our degrees. We left with a way of thinking, an approach to life, a set of standards that identifies us, defines us. We left with friendships which link us firmly to this place. Even if we never set foot here again, this place is forever part of us. But reunions, local meetings, volunteer work, even our donations, keep us part of this place, too. They didn’t tell us when they admitted us that the term was life.

210 Smoots. In my own home, MIT’s presence is particularly pervasive. Mike and I met here. We owe not only our careers to Tech, we owe our personal lives as well. So everything we do for MIT, we do times two. Some days, MIT floods our mailbox. Some days, MIT takes all our free time. Some days, it seems like we have a menage a troix. Just you and me and the Institute, honey. If we were to split, who would get the Class of ’68?

220 Smoots. Arise ye sons of MIT, in loyal brotherhood. It rankled the coeds at times. We were at once insiders and outsiders. But it was part of the challenge. They put the ladies rooms in inconvenient places, but, hey, we could deal with that. We stuck out like sore thumbs in class. Inconvenient if you hadn’t done the assignment — or if you couldn’t keep your eyes open, but you could always impress friends at other schools with the male/female ratio. Some of our classmates didn’t consider us real girls, but enough of them did.

The bottom line was that MIT, for all its ambivalence about coeds, was one of the few places a young woman could be different without being alone. McCormick Hall was a place of refuge, of safety (although, contrary to popular belief, its walls were not papered in gold leaf!). We saw each other succeed, and that gave us strength. I didn’t know how much until I left MIT and was really alone.

230 Smoots. They went and changed the words to the song a few years ago. That was probably the socially correct thing to do, but they have tampered with history. After all, we met the challenge, and that always made me sing the words with special pride.

240 Smoots. Arise and raise your steins on high. They changed that, too. Booze is out now. For me, the song only resonates, only sends chills down my spine, in the original, in all its flawed, sexist, political incorrectness. The song hasn’t changed for me. Never will. I’m going to keep singing it my way.

250 Smoots. Once I returned to the campus and found a display in the main hallway with my name on it. They had listed the first woman to earn each degree offered in each department, and in 1971, I had been the first woman to earn a doctorate in nuclear engineering — probably my greatest claim to fame in life so far. However flimsy the reason, it gave me goosebumps. My name, right there in the main hallway of MIT! Having my name in lights on Broadway or my picture on the cover of Time magazine could not have meant more to me!

260 Smoots. Of course, a year or so later, I returned and searched eagerly for the exhibit, hoping to show it to a friend. But they had taken it down. I was simply part of a changing exhibit, a curatorial exercise. I can’t even remember what replaced it. Sic transit gloria mundi.

270 Smoots. I see by your brass rat that you are a Techman. The brass rat. Beaver, engineer of the animal world. Our own clan totem. Our badge. Our not so secret handshake, our not so private password. From Tokyo to Tortola, we have spotted each other, and perfect strangers have become instant colleagues. What year were you there? What course were you in? Did you know so-and-so? Was Prof. X there when you were there?

280 Smoots. Is it any wonder I now have a lifelong love affair with beavers? Did you know that beavers are a hard thing to collect? Did you know what it takes to get an 85-year old Chinese paper cutter to make a beaver? To get a Pueblo Indian potter to sculpt a beaver in clay, or a taciturn New England hunter to carve a beaver of wood? Why didn’t MIT choose an owl, or a frog, or a turtle?

290 Smoots. I also have a love affair with Alvar Aalto, whose snaky Baker House must have been far more astonishing in 1947 than it is now. Our dining room is early Aalto. I have a love affair with images of the Great Dome. With Calder, with Nevelson. With Cambridge, with Boston. I read Scientific American and look for the number of authors in each issue with MIT connections. I read Science and look for references to MIT research. I read the newspapers and look for mention of MIT. I go to see every A.R. Gurney play. I take perverse pride in the fact that its tuition remains among the highest in the nation. I still know most of the course numbers. I still call it the ‘tute.

300 Smoots. Remember frictionless pucks? Remember neglecting gravity? I remember. Looks like gravity will get its revenge! Remember when you were among the privileged few who had access to computers? When you could impress your family by sending them a letter on computer fanfold paper? When we still used slide rules? Remember getting the shock of your life when you left school and learned that in real life there is no partial credit. You couldn’t get 90% anymore just for setting up the problem right. You were actually expected to solve it.

310 Smoots. After changes upon changes, we are more or less the same. They went and changed some things in the last 25 years. They built new buildings, fixed the steps on Mass Ave., redid 10-250. The chairs had gotten harder, they said. They paved the path between Baker and McCormick. They don’t fold the diplomas anymore. Charlie the Tech Tailor is no longer there. Neither is the F&T Diner. Or the Brighams factory. Or the Heinz 57 sign. Or Springfield Oval, for that matter. Arthur Fiedler is gone. Legal Seafoods is there, but not our Legal Seafoods. Durgin Park is there, but the waitresses are less surly. And definitely younger.

320 Smoots. Yet, not much has changed, really. A few things may be gone, but the essentials remain. The infinite corridor is still infinite. The cracks in the floors have only deepened. The exposed pipes are still exposed. The classroom desks have not changed. The Necco factory is there. The Great Sail is there. The chapel still looks like a beer can. The dollar bill painted around the old Bursar’s office is there. The students still hurry through the corridors once an hour, laden with books, grungy as ever, serious as ever, spirited as ever. Executing a good hack will still earn you sainthood. The essence of the place, the feel of it, is still familiar.

330 Smoots. Remember graduation? I remember. For Mike and me, it was graduation and marriage in two days. Quite a weekend. I remember tearful goodbyes all around. We were scattering to all parts of the country, and thought this was goodby forever! True, some of us have lost touch. But, remarkably, distance has proved the smallest of barriers. The Technology Review column has been, for us, a marvelous way to continue old friendships and make new ones. But the world has grown smaller, too, and I have MIT classmates and friends on the opposite coast, even on other continents, who I see nearly as much as some neighbors down the street.

340 Smoots. Remember seeing all the old fogies in their corny-looking red jackets every June? Have you noticed they’re looking a lot better now? I have. Have you decided it would be nice to be back here in another 25 years to wear that jacket?

350 Smoots. Does the lens of time distort or clarify? Does the filter of memory cloud or refine? Was it all really as I recall it now? I’m not sure. I only know that every time I return, everything is at once familiar and new. That in my heart I feel I have never left, yet to my eyes the things I haven’t seen in awhile seem intensely, almost painfully, sharp and bright.

360 Smoots. The day before I first left home for MIT, I ate lunch with my Dad at a Chinese restaurant. The fortune in my fortune cookie read, “You are about to embark on a long journey.” It has been that.

The journey began the day I crossed this bridge. MIT was the first leg. Growing up, discovering myself, discovering the world. Graduation day, which I had thought was the goal of the journey, was merely a crossroad. Since that day, one person, one experience, has led to another, and another, and another, but the root of it all is always a classmate, a professor, a fellow alum, something I learned or started at MIT.

We have each followed a slightly different road, sometimes diverging, sometimes crossing, sometimes on a highway, sometimes on a rocky path. Most of us have travelled farther than we could have guessed on graduation day, and if we have taken some unexpected turns, they have opened new vistas. Just what paths we will each follow the next quarter century, only time will tell. If the past is prologue, we will travel great distances, yet never stray very far from this spot.

364.4 Smoots and one ear. We gather here once more to be renourished by thy side. There is expectation in returning for a reunion. There is also a little fear. We’ve changed. The world around us has changed. What will everyone be like? Will they look the same to me? More anguishing thought — will I look the same to them? Will it be bittersweet to see each other looking older and to find our dreams have changed, or will the years melt away and be irrelevant?

But enough of reveries. I have only to negotiate Mem Drive safely — no small feat to be sure — and there will be no more time for quiet reflection. Already, I feel energized, stimulated, excited. A thousand other distractions competed for my time and attention this week, but whatever force it is that drew me here the first time, draws me in again. Tonight shall ever be a memory that will never die, ye sons of MIT. Welcome home!

Published in MIT Class of 1968 Reunion Yearbook, 1993.

Last updated: January 2006


Manned Spaceflight Continues. Really.

According to The Baltimore Sun, the Naval Academy has produced more astronauts than any other institution. This is a cool thing, and I’m glad they’re telling people about it.

In the same article, however, I feel like they are giving people the wrong impression about the space program. They write, “While there are no plans for manned U.S. space flights any time soon… NASA continues to train new astronauts, and the academy expects to continue providing candidates.” This makes it sound like all the astronauts are all grounded. Wrong! They just aren’t using American spacecraft for their manned missions.

According to MIT, the civilian institution that has produced the most astronauts, American astronaut Christopher Cassidy will join two Russian cosmonauts on a mission to the International Space Station (ISS) on March 28.  The team will join three astronauts, including one American, waiting for them on the International Space Station.

That sounds like TWO manned missions to me.

Even if one of our astronauts is hitching a ride on somebody else’s spacecraft.



Books That Would Make Cool Movies or Mini-Series

  • Guns of the South (long book; mini-series recommended)
  • Magic Street
  • Dies the Fire (many books; mini series or TV series recommended)
  • Movies made since I first wrote this post:

  • World War Z (I would like to pretend this movie never existed and have somebody make the *real* WWZ, which would be a documentary-style, 10-years-after-the-war, underground after action report. Just like the book.)
  • Ender’s Game (might have been better as an animated production the kids are supposed to be really YOUNG; the whole Enderverse could make for an amazing SciFi animated series…)


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Ready for tomorrow!

Bookend for my earlier photo!

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