Mind Boggling

One definition.

Today, while sitting at my desk in an RV parked in the middle of Central Washington State farmland, I watched a live, full-color feed from outer space on my phone of the historic docking of a privately developed commercial spacecraft to the multi-government built International Space Station. Here’s a screen capture from my phone:

Dragon Docks with ISS

I am old enough to remember when the Apollo astronauts landed on the moon. It was 1969 and I was almost 8 years old. (Aw, come on, don’t do the math.) My mother made us stay up to watch it on the family TV — a big TV console that stood on the floor and required you to get up to change the channels because there was no remote control. The picture we saw of that historic moment looked like this:

Apollo 11 First Step

Do I even need to point out that my phone has more computing power than NASA had when it launched Apollo 11?

We’ve come a long, long way.

I call that mind-boggling.

6 thoughts on “Mind Boggling

  1. Lovely post. Same for me, except I don’t have the phone. And I didn’t get to see the live coverage of the moon landing in 1969 (was at summer camp, asleep, dammit). Aside from no remote control back then, there were roof antennas or indoor rabbit ears. And we had ghosting, sometimes vertical hold who go off, and the knobs *always* wound up somehow breaking. And with several hundred TV channels now available via digital cable, there’s actually less worth watching on TV now than back then.

  2. Maria, I sooo love this post. This summarizes not only how far we’ve developed as a civilization, but also your unique point of view. I was not watching this historic moment, but was instead streaming Mad Men via Netflix , appreciating the personal struggles of what some people endure to “get ahead” in life, to assert who they are, and claim what they want.

    • You realize that Mad Men is fiction, right?

      What’s mind-boggling to me is how far we’ve come just in my lifetime. Technology is amazing. But remember: it’s the desire of people to achieve — for any reason — that moves us forward.

    • It’s stranger than fiction. Mad Men is such an accurate depiction of repressed and unhappy people that it looks real!

      From where does the “desire of people to achieve” come? In my case, it comes from restless dissatisfaction. That’s what Mad Men is about.

      But it might have been more satisfying to watch progress in real life rather than in fiction.

What do you think?