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I wept a little for Michael Collins today.  Old age, I know, and a good old age at that, but all those 'spacemen' are part of my childish belief in the future.  Such brave men, who readily admit to being little more than ballast.  You can fly all the drones you want on Mars.  No-one really cares.  Chaps doing it for real, now that's a different matter.

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Indeed! I saw him on a multi-part documentary on the Apollo program and not only did he come across as a man possessing The Right Stuff, but as a genuinely nice guy, full of life and enthusiasm and with a great line of self-deprecating humour.  Of all the former astronauts that were interviewed for the feature - and they had nearly all of them - Collins  came across as the one I would have most wanted to spend an evening with. He seemed fun. 

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I grew up with the Apollo program (that makes me quite old) and thought Collins' job just about the loneliest in the universe. Many decades on we still haven't been back.

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Apparently he quite enjoyed his time alone in the command capsule. There’s a difference between solitude and loneliness. 

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Remember that he (and later CM pilots*) had to train to bring the craft home alone. Thank goodness none of them had to do it.

*Strictly speaking this was also true for Apollo 9 and more so for 10.

Edited by at9
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8 hours ago, Shyheels said:

That would have been a truly dreadful journey

Just imagine how many untried things had to go perfectly for that mission to succeed!  

Edited by Bubba136

Being mentally comfortable in your own mind is the key to wearing heels in public.

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As a NASA scientist (MARS landers) in the 70's, I know just how little computing power they had to calculate things. It's amazing that every thing worked as well as it did.

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Posted (edited)

 Not to worry!  There was several pads of paper and a few pencils on board for use as back should those computers had failed! ;-)

 

Edited by Bubba136
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Being mentally comfortable in your own mind is the key to wearing heels in public.

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Imagine giving a slide rule to a youngster today.  They'd struggle to draw a straight line with it.

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