NASA scientists faced 20 seconds of dread before Mars rover triumph

Peter Ilott hugs fellow engineer Ann Devereaux as they celebrate the Mars science rover Curiosity’s successful landing on Monday night.
(Brian van der Brug/Reuters)


August 7, 2012 – Globe and Mail

Barely two minutes before an enormous, sophisticated space robot touched down on Mars, Peter Ilott spent 20 seconds consumed with dread, convinced the entire mission had been lost.

As he monitored NASA’s communications link with the rover Curiosity, he and a colleague sitting beside him at Mission Control noticed a fatal signal coming through, indicating a failure substantial enough to cripple the rover and derail a $2.5-billion mission eight years in the making.

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Telcos in talks with Ottawa to shape Internet ‘spy’ bill: documents

Sean Kilpatrick/The Canadian Press

Friday, June 29, 2012 – Globe and Mail


Public Safety Canada has been in close consultation with telecommunication companies over the logistics of Ottawa’s so-called Internet “snoop and spy” legislation – talks that dealt with who will shoulder the costs of pricey “intercept capabilities,” and whether it will even be feasible to monitor user behaviour in an increasingly complex “cloud-computing” environment.

The reams of e-mails, meeting and teleconference agendas, obtained by The Globe and Mail through an access to information request, indicate the talks extended more than a year prior to the government tabling its online surveillance bill in February.

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