Space porn: These images are (quite literally) out of this world
Tony Horwitz is the author of “Confederates in the Attic,” “Baghdad Without a Map” and “One for the Road.” He is also a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist who has worked as a war correspondent for the Wall Street Journal and as a staff writer for the New Yorker.
“Blue Latitudes” retraces Capt. James Cook’s three epic journeys in the 18th century, the last great voyages of discovery. When he embarked for the Pacific in 1768, a third of the globe remained blank. By the time he died in 1779, during a bloody clash in Hawaii, the map of the world was substantially complete. Cook explored more of the earth’s surface than anyone in history — sailing from the Arctic to the Antarctic, from Tahiti to Siberia, from Easter Island to the Great Barrier Reef — and introduced the West to an exotic world of taboo and tattoo, of cannibalism and ritual sex. Yet the impoverished farm boy, who broke the bounds of social class to become Britain’s greatest navigator, remains as mysterious today as the uncharted seas he sailed more than two centuries ago.
In “Blue Latitudes,” Horwitz sets off on his own voyage of discovery. Adventuring in Cook’s wake, he relives the captain’s journeys and explores their legacy in the far-flung lands Cook opened to the West. At sea, aboard a replica of Cook’s ship, he works atop a 100-foot mast, sleeps in a narrow hammock, and recaptures the rum-and-the-lash world of 18th century seafaring. On land, he meets native people — aboriginal and Aleut elders, Maori gang members, the king of Tonga — for whom Cook is alternately a heroic navigator and a villain who brought syphilis, guns and greed to the unspoiled Pacific.
Listen to an excerpt from “Blue Latitudes,” read by actor Daniel Gerroll, courtesy of Harper Audio.
NASA astronaut Mike Hopkins
On December 28, 2013, Expedition 38 crew member Mike Hopkins participating in the second of two space walks to replace a degraded pump module on the International Space Station. (NASA astronaut Rick Mastracchio is reflected in his helmet!)
The Soyuz TMA-10M
The Soyuz TMA-10M headed towards the International Space Station with crew members from Expedition 37 onboard.
40 years ago the Apollo 8 mission flew up to the moon, orbited it ten times and then returned to Earth. This picture was taken from that flight and shows the Earth as it seemingly rises in similar fashion to a sunrise.
Sunrise from Expedition 36
NASA Flight Engineer Karen L. Nyberg of Expedition 36 took this photo of the sun rising -- a sight they saw nearly 16 times per day due to the speed of the International Space Station's orbit around the earth.
A pair of NanoRacks CubeSats -- nanosattelite spacecrafts carrying experiments -- were launched by Expedition 38.