Weird crap in Mike’s place: Gemini 5 flight plan

Weird crap in Mike’s place: Gemini 5 flight plan

In the arena of space collecting there are many levels to handle the many different interests and bank accounts. The most cost effective are things such as patches from the various missions, photo or other swag commonly found in NASA gift shops or on the web. The more serious collectors opt for autographs from Apollo era astronauts, or even flown artifacts. Several online dealers advertise flown items such as small pieces of parachute material...

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Ms. Astronaut

Ms. Astronaut

Not too long ago I attended a talk by Stephan Pastis, the creator of one of my favorite comic strips: Pearls Before Swine. Of course he described the process of getting a strip selected for syndication (a process ultimately aided by Scott Adams), how many times he had to submit and so on. This reminded me of my own experience in that arena. Being a “child” of the 60’s…uh, not the bead wearing “peace, man!” slacker types, my sister filled that...

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Weird Shuttle Crap in Mike’s Place

Weird Shuttle Crap in Mike’s Place

The space shuttle’s cockpit layout would be instantly familiar to any airline pilot when it came to the many electro-mechanical displays that it used. With the “8-ball” attitude indicator and HSI, or Horizontal Situation Indicator, not to mention many other meters and gauges, the main control panel was gravid with intricate “old school” instruments. Starting in 1998 with Atlantis, the shuttles went through a period of cockpit upgrades to...

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Weird Crap in Mikes place

Weird Crap in Mikes place

Still more weird crap around Chez Mike. The most casual of space collectors go with the basics, that is, autographs of astronauts, mission patches, and maybe some of the paperweights that have small fragments of a document or insulation from one of the missions. The serious space collectors, the aging baby-boomers with a little extra cash in hand go after hardware. Leftover hardware or someone’s souvenirs collected by dad or grandparents who...

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Weird Crap in Mike’s Place: Twentieth Anniversary Mac

Weird Crap in Mike’s Place: Twentieth Anniversary Mac

It’s no secret that Apple has produced a number of oddball machines: the spasm-inducing Mac Portable, the original Color Mac, the eMate, and so on. Toss into this hodge-and-or-podge is the Twentieth Anniversary Mac, otherwise referred to as the “TAM.” The TAM was a boutique computer, designed by Sir Jony himself, and celebrated the 20th anniversary of Apple. Released in the spring of 1997, the TAM was initially priced at $7499, and was the...

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My First Computer – the DIGI-COMP 1

My First Computer – the DIGI-COMP 1

Oftimes those of the computer nerd persuasion like to talk about how they got hooked by these “thinking machines.” The “kids” may talk about their first Macbook Pro. Senior kids will poo-poo that and mention their Gateway 2000, Mac LC or even the Apple IIGS. Othermore grizzled veterans will shake their collective heads and whisper “amateurs” followed boasting about their Woz-signed Apple II, Commodore 64 (The Coleco Adam guys just slip quietly...

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