[OT - semi] Mars Rover Animated Videos

I'm sure by now pretty much everyone has seen the animated videos that NASA put out, covering the launch, flight, landing and roving of the
current Mars mission. I, for one, consider this video to be one of NASA's best releases of this kind of material. It's superbly done. The segments which comprise the whole been used innumerable times on news media world wide.
There's a couple notes I'd like to pass along to folks regarding this video.
First, it was produced with a sound track. The launch/flight sequence uses Lenny Kravitz's "Fly Away" (lyrics at http://www.lyricsxp.com/lyrics/f/fly_away_lenny_kravitz.html ). The music and the lyrics go together with the video in the same superb manner as the video production itself. The second segment (approach and landing) uses Holst's "Mars" from The Planets, and is equally good. The third segment, I frankly can't recall the music, but it's a haunting electronic thing that fits very well with the rovers' exploring.
Now, the video is available from NASA for free. You can download it, and you can also receive it on tape from them (a benefit of their being a publically funded agency). Unfortunately, due to licensing agreements, you cannot obtain a copy of the video with the sound track. UNLESS, you are a K-12 educators. For them, it's available, and free for the asking. Not being a widely publicized thing, I don't have a link or email for this, but a little pushing on a local NASA PR/media contact person, and anyone with K-12 educator credentials should be able to get it.
The second factoid is regarding the credits. One name in the credits is the Mars rover mission director, as "technical consultant". The other name is that of a guy named "Dan Maas". He did the entire thing by himself, while serving as a summer intern student with NASA. He just so happens to have started a company for doing this sort of work.
I'm not posting that to advertise for him, but rather because I think that he's received far too little recognition for the excellent work. As his page says, the video, with 6 new minutes of material, will be included on NOVA's "Mars, Dead or Alive" on PBS, Jan. 4 and Jan 6.
You can watch (though not download) his work in Quicktime format from his website. The video is missing some portions from the original, and does not have the same soundtrack (no Lenny Kravitz) at http://www.maasdigital.com/gallery.html , but he put the same editing skills into it. Watch how the music from Holst matches the action.
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I got bootleg copies of these and you just cannoit beleive how well the Kravitz soundtrack fits, had to listen to it 4 times in a row to catch most of the nuances (like when he sings "out to the stars, the milky way, and even mars)
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On 5 Jan 2004 11:40:17 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com (Tater Schuld) wrote:
} } > First, it was produced with a sound track. The launch/flight sequence } > uses Lenny Kravitz's "Fly Away" (lyrics at } > http://www.lyricsxp.com/lyrics/f/fly_away_lenny_kravitz.html ). The } > music and the lyrics go together with the video in the same superb } > manner as the video production itself. The second segment (approach } > and landing) uses Holst's "Mars" from The Planets, and is equally } > good. The third segment, I frankly can't recall the music, but it's a } > haunting electronic thing that fits very well with the rovers' } > exploring. } } I got bootleg copies of these and you just cannoit beleive how well } the Kravitz soundtrack fits, had to listen to it 4 times in a row to } catch most of the nuances (like when he sings "out to the stars, the } milky way, and even mars)
That's my point. Not only did this guy do a superb job on the video, but he did just as good with matching up the sound track to the action. I wish they would have kept at least the Holst portion of the original soundtrack. IIRC, that's old enough to be public domain.
I don't know if anyone who caught the show noticed it: It aired at 8 PM EST. It included a shot of the first color picture from Spirit. That came through yesterday. They completed this show only 24 hours before air time.
More to the interest of us rocket surgeons is the problems they had with the test parachutes. They "squidded". I've never seen that happen before. Something to watch for in designing.
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