Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Archives gones wild! #6

The good folks over at the Project Apollo Archive, have once again updated their images gallery by adding some new scans of the Apollo 7 film magazines. There's some pretty neat shots of the Saturn's upper stage in orbit, worth checking them out :-) Another gallery to check-out once in a while is the one for the ISS, where they have uploaded a rather nice picture taken during the lastest EVA and which shows the Harmony module in it's definitive location:

On the Orbiter's addon front, I finaly completed Sunday my rework of our attachment handling and resumed working on the flow framework, which I'm hoping to wrap-up soon ...

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Thursday, November 22, 2007

If it ain't broke, don't fix it ...

Last week, I decided that it was time for me to revisit our vessel attachment handling. The main reason for such a risky endeavor was to accommodate for new capabilities which I had been including in our Addon Development Kit (ADK). Needless to said, what we had before was sort of working (as demonstrated in our October Sky work) and right now it's not working anymore (well sort of) ... Why fix something that ain't broke, right? Anyhow, I'm hoping to solve the last mysterious issue(s) soon ...

You may have noticed that I'm now using a different acronym, ADK, for what I used to call our in-house Orbiter's SDK. Since it sole purpose is to help creating addons, it didn't make much sense to call it a Software Development Kit ... 9_9


Monday, November 19, 2007

M.I.T material?

If I were to announce my parents that I'm now attending a course at M.I.T, they will no doubt be very surprised, knowing quite well how bad my grads were in Mathematics and Physics. In fact, they will not even believe me! And they will be right (of course) since I'm no M.I.T material. However, thanks to their OpenCourseWare initiative, it is now possible for folks like myself to attend lectures and pretends to be among the smart people in the audience .. albeit remotely thanks to a Internet video feed. Lately, I have been following a series of lectures on the Space Shuttle's Systems from 2005, which I found rather interesting even if some of the contents is (a lot) over my head.

Check out this link for a list of all the good stuff offered on Aeronautics and Astronautics.


Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Project management for (a) Dummy

Oh yeah I'm such a dummy when it come to project management! And I'm not talking here of the full scope of project management with cost and people management! So really, managing our project should really be easier than the real thing ... or so you will think. Alas I'm a bit challenged in that department so things have been a bit chaotic ... which party explain the numerous delays in our project. Since we know have increased the team size to 4 (Said hello to our newest recruit GncDude!), it is more than ever important that we get a bit more organized ...

Partner-in crime Castorp posted yesterday a little teaser on the Orbiter's forum, in response to someone asking for some hint on what we are working on these days. Let see if anybody reading this blog can correctly guess what this is:

Feel free to use the Comments system to post your guess :-)


Thursday, November 08, 2007

STS-ified (once again)

Since I switched back to the space obsession a bit more than a week ago, I had been followed the STS-120 mission with increasing interest since he launched on October 23rd. My wife could easily attest that I'm once again a space addict, since I had NASA TV streaming on my computer non-stop in the evenings even thought there wasn't much happening, but I can't seems to get enough of this marvelous view of the Earth from LEO which are broadcasted LIVE during the missions! Anyhow, since the mission ended yesterday (yep, I watched the de-orbit and landing LIVE), I'll have to wait a few weeks before I can have some more of these views. BTW, I found these views (and associated audio background) very motivating when working on our addons!

Partner in crime, Kerameya, sent me the other day a link to another member of the Blogosphere I had not heard of yet, Captain David. That fellow is entertaining an effort quite similar to ours (but without the Orbiter's addons) but focusing mainly on Vladimir Chelomei work (OKB-52). Since our team is mostly focusing on Sergey Korolyov's creations (OKB-1), I guess that make him and us .. well, rivals ;-)


Monday, November 05, 2007

Help wanted, apply within.

We're looking to expand our "OctoberSky" team with the addition of a "Scientific Adviser". What this means is that we'd like to bring on-board someone with a strong scientific and technical background who has a general proficiency/competency in math, physics, and engineering, and who would be interested in putting his or her knowledge to good and fun use in our historically-oriented projects. Participation will include:

- Technical subjects support
- Algorithm R&D
- Alpha/Beta testing

OctoberSky is an ongoing and quite active project working on a series of addons (NASSP style) for Orbiter to represent early Soviet space technology with the greatest historical and technical accuracy we can attain to.

If interested, then please apply detailing your background and qualifications. While we certainly have lots of fun in this project, we are putting a lot of time and effort into it and so are really looking for a serious-minded individual willing to make what essentially will be a long-term commitment.