“What better occupation, really, than to spend the evening at the fireside with a book, with the wind beating on the windows and the lamp burning bright. Haven’t you ever happened to come across in a book some vague notion that you’ve had, some obscure idea that returns from afar and that seems to express completely your most subtle feelings?” ~ Gustave Flaubert

Not feeling great. Cold and lazy and completely uninspired. I should probably be in bed reading a book.

Instead of a post, I’m offering up NASA images that appeared on my tumblr dash today:

NASA on Tumblr, http://n-a-s-a.tumblr.com/

“When I dipt into the future far as human eye could see; | Saw the Vision of the world and all the wonder that would be.—” ~ Alfred Lord Tennyson, from “Locksley Hall”

                  

“We have your satellite if you want it back send 20 billion in Martian money. No funny business or you will never see it again.” ~ Seen on a hall wall at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Labs

It took me four tries to type in my password just because I kept tripping over the keys. Today is not the day to sit down for a writing session. Instead, enjoy the beautiful images that follow:

From My Modern Met

Not many people get to travel to outer space, but here, we can at least see what it looks like from amazing aerial perspectives. Landsat 5, a satellite that observed our planet for more than 29 years in space, will soon be ending it’s mission. Originally set to orbit Earth for three years, the satellite lived well beyond its intended means. But, a recently broken gyroscope has declared the end of the machine’s time in space.

It orbited Earth more than 150,000 times, capturing more than 2.5 million images of our world’s terrain. In honor of the mission’s end, here are a collection of Landsat 5’s best images of our planet. Landsat 7, which has been orbiting Earth since 1999, will remain overhead and Landsat 8 will be launched into space in February 2013.

Mergui Archipelago, Myanmar
Mount Elgon, Uganda-Kenya Border
Belcher Islands, Canada
Wabash and Ohio Rivers
Painted Desert, Arizona
Dhofar Region, Oman
Erg Iguidi, Algeria
Rhodes, Greece
New England
Lake Eyre, Australia

Okavango River, Botswana

Landsat website

Dies Pater

Such a cool gif set: Jupiter, the fifth planet:

From NASA:

Jupiter, the most massive planet in our solar system — with dozens of moons and an enormous magnetic field — forms a kind of miniature solar system. Jupiter does resemble a star in composition, but it did not grow big enough to ignite. The planet’s swirling cloud stripes are punctuated by massive storms such as the Great Red Spot, which has raged for hundreds of years.

Jupiter’s appearance is a tapestry of beautiful colors and atmospheric features. Most visible clouds are composed of ammonia. Water vapor exists deep below and can sometimes be seen through clear spots in the clouds. The planet’s “stripes” are dark belts and light zones created by strong east-west winds in Jupiter’s upper atmosphere.