Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
NASA Moon Space

NASA Has the Lost Tapes 256

Posted by kdawson
from the we-know-what-you-did-on-that-satellite dept.
The Shuttle launch may have been delayed by two days, but NASA has better news to report. caffiend666 writes "As speculated a few weeks ago, NASA has found and is starting to restore the lost Apollo 11 tapes. A Briefing will be held July 16th at the Newseum in Washington to 'release greatly improved video imagery from the July 1969 live broadcast of the Apollo 11 moonwalk... The original signals were recorded on high quality slow-scan TV (SSTV) tapes. What was released to the TV networks was reduced to lower quality commercial TV standards.'"
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

NASA Has the Lost Tapes

Comments Filter:
  • Excellent! I wonder if there's any evidence of UFOs. Glad they were able to grab the images off the tape, and I look forward to looking at it, and meeting our new alien overlords.
    • by dzfoo (772245) on Tuesday July 14, 2009 @05:04AM (#28688307)

      No, these are just the "Special Edition" version of the faked moon landing tapes. It was "produced" by Lucas Films, in collaboration with NASA, and contain newly added footage and CGI-enhanced visuals.

      They look great, but some have already complained that the new tapes show Buzz Aldrin touching the surface first, which completely changes the character and motivation of the scene.

              -dZ.

      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by Chris Burke (6130)

        They look great, but some have already complained that the new tapes show Buzz Aldrin touching the surface first, which completely changes the character and motivation of the scene.

        I can accept that, but what really ruined the tapes for me was the new extended musical sequence.

  • actually now go around and start yelling at the top of our lungs "THEY FOUND THE TAPES!!!!!"

  • Headline (Score:5, Funny)

    by Adrian Lopez (2615) on Monday July 13, 2009 @07:37PM (#28684859) Homepage

    Initially I thought the headline read "Nasa Has Lost the Tapes", and I almost believed it. "What? Already? They lost them again? Those idiots! ... oh wait."

    • by mrbcs (737902)
      Silly me, I thought they were talking about the Nixon Watergate tapes... I was wondering... how the hell did they find them?
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by C18H27NO3 (1282172)
      Interesting, I read it that way and thought they lost them again, as well. Dang, we must have tumors.
  • "We've lost the tapes." "No, sir, we've found the tapes after all."

  • Lost Tapes (Score:5, Funny)

    by retech (1228598) on Monday July 13, 2009 @07:43PM (#28684911)
    After the 2nd season, I found it boring. And honestly NASA, tapes? Use a dvr if you're going to record Lost.
    • Wasn't the second season where Hurley had flashbacks all the time? I mean I know he looks like a fat hippy, but really... That's just not politically correct, guys.

      And I still don't know what that frigging black smoke was!! God damn it, that show irritated the shit out of me...
  • Moonwalk? (Score:2, Funny)

    by phunster (701222)

    Clearly the first moonwalk was done by Michael Jackson, we saw it live on television

  • Glad to hear that (Score:5, Insightful)

    by juanergie (909157) <superjuanelo@gmail.com> on Monday July 13, 2009 @07:46PM (#28684947) Homepage Journal

    but why do they find the lunar tapes a few days before the 40th celebration of the Lunar mission (Apollo 11).

    Is this a coincidence or PR?

    • Re:Glad to hear that (Score:5, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday July 13, 2009 @08:21PM (#28685167)

      Coincidence. The search kicked off at least seven years ago [honeysucklecreek.net], when an ex-Honeysuckle Creek employee discovered an old tape in his garage. It was sent for analysis, in the hope that high resolution video of the Apollo 11 landing could be recovered. The tape turned out not to be of the moon landing. It did prompt people to ask "what happened to the originals", and kicked off a serious search. It turned out that NASA has misplaced their own copies.

      Copies of the telemetry tapes (hundreds of them) were eventually discovered in the basement of the Physics building at Curtin University, Perth, Australia. They had been placed in the Uni's care by an Australian scientist (Brian O'Brien) who had run an Apollo experiment. He had the tapes as a record of the data from his own experiment, but by luck the telemetry stream includes everything, including the video. It turns out that Curtin Uni thought they weren't that important, on the basis that if they were important, NASA would have already had copies.

    • by initialE (758110)

      NASA _needs_ a good PR department, especially since they have to fight for budget dollars. They don't have a special interests group to lobby for science after all.

  • Nice Title (Score:2, Insightful)

    by basementman (1475159)
    How about "NASA has Found the Lost Tapes"? Right now the title tells me that NASA is in ownership of the tapes, but just can't find them.
    • by Lunatrik (1136121)
      This is just a confirmation of an earlier story that they *might* have the tapes: http://science.slashdot.org/story/09/06/28/186245/Has-NASA-Found-the-Lost-Moon-Tapes [slashdot.org]
    • by syousef (465911)

      How about "NASA has Found the Lost Tapes"? Right now the title tells me that NASA is in ownership of the tapes, but just can't find them.

      Well if you're going to be pedantic, on slashdot the correct title would be "NASA can haz Lost Tapes pleaz?"

  • I tried to go once, but it turned out that the tickets are $19 bucks.
    Is it worth the price?

    • by ahecht (567934)
      If you like news, yes. If you think the $19 bucks is high, just visit 4 of the Smithsonian museums (some of the best museums in the world) first, and since they're free your average admission is just $4.
    • Well, it does bring up the interesting question of why they're not doing it at the publicly-funded Smithsonian Air & Space museum across the street.

  • by Hurricane78 (562437) <deleted@slashd[ ]org ['ot.' in gap]> on Monday July 13, 2009 @08:00PM (#28685045)

    Now even this great movie of fiction gets a remake? Or will it just be a weak director's cut, to prepare for the lauch of the sequel "Mars mission"?

    I hope it will have better props this time. They were pretty unrealistic, and clearly retouched (or 'shopped in 2009 speak) in that old movie.

    • by Lunzo (1065904)
      It's not any different from the original. Buzz won't land first in this one. They're just re-releasing it in high definition.
  • Exciting News (Score:2, Interesting)

    by derspankster (1081309)
    I am especially excited about these tapes because I lived through the first moon landing. I'll never forget where I watched it. In a motel room in St. Louis with the girl (at that time) of my dreams.
  • by sir_eccles (1235902) on Monday July 13, 2009 @08:04PM (#28685069)

    No, it won't convince any of the idiots who think we never landed on the moon. No amount of evidence ever will.

    • by The_mad_linguist (1019680) on Monday July 13, 2009 @10:46PM (#28686233)

      Oh, we definitely landed on the moon, just not when NASA claimed.

      Apollo 13 was the only mission to actually get there.

      • No no no, I distinctly remember Bruce Willis went there once with his geology buddies.

        What's it like to not have your moon, America? Our European moon is lovely. It's a shame God wanted your race destroyed by throwing your moon at you.

        Sincerely,
        Every American citizen who thinks the Simpsons is real.
  • by PPH (736903) on Monday July 13, 2009 @08:07PM (#28685103)

    ... release of the high resolution version until the Blu-Ray/HD-DVD format issue was settled.

  • by Palestrina (715471) * on Monday July 13, 2009 @08:12PM (#28685123) Homepage
    Just wait six months and they'll have the special director's edition EVD with 10 extra minutes and a "making of" featurette.
  • by mjallison (665213) on Monday July 13, 2009 @08:21PM (#28685169)
    NASA is under orders to retain all data from planetary missions, including lunar missions. Once the data as been recovered, what are NASA's plans to archive and prevent the data from being lost over the next 40, or 400 years? How will they plan on making the data available to general public?
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Spacejock (727523)
      Hiding it in the basement of a university in the most remote capital city on the planet seems to work. Unless the Vogons turn up.
      • by spinkham (56603)

        PROSSER: The plans were on display--

        ARTHUR: On display? I had to go down to the cellar to find them!

        PROSSER: That's the display department!

        ARTHUR: With a flashlight.

        PROSSER: The lights had probably gone out.

        ARTHUR: So had the stairs.

        PROSSER: But you found the notice, didn't you?

        ARTHUR: Yes, I did. It was "on display" in the bottom of a locked filing cabinet stuck in a disused lavatory with a sign on the door saying, "Beware of the Leopard."

    • Once the data as been recovered, what are NASA's plans to archive and prevent the data from being lost over the next 40, or 400 years? How will they plan on making the data available to general public?

      I don't know.

      (sorry, your comment just looked really interrogative)

  • by curmudgeon99 (1040054) on Monday July 13, 2009 @08:24PM (#28685189)

    This is one nice and juicy little factoid. Consider how much mythology lives around these hidden tapes. There was no way for Nixon to be implicated in their tampering...

    It's a neat mythology: if you believe the Moon Landing was faked, a hoax, then the soon-to-come high-def photos of the moon should answer that by showing the trash we left behind and that should still be there, the Lunar Landers. And if the landings are proven by the images to have actually occurred, then those same people can migrate to the idea that alien presences on the Moon were airbrushed out. Terrible tragedy it is for NASA that so many of their moon photos have obvious smudge marks over certain details. It would be nice to find out if those were alien ruins, waving aliens or just machine malfunctions

    • by readin (838620) on Monday July 13, 2009 @08:55PM (#28685359)

      It's a neat mythology: if you believe the Moon Landing was faked, a hoax, then the soon-to-come high-def photos of the moon should answer that by showing the trash we left behind and that should still be there, the Lunar Landers.

      If you believe the landing was faked, then the fact that the high-res tapes were found only after sophisticated digital photo-shop techniques were developed helps cement your belief.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Tablizer (95088)

      if you believe the Moon Landing was faked, a hoax, then the soon-to-come high-def photos of the moon should answer that...

      The "high definition" is relative. Later Apollo's had much better resolution, largely because they took a movie camera to the moon and brought it back to be developed rather than send live TV alone. The Apollo 11 footage is primarily of historical significance, being the first. Later missions also used color TV, unlike 11's B&W (although Apollo 12 accidentally ruined their TV camera

  • by Daimanta (1140543) on Monday July 13, 2009 @08:25PM (#28685193) Journal

    NASA doesn't have any lost tapes. If they have found them, they are by definition not lost anymore. I bet there are dozens of tapes that are lost because nobody knows their location but these tapes are not one of them. Correct headline would be "NASA has the found tapes". Sounds redundant? In the human mind that may be the case but if you think about it long enough, you can only come to this conclusion. Being lost is quite a fleeting and interesting feature and has no doubt been studied by filosophers around the ages.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Dr. Eggman (932300)
      Lost is not being used as an adjective anymore in this statement. Lost is now being used as an identifier, a name for, the tapes. The only purpose of calling them the lost tapes is to differentiate them from the other tapes they previously had. Making the headline "NASA has the found tapes" makes the statement more confusing and the title "NASA has found the tapes" would be equivalent to the current title.

      Of course, assuming the identifier 'Lost' is sufficient (given the context) is just leaving this story
      • Lost is not being used as an adjective anymore in this statement. Lost is now being used as an identifier, a name for, the tapes. The only purpose of calling them the lost tapes is to differentiate them from the other tapes they previously had.

        And you know what, this is all completely obvious to anyone who never completed grade school. There's something about how grammar is first taught in elementary and junior school that leads to the kind of delayed-onset petulant pedanticism where someone regaining a "lost tape" is cited as logically inconsistent.

        Any normal person makes the map from "lost tape" to "tape that was lost" a hundred times a day in the course of normal social relationships. Even people not regarded as representing the fat part of

    • "Being lost is quite a fleeting and interesting feature and has no doubt been studied by filosophers around the ages."
      I'm not a philosopher, but it seems to me that being lost is not so fleeting at all.

      For example, if I misplace my keys, I could claim they are 'lost'. I could search for 10 seconds and find them, or I could search all week, or a month, or even a year before finding them. If I misplaced them well enough, I might -never- find them and they will be, forever, lost. Even if somebody else finds

      • by jra (5600)

        Legally, your keys are not "lost", they are "mislaid".

        Things which are lost can become the property of a finder; things which are merely mislaid cannot. The difference is *whether they pass out of your personal control knowingly or not*. If you put your keys down, and can't remember where, or don't remember to take them, you've mislaid them. If they fall out of your pocket, they're lost.

        A good example of this: if you find an iPod in a train seat, you can probably make a case for keeping it, legally. If

    • If they had decent filosophers to organise and index the records, they'd not have lost the tapes.
  • by necro81 (917438) on Monday July 13, 2009 @08:46PM (#28685305) Journal
    The NYTimes has devoted its Tuesday Science section [nytimes.com] to the Apollo 11 anniversary. A feature piece tries to convey just what it was like [nytimes.com] that summer of '69, and the landing's backdrop of the Cold War. Another tries to list some of the impacts on popular culture of the time [nytimes.com]. Yet another tries to compare the Apollo effort to what it'll take to get back to the Moon and on to Mars [nytimes.com].

    Yes, there is also a piece on the hoax-spinners [nytimes.com].
  • It's not clear to me from the press release if these are really the lost slow scan tapes, or just a really good restoration from 40 year-old tapes of the broadcast, which still suffered from the limited analog conversion problems of that era.
  • As speculated a few weeks ago, NASA has found and is starting to redact the lost Apollo 11 tapes.

    There, fixed that for ya.

  • by flux4 (157463) on Monday July 13, 2009 @08:59PM (#28685381) Homepage

    ...here [wired.com]. Finding the tapes seemed nearly impossible at the time (2007) - the old reel-to-reel machines were dead, whole warehouses were being closed, and the people who were actually driving the recovery effort were mostly Apollo-class themselves - well into their golden years. It reminded me of some of the Library of Congress horror stories, only more desperate and with better special effects. If they do have the footage and can actually decode it, this is an amazing find - I wasn't holding out much hope.

    Another cool site is Colin Mackellar's Honeysuckle Creek Tribute Site [honeysucklecreek.net]. Tons of info on the recording, the differences in quality, etc.

    Really good news.

  • At WWDC this year (the Apple developer conference) they had a lunch speaker whose whole job was recovering video from tapes exactly like these. The resolution you can get from them is amazing, they are equivalent (or perhaps surpass) modern HD video cameras. One example was comparing a video pass over the moon to the same are taken with 35mm film, the result wasn't even close - the recovered video offered far more detail.

    I am really looking forward to the footage from this.

    • Are you serious? Apollo Lunar Television Camera Operations Manual clearly states that the "smallest detail observable is 1/500 of scene's vertical dimension and 1/650 of scene's horizontal dimension', as limited by the vidicon tube that was used. How is this supposed to compete with HD? This is on par with SD or slightly below, and furthermore, the more commonly used "faster" mode had even lower resolution (but it had 10 fps instead of 0.6 fps - they don't call it Slow Scan TV for nothing).
  • Is that this is pretty close to the only video tape we're *going* to see:

    if any of the networks are planning anything for the anniversary, they're doing an exceptional job keeping it under wraps.

    Damnit; I wish Uncle Walter wasn't sick. He'd just show up and say "let's go", and who at CBS is gonna tell him "No"? They'll just assign him a camera crew and buy him plane tickets.

  • I've been reading about these found tapes for weeks, post the youtube link already!

I am not now, nor have I ever been, a member of the demigodic party. -- Dennis Ritchie

Working...