Visit SpaceCampUtah.org to learn more about the Space Education Centers in Utah. Visit SpaceGuard.org and ProjectVoyager.org for information on joining a simulator based school space and science club.

Sunday, August 20, 2017

USS Voyager Field Tests the New Thorium Starship Simulator Controls. Looking Good! The Voyager's Isolinear Chip Assembly Team Hard at Work. Meet Jensen, the Voyager's Newest Supervisor. Space News. Theater Imaginarium.

Saturday, August 19, 2017, saw the first roll out and debugging of the new Thorium starship simulator controls created by long-time Space Center supporter, fan, volunteer, flight director, programmer Alex Anderson.  

Alex reviewing his code during the test run of Thorium on the USS Voyager at Renaissance Academy

The Voyager's Jensen Caldwell and Asst. Director Isaac Ostler in the Voyager's Control Room trying to keep up with Alex's demands.  There was a lot of "Send This" and "Push That" along with "Can you see...." and "I'm not seeing".


Isaac was doing three things at once. Typical for this wunderkind. 
The Voyager launched with Thorium for a quick tour of the solar system.  Alex stayed pretty much on the bridge issuing commands and logging results.  Isaac and Jensen did their best to keep up in the Control Room. This was their first time working with Thorium so there was a learning curve.  

Assisting Alex was his wife Crystal and long time friend and associate, Matt Ricks.  Matt is a person you want as a friend. He knows a lot about everything and is always willing to help.  

Tex spent most of the mission in the engine room struggling with confusion, the kind that comes from being introduced to something new. He was heard murmuring something about old dogs and new tricks by those unlucky enough to be on duty that afternoon.

Of course, there were issues; when aren't there with a new set of controls?  Overall, the test went better than expected.  The ship circled around Pluto and made it back to Earth in time for the Voyager's 3:00 P.M. private mission.  

Take a moment and enjoy seeing Thorium at work on the USS Voyager.

Mr. Williamson



The USS Voyager's Isolinear Chip Assembly Team Hard at Work 

Testing the new Thorium Starship Controls wasn't the only thing on the Voyager's agenda yesterday.  The ship's engineering department was busy at work soldering and assembling the ship's computer boards for the new isolinear chip module nearly ready to be installed in the simulator.  

Affan, Matt Ricks, and Isaac Ostler at work on the computer boards

Gibberish decorated the Briefing Room's white board.  It looked important so I took a picture. I could have asked Affan what it all meant, but I didn't want to appear ignorant.

Binary code appeared behind Matt Ricks on the opposite side of the white board. I think it translates to "Work Hard to Make a Better Tomorrow!"  Perhaps another translation is more accurate. "Job Satisfaction is Reward Enough when in the Service of the Voyager".  Perhaps in reference to the fact that the day's assembly was voluntary.   

There were lots of these around. I mistook them for refreshments.  A mistake only made once.

This is where the finished boards were going. Every board a labor of love and burned fingers.
Welcome Jensen Caldwell to Gainful Employment Aboard the USS Voyager

 

The young man in black on the receiving end of Isaac's exuberant enthusiasm is Jensen Caldwell.  Jensen is a junior at UCAS in Orem, Utah and a former Renaissance Academy student.  "Having Jensen on board really classes up the organization," I said out loud so I could have a quote to go along with the story.

Jensen started volunteering on a regular basis in December. Isaac was immediately impressed with his work and insisted Jensen be put on payroll.  I held out as long as I could before approving the promotion because that's just what bosses do.  In the end, Jensen's hard work, enthusiasm, punctuality, work habits, intelligence, and patience (necessary when working with the Voyager's management) won the day.   


Jensen readying the Voyager's crew for their long walk to the bridge

Jensen worked his first paid mission on Saturday.  It was a baptism by fire into the life of a space center employee.  The group showed up with a crew of 14. The Voyager takes 11 max on private missions.  A choice had to be made. Would Isaac take bridge supervisor or would it be Jensen, the new hire?  Jensen lost the debate. Isaac said something about 'pecking order'. Jensen spent the entire two hours dealing with a gaggle of younglings all needing his attention and a very demanding control room staff.  

Welcome to the Starship Voyager Jensen. We hope your time onboard will be rewarding and beneficial for you and the ship.  Remember, we live to serve the ship.  

Mr. W.  

Space News
By Mark Daymont
Spacerubble.blogspot.com


ISS: Dragon Arrives and Russians Take a Walk



SpaceX Dragon resupply cargo vessel orbiting Earth and about to dock with the ISS. NASA pic.

SpaceX made another great launch last Monday, August 14th. The Falcon 9 rocket lifted the Dragon cargo spacecraft into orbit, and then flew back to Earth for a soft landing back at Cape Canaveral. The Dragon carried thousands of pounds of supplies and experiments for the crew on Expedition 52 in the International Space Station. 


NASA graphic of the current spacecraft locations on the ISS.

After a two day "chase" the Dragon spacecraft caught up to the ISS and maneuvered into a capture position. Astronauts Jack Fischer and Paulo Nespoli used the robotic arm to grab the capture point and guide the craft to its docking adapter. Eventually, the spacecraft was secured at the new Common Berthing Mechanism (CBM) on the US Harmony module. Dragon will remain at the station for unloading, and then reloading of items to return to Earth in September.


Cosmonauts Fyodor Yurchkhin (L) and Sergey Ryazanskiy (R) preparing to exit.

On Thursday, August 17, Russian cosmonauts conducted an EVA to launch satellites and bring samples back inside. Expedition 53 commander Fyodor Yurchikhin and flight engineer Sergey Ryazanskiy left the Russian Pirs module for a seven-hour spacewalk. They launched five nanosatellites that had been stored outside the station from a previous supply mission. One of the satellites was to test 3-D printed materials, while several others were commemorative or experimented with communications.

Theater Imaginarium
The best gifs of the week edited for a gentler audience



Saturday, August 19, 2017

Blast From the Past. Historical Posts from the Christa McAuliffe Space Education Center. The Falcon Simulator Opens for its First Overnight Camp. A Report on the Falcon's First Overnight Mission. Odyssey Open on Saturday Evenings. Promotions to Supervisors. Help with Summer Flyers. Magellan First Pass-offs. Home Simulators. Problem on the Overnight Camp.

People Mentioned in Today's Historical Posts:
Mark Daymont, Bill Schuler, Kyle Herring, David Merrell, Aaron Yeager, Kevin Anderson, Corey McGarr, Joe Story, Richard Orcutt, Wesley Moss, Brady Young, Bryson Lystrup, Brad Cummings, Mitch Comfort, Chuck Heaton, Tanner Edwards, 
Brandon Cambell, Josh Webb, Stephen Porter, Landon Hemsley, Bryce Redd, Travis Masterson, Rio Downs, Soren Seibach, Chase Wooton, James Porter, Matt Long, McKay E., Jamie Catlett, Matt Long.

Feb. 2, 2001
The Falcon Simulator Opens for its First Overnight Camp.
People Mentioned:  Mark Daymont, Bill Schuler, Kyle Herring, David Merrell, Randy Jepperson
Hello Troops!
I want to take a minute and thank the following people for working above and beyond the call of duty to meet today's deadline of getting the Falcon up and running as a Starship. I thought it wouldn't get done but I was wrong. This great Falcon team was composed of:

1. Mark Daymont
2. Bill Schuler
3. Kyle Herring
4. David Merrell 

The Falcon will open this overnighter as a spaceship operating in an earlier time period than our Federation. One thing cool about the design is the use of both starlab domes. One dome will house the bridge of the ship and the other a crew lounge (also a great way to sneak aliens into the ship - Ah what would we do without our aliens!)  The Falcon will use modified Odyssey controls running on Macs connected to the PC monitors. It is really quite ingenious the way it has been set up.

Once again, this Center is what it is today because of the dedicated effort of so many people giving their time and talent to this educational adventure.

You gentleman that met the deadline please accept my electronic PAT ON THE BACK for a job well done!

Mr. Williamson

Falcon Ideas
by Randy Jepperson

People Mentioned:  Mark Daymont, Bill Schuler, Randy Jepperson

1. I think that you should have Mark and Bill hook up the Falcon.
2. Randy [he's speaking about himself] shouldn't have to roll up the planetariums after the mission.
3. You should have more cups.
4. Fix the Falcon so it says the same names like for the 2nd chair how it says torpedoes and on theirs, It also says missiles.

Randy Jepperson

February 4, 2001
A Report on the Falcon's First Overnight Mission
People Mention:  Mark Daymont, Bill Schuler, Kyle Herring, David Merrell

Hello Troops,
I'm glad to announce that the Falcon opened for business as a real, fully operation, simulator at the Christa McAuliffe Space Education Center Friday evening, February 2, 2001.

The staff worked on it to the bitter end. The last cables were attached and last switches thrown minutes before the crew arrived for duty.  An hour before the overnighter I received word that the TV monitor (View screen) in the Falcon was shot. That was
no suprise considering the TV was a gift from the US West Foundation in 1990. I found it in one of their (outdated) equipment storehouses, so even then it was old.  It was suggested that I rush down and purchase another TV. Instead I went home and brought down my bedroom 19 inch TV. It fit perfectly into the space; and with that, the last hurdle
was jumped.

The campers came into the gym for their before bed ice cream at 11:00 P.M.  I stood near the stage and listened as the campers shared mission experiences.  I listened for things like:

"That Falcon Sucked"
"That Falcon is so stupid - its inside two gray igloos."
"That Falcon is just a copy of the Odyssey"

I was pleasantly surprised when I heard just the opposite.

"That Falcon is the coolest Dude!"
"Our mission is Awesome!"

Those were just a few of the overwhelmingly upbeat comments from the first crew of the Falcon.

At the end of the overnight mission, the opinion surveys confirmed what we heard in the gym the night before. The Falcon's reviews were up there with the Voyager's, Magellan's, Odyssey's, and Galileo's. Our new simulator is officially a member of the Club.

Again, all of us in the egroup should take a minute to thank the team responsible for this success. 
Mark Daymont - Set Director of the Falcon for hours of extra time working on the Falcon and finally seeing the success of his labor. 
Mr. Herring, and Mr. Merrell for hours of extra work and late nights doing the wiring, computer programming, and networking. 
Mr. Schuler for a great video track to accompany the mission. 

I urge all Voyagers, Pioneers, and Blue Shirts to come and do a Falcon mission sometime to experience a new type of mission.

To all of you younger members of our Space Center family - this is an example of what you have to do to be recognized by any future employeer. The key to success and advancement is hard work. 

So, in conclusion, I am happy to proclaim the FALCON OPEN and SUCCESSFUL!

................That is all........

Mr. Williamson

February 4, 2001
The Odyssey is the First Simulator to Operate Saturday Evenings
People Mentioned:  Aaron Yeager, Kevin Anderson

Hello Troops,
The Odyssey is our first ship to set another first. Saturday evening saw the first regular Odyssey Saturday evening private mission.

Mr. Aaron Yeager has agreed to operate the Odyssey most Saturday evenings to pick up that Saturday evening crowd looking for a little fun and EdVenture at the Space
Center. 

The first mission went very well with Aaron Yeager as Flight Director and Kevin Anderson from the Pioneers at 2nd chair. The Odyssey is now open for private missions on Saturday evenings. Bring your group in and try one of Aaron's awesome missions. They are crowd pleasers.

..........That is all.......

Mr. Williamson

February 7, 2001
Overnight Camp Numbers to Increase. Several Pioneers are Advanced to Voyagers
People Mentioned: Corey McGarr, Joe Story, Richard Orcutt, Wesley Moss 

Hello Troops!

Because our overnight missions now include the Falcon, we are able to increase the number of volunteers on our overnight programs. Because of this, four Pioneers have been promoted to Voyagers based on their points and mission hours.

Congratulations to the following Pioneers, now Voyagers and eligible to work overnight camps!

1. Corey McGarr
2. Joe Story
3. Richard Orcutt
4. Wesley Moss

Thank you!
Mr. Williamson

February 16, 2001
Help Needed to Send Out Summer Camp Flyers.
People Mentioned:  Brady Young

Hello Troops!
Monday is Presidents Day, and of course no school.  Pioneers, Voyagers, and Staff, if you find yourselves with a few free hours on Monday morning from 10:00 A.M. to 1:00 P.M. please come to the Space Center and help Brady and I address envelopes. It is time to send out the summer flyer. the briefing room. We will listen to music, talk, have snacks, and eat pizza while we work. This is volunteer time so there is no money involved but who can put a price on good quality time spent with the Director of the Space Center. To volunteer you must meet the following qualifications:

1. You must have good handwriting!
2. You must be willing to address envelopes.
3. You must smile while doing it.
4. You must be willing to listen to my music.
5. You must be willing to eat snacks and pizza.

At 1:00 P.M. you can go to the gym for 1 hour and play war ball. Those that can't come to address envelopes, but still want to play warball, may come at 1:00 P.M.

If you can come and help out please let me know by voting in the poll in the egroup. Then I'll know how many pizza's to order.

Thanks Troops.

Mr. Williamson

February 18, 2001
The Magellan's First Two Pass-Offs
People Mention:  Chuck Heaton, Tanner Edwards

Congrats go to Chuck Heaton and Tanner Edwards for being the first two people to pass off stations in the Magellan. Mr. Heaton passed off second chair and Mr. Edwards passed off bridge. I am sure that both of them can admit it is not easy.

We look forward to many more attempts, by all of you, at passing off bridge and second chair.

Also just a side note....It looks like this Friday the Magellan can officially be called completed when it comes to programming. Kudos go to Mr. Soren Siebach with assistance from Mr. Stephen Porter. It has been a long road traveled, but the end is in sight and the results are very apparent and positive.

Another side note....thank you all for your continued support of the Magellan. A lot of working attitudes will change and have been changing now that the ship is up and
running in an efficient and effective manner. Here's to many more missions run successfully in the Magellan.

February 19, 2001
Bryson Lystrup Receives His Blue (Supervisor) Shirt
People Mentioned:  Bryson Lystrup

Hello Troops!
I'm happy to announce that Bryson Lystrup was promoted to Blue Shirt level today (February 19, 2001). The announcement was made during the summer flyer addressing session.

Bryson will celebrate a year as a Voyager on February 24th. All that know Bryson are familiar with his dedication and work habits, so making this announcement comes as no surprise to most other Voyagers.

Because Bryson was promoted to Blue Shirt, there will now be an opening in the Voyagers. I will announce the promotion soon. I base promotion decisions on the following criteria:

1. Points.
2. Stations passed.
3. Age
4. The length of Service as a volunteer.
5. The quality of volunteer work.
6. Working attitude - How well the volunteer treats our campers.
7. Recommendation from Green Shirt Flight Directors.

If you know Bryson and would like to send him a note of congratulations please do so.

Mr. Williamson 

February 19, 2001
Brenda Grant to Offer Acting Workshops at the Space Center
People Mentioned:  Brenda Grant

Attention Troops!

Brenda Grant, a teacher at Lehi Elementary, and a director of the Lehi Theater and good friend of the Space Center has agreed to conduct several acting workshops for the staff of the Space Center. This workshop is open to all Blue Shirts, Voyagers, and Pioneers. The first
workshop will be held Saturday, March 3rd from 3:00 P.M. to 5:00 P.M. The workshop will teach the basics of good acting and role playing.

Blue Shirts, the Center cannot pay you to come to the workshop, so attendance is not required BUT STRONGLY ENCOURAGED IF YOU KNOW WHAT I MEAN. Voyagers and Pioneers are also welcome to come (attendence will be recorded on your individual databases and will be used as another tool to evaluate your performance). 

This will be fun. A chance for all of us to learn to become better role players and impromptu actors. The Center is paying to have the workshop here. 

I've noticed that because so many of our missions require acting, it would be good for all to get better at it. This is something I feel strongly about.

Now, I also realize Saturday's are busy days and not everyone can come; but try. I appreciate those that will make the effort to come and take a few hours of their time to develop their characters. Those that do well in the class will be given the major acting roles in the upcoming summer stories.

If you can come please vote in the polls section of the egroup. 

Thank you.
Mr. Williamson


February 21, 2001

Help Needed with a Volunteer's Home Simulator, the USS Gondor.
People Mentioned:  Brad Cummings, Mitch Comfort

I was over at Brad Cumming's house today helping him set up his "space center in the closet" simulator (the USS Gondor, he calls it,) and there are several very important things that he lacks and that I cannot provide.

#1: He has 3 relatively old macs; a IICX, a Macintosh Classic II, and a Centris 610. However, he does not have any way to network these computers except by LocalTalk... therefore there is one odd computer that can't send anything anywhere. I know very little about setting up any sort of network with Macs, so if someone who knows a little about it can tell me what I need to do it, and everything setting up a small network would involve, I would appreciate it.

#2: No sensors. Brad has one stack that has a card labeled "Sensors," but all it has on it is a field to type in what you want to scan for, and a button named "Scan." I have tried and failed many times in my attempts to re-create the radar-looking thing that is used so often at the space center. Not to mention the fact that I only have one computer to work with, and it 
is a Macintosh Classic. If someone who knows the basic idea behind the sensors could share it with me I would appreciate it very much. I would appreciate it even more if I could have the word-for-word script(s) that make it work, but that is probably unnecessary, so I'd be just as happy if someone could give me enough info to figure it out for myself.

That's pretty much all the problems that can be fixed for the time being, since all the other problems are the result of a lack of funds. However, I have a problem of my own that I need help with... as I mentioned above, I have only a single Macintosh Classic at home, and that makes it pretty near impossible to test out and debug my stacks before I bring them over to 
Brad's house or to the space center, and then I don't have enough time to fix them. If anyone has a Macintosh Classic that they consider an obsolete piece of junk, and they'd like to make some money off of it instead of throwing it away, I'd just like to let them know that I will buy it off them for pretty much any reasonable price. E-mail me if you are interested.

Thanks to everyone who can help, and I apologize for making my e-mail a little bit longer than it probably needed to be,

-Mitch Comfort

Hello,

Many of us have created and I am sure all have at least thought of 
creating our own simulator. If you have created your own I want to know. The reason you ask(there is a good one), well because I am thinking of forming some sort of organization where we can talk about our "simulators" with one another and swap ideas and such. Do you like this idea. We could call it something lik...um ...umm ... well the name doesn't matter. I will make a poll to make things easier. Even if you think the group idea is stupid please tell me about your simulator
if you have one.

Here is a little about mine (oh not again, does he ever stop)

Name: U.S.S Gondor(Named after the city in the Lord of the Rings)

Staffers:
Brad Cummings (I made I should better be on the staff)
Mitch Comfort (He pretty much is now in charge of programming though I do some, I hope he doesn't mind me putting his name)
My little brothers(Bad actors but hey what can you expect for free labor)

Thanks to:

Mr. Williamson(Donation of computers and giver of inspiration)
Deseret Industries(They have made building a simulator with a minuscule budget much easier by selling computers for cheap cheap cheap!)

Well I am finally done(Whooo)

-Brad out


February 25, 2001

The Network Goes Down on an Overnighter. The Staff Step In to Save the Day!
People Mentioned:  Josh Webb, Stephen Porter, David Merrell

Hello Troops,
You've missed a very interesting overnight and Saturday program if you weren't on this weekend.

The Overnight Mission started without a hitch. 30 minutes into the program our first hint of potential problems - the certificates would not print. At 9:30 P.M. the second problem emerged like a tornado dropping out of a dark sky. The school wide network failed, crashing 
the Magellan and Odyssey (the Voyager, Falcon, and Galileo all have independent networks). While we did what we could to address the problem, the Magellan and Odyssey did what had to be done in that type of situation - PIRATE ATTACK AND LOTS OF THEM.

When you don't have a computer system, your story has to change very quickly. Talk about on the spot acting and problem solving. A special thanks to a great staff of volunteers and Blue Shirt who stepped in and kept the stories going while our techs did everything thing they could to solve the problem.
 
I noticed that the Odyssey kids were sitting in the Briefing Room while Mr. Merrell tried to get his network operational. Realizing the Odyssey doesn't have actors, I knew the Voyager had to step in and assist. I turned to Josh Webb and told him to get dressed as a Pirate.
In our Grand PooPah story, the pirates were in the process of taking the bridge. I told Josh to run into the Briefing Room and arrest the Odyssey crew. I hadn't a clue where I was going with the story but you do what you have to do to maintain the illusion of the mission. 

Josh was great - our best Blue Shirt by far. He has worked at the Center long enough to know what to do and HE CAN READ MY MIND TO SOME EXTENT!

Josh grabbed the Odyssey crew and led them to the Voyager bridge. I came up on the bridge to explain the appearance of the Odyssey crew to the Voyager. As I was walking up the steps, Josh looked at me with a look that asked "What are we going to do?" I told him to take the staff, go into the contol room and listen to what I was going to make up on the spot and their job was to roll with it and make it real.

I went up on the bridge. My mind was racing as to where this unexpected twist in the story was going to take us. 

"The Pirates have taken the ship" I said. "You are all going to be taken to the pirate ship and held!". I turned and said that the Orion was beaming them off right now. I trusted Josh and Stephen would be good enough to pull something off with 30 seconds advance notice.

We got to the stage and found Josh - as a pirate - beating on the poor Grand PooPah, played by Stephen Porter. They were excellent! The kids sat on the stage guarded by the pirates and watched as Josh interrogated Stephen. Josh then had Stephen led off to have his brain searched for clues about the transwarp coil. This led to the some of the kids escaping from the stage into the dark gym. David Merrell arrived saying the Odyssey was up and running again. The kids that escaped snuck up on Josh and stunned the pirates freeing the rest of the crew!

The kids ran to the Voyager and liberated the rest of the ship from the pirates

Success because of quick thinking and great impromptu acting by an experience group of staff. 

I'll see many of you at the acting workshop on Saturday. Be there if you can. This is what I'm talking about when I say that good acting is a necessity at the Space Center.

Mr. Williamson

February 28, 2001

Working on the Galileo is Fun!
People Mentioned:  Travis Masterson, Kyle Herring

To all those who think Galileo has got to be the worst to work on 
YOUR WRONG just because there are no acting parts(most of the time) dosn't mean its not fun to scare the carp out of them. The mission was so simple yet so complex that you found yourself trying to figure out how they would work it out. 

Kyle is an expert of taunting you. He made the captain nervous and shaky about his crew and not sure what to do. He'd blast up the music so it would add to the chaos well lets just say this try working on the move that's what you got to be able to do and take a blow from Kyle but keep calm.  Galileo is no beginners ship I'll tell you that

Travis Masterson(Kidmaster)

Gary Nuila Leaves for his Mission

Hello Troops,
Many of you may remember Gary Nuila from the old Blue Shirt staff.  I just received this from Gary and thought you may be interested in his latest news. 

And now Gary's Post.

Hello. 
This is a message for Mr. Williamson. I wasn't able to come and announce where I am going on my mission. Being that I'm leaving tommorrow I thought I had better just do it this way. I am going to the Uruguay, Montevideo mission. I am sorry that time didn't allow for
me to come in and announce this in person. I'll see you in 2,

Gary Nuila

New Policy for Training Supervisors (Blue Shirts)People Mentioned:  Josh Webb, Stephen Porter , Brady Young, Bryson Lystrup, Brandon Cambell, Randy Jepperson, Landon Hemsley, Bryce Redd, Rio Downs, Soren Seibach, Chase Whooton, James Porter, Charlie Heaton, Matt Long, McKay E., Jamie Catlett.

Hello Troops,
A new policy for training and team quality control will begin the first weekend of April. All Blue Shirt will be paired into teams and assigned to work every other weekend. Josh W. and Stephen P. are staff supervisors. Each supervisor will be in charge of either the Voyager
or the Magellan and all the Blue Shirts, Voyagers, and Pioneers that work in them. These ships have staff supervisors because of their size and the number of workers each requires. 

Each Team is divided into an A and B sub team. Each sub team rotates every 2 months to different ships. For Example

Team 1 
1A: Voyager
1B: Magellan
1C: Odyssey and Falcon.
The Galileo does not need a Blue Shirt.

Blue Shirt teams
Voyager - Magellan Supervisors: Josh W. Stephen P.

Team 1. (Weekends 1 and 3) 
A. Brady Y, Bryson L.
B. Brandon C., Randy J.
C. Landon H. Bryce R. 

Team 2 (Weekends 2 and 4)

A. Rio D., Soren S.
B. Chase W., James P.
C. Charlie H. Matthew L.

Substitute Blue Shirts:

McKay E.
Jamie

All blue shirts are required to have all stations passed by the end of March. Failure to pass all stations will put them into the Voyager Society until they have all their stations passed. It is up to all Blue Shirts to arrange enough time to train and get passed. 

Charlie, Landon, Bryce, and Matthew L. will become level 1 Blue Shirts once they have all stations passed. They are now in a position to move to Blue Shirt once they have an all station pass. 

If you have any questions please email them to me.

Thank you
Mr. Williamson


The Imaginarium