With the upcoming “In The Shadow Of The Moon”, the baby that is the birth of the Space Age is really just starting to scream it’s lungs out. If you thought that things had returned to “normal” (whatever that is) after the Moon mission madness had died down, then you’d be wrong. A thousand innocent eyed youngsters have been bought up believing that all we shot on the Moon were some grainy TV images that any two bit conspiracy theorist could weave into their latest pipe dream. But, for over 35 years there have been hi resolution video tapes sitting in the vaults of NASA, shamefully neglected while the world struggled and wrestled with the end of the Cold War. Now they have been restored to their full camera shaking, revealing terror that is actual real time “Moon Handycam Holiday Snaps” madness.
A similar process is happening with the Space Shuttle Missions and The International Space Station, as well as other missions. Where before, space dreams have been sought out in the labs of Industrial Light and Magic, now we get the real thing. Frankly it’s a shock to see it, for me anyway. The jolt from Hollywood reality to gazing star struck at an astronauts view of the Moon through his video camera is disturbing, in a good way I hope. It makes me realise how claustrophobic some things have become on Planet Earth. Maybe that just reflects my own life, I don’t know. But there is a new awakening happening here.
So it was with a gasp of “at last!” that I found this new ESA video archive. After coping with the high compression of, the brilliant, but restricted NASA TV, it seems that ESA TV are releasing broadcast quality video by FTP, often before it’s broadcast officially by satellite. Their archive also contains full resolution NASA TV clips (still at 320×240 but without the heavy compression).
So fire up that HD Screen, the Universe is on TV … and it’s been waiting for you to watch it … for a long time now.