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  • Richard Conniff writes about behavior, in humans and other animals, on two, four, six, and eight legs, plus the occasional slither.

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The Lure of Long Distances: The Last Frontier

Posted by Richard Conniff on January 3, 2013

Mars has been an object of colorful speculation ever since the Egyptians first noted its presence in the night sky almost 3500 years ago. Name the first of NASA’s robotic rovers to touch down on the Red Planet and send back detailed close-ups: 

a. Curiosity

b. Opportunity

c. Sojourner

d. Asimov

And the answer is:

(c) Sojourner began to explore the Martian landscape on July 4, 1997 , after a voyage of 312 million miles aboard NASA’s Mars Pathfinder .  It was named for Sojourner Truth, the abolitionist, whose own great voyage of discovery, on foot, in 1826, covered only 11 miles .  But it took her from slavery to freedom.


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