Saturday, June 9, 2007
Friday afternoon I was sitting at my desk when I got an email message from my sister saying she was about to watch the launch of the Space Shuttle Atlantis on the NASA cable TV channel. I had a moment of sadness thinking I was going to miss it. My work day still had another couple of hours to go, and I didn't have access to a television. Then I realized, there was another way to see this event. The Fox News Channel regularly covers shuttle launches, even though most of the other networks have abandoned the space program and seldom cover it unless there is a disaster. I went to the Fox News website on my laptop, and sure enough they planned to cover the entire launch by picking up the NASA feed and running it as streaming video. I watched Atlantis take off while sitting at my desk. Even though it was just a little square on my laptop screen, the sound was great and the picture was glorious.
This is the world of wonder that we are living in....not only that there are space shuttles, but that you can watch them head for the sky from a TV, or a computer or even a cell phone. Increasingly, television is available to us anywhere, whether it's coming from the back of a seat on a Jet Blue airplane, or an iPod. Last Friday afternoon, television came through a laptop, bringing an astronaut's view of the entire world into a windowless office.