Nature: Scientists despair as US government shutdown drags on

Nature: Scientists despair as US government shutdown drags on. “As the shutdown hits the two-week mark with no end in sight, its effects on science have begun to compound, leaving many government researchers weary, worried and demoralized. The National Science Foundation (NSF) has suspended reviews of grant proposals indefinitely, and is likely to delay panels scheduled to judge applications for postdoctoral fellowships in early January. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has taken widely used weather and climate databases offline. And at NASA, the shutdown threatens to disrupt preparations for upcoming spacecraft launches.”

Cornell University: New maps light up information on birds

Cornell University: New maps light up information on birds. “Move over, range maps. A new series of dynamic bird maps from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology reveals unprecedented details not only about where the birds are, but how their numbers and habitats change through the seasons and years. Unlocking this wealth of information required more than 114 years of cloud computing time to process observations recorded in eBird by more than 120,000 bird watchers across North America, along with satellite imagery from NASA.”

The Register: Houston, we’ve had a problem: NASA fears internal server hacked, staff personal info swiped by miscreants

The Register: Houston, we’ve had a problem: NASA fears internal server hacked, staff personal info swiped by miscreants. “A server containing personal information, including social security numbers, of current and former NASA workers may have been hacked, and its data stolen, it emerged today.”

Geospatial World: NASA and FAO jointly develop a new forest and landscape monitoring tool

Geospatial World: NASA and FAO jointly develop a new forest and landscape monitoring tool. “A new way of looking at the dense forests and tall trees has been devised as NASA and FAO( UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization) joined hands to create a new open-access tool. The initiative, which is backed by Google Earth Engine Team and the US governments SilverCarbon Program, permits any user to monitor change in landscape patterns across the globe.”

Planetary Society: New Cameras on Mars!

Planetary Society: New Cameras on Mars!. “There was jubilation when InSight landed, but I’m just as happy to be writing about a distinct InSight event: The flow of raw images sent from Mars, straight to the Web, has begun. The Jet Propulsion Laboratory has begun sharing images from InSight’s two cameras to the mission website.”

Discover Magazine: A Peek at the Real Neil Armstrong

Discover Magazine: A Peek at the Real Neil Armstrong. “‘First Man’ gave us a look at a side of Neil Armstrong we don’t see too often, focusing on the family side of his life over the science element, but even that only gave us a glimpse of the behind-the-scenes home and family life of the notoriously stoic first man on the Moon. Now, the brand new Armstrong-Engel Family Gallery has published personal, never-before-seen images of Neil and his family beginning in 1955 during his Edwards days gong all the way to 1969 and the Moon landing.”

The Verge: NASA lost a rover and other space artifacts due to sloppy management, report says

The Verge: NASA lost a rover and other space artifacts due to sloppy management, report says. “Thanks to improper management, NASA has lost a wide array of historical spaceflight memorabilia over the last few decades — such as an old lunar soil bag, former spaceflight hand controllers, and even a test lunar rover. That’s according to a new report out today from NASA’s Office of the Inspector General, which analyzed how the space agency oversees its historical assets. While procedures have improved at NASA, a few unique pieces of storied spaceflight property have either been misplaced or taken by ex-employees.”