Dragon Space – a dedicated web portal for all China-related space news. Pretty nifty, and it has all the latest happenings with their Shenzhou craft, the fourth of which is expected to take off within the next few days.


Well, I’m finally back from Utah. I actually got back about five days ago, but I think I can be excused from writing entries here what with jetlag and all the Christmas festivities going on – plus, if you’re bored, you should be reading my Two Weeks on Mars weblog.

Things have been fairly quiet back at home; I’ve been stunned by the mildness of the weather here, it feels like spring. In my turn, I’ve stunned everyone by ordering Bedazzled (yes, the one with Liz Hurley) on DVD. Believe it or not, it’s actually a good and funny film. I’ll confess that I was just as vehemently hostile to the proposal of watching the film in Utah as anyone else would be (if not more) but it really is worth a watch, just for the dolphin singing bit…

Other notes; while out to Manchester yesterday for the sales, I went DVD shopping in anticipation of the new CD-R/DVD-ROM combo drive that should be arriving in a few days. My verdict – if you are at all serious about getting cheap DVDs, go to WH Smith. Forget HMV and Virgin, these guys are really the cheapest when it comes to good old movies (in the literal sense). Even cheaper than Play.com (probably not for the newest movies though).

Just finished reading Engine City by Ken MacLeod. Very entertaining, and one of those few books that actually improve upon the previous books in its series. Still, for some reason I feel a strange urge to zoom through all of MacLeod’s books when I read them – I must have read each of his Engines of Light trilogy in less than a day.

Two weeks

I’m heading off to Utah to the Mars Society’s Desert Research Station tomorrow morning, and for the next two weeks you’ll be able to see daily updates and photos of my time there at a new site I set up called Two Weeks on Mars.