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NASA Telescope to Look into Future to Complete Itself

30 May

NASA’s absurdly powerful James Webb Space Telescope will be capable of looking into the future to complete itself by 2017.

The project is working to a 2018 launch date, but is once again being threatened by an unconventionally responsible congressional review of its cost and schedule.

The foresight from the James Webb Space Telescope will provide unknown answers to “how to solve a number of baffling problems necessary for the project’s completion,” testified Deputy Project Director Tanner Schmidt during Tuesday’s congressional hearing.

Although still mostly theoretical, this design is the most developed to date.  Those designs, which are drawn in pencil on four used paper napkins, were presented as part of Schmidt’s testimony.

Intended as a successor to the Hubble Space Telescope, the James Webb is designed to pursue the goals of studying the creation and evolution of galaxies, stars and planets.

“This project is attempting to observe the most distant objects in the Universe,” said Kevin Lacey, head designer of the telescope’s Tunable Filter Imager, who also participated in Tuesday’s hearing. When asked how this could be possible given the presumed infinite size of the Universe, Lacey’s eyes widened with sudden realization and he began stammering incoherently while turning very pale.

After being escorted out of the room to spend some time in his sensory deprivation chamber, Lacey returned to tell the panel about conceiving the idea for the telescope while under the influence of “at least peyote, and possibly three or four other things.”

Planning began in 1996 under the name Next Generation Space Telescope. It underwent a number of name changes during the next six years, including Deep Space Nine Telescope, Voyager Space Telescope, Enterprise Space Telescope and The Animated Series Space Telescope.

The current name honors the late NASA administrator James E. Webb, who notably saved the Apollo program by pointing out only hours before the inaugural mission that the spacecraft was aimed for the Sun, not the Moon.

Webb requested in his last will and testament that the giant telescope be named after him.  His body is also buried inside the telescope, in a cryogenically frozen state.

In an amazing feat of precognition, NASA said the  telescope was already able to predict the biggest challenge to its own completion would be congressional funding.

Rep. Norm Dicks (D.-Wash.) said a decision on the telescope’s future will not be made until after the hearings end later this week. But he said continuation of the project looks bleak at the moment.

“These NASA guys need to calm down with the funding requests and realize the federal government has better places to be spending taxpayer money,” Dicks said. “I mean, come on, who do they think they are? A bank?”

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Facebook Movie Sequel Details Leak Online

23 May

Columbia Pictures executives scrambled Tuesday to shut down the leak of a script for the unannounced sequel to its 2010 blockbuster The Social Network.

The script, which has the working title The Status Update, continues the story of Facebook chairman and chief executive Mark Zuckerberg. It begins seconds after the original film’s ending, (revealing that Zuckerberg’s attempt to “friend” his ex-girlfriend on Facebook gets totally denied,) and continues up to the recent initial public offering of stock in the company.

The script was written by Aaron Sorkin, best known for creating television’s The West Wing, rewriting Will Smith’s scenes in Enemy of the State and probably ghostwriting some of the better episodes of The Gilmore Girls. Sorkin won an Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay for penning The Social Network, which was based on a book of rumors and hypotheses by Ben Mezrich.

A digital copy of the script was uploaded early Tuesday morning to the site MediaFire.com and went viral within hours. An employee of Columbia Pictures — who asked to remain anonymous because he was high on cocaine — said executives were panicked by the leak because the project was being kept a secret. He added that there was no concern over the release of plot details from the film, noting both that the script was mostly recycled dialogue from previous Sorkin work, and that it is only a first draft that still must be approved by Zuckerberg himself.

The natal stage of the script puts into question who will be involved in the film, both in front of and behind the camera. When reached for comment about the leaked script, The Social Network director David Fincher said he would not be returning for the sequel because “it isn’t turning out to be moody enough for me.”

Actor Justin Timberlake is also unlikely to reprise his role. During publicity for The Social Network‘s release on DVD, Timberlake repeatedly affirmed he had fallen out with Fincher and the film’s producers after they shot down his suggestion to have his character die tragically at the end of the film.

A number of graphic sex scenes in the script also call into question the potential involvement of Jesse Eisenberg, who portrayed Zuckerberg in the original film. Eisenberg’s agent has stated in the past that the actor will only appear in scenes with sexual acts being performed on him, and never in scenes where Eisenberg performs sexual acts on himself or someone else.

Eisenberg declined to comment on his current level of involvement with The Status Update. He did, however, confirm the authenticity of the leaked script and acknowledged he has either read it or had it read aloud to him.

Eisenberg added that production of the film had a false start in March under director Terrence Malick, who dropped the project after growing frustrated by his attempts to replace Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross, the team that scored the original film. Malick’s involvement in the project was conditional on hiring Zack Braff to produce the soundtrack, but Braff is already attached as music producer for a film about Jewish online singles network JDate.com.

First Lady Uses Drones For Parking Spot At J.Crew

16 Jan

Michelle Obama seen here explaining to a man who was double parked how her fists are like predator drones.

Predator drones flew over Washington, D.C. this weekend when first lady Michelle Obama couldn’t find a parking spot at J.Crew.

Obama had reportedly been driving around for a half hour before growing frustrated and placing a call to the Department of Defense on her cell phone.

The threat of the drones, which were armed with Hellfire missiles, was enough to free up many parking spaces near the clothing boutique’s Georgetown Park location. There were no reports of injuries or weapons being fired.

“I had no idea it was Michelle Obama,” said Rory Hudson, one of the many J.Crew shoppers who fled the area when an announcement about the drones was made over the store’s intercom.

“I would have moved if she had just asked me,” Hudson added. “And, if she wanted to intimidate me, all she had to do was walk up and flex her arms.”

Malia Obama, 13, was waiting on the curb for her mother to park. According to witnesses, Malia said, “Mom, you’re totally embarrassing me,” while rolling her eyes and covering her face with her hands a number of times.

The incident is the first deployment of armed drones in U.S. territory, but not their first use against American citizens. In September, Anwar al-Awlaki and Samir Khan, Americans with reported ties to Al Qaeda, were killed by drone attacks in Yemen.

President Obama also threatened the lives of the Jonas Brothers — citizens and national treasures of the United States — with Predator drone attacks during the 2010 White House Correspondents’ Association Dinner.

Spokesmen for both The Pentagon and J.Crew were not prepared for immediate comment, citing extreme confusion.

Employees of J.Crew’s The Shops at Georgetown Park location have been asked not to speak about the incident.

One employee, however, on condition of anonymity, said the first lady purchased three cashmere sweaters and a pair of ankle boots, although she spent time in the dressing room trying on much more.

Occupy Cordova: Lost in the Snow

12 Jan

Around 99% of Cordova's 2,000 residents took shelter when the snow began to fall.

By Andrew Harrell, Correspondent

It’s not uncommon to see someone dig himself up out of the snow from seemingly nowhere this week in Cordova, Alaska.

What is uncommon is seeing a protestor dig himself up out of the snow from a makeshift tent.

More than 18 feet of snow has piled up during the past week in Cordova, and somewhere underneath it are the local members of the Occupy Wall Street movement.

“We don’t know where they are,” said Randy Wan, who became concerned about the group and started asking neighbors if they knew anything.  “No one has seen them.”

The buildings surrounding the Occupy Cordova encampment are shorter than the current snowfall, so identifying its exact location is difficult at best.  Wan also explained that even if they could see the buildings, no one can remember exactly where the three members of the group have been sleeping and protesting.

At least one of the protestors, Cathy Shaw, didn’t make it back to her residence in time to be snowed in. Rhea Tomlinson, a friend of Shaw’s, said she shoveled over to Shaw’s house but found no signs of life.

“Even the cat was dead” according to Tomlinson.

“Her bitchy neighbor must have stopped feeding it like she was supposed to be doing. And she doesn’t even have to go in the snow, they live in the same hall of an apartment building.”

Cordova Police Spokesman Bruce Lane, reached on his home phone, laughed when asked if a rescue operation is in place.

“No,” Lane added.

Lane did say the Cordova Police Department is asking anyone with information on the whereabouts of the Occupy encampment to call in the information, so that a clean-up team can be sent there when all the snow melts.