My annual February birthday month fund-raising campaign for Behind the Black is now over. It was the best February campaign ever, and the second best of all of my month-long fund-raising campaigns.


There were too many people who contributed to thank you all personally. If I did so I would not have time for the next day or so to actually do any further posts, and I suspect my supporters would prefer me posting on space and culture over getting individual thank you notes.


Let this public thank suffice. I say this often, but I must tell you all that you cannot imagine how much your support means to me. I’ve spent my life fighting a culture hostile to my perspective, a hostility that has often served to squelch my success. Your donations have now allowed me to bypass that hostility to reach a large audience.


Even though the February campaign is over, if you still wish to donate or subscribe you still can do so. Regular readers can support Behind The Black with a contribution via paypal:

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If Paypal doesn't work for you, you can support Behind The Black directly by sending your donation by check, payable to Robert Zimmerman, to
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Boeing today unveiled a full scale mock-up of the interior of its CST-100 manned capsule.

The competition heats up: Boeing today unveiled a full scale mock-up of the interior of its CST-100 manned capsule.

Pioneer cover

From the press release: From the moment he is handed a possibility of making the first alien contact, Saunders Maxwell decides he will do it, even if doing so takes him through hell and back.

Unfortunately, that is exactly where that journey takes him.

The vision that Zimmerman paints of vibrant human colonies on the Moon, Mars, the asteroids, and beyond, indomitably fighting the harsh lifeless environment of space to build new societies, captures perfectly the emerging space race we see today.

He also captures in Pioneer the heart of the human spirit, willing to push forward no matter the odds, no matter the cost. It is that spirit that will make the exploration of the heavens possible, forever, into the never-ending future.

Available everywhere for $3.99 (before discount) at amazon, Barnes & Noble, all ebook vendors, or direct from the ebook publisher, ebookit.


  • wodun

    It’s cool they threw Bigelow a bone. Probably a good story there.

  • Pzatchok

    The blue mood lighting is cute.

    I can see they found a way to save a few million on engineering and manufacturing.
    That high tech fire suppression system looks just like the ones we have at work all over the building. At least we know it will work and came in under budget.

  • Pzatchok

    Sorry I forgot one thing.

    They will probably charge NASA 10 million for the bracket to hold the fire extinguisher to the wall.

    Oh well that budgets gone too.

  • No, they will likely not charge NASA 10 million for that bracket. For the CST-100, Boeing is not on a cost-plus contract. It is fixed price, and NASA is not even paying the full cost. Boeing has to make an investment as well. This is why SpaceX and Orbital Sciences were able to build and launch Dragon and Antares so cheaply.

    The real question about Boeing here is whether that corporation, used to cost-plus contracts, will be willing to make the investment and take the risk. I have gotten mixed signals from them, suggesting they may not stick it out.

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