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My February birthday fund-raising campaign for Behind the Black it now over. I sincerely and with deep gratitude thank all those who donated. Without your support I could not keep doing this, not so much because of the need for income to pay the bills, but because it tells me that there are people out there who want me to do this work. For those who did not contribute during the campaign, please consider adding your vote of support to Behind the Black, by giving either a one-time contribution or a regular subscription, in any one of the following ways:


1. Zelle: This is the only internet method that charges no fees. All you have to do is use the Zelle link at your internet bank and give my name and email address (zimmerman at nasw dot org). What you donate is what I get.


2. Donate through Gabpay, using my email address zimmerman @ nasw dot org.

3. Patreon: Go to my website there and pick one of five monthly subscription amounts, or by making a one-time donation.

4. A Paypal Donation:

4. A Paypal subscription:

5. Donate by check, payable to Robert Zimmerman and mailed to
Behind The Black
c/o Robert Zimmerman
P.O.Box 1262
Cortaro, AZ 85652

Curiosity looking back

Panorama by Curiosity, looking back
Click for full image.

Overview map
Click for interactive map.

Curiosity is now about halfway across the flat marker band terrain it faced last week, and as part of its routine, used its right navigation camera on January 28, 2023 to create a 360 degree panorama mosaic of the Mount Sharp foothills that now surround it. The panorama above, cropped, reduced, and sharpened to post here, focuses on the part of that mosaic looking behind Curiosity.

You can see the rover’s recent tracks as it crossed this part of the marker band. In the far distance can be seen in the haze the rim of Gale Crater, approximately 20 to 40 miles away. The yellow lines in the overview map to the right show the approximate area covered by this section of the panorama. It is possible the peak of Navarro Mountain is peeking up in the center of this panorama, but more likely it is no longer visible, blocked by the smaller but closer hills.

As Curiosity is now inside the foothills of Mount Sharp, the floor of Gale Crater is no longer easily seen. The rover needs to be at a high lookout point, something that will likely not occur in its travels for many months if not years to come.

The Curiosity pictures I am featuring this morning are cool, and they are also the only real news in the space field at this moment. As is usual on Monday, it takes few hours for the news at the beginning of the week to make itself known.

Conscious Choice cover

Now available in hardback and paperback as well as ebook!


From the press release: In this ground-breaking new history of early America, historian Robert Zimmerman not only exposes the lie behind The New York Times 1619 Project that falsely claims slavery is central to the history of the United States, he also provides profound lessons about the nature of human societies, lessons important for Americans today as well as for all future settlers on Mars and elsewhere in space.

Conscious Choice: The origins of slavery in America and why it matters today and for our future in outer space, is a riveting page-turning story that documents how slavery slowly became pervasive in the southern British colonies of North America, colonies founded by a people and culture that not only did not allow slavery but in every way were hostile to the practice.  
Conscious Choice does more however. In telling the tragic history of the Virginia colony and the rise of slavery there, Zimmerman lays out the proper path for creating healthy societies in places like the Moon and Mars.


“Zimmerman’s ground-breaking history provides every future generation the basic framework for establishing new societies on other worlds. We would be wise to heed what he says.” —Robert Zubrin, founder of founder of the Mars Society.


All editions are available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and all book vendors, with the ebook priced at $5.99 before discount. The ebook can also be purchased direct from my ebook publisher, ebookit, in which case you don't support the big tech companies and I get a bigger cut much sooner.


Autographed printed copies are also available at discount directly from me (hardback $24.95; paperback $14.95; Shipping cost for either: $5.00). Just email me at zimmerman @ nasw dot org.

One comment

  • Lee S

    Oh my…. What you could learn with a rock hammer, a loupe and and a couple of hours walking around that site!

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