Today at 9:45 EST, NASA lost direct contact with the International Space Station due to an equipment malfunction. News outlets promptly went bonkers, even after ISS commander Kevin Ford reported that the station was "still fine and straight," and that "everybody [onboard was] in good shape of course" (contact was still technically possible by virtue of assorted Russian ground stations). Just shy of three hours later, the ISS regained contact with NASA controllers. CRISIS AVERTED. Kind of.
In the aftermath of this morning's accidental quiet, news of the communication loss is still at the top of the Google News science section; and the big G's sorting algorithm has scooped up an unrelated — but amusingly appropriate — article published earlier today over at Forbes. Can you spot it?
Consider the crisis alert reinstated. The real danger to humanity's presence in space isn't loss of communication between ISS and ground control — it's crippling public apathy. Which sort of has a nice, depressing ring to it. All together, now: womp wooomp.