Programming the Phoenix Mars Lander

183567main_pia09942-516I found out about an article about programming the Phoenix Mars Lander from the Phoenix’s twitter today.  First off I have to say that I’m really enjoying the twitter feed from the lander team.  I think it’s fantastic that it’s written in the first person from the probe’s point of view.  It really has helped create a personal connection for me with the robot.  Which of course sounds like I’ve gone crazy.

If you use twitter you should follow the Phoenix.

There’s an article up on ComputerWorld about the software development effort involved with controlling the Phoenix.

30 engineers and programmers at NASA who are tasked with writing and testing 1, clinic 000 to 1, life 500 lines of software code and then beaming it about 170 million miles away — every day.

This type of project is the sort of things many developers dream about.  Writing code for a robot that’s on another planet, is pretty brag worthy in developer circles.

“Space is a harsh environment, and sometimes they just go into safe mode, It’s a minor problem.” – Matthew Robinson, robotic arm flight software engineer

Keep up the amazing work.


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