“Studying whether there’s life on Mars or studying how the universe began, there’s something magical about pushing back the frontiers of knowledge. That’s something that is almost part of being human, and I’m certain that will continue.” –Sally Ride
When Curiosity landed on the martian surface in 2012, surviving “seven minutes of terror,” it went straight to work, examining its surroundings and teaching us about the martian geology of its region.
But by time the end of the (Earth) year came around, it began to embark upon a different project: constructing the first billion-pixel mosaic panorama of the Red Planet. The results, well, spectacularly speak for themselves.