The Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter photographed the Earth’s Moon for calibration information on the color and brightness of its images. (Scientists have been photographing the Moon for a long time and know its brightness and color exactly.)
Around the time this 1994 memo went out at NPR, heralding the Internet’s imminent arrival in the newsroom, I had just been hired by the News & Observer in North Carolina to cover science, technology and Raleigh-Durham’s Research Triangle community. My only qualification: The Metro editor told me I was one of the first reporters they’d met who had a personal email address.
Back then the paper’s editorial style meant I had to define terms that were not yet in the dictionary. So stories on my beat often included clunky phrases like, “email, an electronic message sent from computer to computer…” I got back at the copy editors by planting Yiddish words from the “sch” pages of the dictionary. (“You can’t cut that. It’s in the dictionary!”)