NASA, Microsoft Work Together on Online Planetary Database

NASA PRESS RELEASE

NASA and Microsoft Corp. announced Tuesday plans to make planetary images and data available via the Internet under a Space Act Agreement.

Through this project, NASA and Microsoft jointly will develop the technology and infrastructure necessary to make the most interesting NASA content — including high-resolution scientific images and data from Mars and the moon — explorable on WorldWide Telescope, Microsoft’s online virtual telescope for exploring the universe.

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Microsoft Launches WorldWide Telescope

MICROSOFT PRESS RELEASE

REDMOND, Wash. — May 12, 2008 — The final frontier got a bit closer today as Microsoft Corp. officially launched the public beta of its WorldWide Telescope, which is now available at http://www.worldwidetelescope.org.

WorldWide Telescope is a rich Web application that brings together imagery from the best ground- and space-based observatories across the world to allow people to easily explore the night sky through their computers. WorldWide Telescope has been eagerly anticipated by the astronomical and educational communities as a compelling astronomical resource for students and lifelong learners, and as a way to make science fun for children.

“The WorldWide Telescope is a powerful tool for science and education that makes it possible for everyone to explore the universe,” said Bill Gates, chairman of Microsoft. “By combining terabytes of incredible imagery and data with easy-to-use software for viewing and moving through all that information, the WorldWide Telescope opens the door to new ways to see and experience the wonders of space. Our hope is that it will inspire young people to explore astronomy and science, and help researchers in their quest to better understand the universe.”

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