Russia Planning a Permanent Manned Moonbase

The Russian space agency, Roscosmos, has announced plans to establish a permanent manned base on the moon within the next 15 years. Roscosmos aims to launch a probe to scout Lunar locations in 2024, and has already started construction on the Luna 25 lander that will send its people up to Earth’s satellite in 2030, Russia’s official state news agency Tass reports (via Yahoo).

During the space race between the US and Soviet Russia in the Late-1950s and 1960s, Russia was way ahead of its Western rival, launching the world’s first artificial satellite, Sputnik 1, in 1957, and putting the first man in space, cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin. The Soviet space program, however, suffered a severe decline – the details of which were kept secret until Mikhail Gorbachev’s glasnost (openness) policy in the 1980s – and was soon usurped by NASA, who landed Neil Armstrong, the first man on the moon, in 1969.

‘’The moon is not an intermediate point in the race. Ot is a separate, even a self-contained goal,” Dmitry Rogozin, Russia’s Deputy Premier, wrote in the Government’s official newspaper Rossiiskaya Gazeta. “It would hardly be rational to make some ten or 20 flights to the moon, and then wind it all up and fly to the Mars or some asteroids. This process has the beginning, but has no end. We are coming to the moon forever.”


A Look Inside the Secret World of Soviet PCs

Much like present-day North Korea, Soviet Russia was isolated from the rest of the world, hidden behind the post-war Iron Curtain. Unknown to many, the rise of personal computers in the West during the Eighties was being mirrored in the Soviet Bloc, with homegrown Russian computers, inspired by their Western counterparts, rising to prominence, though not graduating to the mass-market in quite the same way as the US and parts of Europe. We take a look at some of the most popular personal computers in Russia during the end of the Soviet era (via PCMag):

Mera CM 7209 (ca. 1986)

The CM 7209 (above), a clone of the US DEC PDP-11 PC, was a Russian military computer used during the mid-Eighties. A notable model was discovered by urban explorer Jean Andersen during a sojourn to an abandoned power plant in Pripyat, Ukraine. Pripyat was evacuated following the Chernobyl nuclear disaster in 1986.

EC 5300 (ca. mid-1980s)

The EC 5300, also based on the PDP-11, running Alexey Pajitnov’s classic puzzle game, Tetris.

Microsha (ca. 1987)

Sporting the Intel 8080-compable KP580BM80A CPU and 32kb of RAM, the Microsha was the home computing derivative of the Radio-86rk homebrew system, the plans for which were published in a popular Russian computing magazine.

Agate-4 (1984)

This snazzy red and black number, the Agate-4 , was a Russian facsimile of the Apple II home computer and was a fixture in Soviet schools.

EC 1841 (1987)

Another copy, this time based on an IBM PC, the EC 1841 ran an 8068-compatible 4.77MHz CPU and up to 640kb of RAM. Even its operating system was a clone, based upon MS-DOS.

Elektronika MK-90 (1986)

The handheld Elektronika MK-90, with its built-in 120×64-pixel LCD screen, ran BASIC. In line with inflation, the pocket PC cost the equivalent of $22,000 in today’s money.

BK 0010-01 (ca. 1986)

While home computing was more cost-prohibitive in Russia, the most popular family PC was the Government-approved BK 0010-01, which was yet another PDP-11 copy.

Images of Late Soviet Union Computer Mouse Surface, Would Have Cost $300 in 1990

It looks like someone has stumbled upon a rare late Soviet computer mouse. The device is said to have been produced in 1990, but was modelled in 1989, as the documents state. The design is very weird and it comes in red colour (as it would be expected from that era).

The price for this type of mouse is also staggering, coming in at 285 roubles, which was equally translated in US dollars. This would have meant that the mouse in question would have cost around $300 back in the ’90s.

The box states that “It is the most comfortable graphic input device. You can move a cursor or piece of graphics across the screen, paint or use in business”. It even comes with its own serial number written in pen and was under a warranty.

Another odd thing about the mouse is that it comes with its blueprints in the box. But given its price tag, it would be nice to have in case something broke and a piece was required to fix it.

Lastly, the size of the mouse looks pretty realistic compared to a modern mouse, except you can’t really connect it to any modern PC or laptop due to its huge and outdated connector.

Here are the images of the mouse:

Thank you English Russia for providing us with this information