You guys, it's been something of a rough week emotionally for our dear Ms. Allyson, so I'd like to invite you all to marvel at humanity with me.
I first heard of the Sikorsky Prize when NPR did this story on it. Basically, it's a 250,000 challenge to build and fly a human powered helicopter for sixty seconds that has to achieve 3 meters in in altitude and stay within a 10m square. Coincidentally, I had recently been hanging out at UMD so I had kind of a soft spot for the Gamera team and for awhile it looked like they were going to do it. However, today (this is kind of old news now, but I didn't hear about when it happened) I found out that the dark horse Canadian team swooped in and took it (more info here).
If you're a little down on humans today, I think you should take a moment to check this out. I think the flight itself is beautiful, but so is the passion and ingenuity that went in to taking a prize that had been on the table for 33 years. Honestly, I teared up a little seeing this:
I've watched it like four times.
Uncut version (I've also watched this four times):
Original NPR story video:
See, being human isn't so bad.