Crazy things happen when Microsoft, NASA and famed astronaut Buzz Aldrin get together. Crazy, like a new way for anyone to experience Mars like you were actually there.
From now through January 1, visitors to the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex in Florida can experience something called “Destination: Mars.” It combines high-resolution imagery from NASA’s Curiosity Mars Rover with virtual reality to create several real sites on the red planet. Just strap on Microsoft’s HoloLens "mixed reality" headset and consider yourself an honorary space explorer.
Perhaps the best part is that a holographic rendering of Aldrin serves as your virtual tour guide. In case you can’t place the name, Aldrin is one of the Apollo 11 astronauts who walked on the moon way back in 1969. He’s also an author and an advocate for Mars exploration.
Check out the video above to see what this thing is all about.
Unless you have the money and patience to wait for a real-life Mars expedition -- not to mention the spare time to travel the nearly 40 million miles between planets -- this looks like the next best thing.