By the way, JPL being JPL, they assembled the supersonic parachute with colors that spell out in a 10-bit pattern the motto of JPL, "Dare mighty things", along with lat/lon coordinates for where JPL is on Earth.

Because it's JPL, and they do things like this, because that's JPL.
This isn't the first time JPL has done something cheeky. The original wheel designs for Curiosity had "JPL" built into the tread. NASA said, "We have a no branding policy, we can't have the JPL logo being imprinted everywhere you drive on Mars. Remove it."
So they redesigned the tread pattern to have small holes that would help calibrate the distance Curiosity has driven. And of course, they managed to get it past NASA, which didn't realize the holes are "J", "P", and "L" in Morse code.
All the flight hardware was built, "Too late to change it!", so Curiosity is driving around on Mars leaving imprints of "JPL" in Morse code wherever it drives.

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23 Feb
What seriously blows my mind about the Descent Stage and Sky Crane system: YOU CANNOT ACTUALLY PHYSICALLY TEST THE WHOLE SYSTEM ON EARTH. It's /Mars-only/, it only works there.

Over a decade after design and 2 for 2 on use, this is the first time we've seen it all at work.
You can test the parachute by launching it to the fringes of the Earth's atmosphere. You can test the cables, and test the mobility deploy in a lab. You can test the radar and terrain navigation systems on a plane/helicopter. But you CANNOT test the system as a whole all at once.
It is so rare in engineering for a system to be tested as individual pieces, not as a whole system.

It's even rarer for that whole system to work.

It is, by all accounts, practically impossible for that each-piece-by-itself-tested system to work twice.

Until now.
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