World Space Week, an international celebration of science and technology, kicks off today, October 4th, on the anniversary of the launch of Sputnik.
This worldwide event involves everything from film premieres - NASA's "Water Falls" and Warner Brothers' "Gravity" - competitions, costume parties, as well as an ambitious series of Mars simulations and tests of rovers, spacesuits and other hardware.
The event was started in 2000 by the United Nations, and this year's theme ("Exploring Mars, Discovering Earth") is a testament to the remarkable progress that has been made in space exploration and technology over the last decade.
According to the World Space Week website:
World Space Week 2013 is all about what many consider the Next Frontier: the planet Mars...Mars gives us an opportunity to define from scratch what world we want to live in. How can limited resources on a planet be used to build a new civilization, without depleting these resources?
So how can you get involved in this conversation?