Before we had the excitement of the Space Race, political powers shifted based on might and fear much like it does today. President Kennedy really kicked things into high gear with an unthinkable challenge. Just days after successfully putting the first American into space, JFK challenged the country to put a man on the moon. It took just over eight years, and all of humanity knows how that story ends.

Like any other accomplishment for humanity, support and care for the lunar missions faded after we obtained our goal. After eleven years of intense excitement over space exploration, and with new wars developing across the globe, people just eventually shifted focus somewhere else. We put boots on the moon six times throughout the Apollo missions. Most people only know about the first Apollo 11, and the time we failed with Apollo 13, but the missions were successful through 1972, at which point it became so expensive, the Gov pulled funding.

Skip forward to more recent history. NASA shifted their focus from manned exploration to the unmanned variety. Probes, satellites, etc... Soulless vessels that would allow them to explore on the relatively cheap. As technology increased, and things became less costly, NASA put together a Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter spacecraft purpose built to scan, map, and photograph the moon for one year, at which point they would crash it into the lunar surface. You probably remember the outrage when the news media said NASA was 'bombing the moon'... That was this.

Skip forward another almost-decade, the information has been processed, tied together, put on display, and NASA will most likely entertain us for the length of your attention span with what they were able to accomplish. More videos should follow in the near future. Perhaps it will allow NASA to obtain the funds they've been requesting for so long. While this mission did cost a hefty $504million, it's a drop in the bucket. The mission that first put a man on the moon was $25billion.