Neil Armstrong passed away on Aug. 25, 2012, after a life filled with magnificent achievements. Sadly, his death prompted many people across the InterWebs, particularly on social media sites, to ask, Who was Neil Armstrong, and why should I know of him? Surely everyone should know who Neil Armstrong was and what he achieved. After all, he will always be the first person to have walked on the moon.
What follows are a set of websites that should enlighten even the most ignorant people about Armstrong and the Apollo 11 moon landing that made him a household name. And for those of us who already know much about the man and the mission, these sites should add just a little more to that knowledge.
We begin with Wikipedia, a known quantity that is surprisingly often overlooked as a resource for learning more about individuals. Sure, some pages can be littered with mistakes, but as a way of learning the basic facts about Neil Armstrong this is hard to beat.
We get a chronological rundown of his life, before, during, and after the Apollo 11 moon landing. We also get images and video of Armstrong and his fellow astronauts. Last but not least we get links to associated topics and links to the references cited on the page. Following these will open up more avenues of interest.
This is the biography of Neil Armstrong on the official NASA website. It concentrates on his technical abilities, and the skills which made him the right man for the job of leading the Apollo 11 manned mission to the moon.
By clicking on the Apollo page you’ll gain insights into all of the missions that led up to Apollo 11 and beyond. For the 40th anniversary of the moon landing in 2009 this whole section was updated, and original video was restored. If you’re serious about the subject then you could easily spend a whole day clicking around the NASA website.
As biographies of famous people are what Biography.com and ‘The Biography Channel’ does, it should come as no surprise that Neil Armstrong’s entry on the website is a must-read.
You get the facts and figures presented in a sensible fashion, as well as images and videos (which are shamefully set to start playing automatically), and profile connections. This latter feature enables you to click instantly on other famous people who have links with Armstrong, including Buzz Aldrin and John Glenn.
The BBC is usually a fantastic resource for all manner of different topics, and the Apollo 11 moon landing is no exception. It pares the information down to the very basics but cleverly offers up links to other sections of the BBC website, as well as external links, for you to explore further at your leisure.
There are also video clips and audio clips from archive BBC programming, though these may not be available outside of the U.K.
National Geographic has a vast collection of content dedicated to the Apollo 11 moon landing, Neil Armstrong and his fellow astronauts, and the exploration of space as a whole. Linked to and pictured is the photo gallery which offers amazing images contextualized with short descriptions.
Beyond the photo gallery lies articles about Armstrong walking on the moon, the sounds the astronauts heard, and what the samples brought back tell us about the surface. And a lot more besides.
The Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum website has various pages dedicated to the Apollo 11 moon landing. There is a mission summary detailing the timeline of events, facts about the spacecraft and crew, and a set of images and audio/video recordings that help add color to the textual descriptions.
Space.com is a killer domain to own, but thankfully it’s being put to good use. This photo gallery of the Apollo 11 mission and the astronauts who made it happen has only been added after the death of Neil Armstrong. They offer an amazing visual record of this global event that still resonates with people four decades after it happened.
Embedded above is the video footage from the Apollo 11 moon landing from July 20, 1969. And what better way to finish this article up than with the actual film of the event happening. If you click through to the video on YouTube you’ll find associated videos that will add even more background. As is the way with the Web, more knowledge is always just a click away.
Let us know your thoughts and feelings on Neil Armstrong and the Apollo 11 moon landing in the comments section below. And please share this article with anyone who you have seen wondering what all the fuss was about. They need educating, and these websites offer the information up in both interesting and entertaining ways.
Image Credit: Chris Isherwood