Suppose you built your own satellite and somehow managed to launch it into space, what are you going to do next? Can you just ssh into your onboard computer and try out a couple of things to take a picture of earth and download the file? Did you just lose contact with your satellite due to an empty battery, because it heated up too much or because it rotated in the wrong direction? What are other issues you might forget to account for?
After understanding why in spacecraft operations nothing works the way one expects we will have some answers to these questions. Also we will see how these problems are nowadays tackled by mission control centers all over the world, what happens in emergencies, what FDS, GDS, LEOP and TTC stand for and why spacecraft operators worry so much about weird particularities of time systems. Everything will be illustrated by real-life examples.
The only prerequisite for this talk is that you know that earth is not flat!