I’ve been talking to a lot of people at the conference, and not capturing much of it, but Clark Lindsey has been monitoring the blogs and twitter feeds.
Orbital Hub has the latest Carnival of Space.
Why don’t I host one, you ask? I’ve noticed that most of them are mostly focused on space science, and (assuming that’s what the audience wants), I’m just not that into that to do a good job with it.
Launch Vehicle Extreme Makeover:
A team of crack yet touchy feely Engineers arrive on a bus, send the NASA team to Disney World, tear everything apart, and employ John Carmak and XCOR Aerospace to rebuild everything…..It’ll all look nice, but doesn’t really need to work. Employ the typical attendees of the Space Access Conference as the mindless mob cheering the action on.
Big Brother, Space Station Edition:
Pick the hottest babes from an international set of scientists, one grumpy Russian, a cut party animal fighter jock from the US Navy and lock them in an orbital space station for one month of intense competition. Make them execute complex, obscure, yet useless tasks that employ almost none of the skills they developed thus far in their lives. Every week someone is voted out the airlock.
The Gong Panel:
A panel of three PI’s from past obscure space missions completed at least a decade ago decide the fate of proposed programs as they are presented live on stage. The proposed project with the highest score wins funding. At any time during the presentation panel members are allowed to reject the proposal by banging a gong.
I think this would go a long way towards making space more relevant to the general public. Heck, it would make me pay more attention to it.
Don’t give PAO any ideas.
[Late morning update]
Here is the full story on the president’s remarks.
He said nothing about whether he wants to continue the Bush administration’s Constellation program, intended to send astronauts to the moon by 2020. The program’s Ares I rocket is behind schedule and over budget, leading to speculation that it will miss its targeted 2015 launch date and further reduce the skilled work force at KSC.
He was also silent about the fate of the $100billion international space station. Once the shuttle is retired, NASA will depend on Russian Soyuz spacecraft for access to the station.
I’ve been trying, ever since the inauguration, to figure out if the plan is to come up with a new direction for the agency, and then find an administrator to implement it, or to find a good administrator, and direct him (or her) to come up with the plan. Or, given a lot of the other Charlie Foxtrot that’s been going on in general, if there is no plan.
This should be a very useful on-line resource.
Jeff Patterson conquers the solar system.
It’s been a year since Henry Cate kicked off the Carnival of Space. He’s asking for entries for the anniversary edition:
Fraser Cain, the current organizer of the Carnival of Space, has graciously asked me to host the anniversary edition of the Carnival
1) Consider sending in an entry to the carnival? Send the link to a post about space to:
firstname.lastname@example.org. It is helpful if you include a brief summary of your post.
2) Encourage your readers to also send in an entry?
You could direct them here.
This weekend, I met a young woman, now attending law school in Ann Arbor, who was in diapers when it happened. To her, it’s ancient unremembered history, just as the Eisenhower administration is to me (though I at least study it, unlike most of my age cohorts). It made me feel old. We have a generation, though, about ten years older than her, now in their thirties, for whom it was probably the most traumatic event of their young lives. The comments are closed on my post from six years ago, but anyone who wants to post remembrances can do it here, with the caveat that I still haven’t completely recovered from my recent MT upgrade (still hoping that someone who knows it will volunteer to help), so you can use them, but they will time out. Don’t expect to get a response after submitting the comment. Just back up after a while, and refresh the page to see it.
I’m particularly interested in how the event changed your perception of the Shuttle, and the space program in general, if at all, per my previous thoughts.
Wireless is up. There was an announcement from Space Frontier Foundation that the Teachers in Space program has had the donation of 3 suborbital spaceflights, one each from Armadillo, Rocketplane-Kistler and XCOR. The sponsors hope to find federal sponsorship for hundreds of educator flights.
— Update 6:07 MST —
Alan Boyle has more.
Space Journalism Prize submissions have been light this year. It has been revamped as follows.
- Deadline has been extended to May 31
- 3rd party submissions now allowed
- Author permission no longer required
- Clark Lindsey is replacing me as judge
Note that the judging criteria are the same as last year except that there is only nine months worth of material to compete against. If you entered last year, do it again this year. Winner will be announced at Space Frontier meeting.
Out of the Cradle has a list of books for space enthusiasts (though they mostly seem to be for moon enthusiasts).