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George Nield

#NSRC2013 Makes an interesting point that spaceports should be more proactive in expanding industry. Don’t just maintain facilities and wait for customers to show up. Take cue from flight schools and start similar programs for spaceflight. Also, will think that Mojave is a thriving spaceport when there is more spacecraft hardware than windmill parts in the hangar.

The Kickstarter Is Closed

Thanks to all who contributed, but as I wrote in my last update:

I’m over 25% over my goal, but I was hoping for a lot more than that. I’m not sure what this will mean in terms of publicizing, specifically the symposium/presser in DC in February, and distributing books to policy makers. I won’t be able to support it at the current level, though everyone who contributed and requested one will obviously get a book. I’m open to comments as to how to do another Kickstarter for specifically that (e.g., what would the rewards be — more books?).

I guess the next question is (absent a massive flood of last-minute donations) — can I do a press conference or symposium as “performance art” and sell it to Kickstarter on that basis? They rejected my original proposal for this project because I mixed the book publication with the publicity — not clear whether or not they’ll accept a project just for publicizing, because they like to emphasize “creative” projects.

Actually, when it closed, it ended up being 32.5% over the goal, but that, unfortunately, isn’t enough to change the message.

One of the things I’m thinking is to donate X number of books to congressional offices/think-tanks/journalists for each Y bucks in Kickstarter contributions (X and Y being dependent on the economics, as I better understand them), perhaps with book plates indicating the donor. As part of the Kickstarter I’d lay out the costs (e.g., the Washington event in early February will be at least a grand in travel expenses, ignoring costs of the venue, and the cost per book which depends on whether I go offset or not). But I’m welcome to more suggestions, both here and at the Kickstarter.

That NASA Subpoena

Some people think that this is such an Important Story that it’s worth making fools of themselves and threadjacking to point it out. I agree with this commenter’s take:

Congress: We demand that you say 2+2 = 5. Oh, and in metric — no, English – no, wait Metric — tonnes.

NASA: Uh… What?

Congress: Well, we just passed a law that says you must say that 2+2=5 metric-English tonnes. You have one month to get back to us.

One month later…

NASA: 2+2=4.

Congress: Stop lying! You have another six months to think this over and come to the correct answer.

Six months later…

NASA: Well, we found that “2+2…+1 = 5 metric-English tonnes.” But, we’re having another guy look at it, to be sure.

Congress: Stop lying! Subpoena!

NASA: ….

I imagine that the teddy bears (or dogs, or whatever they are) will have something to say about this soon.

A Posting From Bizarro World

So I was reading comments at Paul Spudis’s Apollo anniversary post, and I saw a trackback to this:

As we contend there, if we can put a male on a moon, because can’t we get people to stop creation bad analogies with putting group on a moon? But on this anniversary, a some-more touching defence is, if we can put a male on a moon, because can’t we put a male on a moon? We did, after all, have a devise to do so until Constellation was canceled final year. But there was a good reason it died — it was an try to repeat Apollo (quite literally — NASA director Mike Griffin described it as “Apollo on steroids” when he rolled it out over 5 years ago– a word he no doubt came to regret). The problem was, it was function though possibly a coercion or the bill of that project. As heavenly scientist Paul Spudis points out during Smithsonian Air and Space magazine, a genuine problem is that we have never figured out as a republic because we have a space program.

It’s as though someone took my anniversary piece and put it through a word blender. Does anyone have any idea what’s going on here?