After all the abuse I heap on the agency, I am glad to see that NASA is finally getting the message. Eventually, all NAC meetings - including all NAC subcommittee meetings - need to be made available to the public like this - live and interactive. Right now these meetings are only witnessed by one or two dozen people. The presentations often take a long time to get online - if ever. Transcripts or recordings are never posted. All that emerges are meeting summaries than can take months to produce - and when they do, are bland and devoid of any meaningful content. Hardly what anyone would call "transparent". Murky at best.
NASA Culture: February 2010 Archives
reader note: "An unbadged man said to me as I left my JSC building last Friday, "Is this a place of business or a campus? I mean, is this 'where it all happens'?" I was going to challenge him but he explained he was a bus driver from that bus over there that had brought in some people. I said, just, Yes Sir! and went on home. (It was a tough week.)
In this day and age, should I have pointed over his shoulder and said... That flag up there on that roof flies every day there are Americans on orbit. It has been there continuously, longer than I've been working here. If you go through those doors across the parking lot and turn left and could get past the locked doors and guards, you would be in Mission Control. THE Mission Control Houston. You could pick up a mic and talk to the astronauts and cosmonauts working in space right now. If you turn right instead, you'd find a building full of mission operations people who a week ago had no question that their contributions were valued by the country.
Today, I don't know how that question would be answered in that building. I'm angry the question has even come up. I wasn't born here at JSC, but I got here as soon as I could. I just don't know whether here is supposed to be 'where it all happens' anymore."
Keith's note: You know that the message plan NASA has been trying to roll out is not working when signs carried by protesters outside of KSC today say "Obama lied - NASA died". It gets worse: I also received a link to a YouTube video from someone sitting at their desk at NASA that uses captioned movie footage of an actor playing Hitler to criticise the Obama decision on Constellation. This ain't good folks.
Keith's update: Oh yes - to all of you who are demanding that I post a link to the Hitler video: No way. I find even a casual comparison of anyone to Hitler under any circumstances to be reprehensible and I will not allow this website to be a party to that. If you do not like this policy, then go find another website to read. There will be no further discussion on this topic. Alas, Portal to the Universe, "the latest Cornerstone project of the International Year of Astronomy 2009 (IYA2009)" apparently thinks that Hitler jokes are funny. The posting is by "AmericaSpace" which is run by Jim Hillhouse. Using Hitler - in any context - is never funny and only serves to drag any associated discussion into the gutter.
"NASA Administrator Charles Bolden outlines the Administration's fiscal year 2011 budget request as the agency's road map for a new era of innovation and discovery, and answers questions from reporters as the featured Newsmaker at the National Press Club in Washington Feb. 2"
Keith's note: If you go to 55:18 in this video, I ask Charlie Bolden how he is going to get people to make the transition from flying government-operated spacecraft to commerically- operated spacecraft - and the emotion that goes with making the transition from one way of thinking to another. Bolden's reply gets deep into the emotions and mindsets that underly the changes that the Constellation workforce is now going through - and how he is going to work through that process with them.
Keith's note: Now that NASA has been directed by the White House to cancel Constellation, and with it, all of NASA's big time lunar ambitions, I wonder when they will start to yank things like this sad dancing Moon walker animation offline. Seriously - this is not an insignificant task since there is an immense amount of VSE-related material that NASA has put online since 2004 that will now need to be modified or deleted. In addition, many third party websites contain large amounts of this material as well. And when do you start? Now? When Congress gives up trying to stop this cancellation?
Imagine that there was an Internet in 1967 and you had to erase the Apollo program.