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NASA Hands Out Hand Sterilizers at an Education Conference.

By Keith Cowing
November 30, 2011
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Keith’s note: This pointless hand sterilizer swag [video] was given out at the NASA Educational Stakeholders Conference. Go figure. Cost? Relevance to space exploration?. You lost me on this. Here’s a thought: what if NASA gave out credits to students on Amazon.com for ebooks relevant to space …
Lanco (the commercial vendor for these things) charges a dollar for this product. Fair enough. That’s what these products cost. No big deal, right? NASA is giving these things to its educational professionals. What kind of example is being set? That’s the cost of an iTunes download, or many smartphone apps. No one at NASA ever seems to stop and think about this. They just write checks to buy this crap. And they give it to their own employees and meeting attendees. Total cost – a few thousand dollars. I will readily admit that this is just noise in the greater scheme of things. But the fact that NASA sees this as a worthwhile expenditure – when other things could be offered (an iTunes card to purchase space-releated aps) is emblematic of an agency that is out of touch.
Will NASA Obey The Anti-Swag Executive Order?, earlier post
“If NASA actually had a coherent education and public outreach activity that spanned all directorates, projects, missions, and field centers – one that adhered to a clear, cohesive strategy – and was measured and evaluated with metrics, I would suspect that the expenditure of these EPO funds would result in something of tangible value. Alas, just watch as NASA finds a way to evade the intent of this executive order and continues to spew these useless trinkets under the misimpression that they actually have value.”

NASA Watch founder, Explorers Club Fellow, ex-NASA, Away Teams, Journalist, Space & Astrobiology, Lapsed climber.