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"Why aren't you awesomed by me!"
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July 19 2006

NASA browncoats boost the signal into space. Post on Fireflyfans.net about how Captain Mal's message of love was sent up to the ISS (International Space Station). "Some of the Houston Area Browncoats are working the current Shuttle and Station Mission and they got the Captain's quote about love uplinked to the ISS crew in tomorrow morning's daily summary. Below is the review copy of the daily summary" from Artcat81's post.

I have to say this was uber-shiny, and reading through the thread there is alot of discussion about memories of past NASA launches and experiences at space camp etc. There is even talk of comparison of the space shuttles to Serenity.

How awesome would it be if the next space shuttle or space station to be launched was called Serenity?
There's also a thread on the Browncoats boards.
Maybe if NASA weren't being run by the Alliance ;-)
That is just wicked cool.

Wicked. Cool.
Very shiny! Gives me a case of the warm and fuzzies.
Good ol' NASA - continuing to get their geek on. :)
Rockin'! :-)
This rocks on a whole new level of geekiness.
The actual daily summary in pdf. The quote is at the end.
That is so very, very shiny!!
How sweet that is.
My mind is blown.

Thanks, Kurya, for posting this!
I find this depressing. People who by dint of hard effort learned all the math and jumped through all the hoops of politics to become part of the space program shouldn't have to waste Joss's poetry about freedom and love to describe the decaying American space program. They deserve better, along with the astronauts who died in fleets designed and never much improved from 1970's technology. They should have something better than just the same dreams as us, but they don't.
dreamlogic, Mal is speaking about love of a crappy old boat everybody tells him is wrong to still sail in...
Gossi, yup, and this is why there is such a terrible irony in this. Thomas Reiter is in my thoughts a lot -- because he, along with the rest of the now safely returned Discovery crew, must _really_ love what he's doing, to dare go up there in those crappy old boats, indeed.

It's a rather fitting quote --- and I think he'll appreciate it even more after his safe return.
Aww, see ? Even engineers can have the souls of poets ;).

I kind of agree about the shuttle fleet and that NASA (like government agencies the world over) is bloated, riddled with red-tape and in-fighting and has maybe lacked a coherent vision over the last 20 years or so. However, astronauts know exactly what they're getting into. Many are themselves aeronautical or aerospatial engineers (as well as pilots) and are aware of the risks and take them willingly.

Personally, risks and all, i'd gladly give up body parts (seriously, like maybe my left pinky or something) just to go into orbit , nevermind actually explore space. I just hope we have affordable orbital travel (to mere mortals, not just the Richard Bransons of the world) in my lifetime so I can experience it for myself (fairly sure it'll be the only time i'll actually be overjoyed to throw up ;).
It's "keens" not keels. Argh!

But it is still awesome!
I have to say thanx should go to Artcat81 for posting on Fireflyfans.net and to the houston browncoats responsible for this. And to draw a bit of attention to it, Artcat81 has a suggestion of requesting a copy of the message. Check out his post here .

[ edited by kurya on 2006-07-19 15:53 ]
We have up-linked your weekly virus definition file update.


Sad that this nonsense has followed us into space. I wonder who's in charge of this task on Serenity...
Hey guys, careful about what you say about my space shuttle (I'm working on the engines). She may be old and may have way passed her time but she's still my big baby ;-)
O.K, I see the aptness more than when I wrote that. I didn't mean any criticism of those who keep those old boats flying. Or of the ships themselves, which have obviously held together through enormous applications of love and care, when they've held. I'm very happy the latest mission came back safe. But the overall situation is just sad to me.
And to draw a bit of attention to it, Artcat81 has a suggestion of requesting a copy of the message.

I get the idea of why, but it seems a little time-wasting (on NASA's end) seeing as how we can all just download the pdf anyway. Heh.
I don't think anyone can doubt that the shuttles are marvels of engineeering (I remember watching the first launch on TV at school and being appropriately awed) but in some ways this is a negative quality too.

The engines (please correct me if i'm wrong Yorick, handy to have an actual 'rocket scientist' on the board ;) have to be removed and checked (maybe even stripped for inspection) after every mission. The heat shielding tiles also have to be replaced (often in the hundreds) after each launch.

Obviously hind-sight's 20/20 but these seem to have been design flaws from the outset (not to mention the o-ring design which lead to the Challenger disaster) which have prevented the shuttle from fulfilling its mandate of reusability, quick turnaround between missions and (consequently) cheap launches.

Note that i'm in no way blaming the thousands of engineers, scientists, astronauts and others that help make the shuttles work, i'm blaming the politics and organisational structure which make communications up the hierarchy so difficult (dangerously so, as we've seen) and new ideas so slow to implement.

We should be up there now. Instead we're stuck down here, feet not just of clay but mired in it.
madmolly, right there with ya. Argh, indeed. Very, very cool to get the message up; woulda been even better to get it up there right! I'm not even sure that "keel" as a verb would have much meaning in space flight. "Keen" is definitely the word here -- a mournful wail.
The engines (please correct me if i'm wrong Yorick, handy to have an actual 'rocket scientist' on the board ;) have to be removed and checked (maybe even stripped for inspection) after every mission.


You're right Saje, not only the engines but basically most of the Shuttle has to be stripped to her underwears to be checked and re-checked after every spaceflight.

I didn't mean any criticism of those who keep those old boats flying. Or of the ships themselves, which have obviously held together through enormous applications of love and care, when they've held.


I totally got that dreamlogic :-) I agree the lack of love that didn't keep them flying might have come indeed from the upper places of the political sphere... but you have to remember that the human space program is still in its infancy, these programs are designed by people which are usually humans and thus prone to mistakes. As long as we're learning from these mistakes...
Good point about thge infancy of human space flight. Its easy to be impatient(I am), but when you look at how far we have come in the past 20 thousand years, human space flight has only been around for the last 40-50 years.
...and homo sapiens sapiens may be little more than about 100,000 years old. Nice perspective. Thanks :).
Some of you might be interested in this string over at the OB, in which maiii, one of the Browncoats responsible for the uplink relates the tale, and how they have hopes of sending the Serenity DVD up as well.

http://forums.prospero.com/foxfirefly/messages?msg=31020.1

OK - copy and paste this - I cannot figure out for the life of me WHY I have so much trouble figuring out how to do this. Don't have the time right now to fiddle. Mods - if you want to fix - please do.

[ edited by Znachki on 2006-07-19 21:05 ]
Wonderful thread. I'm just tickled pink that a touching line from Joss' "Serenity" was quoted to the crew. That's so cool!

As for the shuttles, they are wonderful machines that have done much to advance our exploration into space. Yes, we discovered some flaws through heartbreaking tragedies. At this stage of our development, space travel is still a very dangerous endeavor. Yet, being fully aware of this, our astronauts are itching to go ready to push the next mission forward. They are truly the bravest of hearts and the purest of souls for mankind.
That's so sweet.

Sadly, the next Shuttle probably won't be named Serenity; I'm fairly sure the program is being scrapped in the next few years. Now, maybe the next CEV...
Hmm... the first shuttle was named Enterprise thanks to a letter writing campaign by Star Trek fans. I wonder if Browncoats could accomplish the same.
Virgin Galactic, would be the place to go to get a new space ship named Serenity.
That would be cool, kurya (and far more appropriate, considering the free market v governmental nature of Serenity), tho Virgin has already promised to name their first one Enterprise. Maybe the second one?
I went to their website and sent them an email about naming the shuttle Serenity.

And then I applied for a job with them. Keep your fingers crossed.
Good luck madmolly...though maybe you should keep your screen name a secret when interviewing. ;-)
Anyone have a copy of the daily summary PDF for a latecomer? The yousendit link is dead :(

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