Monday, February 9, 2009

NASA gets the YouTube treatment

Remember back last summer when a news blip made the rounds about how a significant number of engineers at NASA were so dissatisfied with the designs of the official launch system they were working on that, in their spare time and at their own expense, they designed their own renegade version and offered it to NASA as a superior product? And that NASA middle-managers promptly turned them down, since getting to the moon ain't exactly rocket science... Oh, wait. Yes it is!

Did you ever wonder what kind of culture can be so steeped in technology, yet so hidebound that it dismisses innovation from the very people hired to make such wonders manifest? Wonder no more. Astronaut Andrew Thomas has, with the assistance of numerous poorly-paid non-thespians, produced (in the tradition of all YouTube greatness) a shoestring video that gleefully bites the hand that feeds, well, a bloated, hidebound bureaucracy well-deserving of such scathing satire. NASA admins do get credit for allowing this to be posted on YouTube, but will this lead to any real change at NASA? I'm not holding my breath.

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