Monday, July 11, 2011

Sorry, kids. You can’t be ANYTHING you want to be.

Did you know they just launched the space shuttle for the LAST TIME EVER? Isn’t that about the saddest thing you’ve ever heard? When I read the news, I turned to my kids and said, “Sorry. You can’t be an astronaut when you grow up. President, sure. But astronaut? Nope.”

I read and read and read the article before I found out the reason why. (Seriously? You put the reason why 1,019 words into the story? We don’t all watch the news and know this stuff already. Some of us rely on interesting / important bits to show up on msn’s home page. Just sayin.’)

If you don’t watch the news either, I’ll fill you in. (And only 127 words into this post, because I’m cool like that.) They decided to stop spending money on space shuttles, because they are putting it all toward spaceSHIPS. As in explore-beyond-Earth-orbit vehicles. No longer will we be sending man to the moon; we’ll be SENDING MAN TO MARS. Not kidding! Sadly, there won’t be any astronauts going into space for 14 or so years, but kids will eventually get to be astronauts again! In OUTER outer space!

I love science fiction. I love that back in the day of the original Star Trek, we saw Spock talking into something like a a flip phone. Fast forward 25 years, and BAM! You could see Spock talking into a flip phone in real life. (Well, assuming you were somewhere Spock was. And that he had need to call someone right then.)

Or that you could see a movie where someone picked up an unbelievably flat screen, and accessed the computer by touching the screen and moving things around with their fingers and BAM! We have iPads.

The way technology and science fiction mingle always amazes me. How does that work? I want to know what you think.

Are a) science fiction writers just THAT good at predicting future technology?

Or b) do science fiction writers inspire future technology?

But more importantly, are you as excited as I am that there will be a future generation of astronauts that will actually step foot on ANOTHER PLANET?!

Photos courtesy



David Powers King said...

That's too bad. No more launches. :(

Then again, I'd love to alive and see man's first step on another planet. Fair trade.

Science fiction--a prelude to science fact

Jessie Humphries said...

I feel like I just got a Monday morning education. Thanks.

Kyle said...

About that question you asked, Yes.

Kyle said...

The way technology and science fiction mingle always amazes me. How does that work? I want to know what you think.

Are a) science fiction writers just THAT good at predicting future technology?

Or b) do science fiction writers inspire future technology?

That's the question.

Ozzland said...

At first I thought writers totally inspire the tech, I mean how cool is it that our scientist can take an idea with no blueprint no data and make it reality. But I’ve had my doubts, and the more research I do totally leads me to change my answer.

Hear me out before crying nut job or looking for my picture in the X-Files chronicles. It appears to me that all of the latest science fiction "ideas" are actually being leaked from the government to specific people / groups with the sole purpose of having them written up as fictional books and or movies. In this way delivering the idea to the masses and more easily passing them off.

Now as large companies get their chunk of technology info and then are able to figure out minute sections of it or at least replicate to some degree something completely new (IPad for example) that we the masses will just brush it off as cool new gadget.

Now you may be thinking what about those novels that came out before 1947 right! Come on now you don't really think Roswell was the first do you? A simple google search shows (extremely advanced technological crafts) being reports as far back as 1561!

Now don’t get me wrong, there are some really smart and creative people out there but since Spock and the gang had hand held laser guns and just this year reports on the US military successfully testing a fully functional laser weapon has to make you stop and think that there must be something more here then happy coincidence.

I’m just saying, the next time you have a super creative idea, sit and ponder did I hear something like that from uncle so and so who I haven’t heard form in years or didn’t xyz from down the road say something like that a couple of weeks ago at the kids football game.

I mean really know after cloning a sheep, making a computer the size of a phone and having a man walk on the moon I don’t think putting foot on mars is really that big of a stretch. Besides we already heard that Dennis Rodman was from Solaxiant 9.

Peggy Eddleman said...

David-- I know- it'll be awesome, right? Totally worth it.

Jessie-- I'm here to serve. :)

Kyle-- I'm pretty sure the answer can't just be yes... Unless you're saying that sometimes it's one way and sometimes it's the other. Or that it's somehow a combination of the two. And now you got me all confused.

Ozzland-- Wow! Very interesting theory! Two things- a) I really want to know how you get to be one of those people they slip info to! And b) I almost blew Diet Coke all over my computer screen when I read that part about Dennis Rodman. I had totally forgotten about him! Ahh, Dennis Rodman. How you used to entertain us. Now if you'll excuse me, I need to get back to trying to remember everything I've ever heard from uncle So-and-So and neighbor XYZ. I've got a book to plot.

Chantele Sedgwick said...

This makes me so sad. No more space shuttles. :( I am curious to see how people are going to walk on Mars and all that, though. Should be interesting... ;)

Kimberly Krey said...

I've noticed those things go hand in hand as well. I'd have to say some of it is inspired by the writers for sure. They imagine the coolest, most ideal type of gadgets and eventually the vision becomes a reality. Very cool. BTW, I was laughing out loud at your comment (on my blog) about the grocery store. Loved it!

Christina Lee said...

We recorded it and watched it again and again. Sad but yeah, so cool about Mars!!

K. Marie Criddle said...

This might be totally off topic, but I've started rewatching all of the old Star Treks from 1987 on and I keep catching stuff JUST LIKE THIS. Crusher on an iPad (and a Snuggie!) Picard discussing cloning! Wesley in sweaters that are a little too awesome for our time...ETC! I'm totally with you; it's awesome to see how sci-fi can predict/guide the future.

Steve Jobs was a huge Trekkie, btw. I'm just sayin'.

Peggy Eddleman said...

Chantele-- I know! It's like a part of our childhood is gone!

Kimberly-- I think you're right. And sadly, that comment about the grocery store wasn't even an exaggeration.

Christina-- Way cool! If I die before I get to see it, I'm going to be really ticked off.

Marie--You just made me want to go back and watch all the old Star Treks! Snuggies? At our elementary school, there are space simulators, and they are all based off Star Trek. It's brilliant, and kids come from all over the state on field trips to experience it. Sad thing is, even though my kids work in the space center, they don't even know Star Trek! Not a proud mom moment.

And Steve Jobs? Really? Totally makes sense.

Christine Tyler said...

As much as I love sci-fi and awesome technology, I'm kind of a NASA-hater. I guess I don't *hate* NASA, I just get really irritated at their complete disregard for anything other than burning money up faster than rocket fuel.

"Oh, our country's in debt? Like, in trillions of dollars? Ah well, let's just use government spending on going to Mars."

This might bother me less if they didn't waste money on landrovers that get stuck on the first rock they bump into because they don't freaking have reverse.

Or defunct satellites that become astro-trash because there was one single typo in their design.

BUT! Let me just say that I liked this post a whole lot more than government-funded chicanery, haha, and apparently it sparked my interest because here I am writing you an anti-NASA novel.

Christine Tyler said...

Sorry about that unmitigated revelation of rocketship rancor.

My answer to the question would be: B.

Peggy Eddleman said...

Christine! Christine! Your comment made me laugh and laugh. You write in such a fun way! I totally get where you're coming from. And when I think about it logically, I agree. It's just that somehow, NASA got a bye in my mind on the garnering of my ire on frivolous spending. Maybe because they represent something that completely transcends government to me. Something that totally falls in the realm of science fiction.

And don't apologize! You can have an unmitigated revelation of rocketship rancor anytime. :)