Sunday, March 23, 2014

Hero of the Week

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration

NASA is a group of scientists charged with exploring space (among other things). A lot of attention is given to the astronauts (and often should be), but I want to recognize the group as a whole. There are thousands of people who donate their particular skill set to the greater overall goal of exploration. Thanks to these scientists we can now see deeper into space than ever before.
            I often take for granted the things I see every day. I get to view images that were impossible a few hundred years ago. Can you imagine what Sir Isaac Newton or Leonardo Da Vinci would have been able to do with a simple calculator, much less a super-computer or super telescope? Just a few thousand years ago we were monkeys poking things with sticks. Now, we are still monkeys poking things with sticks, our sticks just happen to be super telescopes. We are unbelievably lucky to be living right now.

I look at the glowing screen and laugh at a stupid video. I don’t take into consideration the work and history that went into being able to see Charlie biting his brother’s finger. I don’t see the nerds that worked their entire lives to design a tiny bit of technology that adds to an overall project.
            There are people right now inventing new ways to explore the universe and they are sharing it with us. Just one of the newest things NASA has accomplished is the Spitzer telescope. They have taken a 360° picture of the Milky Way and put the whole thing on line for us to look at. We can literally explore the universe from our own home because of them. Here! Click on the link and see something that no one before this moment in the history of the planet could see, until now.   

                So since I can now explore the universe from my home computer, I will call NASA my hero of the week… light year. Please leave a comment about your favorite NASA image, moment, discovery, nerd, etc. 

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