A Close Shave

Okay – are you one of those folks that thinks that “it’ll never happen to me“? Here are some images that, okay, I was going to say that they will make a believer out of you, but the images are not that spectacular unless you know what they are and actually have enough spare synapses to rub together to realize what it means. They are images of an asteroid that zoomed really close to Earth. Big chunk o’ rock n’ stuff that is flying without a pilot through space and nearly misses our home in this big ol’ void.

Asteroid in Near Earth Space

I think it’s amazing that our technology is capable of doing thing greater than just devising methods of sending 140 character memos about what we had for lunch (along with a picture!) to anyone that has a computer, but that this knowledge is being used for some important things. And this brings me to a point: funding for science and NASA in particular.

Sure, going to the moon again doesn’t sound like an overtly important thing. Yes, the International Space Station seems more like an off shore Russian resort with a gazillion dollar price tag and, well, why can’t NASA’s Space Shuttle program (on it’s deathbed it seems,) why can’t our shuttles be more like the shuttle crafts in Star Trek?

Well, those things could change if we gave some money to the agency that brought us the hope of these things in the first place. Technology, the current darling of American Pop culture, that element that enables us to tweet and text, get nipped and tucked, oogle blue aliens in 3-D and hear electro dance beats in Surround Sound, these wonders are a part of our world because of science and exploration. NASA has long been at the forefront of such endeavors and the science that they championed has opened the doors to the future of medicine, communications and powdered citrus flavored breakfast drinks.

So, before a real armageddon comes knocking at our celestial door, let’s support the folks who could make a difference. Funding for NASA and other scientific research projects is our best hope, and it makes quite a bit more sense than doomed from the git go nation building…

http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2010/01/wednesdays-near-earth-asteroid-caught-on-film/

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