• World's Best Space Nerd Will Get $500,000 from DARPA

    Our country has given up on space. Which is understandable, considering the only incentive in space exploration is the chance of discovering the secret of our origins. Booooring! Call me when there are explosions.

    In order to gin up a little interest in the world of not-Earth, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency is awarding a $500K grant to fund intergalactic travel research. If all you know about the Defense Advanced Research Project Agency is that it sounds like the kind of place where sonic booms wreak havoc with people's custom pocket protectors, you are correct. From their website…

    The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) and NASA Ames Research Center (serving as execution agent), are working together to convene thought leaders dealing with the practical and fantastic issues man needs to address to achieve interstellar flight one hundred years from now.

    It's possible that DARPA's agenda is purely scientific, based on the idea that space exploration is an important part of human evolution. In fact, DARPA's research helped create the GPS systems that let us find our destinations, and the Internet that lets us write jokes about DARPA. But keep reading…

    DARPA contends that the useful, unanticipated consequences of such research – benefits from improved propulsion to energy storage and life support – can ultimately benefit the Department of Defense and to NASA, as well as the private and commercial sector.

    Of course. All space exploration has to contribute to defense and commerce. The James Webb Space Telescope that Congress is currently hellbent on killing would probably result in new technologies to assist other Americans hellbent on killing.

    Why does progress have to be filtered through the lens of making money and murder? The universe holds so many wonders! Don't they know there are green women up there, and they'll have sex with anyone? Hell, they even had sex with William Shatner, and that guy smells like schnapps and hair cream. America, we need to rethink our priorities.

    Photo by Bill Ingalls/NASA/Getty Images News/Getty Images

    Tags: Military, NASA, Science & Technology


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