Genius of the Day Award
NASA: DISCOVERY SET FOR LAUNCH TOMORROW, BUT JUST IN CASE... The mission is to see if the modified shuttle works. Everybody watches their fuel tanks these days, but NASA watches closer. The plan is for the crew to take refuge on the ISS if they find any damage when they get there. But what about the shuttle? It cost a few billion bucks, never mind what's it's worth. No problem! They rigged a 28-foot cable so flight controllers on the ground can throw the switches. I called Ann Thropojinic, a veteran astronaut we have relied on in the past, to explain these things. "Does this mean the only function of the crew is to throw a few switches?" I asked. "Not at all," she replied, "the crew is there to do weightless tricks for the cameras."