Star Wars and Isaac Asimov inspired many to enter science, engineering, and aerospace. Now NASA is apparently hoping to revive that link between the sci-fi and the real-sci. The space agency has announced a new partnership with Tor/Forge Books to produce “NASA-inspired works of fiction” for young readers. According to a NASA press release, the goals are for the books to serve as “a gateway to the general public and generate awareness of the significant role NASA plays in our everyday lives” and “to attract and retain students focused on STEM [science, technology, engineering and mathematics] studies, strengthening the agency and the nation's future workforce.”
The Tor/Forge authors will have access to NASA scientists, equipment, and data to bring the books that extra dash of realism. IO9’s Charlie Jane Anders, who calls the announcement “great news,” writes, “Even apart from how this could benefit NASA, I'm hoping we get some kick-ass hard science fiction out of it.” But CNET’s Eric Smalley is a little less enthusiastic. “I'm a little queasy about a government agency influencing popular culture to promote itself. And exactly how science fiction-worthy are NASA operations? Still, it could be worthwhile.”
Read more on IO9.
TODAY IN SLATE
The Budget Disaster that Sabotaged the WHO’s Response to Ebola
Are the Attacks in Canada a Sign of ISIS on the Rise in the West?
PowerPoint Is the Worst, and Now It’s the Latest Way to Hack Into Your Computer
Is It Offensive When Kids Use Bad Words for Good Causes?
Fascinating Maps Based on Reddit, Craigslist, and OkCupid Data
The Real Secret of Serial
What reporter Sarah Koenig actually believes.
The Actual World
“Mount Thoreau” and the naming of things in the wilderness.