More on Stephen Colbert and NASA's naming of Node 3 on the ISS

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Today Stephen Colbert had NASA associate administrator for space operations William Gerstenmaier on the show by satellite for an interview, and talked about Kepler along with a question near the end about Node 3 (which I wrote about just two days ago here):

Kind of fun to see the two of them juxtaposed there as Gerstenmaier seems to be about as serious as they come (I think he enjoys the show though, just isn't used to making quips on tv), and so Colbert had to strain a bit in the middle as there wasn't really any two-way riffing that usually happens with a guest on a show like that.

If you want to see what the overall opinion is of people following the naming, take a look at the comments in this article today from I of course agree with posters like MasterSith (who now has a blog by the way) and Ichess, who said:
It's a name for crying out loud. Can many of us even name half of the nodes or modules on the space station? Can the general public even name one? No. So who cares? I get it, it's not a particularly "nice" name. There is no catchy ring to it, but seriously who cares? If we name it "serenity" (a great name by the way), only the die-hard ISS fans will actually remember it and use it more than once a year in a sentence. The rest of us will forget about it, and move on. So if "Colbert" wins we should accept it and use it. It's great PR for NASA, you literally can't buy PR that good. The majority of Colbert's audience are smart, educated and young.

Some of the other comments have confused Colbert the character with Colbert the person. Colbert the person, at the core, is someone with a famous show that invites scientists and astronauts on his show all the time, and that's all that counts. Or in other words: the US with Stephen Colbert knows that much more about space and NASA and other related subjects than it would without him, so if Colbert is the #1 name chosen (by March 20) then he deserves to have it named after him.


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