Author Topic: How Joe Average Perceives SpaceX  (Read 22999 times)

Offline mfck

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Re: How Joe Average Perceives SpaceX
« Reply #80 on: 07/17/2015 01:27 am »


Joe Average do not know what SpaceX is

I share this view. A globally average person nowadays hardly knows anything about spaceflight. It is a topic that only starts to be interesting if one is inquisitive about it and puts in quite some time into it.

Most of the people are just too busy with more pressing issues varying from just staying alive to keeping up with social pressure their society puts on them.

For others it is just too complex a topic. Yet another group puts their comprehension in other fields, not less complex, but far removed.

Joe Average does not understand spaceflight and thus his perception of SpaceX, be it positive or negative, is inadequate if at all present.

(Heck, statistically speaking the worldwide Joe Average is no Joe at all, but Muhammad)


Offline ClaytonBirchenough

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Re: How Joe Average Perceives SpaceX
« Reply #81 on: 07/17/2015 03:04 am »
I'd also like to add a terrifying amount of relatives who found out I'm going to be an aerospace engineer and build rockets ask, "But isn't there no more NASA?" or "But isn't there no Space Shuttle?" It's scary haha.

Not sure if people are really that un-educated on spaceflight, or if they're just looking for any possible way to relate to me haha.
« Last Edit: 07/17/2015 03:04 am by ClaytonBirchenough »
Clayton Birchenough
Astro. Engineer and Computational Mathematics @ ERAU

Offline msat

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Re: How Joe Average Perceives SpaceX
« Reply #82 on: 07/17/2015 06:38 am »
Yeah, most people have no idea what SpaceX is. "Richard Branson's rocket" is probably better known. But mostly, NASA is pretty much the only universally recognizable name as far as spaceflight goes.

On the few occasions I mentioned rockets to people, they initially thought I was talking about missiles and bazookas. On their radar, SpaceX might as well be an F-117A.

Offline MP99

Re: How Joe Average Perceives SpaceX
« Reply #83 on: 07/17/2015 07:11 am »
Also, if somebody is fan of spaceflight because Spacex and not before, means they aren't really fans of spaceflight.
I'd say many of them would say the "regression" in spaceflight "since the Moon landings" was a bit pathetic, with the Shuttle the one thing keeping any level of interest going.

A lot more people would be fans if they had something to inspire them. As much as you dismiss it, that means people. Human spaceflight.

Cheers, Martin

Offline MP99

Re: How Joe Average Perceives SpaceX
« Reply #84 on: 07/17/2015 07:31 am »


To draw a very simple analogy (since we are talking about the average person's attitudes towards space flight):

The US government and its mainstay launch provider (sorry, they are pretty inseparable in my mind) are the workaholic husband who has been promising you that european vacation since you were newlyweds.  He did take you to Epcot Center that one time, but other than that it's always "maybe next year".  Somewhere along the way you realize it's never going to happen, at least not until you're too old & sick to enjoy it.

I like this, but I think it's more someone who was very successful in the beginning of their career, and has slowly been passed over ever since, hanging on by their fingernails trying to make it to retirement. Forever promising "if I can just finish *this* training, I'll be back on the up".

Again, "Joe Public".

Cheers, Martin

Online Jarnis

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Re: How Joe Average Perceives SpaceX
« Reply #85 on: 07/17/2015 08:40 am »
Also, if somebody is fan of spaceflight because Spacex and not before, means they aren't really fans of spaceflight.

Once NASA stopped having actual goals beyond "running this station in LEO and begging for Congress to give funds for something else, which they never do", with no long term plans, goals or, heck, even hardware, I kinda lapsed. I understand the benefits of ISS as a testbed for in-space hardware, but it feels like NASA got that testbed, then stopped dreaming and is instead just busy trying to find something useful to test there.

Yes, NASA has a couple of really cool robotic missions (New Horizons, Dawn, Curiosity, Juno etc.) but beyond that it feels like their only real plan right now is to build a massive and uneconomical rocket simply because, well, they need to build a massive rocket. Because, well, Congress asked us to do it.

SpaceX on the other hand... first time in decades someone is actually flying to Space with a long-term goal of doing something new. And I'm not talking even Mars - I consider that to be "future dreams" until someone rolls BFR onto a test stand first and presents actual plans how to get there.

No, instead I'm mostly talking about making rockets that have sane price tags, plans for first stage re-use and building new space hardware that isn't "tried and true" (what old space guys seem to love) but instead actually attempts to improve the state-of-the-art in their own field (not using 20 year old electronics that costs megabucks etc.)

Compared to that, SLS feels like someone is gluing together old leftover Shuttle bits while scamming Uncle Sam for massive moneys, in order to fly a capsule that is overkill for LEO taxi, yet kinda weaksauce for missions beyond Earth-Moon system, and doing all that while having absolutely no plans what to use it for. Hard to be a fan of that, beyond the fact that hey, if you are going to launch a big ass rocket, I'm interested to watch how it goes.
« Last Edit: 07/17/2015 12:36 pm by Jarnis »

Offline Semmel

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Re: How Joe Average Perceives SpaceX
« Reply #86 on: 07/17/2015 07:23 pm »
Once NASA stopped having actual goals beyond "running this station in LEO and begging for Congress to give funds for something else, which they never do", with no long term plans, goals or, heck, even hardware, I kinda lapsed. I understand the benefits of ISS as a testbed for in-space hardware, but it feels like NASA got that testbed, then stopped dreaming and is instead just busy trying to find something useful to test there.

Yes, NASA has a couple of really cool robotic missions (New Horizons, Dawn, Curiosity, Juno etc.) but beyond that it feels like their only real plan right now is to build a massive and uneconomical rocket simply because, well, they need to build a massive rocket. Because, well, Congress asked us to do it.

SpaceX on the other hand... first time in decades someone is actually flying to Space with a long-term goal of doing something new. And I'm not talking even Mars - I consider that to be "future dreams" until someone rolls BFR onto a test stand first and presents actual plans how to get there.

I agree with you on that. NASA has really cool projects. I want to put that first because its something no one else does. Yes, ESA and others do some cool stuff, but not on the scale and determination as NASA with its planetary probes. Alone, it is not enough as a long term plan.

The ISS was meant to be a major advancement in engineering and technology as well as a science lab in microgravity. A science lab it is. But the hope was also to use the experience of the ISS to develop interplanetary travel and ultimately human boots on other planets. Despite NASA showing advertisement for such a plan, it has no weight because it is not backed up by political will and determination. The US government does not show enough interest in interplanetary human travel.

Then there is SpaceX and picks up the ball that NASA lost some time after ISS was build: They have the goal to colonize Mars and do what ever is necessary to achieve that goal. Including making space travel cheaper, developing reusable rockets as an enabler and other stuff like modern space suits (lets hope its successful). SpaceX does what really NASA should be doing. At least that is my perception. And it also aligns whith what Elons motivation is I guess. Initially he wanted to make projects in order to raise money for NASA. When he realized that this attempt is futile, he made his own NASA.

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