Friday, March 02, 2007

Time for the latex gloves

I got the biggest shock yesterday. Finally tracked down the first issue of new magazine Monocle, published by the pseudo-desserty Tyler Brule of Wallpaper fame, to see if they had run an article about my orbital debris research.

They had.

In the article I make some rather bold claims about US military aspirations in space. Journalist Jackie Dent quotes me accurately, and what she writes is part of our discussions earlier in January when she first raised the idea of the article. I just wasn't prepared for the effect of reading it, presented so starkly in black and white. I thought, I am so dead. They're never going to let me back into the US again.

On the other hand, would US military/space analysts read a magazine with advertisements for Ferrogamo and Prada in it?


  1. Steve7:27 pm

    Hi, Alice - do you have a reference for that story?


  2. The reference is "Watch this space", Monocle,Issue 1 Volume 1 March 2007 p 70

    I consulted one of my senior space colleagues and he says they're unlikely to get out the gloves, and what I said was entirely reasonable. I'm most relieved! After my Kourou experience, I'd formed a healthy respect for the sensitivities of space industry. But in the end, why would they care what a lone archaeologist says?

    Are you coming to Cairns for ICOMOS in July?

  3. I heard about your interview with Monocle at BLDGBLOG, and wrote a post myself at KuiperCliff yesterday.

    As I say in my post, I'd often wondered about the archaeology of space exploration, but wasn't aware anyone was actually doing anything about it. I'm delighted to hear someone is, and will be paying far closer attention to it in future. Thanks.

  4. What a shame you're in Egypt and not Australia. Beth O'Leary will be joining us in Cairns for the Extreme Heritage ICOMOS conference in July, along with a few other space archaeologists like Dirk Spennemann.

    I'm very keen to see what Kim Staney Robinson has to say in the interview too. Far more science fiction writers think about space archaeology than archaeologists do, Alastair Reynolds being a good case in point, although his archaeology is so old-fashioned ....

    The Space Heritage Task Force is working on a report to the World Archaeological Congress but progres is slow at the moment.