Sunday, October 11, 2009

On the indeterminacy of rockets

More musings inspired by Ray Bradbury.   In his early stories, he talks simply of rockets:  generic, uncomplicated, obvious.  They don't have names or specific purposes:  they are just the vehicle of interplanetary travel. This seems indicative of a period where people don't really know what is going to happen in space.

Later, in the real world, rockets do have names and purposes.  They are the Saturn V, to launch a rocket to the Moon; the Blue Streak, to launch a nuclear warhead towards the USSR; the Europa, to launch a satellite into geostationary orbit.  They are no longer vague; they look different depending on their purpose, they have names and identities (military, civil, scientific, nationalist).

I don't know where I'm going with this.  Just thinking.

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