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Author Topic:   Lunar e-library
kyra
Member

Posts: 583
From: Louisville CO US
Registered: Aug 2003

posted 08-02-2006 04:05 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for kyra   Click Here to Email kyra     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The recent news article on the Lunar e-library struck me as NASA at its best and worst.

While I see this as great source document, at the same time the "free" only applies to those already in the aerospce community - providing they provide resons and references, in short the restrictions around it make it a quasi-confidential document.

This in my opinion violates the NASA charter. Here I am, a taxpaying, natural born citizen, like my parents, and grandparents, and I don't have access. But trust me, if some country wants it for purposes of their own they probably already have it or the information in it they want to keep out of the wrong hands is already out there. I don't mind even payng a duplication fee. What do I have to do invoke FOIA ? (May or may not work)

This is my first truly negative post in a long time, as it is a matter of principle.
Yes, NASA has flown great people and done great things. Its the orginization that I distrust now. If the Chinese make it there before we make it back, we'll have to look no further than a wallowing group of scientists messing around with plans, wondering how to "classify" stuff the Chinese already had and wondering why the public didn't support them through our representative system. Add that to the "climate change" PR scandal, the works of O'Leary and Mullane, all I can say is what an orginization.

Shouldn't that DVD be in every secondary school and college in the country ? If the information might help another nation then it is time to get off our rears and use some good ol' American ingenuity to beat them there. Where's that today ?

I was not around to see Apollo or Skylab, but I'm already talking like a grumpy curmudgeon. There are plenty in NASA whose morale is undoubtedly affected by this. We can only imagine what greats like Young, Cunningham, Schirra and many more would say...

[This message has been edited by kyra (edited August 02, 2006).]

nasamad
Member

Posts: 2121
From: Essex, UK
Registered: Jul 2001

posted 08-02-2006 04:42 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for nasamad   Click Here to Email nasamad     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote

It would be nice if one of us could get a copy, and share it around.

I did look at the criteria for getting a copy but don't qualify, being a non US citizen makes it hard from the off.

It would be nice to secure a copy for the BIS library though !

Adam

Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 42981
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 08-02-2006 04:58 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by kyra:
While I see this as great source document, at the same time the "free" only applies to those already in the aerospce community - providing they provide resons and references, in short the restrictions around it make it a quasi-confidential document.
Kyra, not to undercut your passionate editorial, but before publishing our article about the e-Library, I checked with Marshall Space Flight Center and those with the responsibility of fulfilling requests for the DVD.

It is available to everyone inside and outside of the aerospace community so long as they are U.S. citizens and live in the country. (Export controls are set by the State Dept., not NASA, but as the website explains, permission can be granted by NASA Headquarters for international requests.)

Yes, the NASA forms do require reasons and references, but until someone reports being turned down because their reason or reference is unacceptable, I think more is being read into the process than was intended. At the same time, the DVD wasn't assembled as a PR or outreach tool; its intended and funded purpose is to help researchers.

So if you haven't already, I would suggest submitting a request (assuming you are still interested).

Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 42981
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 08-02-2006 05:02 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by nasamad:
It would be nice if one of us could get a copy, and share it around.
collectSPACE does not condone that advocacy of software piracy.

If the British Interplanetary Society is interested in obtaining a copy for their library, they should file a request with NASA Headquarters, as the SEE website references.

cspg
Member

Posts: 6210
From: Geneva, Switzerland
Registered: May 2006

posted 08-03-2006 03:30 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for cspg   Click Here to Email cspg     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
And from I've been told, the DVD is of little useful value from a historial point of view. Opinion is of an historian at Marshall.
But I agree with Kyra- the simple notion that there are export restrictions (no matter how justified they might be) is like pretending the internet does not exist. It's just plain stupid. Like ordering books from the GPO- if you're outside the US, bang! price and postage are usually multiplied by two....At one point, you can't help but wonder if they *really* want to "sell" or distribute the material their charter asks them to do. But the problem probably lies more in the fact that each center defends for its own territory.(I'm curious to see in 2010, provided I'm still around, what's going to happen when the shuttle retires- if it does- with the thousands of layoffs that will follow). Although anectodal, Michael Gorn, chief historian at Dryden published a beautiful book about NASA's history (ok, it was not a NASA pub) but apparently he didn't bother telling anybody at NASA, and certainly not HQ that he did publish such book. Go figure!
I personnally gave up trying to understand what's going on.

Chris.

Naraht
Member

Posts: 232
From: Oxford, UK
Registered: Mar 2006

posted 08-03-2006 04:47 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Naraht   Click Here to Email Naraht     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
It is certainly a shame that this isn't available freely. On the other hand, judging from the news article, a lot of the contents listed are already available online. Sometimes they are hard to track down, given that NASA's technical reports server is a bit impenetrable, but there's a good index to many of them here:
http://www.geocities.com/bobandrepont/spacepdf.htm

Dwayne Day
Member

Posts: 532
From:
Registered: Feb 2004

posted 08-03-2006 09:27 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Dwayne Day   Click Here to Email Dwayne Day     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by kyra:
The recent news article on the Lunar e-library struck me as NASA at its best and worst.

It would be helpful if, when posting a new thread here, you provided a link. I had no idea what you were talking about.

Dwayne Day
Member

Posts: 532
From:
Registered: Feb 2004

posted 08-03-2006 09:29 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Dwayne Day   Click Here to Email Dwayne Day     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by cspg:
Although anectodal, Michael Gorn, chief historian at Dryden published a beautiful book about NASA's history (ok, it was not a NASA pub) but apparently he didn't bother telling anybody at NASA, and certainly not HQ that he did publish such book. Go figure!
I personnally gave up trying to understand what's going on.

I rather doubt this story. NASA HQ's history office publishes a regular newsletter with information about the work of NASA historians. I bet that if you looked in past issues of the newsletter, you would find Gorn's book mentioned. That does not mean that lots of people at HQ were aware of it, but I'm certain that the history office was aware of it.

Dwayne Day
Member

Posts: 532
From:
Registered: Feb 2004

posted 08-03-2006 09:39 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Dwayne Day   Click Here to Email Dwayne Day     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by cspg:
Like ordering books from the GPO- if you're outside the US, bang! price and postage are usually multiplied by two....At one point, you can't help but wonder if they *really* want to "sell" or distribute the material their charter asks them to do.

Er... allow me to be a little politically incorrect here, but NASA is paid for by US taxpayers, not European taxpayers. So if NASA charges more for non-Americans to receive NASA publications, I have no problem with that. Although I have a lot of problems with the GPO policies in general (and NASA does as well), allow me to point out a few things:

1-they are _federal_ regulations, not NASA-specific.

2-NASA has a far more active and impressive history program than any other space agency. Show me ESA's space history program and then you can gripe.

2.5-NASA has put millions of pages of documents on line that you can freely access from anywhere in the world. Many of these are historical. Show me ESA's or JAXA's similar archives and then you can gripe.

3-with regards to this "Lunar E-Library," it sounds to me as if it was primarily intended to be a resource for NASA employees and aerospace contractors, who usually have to be US citizens to work on NASA projects anyway. So because the resource was intended for them, the restrictions are probably not onerous.

4-the issue here is a law called ITAR, which is a real headache for US aerospace. One of the big problems with ITAR is that the definitions of what is restricted are not clear. As a result, bureaucrats tend to stamp restriction stamps on things that don't need to be restricted. It would not surprise me if 99% of these documents--or even all of them--are free of restrictions, but somebody put the stamp on them just to cover their own behind.

Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 42981
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 08-03-2006 09:39 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Dwayne Day:
It would be helpful if, when posting a new thread here, you provided a link. I had no idea what you were talking about.
Kyra was referring to an article we published on July 31: Lunar e-Library puts space history to work

Dwayne Day
Member

Posts: 532
From:
Registered: Feb 2004

posted 08-03-2006 10:04 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Dwayne Day   Click Here to Email Dwayne Day     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Robert Pearlman:
Kyra was referring to an article we published on July 31: Lunar e-Library puts space history to work

Yeah, I found that with some digging.

spaceuk
Member

Posts: 2113
From: Staffs, UK
Registered: Aug 2002

posted 08-03-2006 01:04 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for spaceuk     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I had a look at the contents of what is on the NASA disk.

A lot of that material - for non-USA and for that matter US citizens - has been around on other web sites for quite a while.
There is a lot of material on programs on the NASA History web pages - many with PDFs available.

Phill

Naraht
Member

Posts: 232
From: Oxford, UK
Registered: Mar 2006

posted 08-03-2006 03:30 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Naraht   Click Here to Email Naraht     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The subject's now being discussed on NASA Watch:
http://www.nasawatch.com/archives/2006/08/another_explora.html

SRB
Member

Posts: 258
From:
Registered: Jan 2001

posted 08-03-2006 04:35 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for SRB   Click Here to Email SRB     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Well, taking Robert's advice, I just submitted the forms as an individual doing historical research. My references are myself (different email address) and my wife. I'll let you know if I (a US Citizen living in the US) get the DVD.

Steve

Naraht
Member

Posts: 232
From: Oxford, UK
Registered: Mar 2006

posted 08-03-2006 04:39 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Naraht   Click Here to Email Naraht     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
It would be interesting just to find out the complete list of documents, so we can find out how many of them are already available publicly.

collocation
Member

Posts: 383
From: McLean, VA, USA
Registered: Feb 2004

posted 08-03-2006 07:52 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for collocation   Click Here to Email collocation     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I spoke to the folks at NASA emailing my applicatin instead of FAXing. If you are a space hobbyist you will get a copy of the DVD. For some reason they want to prevent this DVD from going outside the US, one of the reasons for asking for references. Don't think the I'll get audited by the IRS as a result. The folks running the program seems harmless and I got a sense from talking to them that they really cared about the program. Also, it is free, your Tax dollars at work

kyra
Member

Posts: 583
From: Louisville CO US
Registered: Aug 2003

posted 08-04-2006 09:20 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for kyra   Click Here to Email kyra     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Well, In retrospect, I was a little bit wound up. I guess I should "chill-out" and jump a few little hoops - should be a nice DVD that will fill in a lot of information gaps.

Dwight
Member

Posts: 576
From: Germany
Registered: Dec 2003

posted 08-05-2006 04:10 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Dwight   Click Here to Email Dwight     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Rob, will there be any mechanism in place to access this DVD as a CS member if you live outside of the USA? I would like to obtain a copy, but obviously am located in Germany.

What are the legalities, say, if someone I know in the USA orders it on my behalf? Are they breaking US law by sending it to be?

Cheers,
Dwight

Dwayne Day
Member

Posts: 532
From:
Registered: Feb 2004

posted 08-07-2006 10:03 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Dwayne Day   Click Here to Email Dwayne Day     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Dwight:
What are the legalities, say, if someone I know in the USA orders it on my behalf? Are they breaking US law by sending it to be?

Actually, I believe the answer is yes. Note that they have to agree to the restrictions when they ask for a copy, and they have to provide references.

randy
Member

Posts: 2176
From: West Jordan, Utah USA
Registered: Dec 1999

posted 08-07-2006 12:02 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for randy   Click Here to Email randy     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I just submitted a request for this information using my parents and in-laws for references and stating it was for a private collection. I'll let you know how it goes.

Randy

mikej
Member

Posts: 481
From: Germantown, WI USA
Registered: Jan 2004

posted 08-10-2006 01:01 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for mikej   Click Here to Email mikej     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I submitted the web form and faxed in the hardcopy last Thursday or Friday. I filled out my actual place of business as the "organization", listed "personal historical research" as the "purpose", and listed two managers here at work as references (I guess they told the government that I'm not a terrorist :-).

I just got the following email:

quote:

Mike,

You have been approved to access the Lunar E-Library and I'm mailing the DVD to:
<my home address>
Thank you very much for your interest in the SEE Program's product.

Sopo


So, it looks like the process is an annoying-but-not-insurmountable hoop through which to jump.

SRB
Member

Posts: 258
From:
Registered: Jan 2001

posted 08-10-2006 04:07 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for SRB   Click Here to Email SRB     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I also got approved today, seven days after emailing and faxing the forms. The references portion of the email form must be completed in order to email it, but I used myself as one of the references so it can't have any independent significance.

Steve

spaceman1953
Member

Posts: 953
From: South Bend, IN
Registered: Apr 2002

posted 08-17-2006 06:27 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for spaceman1953   Click Here to Email spaceman1953     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I can share in the frustrations of our "foreign friends" not being able to put their hands on an actual copy of the DVD....and I certainly am not one going to violate the rules and regs. and provide copies outside the USA (or inside the USA for that matter), as it clearly is marked that this software is proprietary....

but the DVD came INSTANTLY after providing the requested (required) information and faxing the forms requested at no charge....unlike the CD's from headquarters.

Cheers !

randy
Member

Posts: 2176
From: West Jordan, Utah USA
Registered: Dec 1999

posted 08-21-2006 05:58 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for randy   Click Here to Email randy     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I got my CD today. Robert, thanks for letting us know about this!

Randy

GoesTo11
Member

Posts: 1309
From: Denver, CO
Registered: Jun 2004

posted 08-22-2006 11:29 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for GoesTo11   Click Here to Email GoesTo11     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Received my copy today. I had submitted my request last weekend, and received an email last Friday stating that the office had received my fax but not the email access form. That was puzzling, but the Product Access Form isn't that involving so I took five minutes and re-sent it. I just said that I was an independent researcher and archivist, gave a couple of professional (non-industry) references, and that was apparently enough.

I thought about calling the department number on the website and when they asked me why I wanted the disc, I'd reply in my best faux-Arab accent..."My name Ibrahim. I am want to build big rocket. Big to fly to Isr...the Moon. Yes, the Moon." These NASA folk don't get many chuckles; I'm sure they would have appreciated that. But I was pressed for time. Anyway, I rececived my CD-ROM via first class mail this AM, which is IMO pretty lickety-split for government work. Unfortunately, I'm on the road now and I'm having issues with my @#!%ing laptop's drive, so I may not be able to actually check it out until I get home this weekend.

Just looking at the thing, however, I was immediately struck by one of the reasons I find the Apollo project so compelling. I'm holding, right now, a wafer-thin disc not even five inches wide that contains over 1100 documents, some several hundred pages each...I'm guessing easily over a hundred thousand printed pages of data.

How many Apollo-era processors would it take to hold the information I have in my left hand right now?

GoesTo11
Member

Posts: 1309
From: Denver, CO
Registered: Jun 2004

posted 08-22-2006 11:36 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for GoesTo11   Click Here to Email GoesTo11     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Oh, and being the selfish plonker that I am, I forgot to thank Robert for bringing this to my attention in the first place. Not being in the industry, I never would have known about this resource had I not seen it on CS.

Thank Yaaaa...

spaceman1953
Member

Posts: 953
From: South Bend, IN
Registered: Apr 2002

posted 08-24-2006 07:16 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for spaceman1953   Click Here to Email spaceman1953     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Yes, ditto both of your comments....without collectSPACE many of us would be LOST !

Thanks for the info !

SRB
Member

Posts: 258
From:
Registered: Jan 2001

posted 08-25-2006 08:11 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for SRB   Click Here to Email SRB     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
My disc also arrived this week. I tried it out today and do to my totally inept computer skills I can't get it to open and access anything on it. I have a Dell running Windows XP. Usually DVDs open by themselves, but if they don't I'm lost. Anyone have any suggestions, other than me taking some computer courses. Any help would be appreciated.

Steve

randy
Member

Posts: 2176
From: West Jordan, Utah USA
Registered: Dec 1999

posted 08-27-2006 11:49 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for randy   Click Here to Email randy     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Steve,

Did you get your question answered? If you still need help, contact me off line.

Randy

Apollo-Soyuz
Member

Posts: 1205
From: Shady Side, Md
Registered: Sep 2004

posted 08-31-2006 01:03 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Apollo-Soyuz   Click Here to Email Apollo-Soyuz     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I will be receiving the DVD. I will critique when i get it.

------------------
John Macco
Vice President
Space Unit
Shady Side, Md.

SRB
Member

Posts: 258
From:
Registered: Jan 2001

posted 09-02-2006 10:52 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for SRB   Click Here to Email SRB     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I had problems with the first disk that was sent. As noted on their web site, a DVD-RW disk is also available if the other doesn't work in your computer. Thanks to their excellent service, the new disk arrived yesterday and works fine. The amount of material on the disk is overwhelming. It will take me, with limited computer skills, some time to figure out how to efficiently use it.

Steve

randy
Member

Posts: 2176
From: West Jordan, Utah USA
Registered: Dec 1999

posted 09-02-2006 03:36 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for randy   Click Here to Email randy     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Happy to see that you got the problem solved. There is indeed a lot of material on the CD. You'll enjoy it!

Randy

Dwight
Member

Posts: 576
From: Germany
Registered: Dec 2003

posted 09-02-2006 05:02 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Dwight   Click Here to Email Dwight     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Has anyone outside the USA managed to obtain permission from NASA HQ? If so what did you need to supply?

thanks
Dwight

Apollo-Soyuz
Member

Posts: 1205
From: Shady Side, Md
Registered: Sep 2004

posted 09-05-2006 07:03 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Apollo-Soyuz   Click Here to Email Apollo-Soyuz     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by SRB:
I had problems with the first disk that was sent. As noted on their web site, a DVD-RW disk is also available if the other doesn't work in your computer. Thanks to their excellent service, the new disk arrived yesterday and works fine. The amount of material on the disk is overwhelming. It will take me, with limited computer skills, some time to figure out how to efficiently use it.

Steve


Who did you contact to get another CD? Mine will not work as I received it today.

------------------
John Macco
Vice President
Space Unit
Shady Side, Md.

SRB
Member

Posts: 258
From:
Registered: Jan 2001

posted 09-05-2006 07:24 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for SRB   Click Here to Email SRB     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
John,

I'll send you the information off line.

Steve

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