|Scott and Megan on the Magellan|
We anxiously Await his Verdict
I stopped by the Space Center on Saturday to drop off a small assortment of bakery goods produced by the good folks at Walmart. I do this to ingratiate myself with the staff and to admire how well the Space Center operates under the command of Admiral James Porter and Sub Commander Jon Parker. The staff are well trained, courteous, conscientious to a fault, and protective of the Center's brand, philosophy and history. You should be ashamed of yourself, especially you old time staff and volunteers, if you haven't stopped by for a mission within the last year or so. Remember, Mr. Porter can always trigger that reactivation clause I put in your volunteering and employment contract all those years ago. The only way out of that re-activation clause is a healthy donation OR the occasional visit to relive old times and to show your support for something you believe has value in the world of education.
"There's someone here that says he use to volunteer," Erin said as I walked in. Believe it or not, it is something I hear often when I make the somewhat traditional Saturday visit.
"Who is it?" I asked.
"He says his name is Scott."
I've known a few Scotts during my 23 years at the Space Center's helm. Which one was the mystery of the day. I followed her to the Magellan bridge and to my surprise found the one and only Scott Slaugh - returned to us from the dark lands of Madison Wisconsin. He and his wife Megan (daughter of the one and only Vicki Carter, former Central Elementary School principal, good friend of the Space Center, and currently an Assistant Superintendent of the Alpine School District) were in town with their four children ages 5 years to 7 months, visiting family and friends. Of course they would include the Space Center as one of those stops. Scott is no fool. He knows all about the reactivation clause and therefore scheduled a Magellan mission to satisfy both his former contract from 2002 AND, doing what was expected to stay out of the crosshairs of Fortuna, Goddess of Fortune, and resident mischief maker / protectress of the Space Center. Oh.... the times Fortuna and I had together; her bad days and good reflected on the simulators and how well they performed.
Fortuna's bad days brought us extreme stress and frustration. They were usually brought on because someone on the staff disrespected her. I'd remind the staff never to take a good day for granted. I taught them that our successes were gifts from her bounteous generosity toward we mere mortals, not due to our own abilities and talent. But as soon as someone would speak evil of her or blaspheme by saying she didn't exist - Watch Out because such talk brought disaster. There'd be a power outage, or the network would crash, or a camper or two would start throwing up uncontrollably, or, or, or...... I could list a hundred misfortunes for loose lips.
Scott works as a software developer, just like he was when he worked at the Space Center in the early 2000's.
|Scott (circa 2001) learning the ins and outs of working the USS Voyager's IIFX Station from the|
great one himself, Josh Webb
Scott was instrumental in the original Odyssey's programming transition from Hypercard to Run Time Revolution. He was the chief programmer for the Phoenix transition from Hypercard to Revolution. This gives him legendary status.
Thanks Scott for your dedication and work during your time at the Center and for remembering all of us little people by making a visit to say "hi" on Saturday. The Troubadours wish you and your family well.
Meet the Flight Directors Series: Austin
|Austin, obviously pleased with something he's doing....|
Today The Troubadour starts a new series called Meet the Flight Directors. The Discovery Space Center's Austin is our first flight director in the series - not that he's the best. I think we all know a certain Mr. Williamson may hold that title, even though he hasn't flown a mission in four years. Anyone wanting to question my credentials does so at his or her peril. I have been known to throw some pretty nasty dirty looks when necessary to defend my reputation in the control room (the kind teachers use to crush students) so tread lightly.
Austin is our first because he's good AND I happen to have recent footage of him flying. Again let me say that Austin is good, not just expedient :)
Austin attended Emily Paxman's Flight Director Academy last year - which is an example of his dedication to his craft. He's energetic, enthusiastic, talented and can't fly enough! He loves his job, as does every flight director I've had the pleasure to meet.
Enjoy a few minutes of Austin at the helm of the DSC's Everest Simulator as he starts a mission of high schoolers and adults.
The best gifs of the week, assiduously edited for gentler audiences, minors, and the terminally offended