Watch this video compiled by NASA of the beautiful launch of the Space Shuttle Atlantis STS-129. It's gorgeous and proves that all space launches should come with their own Celtic soundtracks.
I am so gonna miss the Shuttle. What an amazing machine!
I've heard so many people complain about "that damn Shuttle", and how it's not a "real" space program because we can't go to the Moon or Mars with it, so we shouldn't be wasting "all that money" on it.
All what money? NASA gets such a tiny percentage of the budget compared to the DoD, which gets to have a plethora of different vehicles for different types of mission by each service branch!
The Navy gets battleships and aircraft carriers and submarines; the Air Force gets fighters and bombers and cargo planes, etc.
NASA gets one manned spacecraft at a time.
That's no way to build up a spacefaring society.
We'll never get our Starfleet at this rate!