NASA: dispelling the image that scientists are nerds.
First, meet Adam Steltzner, who designed the crazy, Rube-Goldbergish system for landing Rover on Mars. There’s a National Public Radio profile of him which you can either read or listen to. But the salient fact is this (emphasis mine):
He has pierced ears, wears snakeskin boots and sports an Elvis haircut. He’s quick to laugh and curious about everything. Steltzner’s laid-back style makes team meetings a jolly affair. I stopped by one of those meetings during my visit. The jollity was still there, but it was clear that the prelanding tension was rising.
And he’s a handsome dude, too:
But the guy who has received most of the attention is Mohawk Guy, with the eponymous haircut and stars shaved into the side of his head. As the Atlantic reports:
The wearer, it turns out, was mission Activity Lead Bobak Ferdowsi, manning the controls in NASA’s self-imposed sea of powder-blue polos. Ferdowsi gets a new hairdo for each new mission — and this particular coif was the one voted on, for the Curiosity landing, by the rest of his team. It was meant to be patriotic as well as cosmic: Apparently the original design was supposed to incorporate blue.
Another nice-looking fellow:
Of course he was subject to many “tweets”(these from the Atlantic piece):
And he even replied:
As HuffPo reports, Bobak has received many marriage proposals on Twitter, e.g.,
And of course Ferdowsi now has his own tumblr page (“NASA needs more mohawks”)—now up to 16 pages of images, many of them hilarious, like this one:
Why can’t fruit flies inspire such ardor?