NASA is on a mission: to make space travel more interactive.
With its future unsure thanks to Discovery’s final flight on Wednesday as well as growing interest in commercial space flight, NASA is trying to make space for the average citizen a bit more personal. While odds are you’ll never be an astronaut or be able to pay the astronomical costs of private space flight, you’ll at least be able to send your name rocketing into the ether. NASA recently announced that anyone can go online and input their name in a massive database, which will be placed onto a microchip that will be sent up with the Mars Curiosity Rover in 2011. You can even print out a certificate to show all your nerdy science friends. And while you’re at it, NASA has set up a live webcam that provides video feed of NASA engineers building the next Rover, which will investigate whether the Red Planet has environments favorable for supporting microbial life.