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By Jason Snell for Yahoo Tech
If you want politicians to give you money, you need to build public support for what you do.
NASA has been doing just that since the 1960s. Back then, to build excitement for missions to the moon and beyond, the space agency would send astronauts and astronauts-in-training on tours to towns all across America, giving stump speeches about the space program and its goals.
These days, NASA does much the same thing, but now it harnesses the power of the Internet to make its case.
One way it does so: It invites people with significant social-media followings to NASA facilities and events. Which is why, on the day President Obama released his 2017 budget proposal, I found myself at NASA Ames Research Center at Moffett Field — next door to Google’s headquarters in Mountain View, Calif. — to watch a live stream of a “State of NASA” speech by NASA administrator Charlie Bolden and to hear from other NASA folks in person.