For multiple reasons. But one of the fringe benefits is seeing super-cool things located at the kick-ass places where I’m traveling.
Like when I got to tour the world’s largest laser in 2011.
Which just happens to be where part of the new Star Trek movie was recently filmed.
So here's the Star Trek cast at NIF:
And here I am, a year or so before, with a whole host of other library information types touring NIF when it first opened:
And that's just totally superfantastic. Because my childhood self was a complete Trekkie and, now, I've gotten as close as possible to having walked the halls of the Enterprise.
Touring the facility where Star Trek would eventually be filmed is quite obviously exactly the same as being on the Enterprise.
Or something like it.
But it's also insane amounts of fabulous because, let's face it, filming at NIF - a classified government facility - is twenty million times cooler than filming at the Anheuser-Busch brewery.
My only regret is not being there while filming actually occurred.
Because who wouldn't want to just randomly bump into Chris Pine in the small town of Livermore?
LIVERMORE, Calif. -- The makers of "Star Trek: Into Darkness" went boldly where few have gone before when they visited Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory's National Ignition Facility (NIF), the world's largest and most energetic laser system. With the approval of the Department of Energy, this unique facility was utilized for the first time as a film set.
The filming was conducted in 2012 during a normal maintenance cycle for the facility. All additive costs were completely reimbursed by the film company so as to have no impact on NIF's experimental plan.
Just as the "Star Trek" genre envisions a brighter future for humanity through exploration of the universe, the mission of NIF is to explore physical realms that were previously unobtainable in a laboratory setting. With greater than 50 times more energy of previous lasers, NIF enables the nation to address scientific grand challenges in national security, fusion energy and fundamental science. Built as a centerpiece of the National Nuclear Security Administration's Stockpile Stewardship Program (SSP), NIF provides data required for maintaining the nuclear deterrent without the need for underground testing.