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Sen. Coburn knocks paying to digitize the Grateful Dead, create wolf avatars

Digitizing the Grateful Dead archive, creating avatars of wolves for a zoo video game — those are a few of the technology-related projects that Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) considers a waste of taxpayers' money.

Coburn takes aim at a number of IT-related projects in his new "Wastebook 2010” report, released today, which highlights what he described as $11.5 billion of wasteful government spending.

He cites the following figures and projects:

  • $615,000 spent digitizing the Grateful Dead band archive at the University of California at Santa Cruz. “This is one of the first efforts to preserve and share cultural and historical artifacts of the Baby Boom generation, a group that includes 76 million Americans,” the report notes, but that was not enough to keep it off the list.
  • The National Science Foundation's $600,000 grant to the Minnesota Zoo to create a video game named WolfQuest.
  • NSF's $250,000 in funding for a Stanford University study of how Americans use the Internet for dating.
  • The $60,000 the Government Printing Office spent on a “video game space mouse” to teach children the history of printing.

Posted by Alice Lipowicz on Dec 21, 2010 at 7:25 PM


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