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Blue Origin engineers talk rocket science

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Blue Origin software engineers get their picture taken for a Reddit “Ask Me Anything” chat session. (Credit: Blue Origin via Imgur)

Creating a commercial space effort is clearly not a 9-to-5 job: Software engineers from Blue Origin, the space venture that Amazon billionaire Jeff Bezos created, reinforced that view today during an “Ask Me Anything” chat session on Reddit.

The issue came up just days after a human-resources executive from SpaceX, one of Blue Origin’s rivals in the commercial space industry, went through a Reddit AMA session and addressed the “myth” that his company’s engineers routinely work 80 hours a week.

“How many hours do you guys work?” the Blue Origin group was asked today.

“When you are passionate about what you do, time becomes relative,” they answered. (The group’s responses were not attributed to individual engineers.)

The questioner, who self-identified as a British teenager, wanted to hear more: “Dammit, a non-answer for that one. … ” But sometimes that’s the way it goes on Reddit.

Blue Origin’s team is hard at work at the company’s headquarters in Kent, Wash., developing a suborbital launch system capable of sending passengers and payloads beyond the 62-mile (100-kilometer) boundary line of outer space – as well as an orbital launch system capable of reaching the International Space Station.

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By Alan Boyle

Mastermind of Cosmic Log, contributing editor at GeekWire, author of "The Case for Pluto: How a Little Planet Made a Big Difference," president of the Council for the Advancement of Science Writing. Check out "About Alan Boyle" for more fun facts.

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