I now make some predictions.
Within a day, debris will be for sale on eBay. eBay will close the auctions, which is ok, since the vast majority of the items for sale will be fake.
There are going to be tens of thousands LJ posts talking about it, all with nothing to say. Most of them full of angst. There will be reams of bad poetry. And maybe, here and there, a jewel worth reading.
There are going to be hundreds of hours of TV programming about it, full of TV personalities with blowdried hair, interviewing former astronauts, former NASA people, interviews with uninvolved equally ignorant self appointed experts prattling on, endless repeats of the videos, and all with nothing useful to say.
There are going to be tens of thousands of USENET posts, spawning hundreds of threads, most of them flames, especially in rec.arts.sf.*, sci.space, alt.atheism, and soc.culture.jewish. All talking about it, all with nothing useful to say.
People are going to be pissed at Bush for not taking his attention or focus off the upcoming invasion of Iraq because of this, even tho as POTUS and CinC, there is nothing he can do to help NASA and the families other than allow them to do their jobs. Think about it people, what can he do? Other than express national regrets, trust in the people who's job it is to research this disaster, and then go back to doing his job.
People across the Islamist world, and especially in Palestine, are going to be saying "Good, another dead Jew". I will not be surprised in the slightest if the surfaces more video and newspaper articles of their celebrating this event. The Palestinians never miss an opportunity to make their situation worse.
There are going to be a thousand conspiracy theories, most of them idiotic, about "what really happened", pulling in the threads and threats of the current geopolitical realities of wars, rumors of wars, terrorism, Islamism, anti-Israelism, anti-Americanism. And the odd bit of UFOs.
And elfs contributed this one. Within 2 years, dozens of people are going to file suit against NASA for lung damage for the dust released by the explosions.
Are you going to do your part to prove me right? Or maybe I'm wrong, and these forums and this world is populated by calm, wise, rational beings. Yeah, right.