Sometimes a rocket is just a rocket… December 10, 2016Posted by WorldbyStorm in Uncategorized.
That all this comes wrapped up in a certain rhetoric is a given. For Elon Musk, as the article notes:
“One [path] is that we stay on Earth forever and then there will be an inevitable extinction event,” he told the audience of scientists and engineers. “The alternative is to become a spacefaring civilization, and a multi-planetary species.”
I don’t think that’s entirely incorrect, but I’m unconvinced that it has to be, or can be, accomplished at this historical moment. But where’s the surprise, as the article also notes:
Ashlee Vance, longtime tech journalist and author of Elon Musk: Tesla, Space, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future, thinks these ambitions are driven by a mix of entrepreneurial curiosity, altruism and a dash of egotism. “The guys who are rulers of the universe now are the nerds,” he says. “They were all geeks raised on science fiction and the vision of space we had in the 1960s and 70s. Now they have the money to make this a reality.”
Jeff Bezos has his programme, Microsoft’s Paul Allen and Richard Branson are in cahoots on another. And so on. But when put like that one can see it as generational. It’s as if the CLR had a side effort as a space programme. Some of us here are the same generation as Bezos and Musk, or near enough – i.e. middle-aged.
Is that it? Is it that simple? I’m not unconvinced. Many were bitten by the space bug in those decades, and that it inflected their thinking subsequently. What do others think? And does it have any meaning beyond being an interesting historical after-effect of the original space programmes?