July 14, 2010 at 2:08 am #105589
Space and Future History:
One of my post-retirement writing experiments in the late 70’s was a novel that speculated on human civilizations about 2,000 or so years into
the future. Humankind populates the Solar System as far as technology permits.
The Solar System’s remaining reserves of accessible nonrenewable
industrial-base resources are at the brink of exhaustion. Destiny? Will the solar civilizations huddle and
fade into extinction or will they strive on toward a ‘beyond.’ Might the raving
‘nay sayers’ of a distant future weave new versions of ‘What we have here and
now in our solar systemwill last us forever?”
At what point does an empire or a civilization’s existence and evolution take into account, and extend support to Nature’s gift to humankind
of the instinctive will and desire for the behavior that will build on Nature’s
gift toward survival. Consider the
fates of the:
Optimistically, I’m for the cultures and the civilizations that choose ‘beyond’ when ready, and ‘survival’ along with ‘well-behaved societies,’
plus a hearty ‘Yes! We can!’
I’ve updated my free future history blogs a few times over the years. The current versions are in two blogs:
Part One (Context) ‘Spacefaring and Resources, a future history’ is at:
Part Two: (Novel) The Interstellar Slingshot Revisited’ at: http://slingshotrevisited.blogspot.com/
I note, as prefatory, that the enormous range of our ‘government’s interests and functions evolved over time to correspond with the losses and gains that, together in the early 1960’s, was once a shadowy project bearing the informal name: ‘Space Logistics, Operations, Maintenance and Rescue, Project SLOMAR.’ I believe that the SLOMAR umbrella of what was once the dream of DoD, NASA, and academia for accelerating plans, programs and funding toward an evolving, highly active, expanding ‘humankind in space’ will be a powerful reality.
New directions suggested by the Augustine Report from the most recent changes (accelerating evolution?) within the U S, and related actions, objectives and priorities by governments and the private sector throughout the world support an inference that academia, media and education would do well to study and speculate on potential futures based on the realities of both the past and the present . At this time I’m pretty much of a layman insofar as the needs for a ‘humankind-in-space,’ however I did make an attempt at a ‘future history’ looking back from a couple of thousand years. It was a highly stimulating experience. All sorts of ‘collaboration’ and ‘brainstorming’ ventures via the Internet. Very likely, comparable exercises by others, especially students at all levels, would benefit from planning for their their careers using a ‘humankind in space’ scenario. I don’t doubt that a future GovLoop would also benefit.
July 14, 2010 at 2:53 pm #105595
Fascinating stuff! Have you considered the impact of the commercial space movement as a possible replacement to governmental space programs? Considering the potential profits from asteroid mining, solar power stations, and Helium3 for fusion energy, would the private sector decide that the public sector isn’t moving fast enough and a more robust private space industry arises?
July 14, 2010 at 8:11 pm #105593
Space and Future History. Re: Reply by Bill Brantley 4 hours ago
“SpaceRef – Space News as it Happens ·Wednesday, July 14, 2010 issue ‘Press Releases’
includes a bit lengthy but comprehensive ‘myth-fact’ commentary that is responsive to the points you raised. Suggest you see the
Date Released: Monday, July 12, 2010
Source: Commercial Spaceflight Federation
“Commercial Spaceflight Federation Responds to Recent Misperceptions Related to
U.S. Human Spaceflight” Extensive coverage. I suspect that ‘government’ and
‘commercial’ counterparts worldwide are working up their own ‘myth-fact position papers.
IMO, decisions on which side gets (specific) space missions/workloads/funds are still several years in the future and then only after the politicians buy off on them. Meanwhile, ‘government’ managers, technicians, – and students – that are /hope to be /or will otherwise be involved with the ‘logistics’ functions of ‘humankind in space,’ even at this relatively early stage, might benefit from a review of:
and also ‘detailed research objectives’ at
Pres Obama’s April speech at Canaveral raised enough of a ruckus to confuse politicians AND the space professionals. Getting back on and organized on (a strange) track will not be easy. The action is likely having a significant effect on R&D and management decisions. I believe that there will be enough work on space-related programs in the coming decades to need the support of both govt and industry.
July 17, 2010 at 4:51 pm #105591
See also: U S National Space Policy: Principle: “A robust and competitive commercial space sector is vital to continued progress in space. The United States is committed to encouraging and facilitating the growth of a U.S. commercial space sector that supports U.S.needs, is globally competitive, and advances U.S. leadership in the generation of new markets and innovation-driven entrepreneurship.”
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