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View Diary: Who can own the future? (262 comments)

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  •  Terrific Diary (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    newportbob, orlbucfan, Mark Sumner

    This is one of those posts where the comments are at least as stimulating as the diary.

    Asimov was mentioned, but not (at least so far) his imagining of micro-atomic power generators, leading to an atomic wristwatch for instance.

    Many years ago I read “Are We Alone?” by Rood & Trefil, which postulated that even if there are other intelligent species, they may only produce radio waves (i.e., stuff we could detect from afar) for a brief period of their existence. We know our species has been broadcasting for less than an eye blink on the scale of the universe, much less that of our galaxy; we have been searching for life for an even briefer period - so easy to miss. If our periods of expansion do not overlap, how can we find each other?

    We also need to bear in mind that intelligence does not equal tool-using. Even on our own planet, we are not the only intelligent species, but we are the only ones to have developed technology.  There could be many planets with curious, questioning, intelligent life forms that will never leave their home.

    Speculative fiction aside, I’ve been concerned for a while with the smallness of our high tech strivings, since before NASA announced that they were stopping the shuttle and not planning to replace it. It seemed me that we should have had a moon base by now, not just an orbiting space station, if for no other reason than providing a gravity-based environment, light though it may be.

    We get more and more excited about what we can carry around in the palms of our hands, but less and less excited about the solar system, galaxy, and universe around us. As Mark said, if there’s no (quick) profit, private industry is not going to develop it.

    For every occasion there is a song, and for every song, an occasion.

    by mww01833 on Sun Jul 14, 2013 at 09:58:27 AM PDT

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