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Thread summary:

Future of technology, how far will technology advance the human race, moon mining, asteroid mining, science fiction stories becoming reality

 
Old 02-06-2009, 07:14 PM
 
Location: Northern Maine
387 posts, read 608,688 times
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...namely, how far are we going to go with technological progress? Will things currently impossible become possible with time? Science fiction to become fact? (This has already happened with Ion Drives, although they offer very little thrust, and will happen again with VISOR)

...What do you see happening in the future? I know Wikipedia has an article on asteroid mining, and that sounds plausible, but there's a very high chance it won't happen during our lifetimes. We'll PROBABLY see moon mining within....I'd say 50 years. I also saw a documentary on the Science Channel that said, barring anything horrible happening to us, we'll probably be a space faring race at least within our solar system within 500 years.

I know things I want to see happen will probably happen long after I'm completely turned to dust...but it's nice to hope.

All this won't happen however, if we all destroy ourselves or something like that though.

So what's your take?
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Old 02-06-2009, 08:58 PM
 
Location: Lemon Grove, CA USA
1,055 posts, read 4,121,129 times
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What we consider scifi will certainly become scifact for the most part. Much like many of our favorite childhood stories have come more or less true (depending on your age I guess, lol) the same will happen to our children. Sustainable colonies on Mars, asteroid mining, city sized space stations building interstellar space craft, etc. Barring some life altering discovery (first contact, ancient race on Mars, etc) it will progress in a mostly orderly fashion but it will happen.

Looking at the advances we are making now some things I see happening in the short term (before my life is over) would be robots, AI, colonies on the moon, new forms of clean sustainable power and propulsion and hopefully viable space exploration craft capable of journeying to our neighboring planets and the asteroids.

As far as asteroid mining. Exploiting the resources beyond the Earth's orbit will be required if we want to colonize other planets and explore other systems. The resources on the Earth are quite finite and the asteroids/planets/moons in our system are a great alternative.
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Old 02-06-2009, 10:02 PM
 
Location: Nassau County
91 posts, read 226,567 times
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As much as I love the concept of space exploration & travel I can't help but wonder how realistic it is to 'plan' to colonize other planets/bodies.

I wish mankind would finally get serious about really exploring our OWN planet and concentrating our technological brilliance into making EARTH a healthy place. After we do THAT, I think exploring space makes more sense.


If the time comes when Earth needs to be abandoned, there won't be room on the escape ship for many humans. It won't be the peons who are saved... it will be a very small number of the rich & powerful. Survival of the richest. Ugh. At that point, what's the difference if our species dies out or not?
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Old 02-07-2009, 01:24 AM
 
Location: Lemon Grove, CA USA
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I'm of the "eggs in one basket" belief. I think the sooner we have self sustaining colonies the better. Not only will it protect us from extinction if something terrible should happen to the Earth but the technologies we gain from any effort in that direction would be beneficial to the Earth as a whole too.

You have to deal with entire ecosystems and levels of recycling and reuse that put efforts here to shame. That is just the start though. Rethinking how we build things, how we manage power, resource transportation and maximization, etc. I don't see us being able to create self sustaining colonies any time soon but just getting colonies out there and tackling those issues would go a long way to rethinking how we do things here on Earth.
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