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Science and Technology "Somewhere, something incredible is waiting to be known." - Carl Sagan.

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Old January 8 2014, 10:15 AM   #1
TheMasterOfOrion
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Will hard scifi like Gravity get people back 2 science, space travel?

What happened to the culture of space exploration? Do you think a new wave of books and movies could bring it back? Or would it take an international event, like China establishing a manned base on an Asteroid or something?

I find it sad to see NASA and US manned space exploration and space science getting cut every decade.

Do you think there will ever be an era like Yuri Gagarin, Explorer 1, Apollo, Salyut, films like 2001, StarTrek, StarWars, Barbarella, Darkstar, Planet of the Apes, Moonraker, writers like Arthur C. Clarke, G. Harry Stine, Joan Vinge, Robert Heinlein, NASA's Project Gemini.....
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Old January 8 2014, 12:20 PM   #2
larryman
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Re: Will hard scifi like Gravity get people back 2 science, space trav

I won't watch Gravity, because it is 'hard'. I will continue to demand flying saucer space craft, or at least saucer-shuttle craft, and warp-drive starships. Going 'hard' means going 'rocket' - which means: mass-pollution, and going nowhere.

I'm ok with cutting NASA, as long as NASA favors rockets and spaceplanes over flying saucers - for human spaceflight. I want a new national space agency, that does not have 'aeronautics' in it's name.
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Old January 8 2014, 01:01 PM   #3
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Re: Will hard scifi like Gravity get people back 2 science, space trav

TheMasterOfOrion wrote: View Post
StarTrek, StarWars, Barbarella, Darkstar, Planet of the Apes, Moonraker
Ah, yes, hard sci-fi: Fantasy. Sword and sorcery in space. Soft porn. Comedy. Extended Twilight Zone episode. Sillyraker.

Don't confuse symptoms with the disease. It is not the lack of rockets or taxpayer money that is withering US manned spaceflight. The country is divided, bickering, imploding. The Apollo missions were not about exploring and the pioneer spirit, either. They were political stunts to show off industrial might.

Private enterprises with the dream, the will and the resources are busily making the means right now. They're probably not dreaming of space, but a better world.
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Old January 8 2014, 01:18 PM   #4
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Re: Will hard scifi like Gravity get people back 2 science, space trav

Sadly, Gravity is anything but 'hard' sci-fi. I saw the trailers and went along believing that it would be a sort of fictional Apollo 13. It wasn't.

The physics was ridiculous and it had about as much connection to reality as the average Die Hard movie. It was a big dumb action adventure film, and a very good one with great visuals, but still a hugely wasted opportunity.

It has a veneer of seriousness however, and as such still might help generate interest in real space exploration.
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Old January 8 2014, 01:30 PM   #5
Robert Maxwell
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Re: Will hard scifi like Gravity get people back 2 science, space trav

There is plenty of space exploration going on. Why do people keep claiming there isn't?
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Old January 8 2014, 01:42 PM   #6
JarodRussell
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Re: Will hard scifi like Gravity get people back 2 science, space trav

Movies like Gravity don't inspire people to science/space travel. Because in films like Gravity, everything goes wrong.

Stuff like Apollo 13, Star Trek or Avatar do that, because they portray the inspiring spirit, technology and optimism.
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Old January 8 2014, 02:56 PM   #7
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Re: Will hard scifi like Gravity get people back 2 science, space trav

Robert Maxwell wrote: View Post
There is plenty of space exploration going on. Why do people keep claiming there isn't?
Probably because we haven't had a huge momentous spacey event in a while.

Mars Rovers are soooo mundane.
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Old January 8 2014, 07:36 PM   #8
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Re: Will hard scifi like Gravity get people back 2 science, space trav

Metryq wrote: View Post

Private enterprises with the dream, the will and the resources are busily making the means right now. They're probably not dreaming of space, but a better world.
Exactly. Billionaire's who are science geeks e.g. Elon Musk have a bettter chance to keep space alive than NASA does or even film.
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Old January 8 2014, 07:43 PM   #9
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Re: Will hard scifi like Gravity get people back 2 science, space trav

Wait, so what are any of those space startups doing other than figuring out cheaper ways to get to LEO? Not that that isn't worthwhile, but it's not really going to "explore space."
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Old January 8 2014, 07:47 PM   #10
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Re: Will hard scifi like Gravity get people back 2 science, space trav

If you can get to LEO cheaply, you're half way to anywhere in the galaxy.
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Old January 8 2014, 07:49 PM   #11
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Re: Will hard scifi like Gravity get people back 2 science, space trav

Robert Maxwell wrote: View Post
Wait, so what are any of those space startups doing other than figuring out cheaper ways to get to LEO? Not that that isn't worthwhile, but it's not really going to "explore space."
Well there is the Mars One group. It's according to them a 1 way mission to mars for some brave souls. We'll see though if they can turn this dream into a reality.

They do however have a creative financing plan of turning a reality based TV show into the trip. Whether Mars One reality TV would be as popular as Dancing with the Stars is uncertain.
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Old January 9 2014, 01:30 PM   #12
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Re: Will hard scifi like Gravity get people back 2 science, space trav

This is the way to colonize Mars...

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Old January 9 2014, 01:45 PM   #13
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Re: Will hard scifi like Gravity get people back 2 science, space trav

^ Mars Needs 1950s Hubcaps?
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Old January 9 2014, 10:32 PM   #14
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Re: Will hard scifi like Gravity get people back 2 science, space trav

Robert Maxwell wrote: View Post
Wait, so what are any of those space startups doing other than figuring out cheaper ways to get to LEO? Not that that isn't worthwhile, but it's not really going to "explore space."
And doing rendevouz in Earth orbit is not getting to the moon. But it was a necessary step.

Private business has never been to space before. Going to LEO is, I hope, only the first step and is creating a vast number of possibilities for the future. It's effecting a major change in the way space travel works. Decreasing the launch price significantly is a big part of it. Even if most of the space launch companies we have today never make it beyond LEO, having that private launch capability, and having these lower prices is going to affect space exploration in a serious way that's yet to be seen.

Not to mention that one of the space launch companies has serious plans for going beyond the neighbourhood, has proposed Mars scientific missions to NASA (and is not far with the hardware on those), is planning having their own astronauts and, to nitpick, has launched beyond LEO twice already.
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Old January 10 2014, 12:33 PM   #15
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Re: Will hard scifi like Gravity get people back 2 science, space trav

Robert Maxwell wrote: View Post
There is plenty of space exploration going on. Why do people keep claiming there isn't?
Because it isn't really space exploration that they want. They want the general public to be interested in space exploration, either because they would like for their own interest to be popular, or because they would like to see some indication that the majority of the population around them is still capable of caring about something greater, something of more significance than bloody "Real" Housewives of Podunk, Arkansas or whatever.
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