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IDIOTS...IN....SPAAAACEEE.....

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by DrFrylock, Jul 12, 2011.

  1. DrFrylock

    DrFrylock
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    Recently we had the last launch of a Space Shuttle. America (fuck yeah!) has effectively abandoned its manned space program, at least for the time being. While there is still some manned spaceflight, it seems that interest is dwindling.

    FOCUS: The dwindling interest in manned space since, basically, Apollo. Is this something to be sad about? Do we need a manned space program right now with so many more pressing issues at home? Is it even ethical to spend money on space programs with people in the world that don't have enough to eat? Should we just let the private sector do it, if they even want to?
     
  2. ssycko

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    I think it's terrible. We have the technology to send people to space, and the Moon, and probably Mars, and even if none of those places are liveable with the current state we're at, abandoning attempts to do so is just... depressing.
     
  3. pinballwizard

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    I think it's extremely sad that the space program has gone by the wayside. Aside from the national pride that's associated with space exploration, it's depressing that we are no longer interested in the discovery of what lies beyond. I went to space camp as a kid (the NASA sponsored one not the ugly stepchild Astrocamp) and I've never failed to be entranced by the stars. I can't help but think that by not utilizing the possibilities that space travel could offer to the future we'll be biting ourselves in the ass.

    I must assume that America as a whole was secretly terrified by the fat people in Wall-E and decided to abandon the endeavor entirely.
     
  4. AlmostGaunt

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    I saw the thread title and couldn't help myself. No matter what happens with your space program, one man will always have you covered.

     
    #4 AlmostGaunt, Jul 12, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 27, 2015
  5. dubyu tee eff

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    I say fuck it. There is no need whatsoever to send people into space anyway. The cost savings, while meager in the grand scheme of things, are far more valuable to our country at this time. In the meantime we can more than get by with the amazing robots and telescopes we have available to us. It is saddening situation, but still the correct decision.
     
  6. Durej

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    I think it kind of sucks but we do have a lot to worry about at home so maybe we just need to hold off for a bit. Until we can take care of other problems.

    I'm all about the private sector giving it a go though. Lets see what people who have the funding and ambition can do.

    [​IMG]
     
  7. scootah

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    The space program contributes massively to innovation and science in both the united states and the world. It's lead to some major and massively commercially successful products (like memory foam) that do actually feed revenue back, and it costs less than the annual out of pocket costs of providing air conditioning to US military facilities in Iraq and Afghanistan.

    It's a fucking dumb decision.

    I often dislike Buffet. But I think if we passed his law, there'd be a lot of things cut before NASA.
     
  8. Juice

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    It's depressing.

    The space program helps the overall morale of the country, where everyone thinks that maybe theres something better out there.

    Also, it's 2011 God dammit, isn't this supposed to be "the Future?" Why am I not posting this from my apartment on Mars right now?
     
  9. Crown Royal

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    Check ou the Thousand Year Project. It's a lingering possibility to turn Mars into a liveable, breathable atmosphere if we fuck this planet up to much in the next millenium (we WILL). Essentially, through missionw to the planet 35 million miles away (more than 120 times further than the moon) they will build factories on Mars that will pump out super greenhouse gasses that will eventually build up the planet into livable (but colder) conditions.

    Interesting, and scary stuff. How likely it could be I have no idea.
     
  10. Frank

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    I'm torn, I hate government spending on anything that isn't directly used for national defense, but space exploration is in my mind the only real "new frontier" left for our species to explore.

    If people in the private sector want to do it and are willing to put up the money, let them, they will be significantly more effective than any government agency could be.
     
  11. Lasersailor

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    Our technology has been plateaued for decades, especially concerning getting a craft into space, and getting it back. Currently we have to sit astronauts on millions of pounds of explosives, hope they explode just in the right way, and are surprised when they often don't explode in the right way. Then to get them back we need to skip the craft through the atmosphere generating extreme temperatures on the bottom due to the friction to slow it down.

    It's a very awkward way to get to space and back.

    What NASA should be focusing on is a new space age alternative energy. And I'm not talking about bio-fuel or wind turbines, but something like Cold Fusion, or a Star Trek Berilium Sphere.
     
  12. Harry Coolahan

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    Okay guys, look. The space program is not coming to an end. Manned space programs are being phased out. Keep in mind we will still be sending astronauts to the International Space Station—Russia is going to continue sending American astronauts into space for us.

    This is a good thing. Our manned space program hasn't developed much in the last 40 years. NASA and others realized that all our space funding was being better used in different ways (e.g. robots, satellites, telescopes, medical developments, etc) and that is what NASA's focus is going to be now. The manned space missions have always been a small, insignificant aspect of what NASA does.

    The only real value the manned missions have provided is giving the public a clear image of what they expect NASA is doing right now. But the program is way too expensive for what basically amounts to a PR stunt.

    (I'm not saying that manned space missions don't have their value. Only that some countries like Russia have continued developing their programs, and we haven't. We should either modernize our obsolete program or phase it out.)
     
  13. Racer-X

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    First of all, the beryllium sphere was in the retarded-ass movie Galaxy Quest, not Star Trek [/nerd]

    There are a number of interesting space travel/exploration technologies that are almost within reach. Things like a space elevator or laser propulsion systems.

    I think it's sad that the manned space program is going away. I think it will be a big loss in the fields of pure science. A commercial space program is going to focus on work that has immediate profit potential but we will lose some of the harebrained stuff that may eventually lead to the next big discovery.
     
  14. Noland

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    My understanding of this is that NASA is making an attempt at a manned mission to Mars and the funding simply isn't there to do both the shuttle and that. I saw an interview with someone about that, but I'm too lazy to look for it.

    I think the schedule for making that work is 30 years, but still, very cool.
     
  15. lhprop1

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    And that's your problem. You try to solve everything with more technology. The best solution is to build a giant ladder all the way up to space. You can build a tube around it so it doesn't get so cold and have rest stops off the main tube every little bit with bars, hotels, restaurants, etc. Eventually you could build a little trolley to transport the fucking lazyasses who are allergic to hard work or are afraid to climb.

    No heat, no explosions, just simple caveman ingenuity. Problem fucking solved.
     
  16. zwtipp05

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    I feel one problem with NASA currently is that it is too coupled to politics. When a new administration comes in and decides that NASA's current mission goals are wrong and changes the agency's focus to something else just wastes time and money. What they need to do is give them a budget that is insulated from political pressure (say, it can only change by so much from year to year) and let the scientists and engineers decide what their priorities should be to best use that money.

    I do think the loss of the space shuttle is going to present certain challenges. It definitely makes repairs of some things difficult to impossible. It's ability to bring back entire satellites for overhauls was unique. It's the Semi-Truck of space compared to the Soyuz Smart Car as far as cargo carrying ability goes.
     
  17. Misanthropic

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    The board convened on June the 27th, and has declared that comprehensive cheese mining of the Earth's moon would begin upon Professor Higgenbottom's completion of his spherical space-ship and the trebuchet with which to launch it.
     
  18. PIMPTRESS

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    Leaving it up to the Private Sector is going to result in some nefarious space world control type shit.

    Should be interesting...
     
  19. Chellie

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    I now have an intense desire to watch some James Bond.
     
  20. Kubla Kahn

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    [​IMG]


    Im in between the arguments of us having reached the limit of manned space flight and their usefulness in our solar system and the ultimate goal of advancing society in the Star Trek sense. We are way to far off scientifically to terra forming Mars or some Warp travel that I don't how spending insane amounts of money to send humans to relatively close celestial bodies is actually going to bring us closer to any of these fanciful ideas. Sending robot probes seems much cheaper and just as effective than putting humans on the ground to plant a flag as far as our own solar system.

    On the other hand my dad was one of the many kids whose imagination was sparked heavily by the NASA space race of the 60's. There is a part of me that thinks the psychological add campaign for advancing science could be useful. The last time we had this debate someone pointed out that their just ins't the collective will needed in the private sector to focus on the more lofty goals of space exploration. Outside of Earth bound satellites that provide communications the cost and return for space tourism is just to prohibitive for anything really to be done.