Cheap Water
October 21, 2010 7:21 PM   Subscribe

The race is on: India by 2020, China by 2025 - will the US get there at all?
posted by PuppyCat (24 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite

 
I know that you're commenting on the current state of the United States manned space program, but...

We did get there.
posted by SNWidget at 7:29 PM on October 21, 2010


There's no race. 'Cheap' in this context means 'marginally less than figuring out how break garbage into it's constituent atoms and make water from scratch'

Now, if it was oil.....
posted by lumpenprole at 7:30 PM on October 21, 2010 [1 favorite]


There's one huge difference between landing two or three men on the moon and somehow mining it for resources and bringing those back to Earth.

There's a reason they call it Science Fiction.
posted by HuronBob at 7:38 PM on October 21, 2010 [2 favorites]


We're whalers on the moon...
posted by Talez at 7:51 PM on October 21, 2010 [5 favorites]


It's great that you reminded us in this FPP that we live in an alternative history where Nazi Germany reached the moon, and not the USA.

We did get there.

Seriously, though, the moon landings were a hoax.
posted by KokuRyu at 8:08 PM on October 21, 2010


"Seriously, though, the moon landings were a hoax."

CGI
posted by HuronBob at 8:13 PM on October 21, 2010


We did get there.

Oh, really?
posted by Uppity Pigeon #2 at 8:22 PM on October 21, 2010 [1 favorite]


HuronBob, current thinking does not really support the viability of "space mining" except for uses already outside the gravity well. It would make it a lot easier to have a somewhat self-sustaining base, though. Water being almost as valuable as oxygen in that context.
posted by dhartung at 8:33 PM on October 21, 2010


The shadows!
posted by Threeway Handshake at 8:37 PM on October 21, 2010


dhartung.. ouch.. I didn't read that carefully enough.. thanks.
posted by HuronBob at 8:50 PM on October 21, 2010


The US moon landings were, primarily, Cold War military-propaganda efforts to demonstrate we had bigger rockets and thus a greater ability to nuke the Soviets into the stone age before they could do the same to us.

There's is no reason to go back to the moon.
posted by bardic at 8:55 PM on October 21, 2010 [1 favorite]


Bah, stupid moon. Been there done that. We're now in a race to the bottom! Dig! Dig my fellow Americans!
posted by The Whelk at 8:56 PM on October 21, 2010 [5 favorites]


minecraft!
posted by The Whelk at 8:57 PM on October 21, 2010 [1 favorite]


I liked it that Dr. Manhattan hung out for a while with the astronauts when they got there.
posted by Meatbomb at 9:41 PM on October 21, 2010


Hurray! Every thread is a minecraft thread.
posted by yeolcoatl at 10:03 PM on October 21, 2010


Mmmmm, Mooncheese.
posted by chillmost at 12:15 AM on October 22, 2010


Can I just say, no offense to any Apollo astronauts who may be reading, but there's lots more interesting places to go in our own solar system?
posted by newdaddy at 1:54 AM on October 22, 2010


They are also rather a bit further away.
posted by flaterik at 2:48 AM on October 22, 2010


Noted without comment.
posted by Lemurrhea at 4:12 AM on October 22, 2010 [1 favorite]


Can I just say, no offense to any Apollo astronauts who may be reading, but there's lots more interesting places to go in our own solar system?

Goddamn scenesters. What, the moon's not "indie" enough for you now?
posted by Ritchie at 5:35 AM on October 22, 2010 [2 favorites]


It's more of a Yogi Berra thing, Ritchie. Nobody goes there anymore. It's too crowded.
posted by notyou at 7:26 AM on October 22, 2010


Remember when cutting edge was about space travel and not the newest way to twitter?
posted by namewithoutwords at 8:16 AM on October 22, 2010 [3 favorites]


The fact that there are only a few handfuls of comments on this is as disturbing as the lack of funding NASA recieves. namewithoutwords has beautifully provided what we as citizens of the planet are interested in these days. "Stuff" and "me" - not "there" and "us".

As for distances, sizes and understanding of the solar system:
That wall chart in your fourth grade science class was wrong. The planets don't look like that, they aren't anywhere near to scale, and you can (probably) can't comprehend their distances. Go read the first few chapters of Bill Bryson's "A Short History of Nearly Everything" and you'll get an idea as to the scope of our solar system. Mars? yeah, we haven't been there but it is a hell of a lot farther and longer for things to not go wrong for as long as they have to in order to get there and back. Be honest, the first foolish saps who sign up for a trip to mars are on a one way rocket to their death, and awesomely, they'll have 6 months to a year to wait for that to happen.
posted by Nanukthedog at 11:04 AM on October 22, 2010


Be honest, the first foolish saps who sign up for a trip to mars are on a one way rocket to their death, and awesomely, they'll have 6 months to a year to wait for that to happen.

We're all on a one way space voyage to death -- and not one of us signed up for it.
posted by notyou at 2:56 PM on October 22, 2010 [2 favorites]


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