It still blows my mind that we can fling a 1 ton robot from a spinning, moving rock to another spinning, moving rock and get it not only within a km target zone but have it not explode in any way. Like. Wow. So cool.
It was awesome watching the live feeds and simulations in one monitor and watching Twitter absolutely explode with commentary in the other. It was cool that we got to see the first pictures come back at the same time as the awesome guys and gals at NASA itself. It was cool that the New York streets erupted chanting “Science science science” as they displayed the feed on the huge screens in Times Square. It was cool to watch as the control room hushed for terrifying minutes and then poured forth high fives, hugs and tears as the systems were checked and good to go.
It’s cool to think about the implications of water on Mars.
It’s refreshing to see that there quite a few women in that control room, and the Twitter crowd favorite mohawk guy. Science isn’t just for 60 year old white men anymore.
Earlier today we saw Jamaica’s Usain Bolt utterly crush Olympic 100m records (which he himself had set previously in Beijing). We’ve seen a lot of fantastic things today. These weeks.
Then it hit me. I made a quick graph:
Please excuse the terrible kerning – I couldn’t seem to change that. Suffice to say, in order: American Military Budget, London Olympics and sending a drivable laboratory to another freaking planet.
We could send 680 Curiositys in exchange for one year of America’s defense spending. Imagine the things that we could actually do.
I don’t want to be a killjoy. I don’t want to seem unappreciative of all the awesome that happened today; quite the opposite: I want more awesome to come from not spending that money on useless things like war.
Man must explore. Why torture and kill people for having a different imaginary friend than you? It’s especially ironic since the Christian God and the Muslim God is the same guy.
Anyway, before this devolves into a politico-religious rant I do want extend my hopes for a better designed future. We get to make whatever we want! How awesome is that possibility. How much could we do. As a product designer my contributions are such a micro thing. I can improve the life of police officers with my designs. That’s really cool, but what gets me excited is the next generation of politicians. The ones that grew up on the internet. The ones who look at all these things and like me ask “Okay, wait. Why do we do this, anyway?” – that’s such a neat prospect.
Obviously, I’m ignoring the huge elephant in the room regarding debt, but what would you do with 1.7 trillion dollars? One million million dollars. Every. Year.
I smell a Brewster’s Millions sequel.
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