Donnerstag, 4. April 2019

Living on Mars? Bullshit ...

[Image: the Universe as fair ground ride…]

[german version]

On the occasion of the demise of the Mars Opportunity Rover that was supposed to work for 90 days but was still busily active on the Marsan surface for just under 15 years, allow me to put my two cents in concerning this issue. This nimble little robot explored the surface of Mars and has generated untold amounts of data. A dust storm in the summer of 2018 at last sealed its fate.

Mars: The red planet, god of war and desirable destination of a hubris-ridden species living one planet inward from it in an insignificant star system at the outer fringes of this massive intergalactic party.

It is this irradiated and poisoned desert planet that, if the hubristic monkeys get their say, will soon be the home for people. Bullshit, it won’t! The exploration of Mars is in full swing – and it happens in the only way possible: fully automatically or semi-autonomously using machines.

The little robot assistants to the big and admittedly only partially intelligent monkeys are whizzing around on the surface or are mapping the planet from orbit. They have already discovered water, iron and a variety of other resources.

There is nothing to be said against automated utilisation of these resources to further the goals of the tool using apes. Even isolated mining stations or fuel refineries operated by humans are in the realm of what’s possible.

But actual settlements are not happening – after all, who wants to live in constant twilight, immersed in radiation, stuck in a lava tube? Toxic dust makes every stroll a living nightmare and a form of self-torture, requiring massively uncomfortable hazmat suits.

Not to mention: Would you like to be locked up for months and years in a confined space with a bunch of other weirdos? Also, nobody really knows how fungi and other cultures develop in small habitats.

Certainly, Space X are on the right path when they use space tourism as a way of dumping the odd billionaire on Mars so that he doesn’t bother us here on Earth, but that is not what one might call a settlement. Instead, we could see it as a creative form of suicide. Mars One has failed. But that start-up&go-down media hoax was more or less stillborn.

What Mars is ideal for is as a fuel dump for exploring the solar system – the asteroid belt in particular – and as a place for scientific research. On closer inspection, it becomes clear that this is the way we’re headed. The sky is NOT the limit. Let us build a ring of machines around the Earth… the rest we will sort out later…

*************************************************************************** If fear and malice are seen as reasonable, resistance becomes a civic duty.

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