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Space Cadet

Today, Discovery landed. I watched on the news this morning as it made its descent, and eventually landed. The landing was mildly exciting, but I otherwise don't give a shit. How many years have we been traveling into space? I know we've made some advancements in space travel over the years. We have technology that can give us some amazing photographs of planets, and gather soil samples from their surfaces, yet it still seems to me that we're falling short of our potential.

Space travel is expensive, to be sure. During the past thirty years, however, computer technology has progressed at a rapid clip, while manufacturing costs have decreased (we can now purchase a reliable, fast computer for under $500). I don't have an inkling as to what goes into producing technology used for space travel and exploration, but surely there's a way to make safe, reliable technology at a lower cost.

Let's put a man on the moon for a year and see what happens, or start building structures on the moon that will eventually serve as dwellings for humans. It would be nice to see advancements that those of us who aren't rocket scientists can appreciate.

On the flip side, we could leave outer space as it is. It's one of the great mysteries that has spawned a wealth of fictional works, stimulating our imaginations for decades. There are many things that are best left to the imagination. Maybe outer space is one of them.


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