Author Topic: Why SpaceX Are Going to Beat NASA to Mars  (Read 25175 times)

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Offline Eka

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Re: Why SpaceX Are Going to Beat NASA to Mars
« Reply #75 on: July 19, 2018, 11:48:54 am »
on a planet quite literally perfectly designed to promote  our survival, we would be able to survive on another planet.
Obviously you don't understand evolution. The planet wasn't designed for us. We evolved to survive on it.

We need our eggs in more than one basket. Another rift volcano will erupt, or large meteor will hit earth. If we haven't solved the issues of living elsewhere by then, we are done for as a species.
 
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Offline MT

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Re: Why SpaceX Are Going to Beat NASA to Mars
« Reply #76 on: July 19, 2018, 11:50:19 am »
People love to argue about the little stuff, but if you look at where American taxpayer money ends up (I say American because that's where I live and what I'm familiar with, not because I'm not aware other countries exist) our military expenditures absolutely dwarf everything else. NASA, the cost of healthcare, the cost of college education, and even smaller, even more hot button issues like welfare, that's all peanuts compared to what we spend on military. That's not to say I don't support our soldiers but come on, if there's fat to trim that's the place to look! I'd like to stop blowing up other places for a bit and focus on home.
Oh please stop you stupidity! I have in several threads mentioned the mysteriously disappearance of 21 trillion USD getting ridiculed by your fellow citizens for it now you trying to make point of very same Pentagon spending and you didnt know it was 21 trillions, as if i dont know how the corrupt USA works. The soldiers is not yours but the oligarchs mercenaries im not baffled you support such pathetic criminal crap! There is a reason USA is the planet laughing stock so MAGA and Covfefe!

Have you figured out why your so called fellow soldiers still invading and stationary in Afghanistan do you?
« Last Edit: July 19, 2018, 12:21:06 pm by MT »
 

Offline MT

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Re: Why SpaceX Are Going to Beat NASA to Mars
« Reply #77 on: July 19, 2018, 12:17:05 pm »
We will probably blow ourselves up here eventually anyway. If humans manage to spread to another planet it won't take long for fighting to break out there too, only if it's a completely lifeless planet that we colonize there won't be the huge diversity of other species around. I suspect at least the first several attempts at colonizing another planet will fairly quickly end in catastrophe of one sort or another. Eventually something might work out but I think we're a long way off.

Why this constant negativism on homo sapiens sapiens? But to an extent i agree to your conclusion if Americans are let to spread to other planets there will be endless wars. But if peaceful Faroeans and Scandinavians in general there will be no blowups only flowers and soft pillow thumping then french sex.

Americans are always afraid of something, if not the fellow John Doe on the street its his neighbor, if not its the people of another town, if not its the federal government and if not, its the Canadians and Mexicans, and if not its the Russians  and if not they will invent something to be afraid of as a lame excuse for arming them selfs to the teeth even into space!  What a sad story!  I dont see the Greenlandics behave in this way.
« Last Edit: July 19, 2018, 12:31:42 pm by MT »
 

Offline EEVblog

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Re: Why SpaceX Are Going to Beat NASA to Mars
« Reply #78 on: July 19, 2018, 02:24:13 pm »
https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-audit-army/u-s-army-fudged-its-accounts-by-trillions-of-dollars-auditor-finds-idUSKCN10U1IG
Quote
The United States Army’s finances are so jumbled it had to make trillions of dollars of improper accounting adjustments to create an illusion that its books are balanced.

How is this not the single most important thing being investigated by Congress?
 
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Offline james_s

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Re: Why SpaceX Are Going to Beat NASA to Mars
« Reply #79 on: July 19, 2018, 04:44:46 pm »
People love to argue about the little stuff, but if you look at where American taxpayer money ends up (I say American because that's where I live and what I'm familiar with, not because I'm not aware other countries exist) our military expenditures absolutely dwarf everything else. NASA, the cost of healthcare, the cost of college education, and even smaller, even more hot button issues like welfare, that's all peanuts compared to what we spend on military. That's not to say I don't support our soldiers but come on, if there's fat to trim that's the place to look! I'd like to stop blowing up other places for a bit and focus on home.
Oh please stop you stupidity! I have in several threads mentioned the mysteriously disappearance of 21 trillion USD getting ridiculed by your fellow citizens for it now you trying to make point of very same Pentagon spending and you didnt know it was 21 trillions, as if i dont know how the corrupt USA works. The soldiers is not yours but the oligarchs mercenaries im not baffled you support such pathetic criminal crap! There is a reason USA is the planet laughing stock so MAGA and Covfefe!

Have you figured out why your so called fellow soldiers still invading and stationary in Afghanistan do you?


What are you even talking about? So I admire people who are willing to serve their country, so what? Nowhere did I mention that I approve of what our military gets used for or the people sending the orders. Calm down and take a deep breath, you're reading far more into what I said than I put there.
 
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Offline mtdoc

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Re: Why SpaceX Are Going to Beat NASA to Mars
« Reply #80 on: July 19, 2018, 05:21:37 pm »
https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-audit-army/u-s-army-fudged-its-accounts-by-trillions-of-dollars-auditor-finds-idUSKCN10U1IG
Quote
The United States Army’s finances are so jumbled it had to make trillions of dollars of improper accounting adjustments to create an illusion that its books are balanced.

How is this not the single most important thing being investigated by Congress?

It’s all about who owns Congess Dave.

 
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Offline wraper

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Re: Why SpaceX Are Going to Beat NASA to Mars
« Reply #81 on: July 19, 2018, 05:30:53 pm »
It’s all about who owns Congess Dave.
But it's Elon Musk gets called out by media as a top donor after donating $40k to GOP (DNC too but only few mentioned)  :palm:.
 
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Online CatalinaWOW

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Re: Why SpaceX Are Going to Beat NASA to Mars
« Reply #82 on: July 19, 2018, 11:53:43 pm »
https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-audit-army/u-s-army-fudged-its-accounts-by-trillions-of-dollars-auditor-finds-idUSKCN10U1IG
Quote
The United States Army’s finances are so jumbled it had to make trillions of dollars of improper accounting adjustments to create an illusion that its books are balanced.

How is this not the single most important thing being investigated by Congress?

It’s all about who owns Congess Dave.



The really sad thing is that our Congress critters have been so successfully bought (or so successfully sold themselves) that these numbers are hardly influential.  While the numbers in the chart look huge, they are a tiny fraction of the net worth of all but the newest and least influential, even if focused on only a couple of people.

 
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Offline james_s

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Re: Why SpaceX Are Going to Beat NASA to Mars
« Reply #83 on: July 20, 2018, 12:23:28 am »
It should be a criminal offense to take contributions from any entity. Maybe have a general campaign fund that can be contributed to and then divided out evenly, or do something to even out that process. I'm ok with political positions paying a modest salary but for the most part it should be a public service one does to serve their country and not a path to great wealth.
 
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Offline mtdoc

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Re: Why SpaceX Are Going to Beat NASA to Mars
« Reply #84 on: July 20, 2018, 01:30:30 am »
The only answer IMO is full public financing of elections and once you leave congress, a lifetime ban on lobbying or working in any industry you were involved in regulating.   I know, it will never happen, but I can dream...
 
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Offline tooki

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Re: Why SpaceX Are Going to Beat NASA to Mars
« Reply #85 on: July 20, 2018, 01:15:26 pm »
The only answer IMO is full public financing of elections and once you leave congress, a lifetime ban on lobbying or working in any industry you were involved in regulating.   I know, it will never happen, but I can dream...
In theory I agree, yet in practice, that’d be impossible in some industries. For example, if you’re a nuclear physicist, you’ve really only got 3 major types of employers: the government, nuclear power, or nuclear physics research. So if we instituted a “no revolving doors” law, anyone who worked for the government could never work for the others, and so if they left the government, they’d de facto have to choose a new, unrelated career. And to be sure, we need for regulators to be deeply knowledgeable about the fields they regulate. When they aren’t, we get shit like the horrible net neutrality laws, the attempted laws on encryption (Clipper Chip, remember that??), and the US government’s panel on vaccines. Did you hear about that last one? Because they don’t want it to be “biased” by vaccine researchers, they expressly avoid any members with any background in vaccine research...  |O :palm: |O :o :palm: :wtf: >:(  |O
 

Offline Bassman59

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Re: Why SpaceX Are Going to Beat NASA to Mars
« Reply #86 on: July 20, 2018, 05:45:14 pm »
How is this not the single most important thing being investigated by Congress?

It’s all about who owns Congess Dave.



The really sad thing is that our Congress critters have been so successfully bought (or so successfully sold themselves) that these numbers are hardly influential.  While the numbers in the chart look huge, they are a tiny fraction of the net worth of all but the newest and least influential, even if focused on only a couple of people.

While I completely agree with those who state that there is too much corporate money in politics, and that politicians are easily bought (on the state level, legislators are pretty cheap!), this chart is misleading.

Under the "contributor" column is a list of corporations. But under US law, corporations cannot donate to political campaigns. (They can donate to allegedly-independent PACs, but that is not what this chart describes.) So how can this list be created?

Easy. If you've ever donated to a political campaign, you are required to disclose the name of your employer. When the candidates report their contributions, that information is included, and the agency that tallies this all up reports the total amount donated by the employees of each company. Remember, for a federal campaign, a US citizen is allowed to contribute something like only $4600 to each candidate. Divide the $3,158,849 by $4600 and you get a whopping 686 individuals employed by Northrup Grumman donating to candidates of both parties.

And since most people do not donate the maximum, not even close. I read somewhere that the average donation is $250 (take the CEOs who give the max and the line workers who give $20, and that sounds about right), so that's 12,635 individuals who work for Northrup Grumman who gave money to a candidate. How many employees does NG have? A lot more.

So I'd like to think that the $250 I give to my various preferred candidates will influence their votes, but the reality is that they already vote the way I want them to vote. I give them money so the guy who votes the other way doesn't get into office.

So the real money influence on campaigns comes not from individual donations, but from the super PACs legalized by the Citizens United decision, which basically allowed unlimited money contributed by anonymous people to run "issue ads" supporting preferred candidates and blasting opposition.  The real money influence comes from lobbyists who can promise "jobs" in a district , and they can sweep that PAC money to a candidate.
 

Online GeorgeOfTheJungle

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Re: Why SpaceX Are Going to Beat NASA to Mars
« Reply #87 on: July 20, 2018, 06:06:52 pm »
In two words: rotten politics.
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Online CatalinaWOW

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Re: Why SpaceX Are Going to Beat NASA to Mars
« Reply #88 on: July 20, 2018, 06:18:21 pm »
Before I retired I had direct personal contact with several pols in DC.  It is difficult to overstate how driven by money they are, and how warped they and their staffs have become over years of exposure to the system.  I think most do not enter politics with the intention to be corrupt, but the forces on them are huge and subtle.
 

Offline mtdoc

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Re: Why SpaceX Are Going to Beat NASA to Mars
« Reply #89 on: July 20, 2018, 07:04:09 pm »
. But under US law, corporations cannot donate to political campaigns. (They can donate to allegedly-independent PACs, but that is not what this chart describes.)
That is a distinction without meaning. Corporations cannot only donate to a PAC that is specifically dedicated to electing an individual, but they can also donate to local or national party "committees" whose sole focus may be electing one particular individual ("The committee to elect John Smith"). In the end the  result is that individual corporations or industries can indeed donate very large amounts of money to particular candidates.  Which is, for example, how Koch Industries alone has been able to donate $6.5 million just so far in the 2018 election cycle.

Quote
If you've ever donated to a political campaign, you are required to disclose the name of your employer.
Not really true - it's only true for donations > $200. I've donated to several candidates campaigns without disclosing my profession or employer. 

Quote
Remember, for a federal campaign, a US citizen is allowed to contribute something like only $4600 to each candidate.

Actually, individual can contribute up to $10k per year to a local party committees and  up to $10K (or in some cases 100K) per year to national party committees. For example

As for where congressional donations come from, there is very little of that money that is coming from small individual donors.  Most of it comes from big donors and PACs.

The above info can be verified on the Wikipedia article on US campaign finance

Quote
So the real money influence on campaigns comes not from individual donations, but from the super PACs legalized by the Citizens United decision, which basically allowed unlimited money contributed by anonymous people to run "issue ads" supporting preferred candidates and blasting opposition.  The real money influence comes from lobbyists who can promise "jobs" in a district , and they can sweep that PAC money to a candidate.

I agree. The figures in the defense contribution chart does not even include the very large amounts spend by the defense industry on lobbying congress.
 
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Offline apis

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Re: Why SpaceX Are Going to Beat NASA to Mars
« Reply #90 on: July 20, 2018, 07:41:21 pm »
NASA's budget is absolutely tiny in the grand scheme of things, it's no wonder they haven't undertaken anything really monumental in a long time.

I think space is fascinating, but unlike many I'm not so enamored by the idea of sending people to Mars. Even under the best conditions, it's a less hospitable and far more isolated environment than the most climate-extreme, desolate "corners" of the Earth. What exactly is someone who goes there going to do? I suspect the novelty of being on another planet will wear off pretty quickly once they get there. If an emergency occurs, they are on their own, even if we were to send them needed supplies it would take months for them to get there.

I would be more interested in sending unmanned robotic probes to more places. It's much cheaper and less risky, and we can send them to far more places, learning much more than we can by putting a human on Mars. Exploration can be mechanized and automated, the only reason to send a human there is because we can.
Yes, exactly. There isn't even any scientific reason to send humans to Mars; it's extremely expensive, impractical and dangerous, and you have to go through the trouble of sending all the people back again. A robot can do any necessary job "cheaply", safely and it can be left at the destination when the mission is finished.

As for setting up a permanent settlement on Mars. What would they do there? They would be completely isolated, living in little huts in a desert with no air outside. They would die from boredom. Sure there are people who voluntarily live in cloisters and stuff, so there are probably those who could and would do it, but why would anyone else pay for it.

Colonising Mars? No atmosphere, no magnetic field, no water. Terra-forming isn't realistic. I guess you could have people living in pressurised underground structures. But how would the colonists construct them and set up the necessary manufacturing facilities and mining operations (for the raw materials) without massive support from Earth. It's not going to happen any time soon.
 

Offline apis

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Re: Why SpaceX Are Going to Beat NASA to Mars
« Reply #91 on: July 20, 2018, 07:52:30 pm »
I didn't like Andy Weirs new book about the moon as much as The Martian, but his description of a practical colony on the moon sounds at least realistic compared to setting up a Mars colony.
We can get a lot more tonnage to the moon much cheaper and quicker, and tourists could take realistic two week long vacations there.
Mars is more hospitable to larger scale colonisation for sure, but several orders of magnitude more tricky.
Haven't read that book (yet  :)) but I agree, a permanent settlement on the moon makes much more sense than a base on Mars, as well as a bigger space station in earth orbit. And there are actually both scientific and economic applications for a moon base.
 

Online GeorgeOfTheJungle

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Re: Why SpaceX Are Going to Beat NASA to Mars
« Reply #92 on: July 20, 2018, 08:00:57 pm »
Colonising Mars? No atmosphere, no magnetic field, no water. Terra-forming isn't realistic. I guess you could have people living in pressurised underground structures. But how would the colonists construct them and set up the necessary manufacturing facilities and mining operations (for the raw materials) without massive support from Earth. It's not going to happen any time soon.



« Last Edit: July 20, 2018, 09:02:26 pm by GeorgeOfTheJungle »
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Offline Nusa

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Re: Why SpaceX Are Going to Beat NASA to Mars
« Reply #93 on: July 20, 2018, 08:21:08 pm »
... There isn't even any scientific reason to send humans to Mars; ....

There are all sorts of scientific reasons to send humans to Mars. Nearly everything that happens to those humans in that environment, and much of what they see and do, would be scientific data that's unobtainable anywhere else. It doesn't stop being science just because it's expensive as hell and may not happen in our lifetimes.
 

Offline apis

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Re: Why SpaceX Are Going to Beat NASA to Mars
« Reply #94 on: July 20, 2018, 08:26:38 pm »
... There isn't even any scientific reason to send humans to Mars; ....

There are all sorts of scientific reasons to send humans to Mars. Nearly everything that happens to those humans in that environment, and much of what they see and do, would be scientific data that's unobtainable anywhere else. It doesn't stop being science just because it's expensive as hell and may not happen in our lifetimes.
But the same data can be collected by robots for a fraction of the cost and risk, so there is no reason to send humans.
« Last Edit: July 20, 2018, 08:33:34 pm by apis »
 

Offline wraper

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Re: Why SpaceX Are Going to Beat NASA to Mars
« Reply #95 on: July 20, 2018, 08:45:56 pm »
But the same data can be collected by robots for a fraction of the cost and risk, so there is no reason to send humans.
Nope, it cannot. Unless artificial general intelligence is developed. And not such which runs remotely on earth but which can be shipped to Mars.
 

Offline Nusa

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Re: Why SpaceX Are Going to Beat NASA to Mars
« Reply #96 on: July 20, 2018, 08:49:24 pm »
... There isn't even any scientific reason to send humans to Mars; ....

There are all sorts of scientific reasons to send humans to Mars. Nearly everything that happens to those humans in that environment, and much of what they see and do, would be scientific data that's unobtainable anywhere else. It doesn't stop being science just because it's expensive as hell and may not happen in our lifetimes.
But the same data can be collected by robots for a fraction of the cost and risk, so there is no reason to send humans.
Did you even read what I wrote? Let me know when a robot can collect data on how humans function in a Martian environment without having humans in a Martian environment.
 

Offline apis

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Re: Why SpaceX Are Going to Beat NASA to Mars
« Reply #97 on: July 20, 2018, 09:19:07 pm »
... There isn't even any scientific reason to send humans to Mars; ....

There are all sorts of scientific reasons to send humans to Mars. Nearly everything that happens to those humans in that environment, and much of what they see and do, would be scientific data that's unobtainable anywhere else. It doesn't stop being science just because it's expensive as hell and may not happen in our lifetimes.
But the same data can be collected by robots for a fraction of the cost and risk, so there is no reason to send humans.
Did you even read what I wrote? Let me know when a robot can collect data on how humans function in a Martian environment without having humans in a Martian environment.
Alright, sure, you need to send a human to see how a human function in a martian environment ;D. I really doubt anyone is going to want to spend the money required just to get the answer to that question though.

But the same data can be collected by robots for a fraction of the cost and risk, so there is no reason to send humans.
Nope, it cannot. Unless artificial general intelligence is developed. And not such which runs remotely on earth but which can be shipped to Mars.
Why not? What a human would be doing is collecting rock/soil samples and operating the measurement equipment that was prepared back on earth. A robot (remote controlled from earth) can do that as well (that's what the mars rovers have been doing). A human might be better at it but not enough that it motivates the extra cost/risk.
 

Offline wraper

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Re: Why SpaceX Are Going to Beat NASA to Mars
« Reply #98 on: July 20, 2018, 09:27:54 pm »
Why not? What a human would be doing is collecting rock/soil samples and operating the measurement equipment that was prepared back on earth. A robot (remote controlled from earth) can do that as well (that's what the mars rovers have been doing). A human might be better at it but not enough that it motivates the extra cost/risk.
Results of what could be done with robots is pretty evident as they were already sent. The answer is - not that much. Something very simple for a human often is extremely difficult for a robot. Robots are good for doing tasks which are easily automated and need high volume of repeated operations. But general tasks are extremely difficult for them.
« Last Edit: July 20, 2018, 09:31:17 pm by wraper »
 

Offline apis

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Re: Why SpaceX Are Going to Beat NASA to Mars
« Reply #99 on: July 20, 2018, 09:35:54 pm »
Why not? What a human would be doing is collecting rock/soil samples and operating the measurement equipment that was prepared back on earth. A robot (remote controlled from earth) can do that as well (that's what the mars rovers have been doing). A human might be better at it but not enough that it motivates the extra cost/risk.
Results of what could be done with robots is pretty evident as they were already sent. The answer is - not that much. Something very simple for a human often is extremely difficult for a robot. Robots are good for doing tasks which are easily automated and need high volume of repeated operations. But general tasks are extremely difficult for them.
What specifically is it you need a human for that you couldn't have a remote controlled robot do? (And something that couldn't just as well be done here on earth, the ISS or on the moon)

Compare with what the astronauts on the moon did for example.
« Last Edit: July 20, 2018, 09:40:00 pm by apis »
 


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