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Aphelion Editorial 082

June 2004

by Dan L. Hollifield

The Usual Rant from the Aphelion Senior Editor

It seems like there just isn't enough time to do everything that needs to be done. Whenever I finish one task, five more pop up demanding my attention. And they all want to be done now! (Grin) How can I schedule everything that I need to do? Easy, I can't. I'll just have to do as much as I can and hope I run out of projects before I run out of time. Time is a non-renewable resource, unlike money. I can't just make more, earn more.

Scheduling time just to sit down and write has become a hassle. But I know I need to raise the priority on this item. I seem to spend an hour every day just dealing with e-mail and spam, then another hour catching up on the Aphelion Lettercol and the other few websites I check out regularly. Then I try to write something, anything, just to be writing. Eventually, I get things done. Its the offline tasks that keep eating away at my time. Some things will just have to go in order for me to make time for more important things.

Sort of like what NASA says it wants to do in order to go back to the Moon and then on to Mars. I absolutely hate the idea of allowing the Hubble telescope to die, to back out of the ISS, and to let the remaining shuttles turn to rust. I know that going to the Moon and Mars is going to take boatloads of money, and that corners are going to have to be cut to do it, but that still doesn't make the reality any more palatable. I'm hoping someone can come up with some alternatives before we lose anything irreplaceable.

I'm a firm believer that exploring space should be a world-wide project. We humans need the resources and we're going to need the room. And I also believe that new technological advances are going to come from all over the globe. The US is not going to be able to manage it alone. Besides, invention knows no national boundaries. (For instance; Tesla was Serbo-Croatian, Einstein was German- even though they worked in the US it is still a valid point. No country holds the patent on genius.) Someone needs to start looking at everything everyone is doing now, so we can eventually piece together the breakthroughs that will make the colonization of the Moon, the asteroids, Mars, orbital habitats, deep space probes, and everything that we've been reading about for years. Humanity has the need- not any one country on the planet, but all of us. We're going to have to learn to work together. Or we're just not going to be able to do the job. That's the bottom line from my personal point of view. Everyone is going to contribute a piece of the puzzle. Everyone will have to work together. I don't delude myself that the task of international cooperation will be easy, but if we humans want space exploration to remain more than the subject of entertainment then we're going to have to work together.

There really is no other way.


I now return you to your regularly scheduled reading...


2004 Dan L. Hollifield

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