Wednesday, July 11, 2007 and outer space

There's an excellent new site - for personalized news - where you can easily get news stories, video clips, photos, etc suited to your interests. If Digg is a bustling, often frenetic department store, think of thoof as an inviting boutique.

Once you sign up and start reading (free, and the easiest sign-up I've ever seen), thoof keeps track of your interests. They serve you a personalized page of stories, vids, links, etc that reflect what you like.

When I logged on for the first time, at least half a dozen a stories caught my eye - a piece about the worst sites on the Web, Harry Potter's first long kiss, and (of course) a story about iPhone were among them. But I decided to check out A Better Purpose for N.A.S.A. Space is one of my passions, and I've long thought that NASA could indeed be doing a much better job.

It's always a kick to find an article that you agree with wholeheartedly. Phil B. argues that NASA needs to set a much more ambitious agenda and framework (I won't say groundwork) for space colonization and settlement than it has done thus far. We need to learn how to work and live beyond our planet, not just explore. Efforts like the Biosphere II in Arizona need to be revamped and taken off of this world.

I also agree with Phil, and argue extensively in my own book, Realspace, that our efforts in space need to be less dependent on politicians. This is no easy task - government funding can launch a lot of space ships - but we have to make those ships and our habitats in space less hostage to a politician or party being voted in or out of office.

Had it not been for, I would not have seen this important article - it was posted on the philforhumanity blog more than nine months ago. I'll no doubt be contributing articles of my own to this great new site. Count me a happy participant, reader, and writer.

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