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Wednesday, November 3, 2004 - 5:21amSanction this postReply
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Edward,

Excellent article!  Thank you so much for posting it.  I look forward to the day when spaceliners becomes as commonplace as airliners and oceanliners.


Luke Setzer

(Edited by Luther Setzer on 11/03, 6:03am)


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Wednesday, November 3, 2004 - 7:36amSanction this postReply
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Thanks for posting this article. It's good to see that amidst all the negative concerns about terrorism and the decline of Western civilization, space entrepeneurs like Diamandis, Allen and Bronson continue to pursue positive free-market ideals and stand to make a lot of money doing it!

-- Michelle


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Wednesday, November 3, 2004 - 7:53amSanction this postReply
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Thank you Luther and Michelle:

Yes, I looked at the list of articles I have posted at SOLO this year and the last half dozen or so have been polemical. I figured it was time to post something more positive.

:)

Ed

(Edited by Ed Younkins on 11/03, 7:54am)


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Sunday, September 24 - 5:10pmSanction this postReply
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A lot has happened since the original article was posted 13 years ago. I tried to get information to build a summary, but there is too much out there and it changes fast. Even Google was behind the curve. The best current information is in Wikipedia under "List of Private Spaceflight Companies." Some, such as SpaceX are launch vehicles, but there is more to the business than that. Bigelow Aerospace (here) built two modules for the ISS.  Bigelow founder, Robert T. Bigelow made his initial fortune in hospitality with Budget Suites of America.  (I mean, we're not just going there to ride around and come back, right?)  

 

It is pretty easy to heap coals on  NASA, as even I am wont to do, but they are far from a bloated government bureaucracy.  Remember that the loss of the Challenger was due to Martin Marietta's engineering managers. The failure of "group think" was first identified and labeled in Fortune because it plagues all organizations, even (or especially) business corporations. 

 

I look to the history of colonization. All the gold and silver looted by Spain made it poorer. Meanwhile, the English were happy to fish for cod off the coast of Newfoundland, and at first had no impetus to colonize.  If you lived the 100 years from 1580 to 1680 and looked back on your life, what could you predict for North America, even if you lived in North America? 

 

The extension of law will be fundamental to the successful colonization of outer space. Melinda Snodgrass wrote several science fiction stories about law in space (Circuit, Circuit Breaker) and she wrote the ST:NG episode "Measure of a Man."  



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