We are on the brink of a huge cultural shift. As governments worldwide flop around trying to Fix The Economy (tm) and make sure we all don't starve to death ...
... there are individuals spending trillions of dollars pushing the envelope of humankind's achievement. The whole of humankind. Not just padding their pockets.
Things that a few decades ago were barely within reach of the richest nation states.
MIT's Technology Review has just gotten news of a mysterious new project that claims it will "create a new industry and a new definition of 'natural resources.'" Space exploration company Planetary Resources will be unveiled in a conference call on Tuesday, April 24th. Besides the audacious announcement, which promises to "overlay two critical sectors — space exploration and natural resources — to add trillions of dollars to the global GDP," what makes this unique is its high-profile support group. The venture is backed by Google executives Larry Page and Eric Schmidt, director James Cameron, and politician Ross Perot's son, among others.
There have been only four successful dives:
- by the United States Navy (in 1960)
- [unmanned] by Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology (in 1996)
- [unmanned] by Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (in 2009)
- by James Cameron (in 2012)
I'm excited to report that, using state-of-the-art deep sea sonar, the team has found the Apollo 11 engines lying 14,000 feet below the surface, and we're making plans to attempt to raise one or more of them from the ocean floor. We don't know yet what condition these engines might be in - they hit the ocean at high velocity and have been in salt water for more than 40 years. On the other hand, they're made of tough stuff, so we'll see.
Elon Musk's Dragon gets green-light for launch to Space Station
This is going to be the first private spaceship to dock with the International Space Station. And if that's not enough, they are also the first private entity to be planning a manned Mars mission.
Even better ... the only entities to have ever put an object in orbit are (in order of first success):
- Soviet Union
- United States
- United Kingdom
- European Space Agency
- Elon Musk (spaceX)
Keep in mind, orbital capabilities put you 98% towards earth-to-earth ballistic missiles. All you need is a warhead.
I honestly can't decide whether this is more scary than awesome, or the other way around. On the one hand all of this is positively exciting - every young boy has read books about space and dreamed of being an astronaut. Even the deep sea always holds a special kind of allure.
At the same time ... listening to the news makes it seem like thusands of people are losing jobs every day. Unemployment is rising. Civil unrest is on the verge of causing a pretty big bang and everyone everywhere is unhappy with their governments, the state of the economy. Everything.
And yet, we have individuals with trillions of dollars to spend on bringing mankind closer to the sci-fi dream of the 1960's. Even the desire to do so!
Food for thought.
- Is James Cameron Investing In Asteroid Mining Project? (m.deadline.com)
- What Will Director James Cameron Do In Outer Space? [Space] (gizmodo.com)
- Google execs back mysterious space exploration startup (digitaltrends.com)
I write mindblowing emails with real insight into the career and skills of a modern software engineer. "Raw and honest from the heart!" as one reader described them. Fueled by lessons learned over 20 years of building production code for side-projects, small businesses, and hyper growth startups. Both successful and not.
Subscribe below 👇
Join Swizec's Newsletter and get mindblowing emails 💌 on mindsets, tactics, and technical skills for your career. Real lessons from building production software. No bullshit.
"Man, love your simple writing! Yours is the only newsletter I open and only blog that I give a fuck to read & scroll till the end. And wow always take away lessons with me. Inspiring! And very relatable. 👌"
Have a burning question that you think I can answer? Hit me up on twitter and I'll do my best.
Who am I and who do I help? I'm Swizec Teller and I turn coders into engineers with "Raw and honest from the heart!" writing. No bullshit. Real insights into the career and skills of a modern software engineer.
Want to become a true senior engineer? Take ownership, have autonomy, and be a force multiplier on your team. The Senior Engineer Mindset ebook can help 👉 swizec.com/senior-mindset. These are the shifts in mindset that unlocked my career.
Curious about Serverless and the modern backend? Check out Serverless Handbook, for frontend engineers 👉 ServerlessHandbook.dev
Want to Stop copy pasting D3 examples and create data visualizations of your own? Learn how to build scalable dataviz React components your whole team can understand with React for Data Visualization
Did someone amazing share this letter with you? Wonderful! You can sign up for my weekly letters for software engineers on their path to greatness, here: swizec.com/blog
By the way, just in case no one has told you it yet today: I love and appreciate you for who you are ❤️