This Morning’s Moon, 9/5/20

What it looked like from Ohio this morning. Maybe it’s the science fiction author in me talking, but one day I think people will live there, not just on a base but on a permanent basis. And as wild as that (still) is, for them, it will just be… life. That’s the interesting part to me.

Hope you are all enjoying your Labor Day weekend so far.

— JS

19 Comments on “This Morning’s Moon, 9/5/20”

  1. Agreed. I can only hope that they will have purple hair and go-go boots like they did in the 1960’s TV show UFO.

    Now that would be cool!

  2. Can’t happen soon enough. Ever since I read “The Menace From Earth” by RAH, I’ve wanted to be able to “fly” in the air reservoir caves. And the low gravity seems like an excellent place for a retirement community. I’m pushing 70 and the various aches and pains are starting to get annoying.

  3. I just finished Mary Robinette Kowal’s THE RELENTLESS MOON which I LOVED hardcore. So yeah, I also think people will live there on a permanent basis. I would love to see that!

  4. John, as a Jersey boy who grew up with the idea that Jersey tomatoes were the best, I always fantasized about being the first man to grow tomatoes on the moon. 1/6 gravity! Imagine the pizza! The spaghetti sauce!! I still have a boxful of all the Time, Life, National Geographic and New York Times articles when we first landed on the moon in 1969 when I was ten years old. We will not only live there, but we will overcrowd it as our silly rabbit-like humanity tends to do with every living space!

  5. There’s a futuristic Risk-type (i.e. Risk-rip off) board game that lets players build a launch facility and colonize the moon…and then, depressingly, fight over it.
    Or the inhabitants could build an amusement park with singing animatronic whalers.
    So, yep – just life.

  6. I still have my moon map, given out free at MacDonald’s restaurant while the three were still on the way there. Years later I later I used it to track events in The Cat Who Walked Through Walls.

    Also I remember, “Is the impossible about to become possible?” when a magazine showed a desert with a bug-like machine being tested to be a lunar lander, to be used in the future.

  7. When Armstrong and Aldrin landed on the Moon, my teenage self just assumed that the consensus SF reality of a straight line toward a lunar colony and then Mars missions and a Martian colony would come to pass. The fact that it hasn’t is one of the worst errors we’ve made as a species. I didn’t expect, but I hoped, then, that I’d work on the Moon one day, or at least get to retire there.

  8. I just came back from taking out the trash. The Moon and Mars are practically on top of each other tonight. Hopefully, you can get a good view Sunday morning.

  9. I was a Space 1999 fan. I think it’s time we took the moon for a flight away from here.

  10. I saw the first episode of Netflix’ Away last night, with attempts to show low gravity, well-intentioned, but, the dropping of the book was off. Also no conversation lag. I remember seeing them on the moon, back when, and the gravity was clearly … different. Anyhow, the moon looked much whiter to me, in the sky–are there special effects going on?

  11. Your fellow Ohioan Isaac Arthur suggested that the moon would be our industrial base with workers on rotation (because of bad side effects of low gravity) but with their homes on an O’Neill cylinder nearby. His videos are most convincing.

  12. I admit it would be cool to have some bases there. Research bases like we have in Antarctica could be interesting; and I could see some scenarios where constructing or servicing spacecraft on a surface that had a substantially shallower gravity well than Earth’s could be useful. If costs came down (or the super-rich got interested) there could even be some possibilities for tourism.

    Near term, I don’t see realistic scenarios for many people living permanently on the Moon, but perhaps if we get Earth into decent, stable shape we’ll have enough surplus and technological advancement to subsidize Moon colonies, and maybe eventually manage to make some self-sustaining. (I realize that Kowal’s stories, and many others before hers, instead imagine we divert lots of resources into settling people elsewhere because Earth is becoming uninhabitable. While I’m willing to suspend my disbelief reading her books because it’s fun to imagine close-to-now space colonies, I also see at least some of the hand-waving involved.)

  13. Sure, it would be cool, but there is no economic justification for living on the Moon and quite a few reasons to not do so. As far as non-economic justifications, you can see how far that takes you. NASA has been “returning to the Moon” since the administration of Bush the Younger. This is not a thing Congress is willing to spend money on.

    We have to face facts. Anything humans can do in space, robots can do cheaper and better. And it isn’t a national tragedy when a robot blows up. After we’ve climate changed ourselves into extinction, our robots will be all that is left.

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