Carl Sagan Was Looking to the Future

The great scientific thinker Carl Sagan always had a mind toward what lay ahead. He wanted to touch and describe what could not be reached, like the far away stars or the far distant future. He was always trying to get a glimpse of what lay beyond human reach and at the same time make people as excited for it as he was.

He did this through his writings and his many television appearances. In his book Cosmic Connection, Carl Sagan talk about what he envisioned the future to be like. Now, unlike many people of his time who wrote science fiction and based thier ideas of the future off of fantasies and dreams, Carl Sagan was basing his ponderings and prognostications off of scientific fact and where he saw the trends and the technology going.

He envisioned a world where robots would be mass produced, taking over some of the menial or more difficult jobs on Earth. He imagined they would be taking the job of housecleaning and other daily chores so that we would have more leisure time or more time for inventing and bettering ourselves. “This is a bit ironic because he often used local cleaning ladies that he wanted to personally support” says Henry who owns Cleaning Services Chicago.

Sagan also imagined an unmanned vehicle being sent to another planet. Perhaps it would be Mars, he surmised. He wasn’t wrong there. We are already seeing that happen. He recognized and respected that each country and each culture had their own view of space exploration. He knew that the idea of what space travel would be like in the future was open to interpretation, since there were several different space programs running during his lifetime, each with different goals and methods. Who would have thought that India would have been one of the next countries to make their way into space shortly after Sagan’s death?

Sagan was fearful of the advance of technology and space exploration being connected to warfare. He knew the space race between Russia and the United States was spurred on by the Cold War and it owed its very existence to hostilities between these two countries. He noted that a great many people involved in space programs would not even have their job had it not been for the opposing views of the other country.

What then would he think of the current US President’s Space Force? It’s military garb and focus on defense and vigilance can make it seem like a war readiness program more than an exploratory one. Would Sagan be uncomfortable with the future implications of such a program? He certainly had a lot to say about the militarization of space travel during his lifetime.

But he had an optimistic outlook for the future many times in his writing. He said that military involvement in space prams could work out for good, because it involved military personnel up in space rather than on earth fighting with one another. He believed that technology and people would advance despite the motives behind those advances and that many of the technologies of the future would find a way to be used for good.

Read our previous article here: http://carlsaganday.com/science/cosmos-the-documentary-that-changed-how-people-viewed-astronomy/

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