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#1 2018-09-08 17:16:33

louis
Member
From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 3,939

How did you get interested in Mars & its colonisation/terraformation?

Not sure if this has ever been broached on this site before...although people may have volunteered info on joining...

What really brought you here?

For me the spark I think was really the 2003 close approach (opposition) - which apparently was one of the closest in millennia...I do remember seeing it hanging low in the southern sky beckoning my interest, a big (very big, compared with everything else) orangey dot in the sky. 

From that point onwards Mars got a hold on me - I got interested in the old, now defunct, Red Colony site (probably taking in the Mars Underground movement en route) and then came here.

Of course I had always had a strong interest in space exploration...but was very disappointed at the slow progress we saw after the moon landings...I always felt NASA had gone down a blind alley with the Space Shuttle but back in the day there was no internet to confirm one's suspicions...( I just looked up the last Space Shuttle flight and can't believe it was still going in 2011 - so that's 30 years of wasted effort! - awful! - can you imagine the demoralising effects of 30 years of no progress...).  I've never been convinced either by the ISS baloney. That's many wasted billions there, just to service a political project of dubious value.

The more I learnt about Mars, the more it seemed obvious to me that Mars is where we belong in the solar system, excepting our original home, and that spreading our money and effort across thousands of space projects makes no sense. What we need is focus.

Thankfully Musk at least has focus.

I think also the 9-11 thing, the death of a lot of hopes for a brighter future on Earth, followed by some horrendous wars,  certainly fed into my motivation to get interested in Mars, ironically the planet of war, according to the ancients.


Let's Go to Mars...Google on: Fast Track to Mars blogspot.com

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#2 2018-09-08 20:12:54

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 13,056

Re: How did you get interested in Mars & its colonisation/terraformation?

Ya I am a Space Nut since the Apollo missions, lunar landings, Shuttle launches and of the ISS but more so since finding a renewed efforts just to get back to the moon and then the hope of going to mars.

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#3 2018-09-08 20:29:07

RobertDyck
Member
From: Winnipeg, Canada
Registered: 2002-08-20
Posts: 5,484
Website

Re: How did you get interested in Mars & its colonisation/terraformation?

I grew up during the Space Race. I watched on TV with my mother the last 2 missions of Mercury, all of Gemini, and Apollo through the Apollo 11 Moon landing. I continued to be a fan and watched everything since. When I was a pre-schooler, I wanted to be an aerospace engineer. I wanted to be the engineer to design the spacecraft for the first human mission to Mars. That didn't happen. There weren't opportunities for Canadians in that field, or so I was told. And no aerospace engineering program at any university in my province. My parents couldn't afford to send me to university out of the city much less out of the province. Canadians were still depressed and hurt over cancellation of Avro Arrow; everyone convinced me there's no future in that field. So I went into computers. But it was still my dream to make a fortune, then I expected the computer field would collapse to a few giant companies in year 2000, so at that time I would shift to aerospace. That didn't happen. No fortune. Barely made ends meet.

In the spring of 1998, I met a friend for lunch at a cafe in a book store. I perused the book shelves while waiting for him to arrive. That's when I found "The Case for Mars". It was so exciting! It described "The Case for Mars" conferences which occurred every 3rd year, and later that summer was the next one. I couldn't afford to go. In June of 1999, I got a good paying job in Miami Florida. Thought I missed the conference, but when I checked the internet, I discovered "The Mars Society" has been founded at the 1998 conference. I joined the Society and became active on the first internet forum. Although the first convention I actually attended was 2002. I was so active in 1999 that Robert Zubrin thought I was a founding member. Technically I'm not since I wasn't at the conference in 1998.

I was quite ambitious and very active from the time I first joined in 1999 though 2005. I tried bidding on a few NASA contracts; got on their short-list a couple times, but never landed a contract. I founded the local chapter of the Mars Society, which remains active today. It's now the only remaining chapter in Canada that has remained continuously active.

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#4 2018-09-09 00:26:06

IanM
Member
From: Chicago
Registered: 2015-12-14
Posts: 251

Re: How did you get interested in Mars & its colonisation/terraformation?

I have family, and quite a family history, out west in Utah, San Diego, and formerly Grand Junction as well. I developed a keen interest in the Wild West from my experiences visiting them, and that interest essentially translated to Mars.


The Earth is the cradle of the mind, but one cannot live in a cradle forever. -Paraphrased from Tsiolkovsky

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#5 2018-09-09 03:20:27

louis
Member
From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 3,939

Re: How did you get interested in Mars & its colonisation/terraformation?

Yes. I think that is quite an important pull for Americans, that sense of creating a new "frontier". Certainly Britons with their long tradition of maritime exploration and adventure find some resonance in the idea of travelling such a long distance to explore new lands.


IanM wrote:

I have family, and quite a family history, out west in Utah, San Diego, and formerly Grand Junction as well. I developed a keen interest in the Wild West from my experiences visiting them, and that interest essentially translated to Mars.


Let's Go to Mars...Google on: Fast Track to Mars blogspot.com

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#6 2018-09-09 03:23:30

louis
Member
From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 3,939

Re: How did you get interested in Mars & its colonisation/terraformation?

So you are a long term Mars proponent on the net! smile I think many of us have been inspired by Zubrin.  He's the man who has really all the time said "Keep your eyes on the possible - and the possible is a much bigger place than you think." He has a great combination of vision and engineering. Mars won't happen without both.

RobertDyck wrote:

I grew up during the Space Race. I watched on TV with my mother the last 2 missions of Mercury, all of Gemini, and Apollo through the Apollo 11 Moon landing. I continued to be a fan and watched everything since. When I was a pre-schooler, I wanted to be an aerospace engineer. I wanted to be the engineer to design the spacecraft for the first human mission to Mars. That didn't happen. There weren't opportunities for Canadians in that field, or so I was told. And no aerospace engineering program at any university in my province. My parents couldn't afford to send me to university out of the city much less out of the province. Canadians were still depressed and hurt over cancellation of Avro Arrow; everyone convinced me there's no future in that field. So I went into computers. But it was still my dream to make a fortune, then I expected the computer field would collapse to a few giant companies in year 2000, so at that time I would shift to aerospace. That didn't happen. No fortune. Barely made ends meet.

In the spring of 1998, I met a friend for lunch at a cafe in a book store. I perused the book shelves while waiting for him to arrive. That's when I found "The Case for Mars". It was so exciting! It described "The Case for Mars" conferences which occurred every 3rd year, and later that summer was the next one. I couldn't afford to go. In June of 1999, I got a good paying job in Miami Florida. Thought I missed the conference, but when I checked the internet, I discovered "The Mars Society" has been founded at the 1998 conference. I joined the Society and became active on the first internet forum. Although the first convention I actually attended was 2002. I was so active in 1999 that Robert Zubrin thought I was a founding member. Technically I'm not since I wasn't at the conference in 1998.

I was quite ambitious and very active from the time I first joined in 1999 though 2005. I tried bidding on a few NASA contracts; got on their short-list a couple times, but never landed a contract. I founded the local chapter of the Mars Society, which remains active today. It's now the only remaining chapter in Canada that has remained continuously active.


Let's Go to Mars...Google on: Fast Track to Mars blogspot.com

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#7 2018-09-09 03:24:41

louis
Member
From: UK
Registered: 2008-03-24
Posts: 3,939

Re: How did you get interested in Mars & its colonisation/terraformation?

So it's always been space for you, and Mars is a particular focus of interest...that makes sense.

SpaceNut wrote:

Ya I am a Space Nut since the Apollo missions, lunar landings, Shuttle launches and of the ISS but more so since finding a renewed efforts just to get back to the moon and then the hope of going to mars.


Let's Go to Mars...Google on: Fast Track to Mars blogspot.com

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#8 2018-09-09 09:17:28

Terraformer
Member
From: Lancashire
Registered: 2007-08-27
Posts: 2,890
Website

Re: How did you get interested in Mars & its colonisation/terraformation?

I can't remember. Maybe Sci-Fi? I was quite young at the time.


"I guarantee you that at some point, everything's going to go south on you, and you're going to say, 'This is it, this is how I end.' Now you can either accept that, or you can get to work." - Mark Watney

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#9 2018-09-09 09:40:51

GW Johnson
Member
From: McGregor, Texas USA
Registered: 2011-12-04
Posts: 3,231
Website

Re: How did you get interested in Mars & its colonisation/terraformation?

For me it was going into space.  Not just Mars,  all the destinations.  There were sci fi books,  movies,  even the occasional TV show.  The Walt Disney shows about going to space were a big part of it,  as was Twilight Zone,  and an obscure TV series called "Men Into Space".  The rocket X-planes were flying in those days:  X-1,  X-2,  and the Skyrocket.  The X-15 and NASA's Mercury capsule came later.  Most of the military air fleets were still piston-prop in those days.

GW

Last edited by GW Johnson (2018-09-09 09:41:46)


GW Johnson
McGregor,  Texas

"There is nothing as expensive as a dead crew,  especially one dead from a bad management decision"

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#10 2018-09-09 20:42:17

Oldfart1939
Member
Registered: 2016-11-26
Posts: 1,548

Re: How did you get interested in Mars & its colonisation/terraformation?

I can trace my interest back to the original articles in Collier's Magazine, written by Werhner von Braun. "Across the Space Frontier," and subsequent articles a few years later about going to Mars. That was in 1952, by my recollection.

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