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I think people miss the point of the article because the article itself doesn't make much sense.

The opening paragraph states that scientists have found Phosphine and what conclusions they have draw about it (aka possible life). The next paragraph starts with the author stating, I quote, "I'm skeptical". The reason given that a mars rock that got scientists all excited 90's turned out to be a dead end. Come on. Then the author rambles on about how unfeasible it would be to explore Venus compared to Mars as if that has anything to do with life on Venus.




>I think people miss the point of the article because the article itself doesn't make much sense.

Perhaps that's so. It certainly doesn't directly address scientific issues with the exploration/exploitation of Venus and/or Mars.

Rather, the main theme of the blog post seems to be: The challenges of exploring Venus/searching for life are metaphorically similar to current issues here on Earth (climate change, SARS-Cov2, etc.), while Mars represents the endless expansion/frontier attitudes of 18th-20th century mercantilism/capitalism.

As such, I found the post to be more about how humans think about solving problems and a plea for a new kind of thinking. As Lincoln put it: "The dogmas of the quiet past, are inadequate to the stormy present. The occasion is piled high with difficulty, and we must rise -- with the occasion. As our case is new, so we must think anew, and act anew. We must disenthrall ourselves, and then we shall save our country."

While I certainly don't disagree with the sentiment, I'm not convinced that the metaphor is a good one. Exploring/colonizing/exploiting off-world resources, regardless of where they might be, will require us to "...think anew, and act anew."

All that said, perhaps I completely misunderstood the blogger's point. But I don't think so.

Edit: Clarified the amount of sense I think the author of the blog post was making and cleaned up my own verbiage/reasoning.


(Post author here)

That's a good summary of what I was trying to say, and I appreciate the effort you put into deciphering my rambling style. This wasn't a post I expected to get much attention!


Hey, sorry about my knee-jerk reaction to your article. Makes more sense after reading the above post! Looking back it was well referenced, I just went down the wrong thought path. I should think about things more before commenting. :)


Thank you for writing it. Not enough of this sort of thinking on HN. Too much emphasis on the incrementalism of "pioneering the obvious". Not enough on the 10,000 foot view of the problem.


"Pioneering the obvious". What an intriguing phrase! I wish you would expound a little more.




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