Thomas Edison invented the lightbulb before there were lamps. Alexander Graham Bell created the telephone, but had nobody to call. And it seemed absurd when Bill Gates predicted there’d be a PC in every home. Thankfully, Al Gore came along to invent the internet.
At the time people questioned, ‘why do we need that?’
Some may scoff at virtual reality, electric cars, cryptocurrency and the metaverse. But we’re seeing a glimpse of the future. Those far-out ideas could break down walls for something profoundly greater.
So, we need visionary scouts on the next ridge. Our future lies in those who see the potential.
Here’s my take. I’m amused by people who say that space exploration is a waste of money. With so many problems here on Earth, why bother with life on other planets?
Here’s what they’re missing.
NASA is credited with more than 1,300 innovations; everything from baby formula to memory foam to water filters and home insulation. GPS was originally designed to locate satellites and enemy weapons. Now this tracking device is embedded in every cell phone and most cars. NASA engineers also developed the first camera phone, laptop, wireless headphones, gaming joystick and the computer mouse. They helped reinvent medical technology with the first CAT scan, insulin pump, heart transplant device and LASIK.
NASA developed a tool to suck up moon rocks, now known as a Dustbuster. Nike adopted astronaut shoes for their first Air Trainer sneakers. And LED lights were first used to grow plants aboard a spacecraft.
As for wasteful spending, NASA receives 0.48% of the federal budget (its lowest amount of funding in 60 years). But they always stick the landing.