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A-L-E-X
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27 Sep 2017 12:03

Anthro_Danielle wrote:
Hi A-L-E-X - it's always so wonderful to hear your thoughts and perspectives!

A-L-E-X wrote:
Source of the post I think we're entering a new era of awareness, with access to so much information, you get a better idea of what's going on and can better prepare for the future.  Humanity has had to learn that rather than fight the environment and nature we have to learn to live with it because we are a part of it.  Fighting it is the same as fighting ourselves.

Another thing which you just reminded me about is how important creativity is in science- not just for making new discoveries but also fostering interest in science.  Knowledge might nurture the mind but creativity soothes the soul, and I find that when both are used together, they make for an explosive combination to explore undiscovered lands.

I like the way you put it, a new era of awareness - I guess (correct me if this wasn't what you meant though) that's kind of a cool way of looking at it, it suggests new kinds of awareness, new paradigms or perspectives, which I think we do have and are finding/making now (simply having a view of Earth from space, being able to collect all kinds of data over long periods of time and across cases ie., Earth observation and monitoring, and from that being able to infer all kinds of complex and subtle or slow trends, patterns, and developments). Accessing and thinking about things in these ways, with these tools, at these scales, seems relatively novel! But it's also not just automatically good, it can be complicated with multiple outcomes in different cases, so I guess I kind of like the frame of 'awareness', maybe compared to something like 'improvement' or 'revolution'? I'm not sure if I'm communicating that super clearly, kind of just thinking through it myself!

I love your points about creativity! As part of the scientific process, and also for getting people involved and invested in that scientific process! Inspiration, stories, positive feelings and experiences, personal relevance and the 'human touch' all seem to play such a key role in motivating people to get into (space) science, and are also prioritised now by many science communicators (rather than just like, provision of facts to correct knowledge gaps in the public, for example). Finding the best ways to creatively engage people like this for which outcomes, can be a challenge, and is one I think practitioners are starting to grapple with more concretely - like just giving people a positive encounter with science, or sharing a really relevant and engaging story, are really wonderful! But what are the desired outcomes in those specific cases? Getting people to get on scientific career tracks themselves? Or getting them to attend more events, or lean a certain way or certain policies or matters of public opinion & voting? Which approaches best suit specific goals, and the best ways to implement them to achieve those goals optimally, is a pretty interesting challenge and topic of discussion at the moment, and it's pretty interesting seeing the different ways people try to optimise or fine-tune their own approaches and work as they go for desired outcomes.

I think social media helps heighten the awareness because people function more as a global community instead of how things were in the past, which was mostly within the artificial borders created by whatever society they live in,.  It's really great to see all different perspectives, I believe it not only leads to accelerated learning about the outside world, it also helps us understand ourselves better!
I think it's extremely important to communicate science effectively to the public, because if that isn't done than there will be other influences which have their own reasons for doing so (climate change denialists for example.)  A scientifically literate society is the only kind which is sustainable, as only a rational long-term approach can help maintain the natural balance that we all need to exist.
 
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Anthro_Danielle
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15 Oct 2017 23:42

A-L-E-X, You make some really great points about the different ways in which using social media affects or feeds into our awareness. I thought about what you said in terms of these key words - do you think this is a fair distinction?
  • Accessibility (we can access more different content from around the world, easily)
  • Connection/Sociality (forming a larger 'global community' that we can interact with, not just bound to one small physical locality like town or country)
  • Reflexivity (access to wider perspectives gives us better knowledge about ourselves)
A-L-E-X wrote:
Source of the post I think it's extremely important to communicate science effectively to the public, because if that isn't done than there will be other influences which have their own reasons for doing so (climate change denialists for example.)  A scientifically literate society is the only kind which is sustainable, as only a rational long-term approach can help maintain the natural balance that we all need to exist.

Thanks for articulating your opinions about science communication so clearly, I think it's probably really important to factor in those kinds of large-scale perspectives when we're considering or evaluating scicomm outcomes - like, maybe it is harder to really clearly quantify big, general outcomes like increased exposure/access/influence to science or increased literacy, and maybe increasing those things doesn't necessarily always directly correlate to clear and concrete outcomes amongst the public (like people taking up careers in science, or increased enrolment in science courses, or better performance on tests of scientific understanding, or statistics on public involvement in science policy lobbying, etc.), but it might still be important in terms of just setting general societal attitudes and understandings, and in preventing certain negative shifts that might occur if we don't counter them (like rise of climate change denialists, etc.).

Thanks for sharing your thoughts, I'm loving these discussions!
 
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26 Nov 2017 15:22

I wish I could help out but I'm only 17...
I could provide kind of a unique perspective since my life so far has been, lets say...not normal. So the way I see things is probably a bit different than most my age, including those in this sort of space-based community. I also do plan to have a career based in space, whether it be a sub-field of theoretical astrophysics or something more art/CGI-based and am in the closing weeks of my first college semester...
But I guess I can't participate, as you said only 18 or over, and I suppose that's fine, it might not even be of your choice, I don't know, but if there's anything I can do to help just ask.
Search the skies for a new home
As the old one burns
In ashen skies and firey night
The void my only savior
I, am the lone, space pioneer.
 
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13 Jan 2018 09:05

Anthro_Danielle wrote:
And no, I haven't been on Paul Carr's podcasts, but I sure would love to! That is another super interesting project, and gosh don't you just love the internet?? I think that over the next year as fieldwork (for this project at least) finished, and I get stuck into analysis, it will be really important to not just try to crank out the thesis (cause who really cares or is going to see that, right?), but also to try to make what is useful about it and the findings available in accessible forms, and I like the thought of avenues like those kinds of shows and communities! So again, on that note, I welcome suggestions for key issues, practical applications, things that it would be useful to have explored or found out, cause it's great when research is actually relevant to people outside of academia~ @[email protected]

Totally!
Sorry it took me so long to get back to you, I've been busy with school as you can imagine. I can send you Paul's contact details for the podcast privately. I helped him a little bit with the KIC 8462852 (aka Tabby's Star or Boyajian's Star) wiki on the /r/KIC8462852 sub-Reddit.
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Anthro_Danielle
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22 Jan 2018 22:18

SpacePioneer wrote:
I wish I could help out but I'm only 17...
I could provide kind of a unique perspective since my life so far has been, lets say...not normal. So the way I see things is probably a bit different than most my age, including those in this sort of space-based community. I also do plan to have a career based in space, whether it be a sub-field of theoretical astrophysics or something more art/CGI-based and am in the closing weeks of my first college semester...
But I guess I can't participate, as you said only 18 or over, and I suppose that's fine, it might not even be of your choice, I don't know, but if there's anything I can do to help just ask.

Hey SpacePioneer - I'd love to hear your thoughts of course - unfortunately the age restriction is an institutional ethics requirement. Working with people who are legally minors requires more detailed and different kinds of ethics clearance which this project doesn't have >.> But even though I'll roll out a survey and then start analysis and writing very soon, I'll stay logged on and present here this year, so when you do turn 18 feel free to jump in, it would be so great to hear from you!!
 
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Anthro_Danielle
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22 Jan 2018 22:31

jadestar wrote:
Source of the post Sorry it took me so long to get back to you, I've been busy with school as you can imagine. I can send you Paul's contact details for the podcast privately. I helped him a little bit with the KIC 8462852 (aka Tabby's Star or Boyajian's Star) wiki on the /r/KIC8462852 sub-Reddit.

jadestar - never apologise for having an exciting and busy and full life! I hope school is going well :)

That work on the Tabby's star subreddit is super interesting! I'd love to hear more about what you did with it - are you an active member of the subreddit? If there's anything you'd be willing to share here/over DMs I would love to hear it! Everything's starting to hit this weird point in fieldwork where I'm finding everyone from my separate case studies and fieldwork sites are separated by like, only one degree of separation, and it's kind of freaky and kind of fun to explore all the overlaps of this big weird wonderful space community!
 
A-L-E-X
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26 Jan 2018 13:17

jadestar wrote:
Anthro_Danielle wrote:
And no, I haven't been on Paul Carr's podcasts, but I sure would love to! That is another super interesting project, and gosh don't you just love the internet?? I think that over the next year as fieldwork (for this project at least) finished, and I get stuck into analysis, it will be really important to not just try to crank out the thesis (cause who really cares or is going to see that, right?), but also to try to make what is useful about it and the findings available in accessible forms, and I like the thought of avenues like those kinds of shows and communities! So again, on that note, I welcome suggestions for key issues, practical applications, things that it would be useful to have explored or found out, cause it's great when research is actually relevant to people outside of academia~ @[email protected]

Totally!
Sorry it took me so long to get back to you, I've been busy with school as you can imagine. I can send you Paul's contact details for the podcast privately. I helped him a little bit with the KIC 8462852 (aka Tabby's Star or Boyajian's Star) wiki on the /r/KIC8462852 sub-Reddit.

Very interesting work right there :)  I was looking for some 3D modeling on that star.
 
A-L-E-X
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26 Jan 2018 13:19

Anthro_Danielle wrote:
A-L-E-X, You make some really great points about the different ways in which using social media affects or feeds into our awareness. I thought about what you said in terms of these key words - do you think this is a fair distinction?
  • Accessibility (we can access more different content from around the world, easily)
  • Connection/Sociality (forming a larger 'global community' that we can interact with, not just bound to one small physical locality like town or country)
  • Reflexivity (access to wider perspectives gives us better knowledge about ourselves)
A-L-E-X wrote:
Source of the post I think it's extremely important to communicate science effectively to the public, because if that isn't done than there will be other influences which have their own reasons for doing so (climate change denialists for example.)  A scientifically literate society is the only kind which is sustainable, as only a rational long-term approach can help maintain the natural balance that we all need to exist.

Thanks for articulating your opinions about science communication so clearly, I think it's probably really important to factor in those kinds of large-scale perspectives when we're considering or evaluating scicomm outcomes - like, maybe it is harder to really clearly quantify big, general outcomes like increased exposure/access/influence to science or increased literacy, and maybe increasing those things doesn't necessarily always directly correlate to clear and concrete outcomes amongst the public (like people taking up careers in science, or increased enrolment in science courses, or better performance on tests of scientific understanding, or statistics on public involvement in science policy lobbying, etc.), but it might still be important in terms of just setting general societal attitudes and understandings, and in preventing certain negative shifts that might occur if we don't counter them (like rise of climate change denialists, etc.).

Thanks for sharing your thoughts, I'm loving these discussions!

Well to be honest I'd like for all lobbying to be made illegal (as well as large political donations lol), we have a lot of bad that happens because of lobbying and money in politics.
Learning science for the pure sake of learning it, without the taint of money being involved is what I find to to be the best and purest way of learning :)
 
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Anthro_Danielle
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19 Feb 2018 23:38

A-L-E-X wrote:
Source of the post Learning science for the pure sake of learning it, without the taint of money being involved is what I find to to be the best and purest way of learning :)

I think that's such an important point, and a really important question to be asking of our knowledge-production processes and institutions at the moment! The constraints that scientific research have to be done under are huge, and clearly shape possibilities and outcomes. Without industry funding or some kind of benefactor it's almost impossible to run a project at larger scales, and with funding of course the kinds of research questions, focii, outcomes, products are often limited to needing to align with the interests of whatever that funding body is. And then the pressures of competitive neoliberal academia, well you need to be publishing publishing publishing, and probably not sharing the secret ingredients to whatever you're building your unique career on, so are ideas and data being fully explored and developed before publication? Are they being published and disseminated in most/maximally accessible and effective forms? Are many researchers getting to effectively access and collaborate on the project? These are all good questions... But of course it's maybe not just as simple as 'tapping out' because if you want to actually do the research and do the science, there are maybe only so many places where it's happening, and you don't necessarily get the choice about *how* that happens. >.>
 
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Starlight Glimmer
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05 Mar 2018 03:00

When it comes to space....I've liked it ever since I was a little boy. Star trek, the various series were the staple of my elementary years.

I like it because it gives me hope, hope that humanity can one day find a better way then greed and corporations. I just like the sheer sensation of the unknown, imagining what could be out there, making my own worlds. I believe that if we can get our minds in gear on earth, that space will be ours to explore. 

I often imagine myself being one of the members of a ship. A ship miles long, and with thousands of people on board, departed from earth, headed to an exoplanet to find a better home. Such a ship would be completely independent of any intersteller authority. Such as Earth. These people will be selected for this mission, and will probably be trained in various fields and will adapt to whatever new home they encounter

When it comes to spaceengine, I've played it for many years. Ever since 2014 I believe. I just like to go off and explore, and see what I can find in it. Though more recently I use it to create worlds which you can see in my addons thread. When it comes to social media, I prefer forums and discord, the more 'traditional' like twitter, facebook, instagram, etc. Just isn't for me. I like the private 1x1 with people and the small, tight nit communities in various servers on discord and forums. But I still prefer Discord over forums. I like privacy. 

Social Media has many positives, but it can also be used for many negatives, which is why I believe that the youth, like the middle school and below shouldn't be allowed to access it. And that kids shouldn't have social medias. I think it needs to be regulated to some extent.
 
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Anthro_Danielle
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26 Mar 2018 00:31

Hey Starlight Glimmer! I really appreciate you sharing your thoughts and stories, thank you so much.

Starlight Glimmer wrote:
Source of the post I like it because it gives me hope, hope that humanity can one day find a better way then greed and corporations. I just like the sheer sensation of the unknown, imagining what could be out there, making my own worlds. I believe that if we can get our minds in gear on earth, that space will be ours to explore.

I feel you~ This feeling of hope is such an interesting thing, and interesting issue too. Sometimes it can almost feel or sound very romantic or idealistic, like maybe even to the point that it's almost far-fetched, or really... far away from serious issues and problems that face us in the here and now. Like, dreaming of space travel is all well and good, but what if we spent our time and resources on redressing other very specific, pressing social and systemic problems here on Earth right now? Is it a bit of a waste of time, or maybe indulgent or something. This kind of thing is a criticism or counterpoint it's not uncommon to see, right?

And to an extent I am sensitive to that - important issues are being pointed to. But I also feel you on the hope. And the power of those ideals, real Star Trek style. Like... we're not better right now. And it's very easy for us to be banal and cruel and terrible without even thinking about it. But we *could* be better... And I do feel like the sense of possibility, of knowing that things could be different to how they are now, is really powerful! Why bother doing anything without that?

Starlight Glimmer wrote:
Source of the post When it comes to spaceengine, I've played it for many years. Ever since 2014 I believe. I just like to go off and explore, and see what I can find in it. Though more recently I use it to create worlds which you can see in my addons thread. When it comes to social media, I prefer forums and discord, the more 'traditional' like twitter, facebook, instagram, etc. Just isn't for me. I like the private 1x1 with people and the small, tight nit communities in various servers on discord and forums. But I still prefer Discord over forums. I like privacy.

This makes sense to me! Really classic social media platforms definitely have different feels, very public-facing and public in nature, managing lots of different relationships all at once. There is something about more old school forums and chat groups that feels good (partially nostalgia? XD). I wonder if you could clarify one point for me - you mentioned you prefer discord in this comment, but in the other thread you sort of suggested the most of the users you know are on the forums specifically and that you don't interact with other users outside of the forums - do you mean that overall as a platform type, you prefer discord to forums, but in the case of SE you prefer or are most engaged with the forums? I'm sorry if I'm misunderstanding, you don't have to say more, of course, I just want to do my best to understand you properly and am no sure if I've done that XD

Starlight Glimmer wrote:
Source of the post Social Media has many positives, but it can also be used for many negatives, which is why I believe that the youth, like the middle school and below shouldn't be allowed to access it. And that kids shouldn't have social medias. I think it needs to be regulated to some extent.

I absolutely agree that it is super complex - there are aspects that seem clearly functional, positive, or good, and some that seem clearly not so much, but then the same tech and social systems that are doing good in one context or use are often also an absolute nightmare or seriously concerning in another. Really critical and engaged public conversation and education about how we should be using these tools and technologies, but also about how they themselves work and are built, is a really pressing issue, I think, so that pressure for regulation that actually serves the people and not just big corporations can kind of be built up.

The idea that tech in social contexts is automatically like, value-neutral, especially when it and all our data might be owned by companies we have very little control over, and which work in ways we can't access or know about but can only reverse-engineer or guess at, is so pervasive and really important to discuss and pull apart a bit. Which we're maybe seeing this week with the Cambridge Analytica scandal? I hope these discussions can continue and maybe prompt something like increased and better targeted regulation, and not just fizzle out in a few weeks!

Thanks so much for stopping by and chatting!
 
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Starlight Glimmer
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26 Mar 2018 03:25

Anthro_Danielle wrote:
Hey Starlight Glimmer! I really appreciate you sharing your thoughts and stories, thank you so much.

Starlight Glimmer wrote:
Source of the post I like it because it gives me hope, hope that humanity can one day find a better way then greed and corporations. I just like the sheer sensation of the unknown, imagining what could be out there, making my own worlds. I believe that if we can get our minds in gear on earth, that space will be ours to explore.

I feel you~ This feeling of hope is such an interesting thing, and interesting issue too. Sometimes it can almost feel or sound very romantic or idealistic, like maybe even to the point that it's almost far-fetched, or really... far away from serious issues and problems that face us in the here and now. Like, dreaming of space travel is all well and good, but what if we spent our time and resources on redressing other very specific, pressing social and systemic problems here on Earth right now? Is it a bit of a waste of time, or maybe indulgent or something. This kind of thing is a criticism or counterpoint it's not uncommon to see, right? 

Hmm. If we were to address said issues I feel it would take a long long time. However we could do both at the same time if we put our minds to it. If we all focus on one thing, or 2 things. Things would really get done. My example is the Vulcans from star trek. They were once like us and they had their wars and such for many thousand years. However one day there was a following lead by a reformer to embrace logic and peace. This idelogy spread throughout their people and the wars ceased and they spent a few centuries on mopping up their planet. If we embrace logic and peace, we could do the same. We must suppress our base ape like instincts.

And to an extent I am sensitive to that - important issues are being pointed to. But I also feel you on the hope. And the power of those ideals, real Star Trek style. Like... we're not better right now. And it's very easy for us to be banal and cruel and terrible without even thinking about it. But we *could* be better... And I do feel like the sense of possibility, of knowing that things could be different to how they are now, is really powerful! Why bother doing anything without that?

The way I see it, personally is that the elite rich people leading our world do not care about our success, they only care about themselves. I'll leave it at that, heh.

Starlight Glimmer wrote:
Source of the post When it comes to spaceengine, I've played it for many years. Ever since 2014 I believe. I just like to go off and explore, and see what I can find in it. Though more recently I use it to create worlds which you can see in my addons thread. When it comes to social media, I prefer forums and discord, the more 'traditional' like twitter, facebook, instagram, etc. Just isn't for me. I like the private 1x1 with people and the small, tight nit communities in various servers on discord and forums. But I still prefer Discord over forums. I like privacy.

This makes sense to me! Really classic social media platforms definitely have different feels, very public-facing and public in nature, managing lots of different relationships all at once. There is something about more old school forums and chat groups that feels good (partially nostalgia? XD). I wonder if you could clarify one point for me - you mentioned you prefer discord in this comment, but in the other thread you sort of suggested the most of the users you know are on the forums specifically and that you don't interact with other users outside of the forums - do you mean that overall as a platform type, you prefer discord to forums, but in the case of SE you prefer or are most engaged with the forums? I'm sorry if I'm misunderstanding, you don't have to say more, of course, I just want to do my best to understand you properly and am no sure if I've done that XD

What feels good about the 'old style' forums is more or less the sense of community. If a forums or some thing is too big there is no sense of that and I feel lost. But nostalgia is a part of it. In the case of SE I am more involved here, it is really the only place I see SE being a major topic of discussion. 

Starlight Glimmer wrote:
Source of the post Social Media has many positives, but it can also be used for many negatives, which is why I believe that the youth, like the middle school and below shouldn't be allowed to access it. And that kids shouldn't have social medias. I think it needs to be regulated to some extent.

I absolutely agree that it is super complex - there are aspects that seem clearly functional, positive, or good, and some that seem clearly not so much, but then the same tech and social systems that are doing good in one context or use are often also an absolute nightmare or seriously concerning in another. Really critical and engaged public conversation and education about how we should be using these tools and technologies, but also about how they themselves work and are built, is a really pressing issue, I think, so that pressure for regulation that actually serves the people and not just big corporations can kind of be built up.

Yes it is a pressing issue. It's one of the many things that need to be solved. Regulation of things should be done to some extent, really. 

The idea that tech in social contexts is automatically like, value-neutral, especially when it and all our data might be owned by companies we have very little control over, and which work in ways we can't access or know about but can only reverse-engineer or guess at, is so pervasive and really important to discuss and pull apart a bit. Which we're maybe seeing this week with the Cambridge Analytica scandal? I hope these discussions can continue and maybe prompt something like increased and better targeted regulation, and not just fizzle out in a few weeks!

Personally I feel betrayed by these companies. To them we are just the consumer, we are just the money maker and nothing else no matter what they say. The data should be owned by the people. 

Thanks so much for stopping by and chatting!

Responses in green. No problem!
 
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Anthro_Danielle
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20 Apr 2018 00:01

[color=#ffffff]Starlight Glimmer,

Hmm. If we were to address said issues I feel it would take a long long time. However we could do both at the same time if we put our minds to it.
[/color]

Yes, that's a good point! That addressing some of these different issues aren't necessarily mutually exclusive. I mean, so much space technology has direct relevance to everyday life on Earth, comprising critical infrastructures or having use/applicability to a range of social problems.

The way I see it, personally is that the elite rich people leading our world do not care about our success, they only care about themselves. I'll leave it at that, heh.

I'm with you on the logic and peace! Priorities definitely become an issue though, like depending where you sit on collectivism/relationality - individualism, and longterm - shortterm thinking, very different things are going to be logical or preferable for you or not... And certain kinds of systems and positions in society definitely seem to encourage or privilege one end of those scales rather than the other... 

What feels good about the 'old style' forums is more or less the sense of community. If a forums or some thing is too big there is no sense of that and I feel lost. But nostalgia is a part of it. In the case of SE I am more involved here, it is really the only place I see SE being a major topic of discussion.

Thank you for elaborating on your thoughts about the forum format. So it's nice in a nostalgic way, but also small or focussed or tight knit enough that it allows you to feel like you can get to know the people and conversations, and to get involved?

Personally I feel betrayed by these companies. To them we are just the consumer, we are just the money maker and nothing else no matter what they say. The data should be owned by the people.

Data and 'the people' is *such* an interesting topic and issue. Like that data can be thought of as something like the products of the general public/civil society (as in, things produced by them), that we do/should rightfully own, and how this might affect industry structures and civil society and democracy is such a huge set of questions and issues for our time. A minor recommendation if you're interested in some of these issues - the Berkman Klein Center has a pretty good newsletter that rounds up and shares informed academic perspectives on topical news and developments (https://cyber.harvard.edu/)

Thanks for sharing!
 
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An'shur
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29 May 2018 16:13

Hello there. I am a soon-to-be 22 years old student of applied physics.


Anthro_Danielle wrote:
Source of the post Why space? What does it mean to you? Why does it interest you? What inspired you or sparked your original interest?

It is not easy to elaborate why am I interested in space. It is like when people ask me questions like why is black my favorite colour, or why do I like a particular smell or taste. I do not know how to immediately react to seemingly simple questions. One instance, when walking in a narrow, very thin passage flanked with various shops, a classmate asked me whether it stinks there or not. I answered a yes/no question with "I haven't ever thought about that", to which he wondered why am I so philosophical about it. I feel like interests and hobbies often just happen to be or not to be without a set reason. However, I will try provide a satisfactory answer to your other questions.

I can say for certain that I have been interested in space and astronomy since before elementary school. Not many people out of all are into astronomy, but I always managed to be in a class at school with at least one like-minded individual to share thoughts and knowledge with. My interest in space may stem from me being naturally curious about the unknown, and this unknown, space, is huge. That's where we get to what space means to me. The size and estimated age of the universe shows us how small and insignificant we are in comparison to it, that how very little we know and how much there is to discover and find out about how things work. Take the time since Galileo Galilei aimed his telescope at Jupiter and compared it's system of moons to the Solar system. About 400 years have passed since his discovery of Jupiter's array of moons, the miniature Solar system. The ratio of four hundred years to the age of the universe is the same as the ratio of time it takes me to water my chili pepper plants to my current age. You don't water your plants and look at them for about twenty seconds and suddenly become expert in how to care for them, what temperatures and humidity they prefer, how spicy are pots each species produces, and the list goes on... 20 seconds of looking is simply not enough to know all there is about chilies, just as 400 years is not enough to get to know all ins and outs of the universe. This is what fascinates me the most about space, how little we know.
 

Anthro_Danielle wrote:
Source of the post Your information & communication practices: How do you personally follow, learn about, and participate in space technology, science, and projects? Do you work or volunteer on any projects? How? Do you play any other space-related games? Lists, examples, or links are great and very much appreciated! How do you stay up-to-date with the space-related news and events that interest you? What news sites do you check, what newsletters do you subscribe to, what chats do you run, which podcasts and livestreams do you listen to/watch, which accounts, people, institutions, projects do you follow on social media, which channels and platforms? How do you learn new things to do with space? How do you access and share resources? What do your networks look like? How many people do you interact with? What kinds of content do you produce and share?

I have attended a summer camp focused on practical amateur astronomy six summer holidays in a row. Once I also participated in an astronomy olympiad while at high school. The results were not very.. overwhelming, but sufficient for my physics teacher who was in contact with employees of my city's local planetarium, so I was invited to prepare a few presentations for the public. One of them was about the life cycles of low and high mass stars. I did not get to present them myself, which I am glad for, since I am like a deer in the headlights in front of a crowd, but the planetarium offered me a course in astronomy for free, so why not attending it too. I did not proceed further, but it is experience what matters.

I occasionally play Freelancer, a game from 2003. Long story short, West and East wage a war for so long that nobody knows who started. Eventually, the East gains the upper hand and the West sees no other solution but to build five colony ships, fill them up with human colonists in stasis and escape the Solar system. They settle in Sirius Sector, a star cluster or whatever, each ship carrying a different nation. Eight centuries later, that's when the Freelancer campaign is set, the colonies are infiltrated by aliens called the Nomads and turned on one another to soften the humans up before they plan to come in themselves. Shocker, the aliens in the end lose.

I check up a few youtube channels. I would not say that I do so regularly, but I tend to check Vsauce and Kurzgesacht on occasion. I do not subscribe or take any other active part in most cases. I tend to just be the reader and watcher, meaning, I do not have my own platform, blog or anything in that sense. Space Engine forums is an exception, not that I am any active anyway. I prefer to read other peoples' discussions, rather than directly participate. However, when I discuss, it is fruitful. A good example would be me trying to figure out how to calculate luminosity curve for a pulsating variable star with Watsisname. It starts here and finishes on the next page. This dilema showed me that things are not always as simpe as they appear at first.


Anthro_Danielle wrote:
Source of the post SpaceEngine – why do you like it? Why and how do you use it? What do you think you learn, access, or ‘get’ out of it? How do you play and interact with others in the community (eg. Discussions on other forums or chat services, making/sharing mods, sharing music, sharing scientific or educational resources, etc.)?

Well this question is easier to answer, I like it for it's aim towards realism and it's high graphical quality. I use it to just fly around and mostly for creating stellar system addons for others to download. I am most fond of the planets from Stargate I have created, since it is my favorite series from childhood and I have also re-created Sirius Sector from the game Freelancer I mentioned above. Here is the link. What can I get out of it? I think it is like with other games, enjoyment, chilling down a bit.. you get the idea.


Anthro_Danielle wrote:
Source of the post Past, present, future possibilities for Humans: 1. Living and working with space and the environment; 2. Living and working with technology. What are contemporary issues in the space industry and its communities? What moments, events, people, organisations, companies, technologies, places, etc. were important or significant in the past? What about now? What about in the future – what do you think will be important? What possibilities and visions for the future of humans & space, humans & technology do you think would be the best? Worst? Most likely? Based on what – ie., how could we guarantee or avoid them? Have your visions or ideas been influenced by anything (like popular news stories, policy documents, movies or books, etc.)? Histories, stories, wild speculation, maps, links, videos, etc. are all great!!

Now I am going to get pessimistic and misanthropic.

It is at this moment, not possible to coexist with the environment. I see two main reasons. At first, Earth is inhabited by more people that it can sustain. Up to 50% of the world population lives in poverty, depending on how you define poverty. 10% is illiterate. There are not enough resources for us to use. The second reason is lack of will from above, governments and corporations. Only object of concern for these subjects is their wallet and power, no matter how much carbon dioxide and other waste is created. I do not think the planet can be rendered uninhabitable during one human lifetime, which brings me to the cause of why are we damaging the environment and not giving it nearly enough attention, we are incredibly short-sighted, not thinking about consequences in longer time frames.

Science and technology can be a tool for doing both good and harm. Unfortunately, scientific advance is primarily motivated by the desire for control, power and dominance over others, which we have inherited from animals. Animal packs have alphas, who lead. Other strong specimen fight and compete with alphas for power and territory. The difference between us and a wolf pack is, that wolves do not have weapons of mass destruction. Speaking of motivation for scientific advance, we have used a nuclear fission bomb in a war conflict, twice, sooner than the first nuclear reactor was grid-connected. Few years later we developed a hydrogen bomb, over half a century later we are still unable to use nuclear fusion to generate power. Granted, destruction is easier that construction, that is all about entropy, universe tends to become less organized, but that is a whole different topic. The point is, that war is the best motivation for scientific and technological advance. We may not have made it to the Moon in sixties without German research into ballistic missiles.

The main issue in space industry is the lack of funds. US military has much more than NASA, as an example.

Visions... I just hope than we won't replace nuclear weapons with death stars. I think the best way to make sure this won't happen, at least between humans, is to unify. I am speaking about a world government. It is currently impossible to implement due to all of our cultural, religious and other differences. I am afraid, at the present time, it seems that the most likely chain of events to install a world government is a couple more world wars with one side eventually emerging undoubtedly victorius, on the other hand, we may end up wiping ourselves out while doing this, given how resourceful are humans when it comes to looking for ways to neutralize the opponent.

Conclusion, there are two ways to a world government, quick and bloody, or slow, patient, in hope that humanity will come to it's senses and settle the differences some way else but wars. We need and must resolve our problems here on Earth first, before expanding into space.

I would like to dig into these question deeper, but right now my clock shows quarter to two. I hope you get something from this reading.

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