Of course, the real question is why anyone would want to put humans into space in the first place. As technology improves, so does the capabilities of unmanned vehicles. As AI improves, chances are 99% of situations can be better handled by computers than by panicking irrational humans. Furthermore, machines don’t need the weight & complexity of artificial gravity and they can be accelerated/decelerated much faster than would be safe for people, thus cutting journey times by a very significant amount.

We tend to fixate on Cowboys In Space because that’s the narrative of sci-fi. But in the real world, unmanned missions have given us 99% of what we know about the universe we live in, at a fraction of the cost of sending people into low Earth orbit. So let’s stop worrying about artificial gravity and instead begin to imagine all the incredible exploration we can do if we direct funds to better ends.

Anyone who enjoys my articles here on Medium may be interested in my books Why Democracy Failed and The Praying Ape, both available from Amazon.

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