August 15th, 2013

There’s a lot of doom and gloom to be found lately, war, economic crisis, impending environmental catastrophe, and a dysfunctional congress being only just the first, most obvious points to hit. It’s easy to fall into an idea that humanity is kind of on a dead end trip. Recently, though, there was a tiny little story that carried with it the thought that there may, actually, be infinitely more ahead of us. NASA admitted that they have a tiny little project devoted to warp speed. Warp speed!

Not pretending to understand the first thing about physics, and knowing for certain everyone reading this knows more about it than I do, I can only repeat what I read. What I read, though, is that there is a small team at NASA that understands that new discoveries about the nature of the physical world must be made to achieve this science fictional goal, but that they kind of believe they can do it. That is, they believe that they can demonstrate the possibility of technology that fractionalizes the time it takes to travel between planets and stars.

I apologize for whatever ignorance I’m betraying here, I understand that I’m on shaky ground writing to tech people about science. This is a little bit exhilarating, though, from my humble layman’s point of view. Space travel could become more accessible, meaning that the frontiers could get burst wide open, with unimaginable possibilities lying in waiting. The things that made up the fantasies of my childhood could actually become practical realities. I feel foolish even writing this, and yet as I’m writing it to the people who brought us the weird and magical internet and all its wonders, I get the sense that maybe you understand. There’s a lot more possibility in the world than what we can see.

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