Monday, February 21, 2011

Just how virtual have we become?

I am listening to Philip Sheppard's score for the movie "In The Shadow Of The Moon", a documentary movie covering the Apollo Mission to land men on the moon. Uplifting music, as it should be, given the incredible feats that were accomplished at the time.

Then I wondered what the response to Jack Kennedy's urgings on winning the space race would be today. I suppose modern society could achieve the same success, but at the same time I think the engineering practicalities have been thrown out with the baby and the bathwater. We think we can simulate better than we can act these days, though typical models seem to fail at even coming close to reality these days. Just think "global warming".

So, while I applaud NASA's commitment to forward planning in space, I do have to wonder if the capabilities of the 1960s have been lost by a generation accustomed to doing everything as a simulation.