November 21, 2012
To date, just over 500 people have been to space--that is, approximately one out of every 14,000,000 people. In the next few years we should hope to see travel become much more accessible, at least to LEO, so that perhaps every town might have at least one astronaut, cosmonaut, or taikonaut. Then we will truly be living in the Age of Space. Within a few hundred years I can envision this leading to permanent habitation of Mars, something I have dreamed of since I was in grade school. Alas, I am unlikely to be one of these first settlers of our red neighbor, but I can imagine through my music how this might be experienced by those intrepid humans who do get to make that trip.
An asteroid or comet headed for Earth is the only large-scale natural disaster we can prevent. Working together to fund our Shoemaker NEO Grants for astronomers, we can help save the world.